"You're sure that I can bring this back for a full refund if she says no?"
"As long as you do nothing to it like resizing it to fit her finger we will take it back."
I handed the man my Visa card and five minutes later I walked out of the store with a half carat diamond engagement ring and hoping that Vickie would say yes when I took a knee in front of her. I picked her up at seven, took her to dinner at Mario's and then we went to The Boom Boom Room for drinks and dancing.
She went home with me (she always slept with me when she was home) and as soon as we were in my condo I asked her to sit down on the couch and told her I had a surprise for her. I went into the kitchen and poured some white wine into a wine glass, went back to the living room and handed it to her. After she had taken a sip I knelt in front of her and said:
"Victoria Marie Barham, would you do me the honor of becoming my wife" and I held out the open ring box to her.
"Oh my God" she said as she reached for the box, "I don't know what to say."
"There are only two answers to that question and the preferred one is "yes."
"Oh my God; I can't believe it. Of course I'll marry you."
She set her wine glass down on the end table and pulled me up onto the couch with her and then smothered me with kisses. Then she pulled me along behind her to the bedroom where she showed me what I hoped I could look forward to for the rest of my life.
I met Vickie by sticking my nose into something that was none of my business. I had stopped in at The Boom Boom Room to have a drink or two after a long day at work. As I came through the door and my eyes adapted to the low light level I saw a damned fine looking woman sitting at a table alone. Lenny Wilson, a loud obnoxious asshole, walked over to the table and hit on the woman. She obviously told him to leave, but Lenny persisted and I could see from the woman's face that she was starting to get pissed.
I walked over to the table, pulled out a chair and said, "Hi sweetie; glad you could meet me here." I looked up at Lenny and said, "You need something Lenny?"
He looked at me and was about to say something, but then thought better of it, shook his head "no" and turned and headed back to the bar stool he had left. The woman looked at me and said:
"And you are?"
"And you are here because?"
"I know Lenny and how he gets when he has a few. You looked like you were getting to go nuclear on him so I thought I could diffuse the situation and keep you here."
"Keep me here?"
"The man behind the bar, Matt, doesn't tolerate disturbances. His policy is that it doesn't matter who or why, both parties are told to leave."
"Did you stop to think it all the way through?"
"Think what all the way through?"
"Your rescue of me. What happens when you get up and leave? Won't that just be a signal to that idiot at the bar that this is all phony and he will get up and come back?"
"I'll just sit here and appreciate the scenery until whoever you are waiting for gets here."
Matt had seen me come in and Terri showed up with a Pabst Blue Ribbon and as she set it down in front of me she said, "On Matt" and then she left to wait on another table. As Terri walked away the woman said:
"What makes you think that I'm waiting on someone?"
"You don't look like the kind of woman who goes to a bar to sit alone. You know that a woman who looks as fine as you is going to get hit on in a place like this so I guessed that you are meeting someone and that they are either late or you are early."
"What if I am here hoping to get hit on?"
"I'd discount that in a heartbeat. You don't have to go anywhere to get hit on. You either have a significant other or one hell of a long line of guys trying to get you to go out with them."
"I notice that you are not gender specific when talking. Significant other? Them?"
"These days you can never tell. A significant other could be either male or female."
"And if my significant other is a female?"
"I'd be greatly disappointed, but I'd also think that your significant other was one hell of a lucky person. I would probably hate her, but that is neither here nor there. The immediate problem is what to do if you aren't here waiting for someone."
"Well lucky for you I am waiting for someone and she is late. I guess if I have to put up with you until she gets here you should know my name."
She offered me her hand and said, "My name is Victoria Marie, but I answer to Vickie."
I ordered her another drink and myself another PBR and we sat there drinking and chatting. I learned that she was a flight attendant and she learned that I was a heavy equipment mechanic. She learned that I owned a two bedroom condo and I learned that she shared a house with three other flight attendants. We were both college drop-outs and we were both Gemini. We were just starting to talk books and movies when she said:
"Here comes who I am waiting for."
I turned, fully prepared to hate the man coming and was surprised to see two very lovely ladies approaching the table. One of them said:
"Sorry we're late, but we had a flat tire."
"That's okay" Vickie said, "I found someone to keep me company. Frank, this is Gina" and she pointed to the blond. "And this is Trisha" and she indicated the trim brunette. "And this girls is Frank and I saw him first so save the flirty smiles."
That caught me completely by surprise. I looked at her and she smiled at me and said:
"You won't mind them sharing our table will you?"
"Of course not."
Trisha looked from Vickie to me and then back at Vickie and then she shrugged and sat down.
"I really don't want to intrude" I said, "You obviously didn't plan to meet here and have a stranger at your table."
I started to get up and Vickie put out a hand to stop me. "Nonsense Frank. You aren't a stranger. I've just spent half hour learning all about you. Besides, if you sit here you will keep the wolves away. If you leave all the guys will think we are sitting here looking for male companionship. How about it girls? Should he stick around?"
She got a chorus of yeses and I sat back down. The three were apparently meeting just to have a few drinks to unwind after work so the talk was general. Where a bunch of guys might have talked sports the three women discussed TV shows, fashion, music and diets. I was asked my opinion on skirt length, high heel styles and my thoughts on Lady Gaga. They were disappointed that I didn't watch and therefore had no opinion on Dancing with the Stars or Private Practice.
An hour later Tricia said she had to be going and Gina guessed she had better get home to her husband and kids. Then I was alone with Vickie again. I smiled at her and said:
"You saw me first and they shouldn't flirt with me?"
"What's the matter Frank? You have something against women who are forceful and make the first move?"
"Not at all. I'm just surprised."
"I would have bet my next paycheck that a woman like you was already taken."
"Three weeks ago I was. Do you believe in fate?"
"I don't know if I do or not."
"Before you came in I was sitting here thinking that it was time for me to put Timmy behind me and then you appeared. To me that was a sign. I have no idea if we are compatible, but something brought you to my table. I'm calling it fate."
"I make it a point never to argue with a beautiful woman."
"I'm ready to get out of here. How does a bite to eat sound?"
We had a light dinner at Denny's and talked some more and finally it was time to call it a night. I asked her if I could see her again and she gave me her cell phone number and I gave her mine.
"Because of my flight schedules I'm hard to reach. I'm leaving tomorrow for a three day trip so how about I call you when I get back?"
"Please don't lose my number" I said as we got up to leave.
I walked her to her car and just before she opened her door she turned and kissed me on the cheek and then said:
"I'm looking forward to getting to know you better Frank. Call you in a few."
Vickie called me four days later and we met at Silvio's, had dinner and then caught a movie. That date led to a second and the second to a third. We kissed on the fourth and necked like teenagers on the fifth, sixth and seventh and got so carried away with our making out that we ended up making love on the back seat of my extended cab pickup.
It was a weird relationship from the start at least from the standpoint of getting together. She had a flight schedule that took her out of town for three or four days at a time. When I picked her up at her place she was always waiting on the front porch and when I brought her home she never asked me in.
"When the four of us decided to share a house" she said, "We came up with some rules to follow. One of the biggest and most rigorously followed is that no males are allowed in the house. I know it sounds strange, but we all have different flight schedules and there is no telling who will be at home or when. Anna's idea of relaxing at home is running around naked and Sophie runs around in bra and panties and neither one wants to be told to go and put some clothes on just because a guy is coming over. And then there is Marge. She broke up with a long time boyfriend and right now she hates all men."
"I like to run around naked too."
Weird I thought, but whatever, right?
.... There is more of this story ...