Aksel & Vashta

Chapter One

Vashta has been divorced a year and has vowed never to get married again. They had only been married two years and the final year when she asked for a divorce was a living hell. It was as if the nice man she married was switched by aliens with a self centered asshole whose mission on this planet was to treat her like crap and make her cry as often as possible. She vowed to herself she would never remarry, apparently all that did was turn perfectly good men into jerks. Vashta wanted to swear off men all together. She even pondered only briefly becoming a lesbian but she couldn’t think of women that way. It was men or nothing and she was opting for nothing.

Vashta was a pediatrician and honestly formed a bond with everyone that came to see her. Some of the children and their parents loved her so much they would actually become friends. One such little girl invited her to her birthday party recently. That was one thing her ex husband loathed about her. He hated she would make friends with her patients and their families. Now he finally wasn’t around to try and make her feel like it was weird.

At the party when the cake was cut a ridiculously handsome man asked if he could sit next to her. Her heart went wild and she could barely find her voice to tell him it was ok to sit with her on the couch. Thankfully he didn’t seem to notice her struggle to speak, that or he was kind enough not to laugh or tease her for her loss of words. He sat down and she wondered if it was a good idea. She had sworn off men and here she was sitting by a drop dead gorgeous knock out.

He had tanned skin, short black hair, and the most stunning brown eyes. While they ate he began to talk to her and she found herself actually enjoying it. She decided this was ok. She had sworn off marriage and dating but not spending time with kind, incredibly handsome men who wanted to be her friend. At the end of the party he had given her his number and didn’t even do that stupid, childish “wait three days to call her rule” any man that had ever done that to her she just didn’t answer his calls. Games weren’t her thing.

He had called her the very next day and ever since then he was constantly inviting her out with him. She found herself not only droolig over his appearance but falling completely for his personallity. She was always having to remind herself “This amazing man will disapear if you try to date him. Dont be fool enough to think men are stil this wonderful once they’ve won you” More than just her ex husband made her think that. She honestly had a horrible track record when it came to choosing men and she didn’t know why. They always seemed to nice at first.

The sound of knocking woke Vashta and she groaned, grabbing her phone and checking the time. It was supposed to be her day off, a day for sleeping in and now someone was knocking on her door. She pulled her pillow over her head and the knocking stopped. Her phone vibrated and she grabbed it. There was a text from Aksel that said: Let me in before I drink both of these coffees and eat all the chocolate I bought you. Accompanying it was a picture of said coffee and chocolate. She smiled, feeling her heart warming at his sweetness. She got up, stopping briefly in the bathroom to brush her hair into a ponytail. He had the biggest smile on his face when she pulled the door open and it made her heart ache.

“Good morning beautiful.” He said sweetly and held out her coffee.

“To what do I owe this visit?”

He shrugged. “I just happened to be off today too and hoped to hang out with you.”

“How do you always look so perfect in the morning?”

“I love mornings.”

“Well come in then you silly man, it’s chilly.”

He happily accepted the invitation and followed Vashta to her kitchen table. Vashta halved the bar he bought and gave him some “still feels weird to accept candy from a dentist” she said teasingly. He smiled “candy isn’t bad as long as people brush their teeth” Vashta smiled and it wrapped itself around Aksels heart. What he wouldn’t give to be with her but he could tell that wasn’t what she was interested in. That didn’t make him fully give up the thought though. He felt that if he kept showing her what she meant to him eventually she would let her guard down and allow him to love her or she’d at least explain why her obviously warm heart was so closed to relationships.

“Sorry I look like I just had a fist fight with my bed.”

“I think you look adorable in your pajamas.”

She blushed. “Yeah right, I look like a nightmare.”

“Well then you’re the cutest nightmare I’ve ever seen.”

She laughed. “So what are we doing today? I mean you came all this way.”

He shrugged. “We can stay in all day if you want and binge on movies since it’s so chilly out.”

“Hey, it’s fall, it’s normal for it to be chilly. Next is winter and snow.” She took a sip of her coffee. “I’m going to have to bundle up.”

“You’ll look mighty cute in all those layers.”

“Movies sound good, but I can’t make you stay in on your day off. How about we go out for breakfast.”

“Then we have to go to the store, Marci reminded me yesterday that we’re out of gifts for our younger patients. You can help me pick out the girl toys.”

