Is it Really just a Chemical Reaction?

"I love you," she said lifting her eyes to stare directly into his. They wrapped their arms around each other and shared a kiss. The entire office broke out into applause. The secretaries left their phones on hold, the computers were left unattended everyone was standing and cheering for the couple as they declared their love for each other.

It was so simple, just three little words. She loved him and he loved her back. They lived happily ever after, the end.

I dug my spoon into the carton of fat free ice cream I held in my hand. Fat free because if I had eaten a tub of ice cream every time I was dumped I would be three hundred pounds and feel even more miserable than I already was.

Why was it so simple in the movies? My phone rang and I threw the spoon back into the nearly empty container.

"Hello."

"Hey, whatcha doing?"

"Watching movies and eating a gallon of ice cream."

"Oh no, did something happen, with a member of the opposite sex I presume?"

"Yes," I choked. "Dean, he broke up with me."

"Dean? Wait, is that the guy you had two dates with?"

"Yes, and he said we shouldn’t have a third!"

"What happened?"

"He said I was too clingy or some stupid crap like that."

"And you’ve been watching romantic movies, eating chocolate mint ice cream, dressed in your pink and black plaid pajamas all day."

"No, They’re purple and black."

"I’ll be right over."

I was sprawled on the sofa watching Say Anything when Julie walked through the door. She looked sympathetic and pitying. I sat up to make room for her on the sofa.

She hugged me and said "Tell me everything." Julie was my friend since freshman year of high School and had went through a lot of break ups with me.

"I called him you know, to see when he wanted to go out again because he hadn’t called. He said I was too clingy I expected too much of him and that we shouldn’t see each other again."

"What did you do to make him think that?"

"Nothing," I said indigent. She stared at me with that I know-you-too-well expression on her face. "Okay, I may have...broken into his house through the skylight..."

"Monica...you can’t do that! That’s completely insane!"

"Well, he wasn’t calling me like he said he would...and I saw a girl do the exact same thing in a movie..."

"Yeah, that’s a movie...what would posses you to do such a thing?"

"I love him."

"You’ve only been on two dates. How could you be in love with him?"

"It’s a feeling. I just know and he had the three."

"Honestly, Monica I’m starting to worry about you. I mean in High School it was okay, you were the lovesick teenager, but you’re Twenty-eight now. You’re a grown woman you can’t keep doing this."

"What do you suggest?"

"I think you should take a break from men."

"What! How long of a break?"

"I think indefinitely."

"Don’t you think that’s kind of extreme?"

"Extreme measures need to be taken. And you need to stop watching these movies," She said grabbing the remote and turning off the tv.

The next morning I was at work. No sick leave for me, not this time. Dean was a distant memory or so I told myself. It wasn’t going to happen again. I was not going to chase "the one" anymore. Today, was a new day, a beginning to my new sane, adult life.

Julie came around the corner. "You got the meeting with the new client in five minutes, you up to it?"

"Yes, Dean was the past. Today is the future."

"That’s what I like to hear." She smiled and walked away.

I turned on my computer and looked at the clients file. He was in a band. They did hardcore rock and needed designs for T shirts, posters, and a website. Everything that was my specialty.

"Hi, I’m Ethan I’m here to discuss the designs for my band."

"Oh," I turned my head from my computer. He was gorgeous. His hair was dark brown almost black, shaggy but not in his eyes. It was messy but no out of control. It had that just out of bed look. His features were sharp. He had high, well defined cheek bones and a nose that was a perfect 45 degree angle. His lips were full and had a hue of rosy pink, and he had the bluest eyes I ever saw. Looks? Check. I said in my head then chased the thought away. "Hello...um...please take a seat."

He looked at me oddly then sat down.

"So, um...I see you wanted pretty much the whole package. Did you have some ideas for designs already?"

"Yeah, I don’t want it to be what everyone else is doing. I don’t want skulls and I definitely don’t want any neon. I was thinking a picture, just simple iconography. I did a drawing if you want to see it."

"Oh, yeah lets see it."

He took out a folded piece of white paper from his back pocket.

The drawing was beautiful. He was quite proficient. Drawing, a common interest. Another check to the list and I forced myself to focus. "This is really strong."

"Thanks, I’m an art school drop out." He smiled. "I was hoping of going more for like what the bands in the late 70s and 80s did design wise like Joy Division and Depeche Mode."

"Yeah, I can definitely see the influence." I tried to hide my shock that a man not even born during that time knew who these bands were and knew their aesthetic well.

"Yeah or even the hardcore bands back then too like, I don’t know I was even thinking something like Bane."

The man I marry will be a fan of Bane. It was a joke I always made. I always thought the odds of meeting a guy my age who even heard about the band were impossible. Common interests, Music being the most important. Check. "Can you excuse me for a minute I’ll be right back." I went straight over to Julies desk. First walking then when I was out of sight I went into a full on run. "Julie, I can’t do this."

"What are you talking about I thought Dean was the past?"

"He is and my future is our new client. I’ve only talked with him for less than five minutes and he has two of the three! You have to take him."

"What? No, we agreed I do the corporate you do the creative. I have no idea how to design for a band."

"But if he has the three..."

"Monica, you can do this you are a strong independent woman."

***

I’m a strong independent woman. No, I’m not, otherwise I wouldn’t be stalking him online in my room with his posters and pictures on the wall, while his songs play on my Ipod. I made myself believe it really wasn’t stalking because all the information was public. It wasn’t my fault he updated his twitter account everyday. But soon the harmless internet stalking and me waking and going to sleep to his music turned into going to his band’s show with the express purpose of me telling him "I love you and I don’t care if that’s not professional of me. I think we could really have something here."

I never got to say that because at that very show I met Rick. He was the only one jumping and dancing. The crowd drew their attention to him distainfully. He bumped into me, nearly knocking me down. I was ready to tell him off but he appologized profusely and he was so adorable. I forgot about Ethan.

That taught me something. If I could be so obsessive about someone then completely forget about them when someone new came along, then that wasn’t love. My brain told me it was love but my heart didn’t agree.

Rick and I took things slow. I didn’t once mentally check off the list. We were two people. I likde him and he liked me and that was enough.


Comments:
 
StarPoet   StarPoet wrote
on 9/21/2010 5:54:37 AM
Nice story that one needs to think about in this day and age. Love can make a person think, say, and do some crazy things and you prove that here in this story.

edayja
Short Story
Romance
writing edayja
Love is so blind it feels right when it's wrong
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Synopsis
Monica has been chasing "the one" since she can remember. When she meets a guy and he fullfils the three qualities on her mental checklist she falls instantly in love and theres no turning back until he dumps her and so has been the cycle for her entire dating life. She wants the kind of love out of the movies she saw in her teen years but shes all grown up now and her best friend thinks its time she starts living in the real world. She agrees until she meets Ethan and then slips back into her old ways.
A Word from the Writer
This is something more light hearted then what I've been posting lately. I originally was going to enter this in a short story contest that my friend was also entering but I couldn't fit the story to the rules. I wanted to finish it the same time as hers though so it would be like we were still writing together. Hopefully the readers here will enjoy it. I wanted to write the opposite of most romantic comedies that are out today and that's where I got the idea for this story. I'm probably going to rewrite this in the future so any constructive comments on what needs work will be much appreciated!
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