“So, what brings you here today?” he asked, looking amused.
“Do I have to have a reason for coming over?” she quipped.
The truth was, she enjoyed spending time with him. They had become close since the untimely and tragic death of Rebecca, her best friend two years ago. Roark was Rebecca’s older brother. He had always been kind and friendly towards her so it wasn’t surprising that she fell in love with him. She was careful not to give away her feelings for him. Only Rebecca knew how she felt about Roark and that secret had died with her.
She missed Rebecca and often reminisced about her with Roark. Rebecca had another brother, Jack, but she had been closer to Roark whom she had adored and admired. Rebecca used to say, “I hope and pray that one day I will end up marrying a man like Roark.”
And she used to say, “I hope and pray that I will end up marrying Roark.” And they both giggled.
“Earth to Susannah,” Roark’s voice brought her back to the present. “You were gone for a moment.”
“I was just remembering something Becca said.”
“I’ve been thinking about her a lot lately. Her birthday is in two weeks. She would have turned twenty-one.”
“I read online that her favorite band Dog Days of Never are in town and performing with the Bourbon Blondies at The Emperor Club tonight. That would have been the best birthday present ever for her.”
“I know,” he said. “And it just so happens that I got tickets to go.”
Susannah looked at him. “So, who are you taking?” she asked. “Amanda?” Amanda was a former co-worker. She had been hanging around him a lot lately. She was very pretty and Susannah was jealous of her.
Roark looked surprised. “Amanda?” he exclaimed. “Why would I be taking her?”
Susannah shrugged. “I don’t know. She’s always hanging around you and I thought that maybe you didn’t mind because you liked her and–“
Roark laughed. “Amanda and I are just friends. I don’t have any romantic feelings for her whatsoever. I bought the tickets for you and me, Susannah.”
Her eyes widened. “Me?” she exclaimed.
He got up from the floor and walked over to her. When he was standing in front of her, gazing down into her upturned face, his expression serious, he said, “Yes, you. I have always wanted to ask you out but wasn’t sure you would be interested. When I saw your reaction when you thought I was taking Amanda to the concert, I knew then that you feel the same way about me. I think Becca would be very pleased that our first date would be to see her favorite band. We will do it in her memory.”
Tears glistened in Susannah’s eyes. She couldn’t believe that this was happening and he was right. Becca would be ecstatic. She could almost hear her saying, “My favorite brother dating my best friend, what more can a girl wish for?”
Roark reached up and taking her by the shoulders, he pulled her towards him. “So, are you free tonight?”
She beamed up at him. “Of course, I’m free. I’m free tonight and every night for the rest of my life–“
The rest of her words were smothered under his lips.