“I’d enjoy that. Let me get dressed, I’ll be right back”

“No rush” he said with a smile as she walked away. Despite him saying no rush Vashta readied herself as quickly as possible. She wanted a shower but that would take too long so she just brushed her hair, she could shower tonight. She almost walked out without brushing her teeth but somehow she didn’t feel she could go out with a dentist and not brush her teeth, even if she planned to keep drinking her coffee. When she came out Aksel smiled again “beautiful”

“Lets go you flirt”

“Flirt? Thats the second time you’ve called me that. I’m just telling you what I see” Vashta grabbed her purse “come on” she said and they both walked out, Vashta locking up. “Your car as always?” Vashta asked and Aksel nodded since he had a mouth full of coffee. Vashta slipped into his passenger seat then he asked “anywhere in mind?”

“Ihop”

“Ihop it is” There wasn’t one near her place but it wasn’t too terribly far to go, hell if it was an hour away he would have taken her if thats what she wanted. They walked in and were soon seated. Their waitress came over with a small child like glee “Vashta, same?”

“Yep”

“Need time for your order sir?”

“Give me what she gets”

“Okay, be back soon”

“what do you get that they know so well?’ he asked and she laughed “Smokehouse Combo” He looked at the menu “oh good” Her smile was unfaltering “You should have looked first” he shrugged “its breakfast, what can you order thats not good?”

“This is true, a man after my own heart”

“what drink do you get”

“Orangejuice, she can get you more coffee though”

“No no, Orangehjuice is great”

She smiled. “You have to love a man who’s easy to please.”

They just stared at each other for a moment then Vashta broke eye contact and Aksel cleared his throat. “So uh how are your patients?”

“Good, lots of colds lately, it’s going around.”

“Don’t go getting sick on me.”

She giggled. “Well if I do I guess you’ll have to come over and make me all better.”

“I make a mean pot of chicken noodle soup.”

“And how about yours.”

“Really good, I did have to remove some wisdom teeth from this teenage boy, the poor kids mouth was swollen and he could barely chew.”

“Well you’re a good dentist so I’m sure he’ll make a speedy recovery.” She suddenly started laughing.

“What’s so funny?”

“Just every time people in a medical field get together they always talk about work, surgeries, sicknesses, weird things. It’s just funny.”

“at least we aren’t as bad as most. Thats just our go to topic if we cant think of anything else to talk about”

“true” They continued talking about patients until their food arrived and was set before them. Silence fell between them only the amount of time it took to finish eating, pay and leave the restaurant and ridiculously perky waitress. “what makes that woman so happy?” Aksel asked and Vashta shrugged “I don’t know but it makes me happy. I know that kind of personality would bug a lot of people but that must be a wonderful way to live. Imagine being that happy all the time?” Aksel smiled, his eyes softening as he glanced at her.

Once back in the car they went to Toys R Us to find little things for Aksel to put in gift bags for the children. She would love to give out things when her children had to get their shots but it wasn’t allowed. Vashta went a little over board picking things for Aksels patients but he didn’t mind. It wasn’t like he wouldn’t use it all eventually. They checked out then walked back to Aksels car where he set the bags in his trunk. “How about I take you home so you can change into some jogging clothes, I’ll meet you at the park.”

“Sounds good, we havent jogged in together in almost a week” Aksel walked Vashta to her door, wanting a hug and taking them separating as an excuse to do it. Vashta giggled again “We’re going to see eachother in like half an hour tops” He smiled and squeezed a little tighter before letting go “see you soon” The way he was looking at her caused a blush to tint her cheeks. She didn’t know if she imagined it but the way Aksel looked at her was unlike any way a man had looked at her before.

She changed quickly, not wanting to keep Aksel waiting. She made sure everything was locked up then left her house. She smiled when she saw him waiting for her on one of the park benches and pulled over. He got to his feet when she exited her car and met her halfway. “You look so cute in that sweater.” He said and she felt her cheeks get hot.

“Whatever, liar.”

“I’m not lying, neon pink is definitely your color.”

She gave him a playful push and he grabbed her hand, allowing his thumb to brush lightly across her skin. She knew she couldn’t be imaging the adoration in his eyes, not when he was standing so close to her. She swallowed nervously and looked away. “Come on, we’re burning daylight.”

“You’re right of course.” They took off along one of the trails, him going her pace since it had been a week. They stayed silent for awhile, him feeling a bit awkward for making her uncomfortable. He couldn’t help the flirting, it just naturally happened when they were together. “I’m sorry.” He said and she looked at him in confusion.

“What did you do?”

“I made you feel weird, I could tell.”

“It’s okay, don’t worry about it.”

“It’s hard not to worry about something that could negatively effect our friendship.”

“Really, it’s fine. Running and talking is a bad idea.”

“Yeah, sorry, I’ll shut up. I’ll make it up to you with lunch, anything you want.”

Chapter Two

She smiled and nodded, going through places in her head so she’d know what she wanted by the time they were done. After catching their breath Askel asked “Where to?”

“Romanos Macaroni Grill”

“Nice choice, okay, lets go. I really am sorry you know”

“stop being stupid” He smiled but it seemed to have sadness behind it. Hungry and not sure if sadness was really what hid behind that smile she decided not to ask. Instead they talked about some of her patients while Askel drove. Once parked they exited the car, Autums chilly winds nipping them both again. There was a small wait to sit down but neither cared, they just talked to pass the time. It was crazy how easy it was to talk to him, everything was easy with Askel.

He was tempting her so much, seemed so perfect for her but how could she trust herself. All she knew how to pick were douches, her ex husband the prime example. How did they always trick her into thinking they were nice men? She was far too gullible and while Aksel truly seemed different she was still afraid she was being naive again. When they were ready to give their orders Vashta asked for the Chicken Milanese while Aksel ordered Pork Chop Vesuvio.

“I’ve never tried Pork Chop Vesuvio, is it good?” Vashta asked when the waitress was gone. “I’ll let you try some of mine when it gets here.”

“Thanks” It took a long time to be served here but the food was always worth the wait. When it finally came the two were laughing embarrassingly loud at a joke Askel had told her, he had a gift for joke telling. Vashta quickly composed herself “we’re so sorry” The waitress smiled “its fine mam” she set their food infront of them then asked “drink refills?’

“yes please” Vashta said then Askel nodded.

Here’s your bite.” Aksel held up his fork and Vashta leaned forward, taking the food into her mouth. “Good?”

“Delicious, I’ll have to get it next time.”

“How about you give me half of yours and I’ll give you half of mine then we’ll both have some variety.”

“Okay.” He pulled her plate over and moved the food around then slid it back to her. They talked as they ate and Vashta found herself getting so lost him that she forgot everyone else. He picked up a napkin and reached over, surprising her when he wiped the corner of her mouth. “Thank you.” She said, blushing profusely.

“I figured you didn’t notice.”

“I just get so focused when I’m talking to you.”

His smile was ebullient, his eyes jovial in such a way he would be perfect to play Santa during holidays. “what would you like to do when we’re done eating?’

“The food here is too good to think of anything else” His smile reflected laughter this time “well, when you can think let me know.” They finished their food and paid. It wasn’t until they were outside Aksel inquired ‘where are we going?”

“we’ll be on our feet all day tomorrow and thinking back on your offer of relaxing in my house I like that. We can play chess and talk before its only patients we’re talking to”

“Sounds perfect to me, do you have hot chocolate?”

“Just ran out yesterday”

“Then we’ll stop at Food Lion and grab some and a few other snacks for the evening”

“alright” The Food Lion stop was brief just as returning to her home was. Aksel had loaded the bags into his car so he could take them up without a fuss from Vashta. When he set them down she said “set up the chess board and I’ll get some hot chocolate started” He walked out and she put some water on the stove before putting things away. When finished setting up the board Aksel waited for her on the living room couch, happy when she finally walked in with their drinks.

They were evenly matched when it came to how well they played this game so they hadn’t completed many rounds when Aksel needed to go home. Being a dentist required him to be well rested before work. He sighed “want to meet up for dinner at seven tomorrow?’

“Sure, how about Applebees?”

“fine with me” She followed him to her door so she could relock it when he left. Aksel gave her a long hug then as always he stepped out of the doors view and waited to hear the deadbolt click before going to his car. He thought of his small triumph as he started his cars engine. She had agreed easily to dinner with him. Up until today she had been hesitant in agreeing to see him but now she practically lit up at it. Progress, it was all he needed.

Vashta found herself sad as she walked to her bathroom to get a shower. She was always sad for a little while after he left. On top of her sadness was surprise at herself for not even thinking about it before telling him she’d see him for dinner. She was dangerously attracted to this man and here she was jumping at opportunities to be around him.

Getting to sleep that night was not easy. All she could do was toss and turn as she worried about her and Aksel’s relationship. He was just so sweet and the sweeter he was, the more irresistible he became. He had been so sincere in his affections that she still feared it was all just a ruse. After awhile her eyelids finally grew heavy enough and fell closed. The next morning at work, her coworkers could tell she had something on her mind. They wanted to ask if everything was alright, but didn’t want to be nosy at the same time. She pepped up when her first patient came in, all smiles as she waited for the nurse to finish weighing and measuring the little boy.

“So how is he doing today?” She asked when she walked into the examination room. The little boy got off the floor and ran to give her a hug.

“A lot better, he still has a slight cough.”

“Having pneumonia will do that to you, but he’s a strong little guy.” She tussled the boys hair. “Just keep up with the fluids and rest. If his fever gets to high make sure to take him to the hospital.”

“I will, thank you so much.”

“Make sure he gets a sticker and a sucker and call me if you have any concerns, no matter how small they might be.”

“You know I will. I called you way too much during his first few months, I cant believe you never denied my calls.”

“First time moms always worry over everything. Better safe than sorry and I don’t mind. I love kids, its why I’m a pediatrician”

“well, you’d make a good mom Vashta. You need to find a good man to have kids with” Vashtas thoughts immediately went to Aksel, it caused her cheeks to tint. The mom noticed but since she had a sick little one she decided just to go instead of talking about what man Vashtas mind went to. Vashta sighed, not sure what to do with herself. She considered canceling her plans with him tonight but decided against it. No matter what she said he would think he did somthing wrong and that wouldn’t be fair to him, not with how wonderful he was.

Between patients all she could do was think about him and wonder what could be if she opened her heart again. It was hard not to consider with him. He always made her so happy and absolutely nothing about him showed he was hiding an asshole underneath all that sweetness.

The rest of the day went by slowly for her, only making her grow more and more nervous. Aksel glanced at the clock every time he wasn’t with a patient, excited he was getting a night out with Vashta. He hoped he could show her how much he loved her and get her to open up. When it was finally time to close up and go home he nearly ran for the door. He rushed home, taking a quick shower and pulling on a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. He brushed his hair and teeth then headed to Applebees. Vashta tapped her fingers nervously on the steering wheel as she drove to Applebees. She was extremely eager to see Aksel, but also worried. She didn’t want to mess things up between them, she feared that if she continued to keep him closed off then he would get tired of her. She didn’t want to lose the greatest friend she had just because she was afraid to love again.

He was sitting on the trunk of his car when she pulled up and gave her that same sweet, loving smile as he hopped down to greet her. He pulled her door open for her once she was parked and handed her out. “How was work?” He asked.

“It was good actually. How about you?”

“Same, the kids really liked the toys we picked out. I should have you help me more often, you know exactly what children want.”

“I keep getting told I’d make a good mother.”

“I’d have to second that, you’re pretty amazing.”

Vashta blushed, her heart thudded. She did want kids, would have ended up having them with her ex husband if he hadn’t dropped on her after they were married he never wanted children. She had cried for weeks about it then felt trapped because she had vowed forever to him. “well, maybe one day I’l have some.” She said nervously. Aksel smiled softly, thinking her red face was adorable. “Lets go on in” Once they had their menus in their hands it wasn’t long before they knew what they wanted.

“If I may ask why didn’t you have any while you were married? I know you dont like talking about your marriage so its okay if you don’t want to answer.”

“He didn’t want any”

“why?”

“Thought they were annoying”

“wow, I already knew he was an ass but jesus”

“Yeah, sure know how to pick them dont I?” Aksel frowned “I highly doubt that has anything to do with you. You ended up with a jerk, everybody ends up with at least one jerk” She sighed “I’ve never told you about my exs, aside from my ex husband”

“what about them?

“Its not a dinner conversation, lets drop it” Aksel didn’t want to, this had been precisely what he was waiting for. For Vashta to talk about unhappy things and allow him in. “I’m your friend and we’ve been close for awhile now Vashta. I want to know all about you, even the bad so I can help you through it” he took her hand “please tell me” He had been absolutely wonderful to her. If anybody deserved to know all about her it was him.

She sighed and began telling her of her love life since her very first boyfriend. Even when their food arrived she just kept talking while Askels eyes stayed glued to her. When she was done her heart felt mangled from recounting her horrible relationships. Aksel actually got up, walked around the table and hugged her. “what ungrateful assoles” he said as he embraced her “Ungrateful?” Vashta asked in honest confusion. “They had you and treated you like shit. You are so amazing. I don’t understand how they could treat you like that”

She hugged him back, felt tears burning in her eyes and became embarrassed that she was going to cry in the middle of a restaurant. “I really love you Vashta, with all my heart.”

She pushed against his chest. “But, you can’t.”

“Yes I can and I will. Don’t think I’ll hurt you, I’d rather die than cause you any pain. I’m sorry those other men hurt you, but I’m not the same. Don’t you trust me?”

“I do.”

“Then let me love you, let me be the one to mend your broken heart.” He pulled back and wiped at the tears on her face. “Do you want to leave?”

“No, we should eat.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yeah, we came here to have a good time and I’ve turned it into and all out cry fest.”

He smiled and kissed her forehead. “I don’t mind taking our dinner and leaving, I just don’t want you to look so sad anymore.”

“It’s fine, really, lets eat.”

“Okay.”

Chapter Three

“You really are a wonderful man Askel. I hope I havent hurt your feelings by being scared about my feelings for you…you dont deserve such doubts at all. I’ve just made so many poor choices its hard to trust myself. It has nothing to do with you”

“I understand, just put your faith in me and unlike them I’ll always be by your side. Let me mend what those jerks have done to your heart. All I want is a chance” She finished chewing her food then responded “With how great you’ve been you of all men deserve a chance. I love you too Askel” His eyes filled with happiness and adoration again as she had often seen dance in his eyes when they were together. The two finished their food then gave eachother a long hug outside. “can I call you tonight?” Askel asked.

“I’d really enjoy that”

“when?”

“I’ll call you when I get home, sound good?”

“yeah” Vashta kissed his cheek “thank you for being so good to me Askel. You truly are a breath of fresh air”

“Thank you for opening up. The last time you were hurt is truly you’re last. I’m not a perfect man but I do know I honestly love you”

“nobody said I was perfect either. All we can do is try” Askel took her hand and brought it to his lips before walking Vashta to her car. When her engine started he got into his and drove off, excited that he would get to talk to her tonight. Vashta just thought of how sweet he had been about the whole thing. Once again he showed what an amazing heart he had beating in his chest. He could have taken offense or called her whiney and over dramatic but he was understanding and even angry she had such bad luck with dating and her marriage.

When Vashta got home she decided to start getting ready for bed to distract herself while she waited for Aksel’s call. She just shimmying out of her pants when her phone rang. She hurried grabbed it and flopped down on her bed. “Hey sweetness.” He said and she smiled at the love she could hear in his voice.

“Did you make it home safe?” She asked.

“Of course, but I do wish I was with you. Maybe next time.”

She smiled and blushed. “Maybe.”

“Who would have thought you’d be shy.” They both let out a laugh and sighed happily.

“It’s hard to believe that this is real, I’m still a little scared.”

“That’s because you’ve never been truly loved before so it’s going to take some getting used to, but I promise to show you every day just how important you are to me. I promise to never break your heart and to give you everything that makes you happy. You want a huge wedding with acrobats and dancing tigers, I’ll make it happen.”

She giggled. “You silly man, you make me so happy. I love you, I really and truly love you.”

“Good.”

They talked for awhile, both of them losing track of time. Vashta yawned, her speech becoming more of a mumble than actual words. Aksel smiled when her breathing softened, feeling a little selfish for keeping her up so late. “Good night my love, sweet dreams.”

He whispered into the phone then hungup so he could plus his phone in and not completely kill hers. The next morning Vashtas phone fell off her face as she sat up. She smiled, remembering how long she had talked to Askel last night. As she readied she went through the conversation in her head, blushing again when she remembered him mentioning marriage. It hadn’t been a proposal but him saying anything about it showed it was somwhere in his mind. She wondered what her friends would say if she ever did since she had told them all she would never marry again.

They probably understood she did mean that then because she was so upset but now, now she had Askel and if he asked her to marry him at sompoint maybe it wouldn’t be so bad. When she arrived at work Vashta plugged up her phone in her office since she never had any free time in the mornings anyway. She may aswell charge it up so it had battery when she was able to use it.

Her opportunity came around three in the afterrnoon. She walked into her office and unlocked her phone to find a text message from Aksel “dinner tonight at my place? 8pm so I have time to make it special?” With a nervous heartbeat she responded “Sounds romantic, I guess I’ll have to return the favor tomorrow night”

She was so ecstatic about her date with Aksel that she was beaming. Everyone around the office smiled as they whispered about her upbeat attitude. “You look happy.” One of the nurses said. “So who is it?”

“My friend, well boyfriend now, Aksel.”

“The dentist? Good for you.”

“We have a date tonight at his place.”

“Date, right.” She winked and Vashta blushed. “Have fun.”

Her cheeks stayed red the rest of the say as embarrassing thought after embarrassing thought filled her head. When she finally told her last patient goodbye, she was more nervous than she had ever been. She wasn’t sure what she should wear. He always seemed to love her in everything. She was glad he had given her some extra time because she felt like getting ready was going to take forever.

As Vashta rummaged through her walk in closet she felt as though she had nothing to wear even though that couldn’t be farther from the truth. It just didn’t feel anything looked good enough on her for a romantic date with Aksel. Eventually she just pulled out everything he had given her compliments on which still was quite a bit. She decided to call one of her friends for fashion advice “hey, whats up?” Naomi said when she answered Vashtas call “I have a date tonight and I can’t decide what to wear”

“with Aksel!?”

“Yeah”

“finally, it was ridiculously obvious he had feelings for you and hes such a sweetheart. Skype me on your laptop and we’ll talk clothing. How long do we have?”

“a few hours still. He planned it for eight”

“What did you waste time on after work? Should have called me sooner”

“I was trying to decide by myself but I’m just feeling self conscious. He’s always made me feel so comfortable but now that I’m actually dating again I’m scared I’ll screw this up. I’m apparently a dick magnet.. what will a nice guy think of me”

“That you’re amazing. Your problem has always been you never see the bad in people. All you ever see is the good things about them and you do it to the point of blindness just because you have a good heart. hell, I don’t think I’ve ever heard you talk bad about anybody since I’ve known you aside from when people ask you why a relationship ended. Other people have seen through your exs bullshit, including me and Aksel is the real deal. With him he honestly is a sweetheart from what I can see and he adores you Vashta. You could go over in anything and look beautiful to him, I swear”

“I still want your help though. I’ll call you from Skype in a second”

“Okay” they hungup and soon connected through Skype. Vashta modeled for Naomi until finally they had an outfit put together. “thanks”

“No problem, enjoy tonight and don’t stress. Nothing is different just because you’re dating”

“easier said than felt” Naomi laughed “It’s Aksel, turn your phone off too and just enjoy the evening”

“Yeah, I planned on doing that before I got out of my car” They hungup and Vashta applied some eye shadow and just a little foundation. She never put a lot on and only truly wore makeup for special occasions but she really wanted Aksel to think she was pretty tonight. With that done she sprayed a little perfume then glanced at the time. Her clock told her it was just a little past seven “what am I supposed to do with myself until eight?” She thought.

Aksel had to make the perfect meal for her, something he knew she would love. He thought about it as he showered and pulled on clean clothes. He decided on salsa chicken with Spanish rice and corn while brushing his teeth and headed into the kitchen to start cooking. He smiled and hummed, excited about seeing Vashta. She had made every day beautiful, her smile lighting up his world. He felt like he was floating and prayed he wasn’t dreaming. Vashta glanced at the clock, her eyes moving away from the book she was reading. Her heart gave a leap when she realized it was time to go. She was so nervous that she nearly dropped her keys when she got to her car. She took a deep breath when she got behind the wheel, not wanting to get into an accident because she was feeling jittery.

She told herself as she drove that everything was going to be okay, that Aksel was the most amazing man in the world and would never hurt her. He had showed her time and time again how much he adored her, bringing her gifts and telling her how wonderful she was, never with an ulterior motive. He was the most genuine person she knew and was absolutely perfect in every way. She knew she was having one of those, too good to be true, moments and told herself there was no reason to be doubtful. She felt a little calmer when she finally pulled to a stop in front of his house and got out. She walked up to the door and rang the doorbell. Her heart stuttered when he pulled the door open and she blushed when his eyes moved over her.

“Wow, as beautiful as ever.” He said and smiled at her. “Come in.”

Vashta smiled back and stepped inside. After he shut the door he walked ahead of her to his kitchen table so he could pull her chair out “aw, thank you” she said through her happy smile. Once she was seated he asked “what do you want to drink?”

‘just water is fine” he walked into the kitchen and came back with a pitcher of ice water so he could fill both their glasses and just leave it there so he wouldn’t have to leave her again. She reminded herself that this was the same, sweet man she had known over the months so she shouldn’t be nervous as she brought her first bite to her mouth. “wow, what is this?”

“that was the Salsa chicken, aside from that I made Spanish rice and corn” She tried them “nummy” he smiled almost humbly as he took another bite of his own food. “you didn’t have to put on make up for me you know” he said and she blushed “you offered to make me dinner, I wanted to go through the effort for you”

“why when you’re naturally gorgeous?”

Her face warmed. “You’re so sweet.”

“I’m just being honest.”

He took her hand and let his thumb play over her fingers as he ate. He stopped at her ring finger and brushed his thumb back and forth over it, making her heart stutter. “What’s on your mind?” She asked, feeling a little nervous.

He smiled. “Oh you know, our future.”

“Our future?”

He nodded. “Yeah, it’s important to think about.” His smile widened. “After dinner, I have something to give you.”

“Okay.” Her mind raced as she thought about what he wanted to give her. When both of their plates were clean he took them and put them in the sink.

“Stay right there.” He said as he left the kitchen and headed upstairs. She tapped her fingers on the table and bounced her legs. She got to her feet and paced nervously back and forth. She came to a halt when he came back down. “Well at least you stayed in the room.” He teased, making her crack a smile.

“Well, this is all so, you know different than what I’m used to.”

He crossed over to her and took her left hand in his. “I really love you Vashta.” He held up the ring he had in his other hand. “This is actually mine so it’s big, but I will get you a ring when I get the chance. Until then you can just wear this one, it’s a promise.” He slipped it onto her thumb and she swallowed the lump in her throat. “Will you marry me Vashta? I promise to make you the happiest woman in the world.”

The question was terrifying yet exciting at the same time. She stood there frozen, just staring back at him while Aksels eyes were filled with hope and that adoration that always touched her soul. She had never felt so much love from anybody and she knew she loved him so Vashta finally said “I will” he let out a breath of relief and hugged her tightly “Oh Vashta” He pulled back and took her face in his hands. He brought her lips to his and kissed her, causing goosebumps to cover her body as tingles ran up her spine. Aksel spoke softly when he pulled back “I’ll calm down before I overwhelm you. I know I just pushed my luck with that kiss. I couldn’t help it. I’ve been wanting to do that since I met you”

“I liked it”

“well youll be getting a lot more from me. I have another question for you since i got a yes from my first one”

“what else could you need to ask?”

“Well, last night when i said I wished I could have come home with you you said maybe next time… Woudl you stay here tonight and let me hold you or allow me to follow you home in my car so I can cuddle with you there tonight”

“you mean..stay all night?”

“please, I’m not looking to get in your pants, on my honor I’m not”

“um..okay but I think you need to come to my place because I didn’t bring anything to sleep in or clothes to wear to work”

“thats fine by me, let me make a bag” Vashta waited nervously until he returned looking immensely happy. She smiled “you’ve really wanted to kiss me since the first day?:

“You have no idea. You were so adorable when I left you speechless. I wanted to kiss that dumbfounded look right off your perfect face” Vashta blushed “so you did notice I couldnt talk”

“Yeah, I just didn’t want to tease you at the time because I didn’t want you to say no to letting me sit by your side”

“I’ve been wondering if you noticed”

“I’ve been noticing a lot of things about you, every one of which I love which is why i’ve thought about marrying you so many times. I swear whats between you and I is different. I’ll never treat you any less than you deserve to be treated Vashta. You’re everything to me. I mean it” Vashta hugged him as she fought back tears. He set down his back and held her softly in his arms. All he coudl think about was spending tonight holding her and once they were married getting to hold her like this as often as he wanted. He meant that he loved her and one day soon he’d ask her to marry him in the fairy way but for now, what he was would be held off for another time.

He had already pushed so much tonight that he knew claiming to be a fairy would be the undoing and make her back off. He hated her not knowing though and would fix it as soon as he knew it wouldn’t scare her. It would be a lot to take in anytime but she was taking a big chance with her heart that he knew was hard for her so adding wrapping her mind around the fact fairies were real was a bit much to ask. He’d just enjoy what he had right now and ask for eternity when the time was right.

~ The End ~

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