“So, what are you in the mood for watching now?” Natalia asked as she turned on the television.
They were at his flat and had just finished having Thai take out. They were now going to spend the rest of the afternoon watching movies. Natalia was trying to find something for them to watch on YouTube.
“I don’t know,” he replied shortly.
“What about a film noir or an Agatha Christie mystery or a Comedy or–“
“It doesn’t matter, just choose something.” He got up from the sofa and walked away.
“Ok, Brody, what’s the matter? You’ve been in a foul mood all day. Did you run into Kalisha again?”
He turned and faced her, his expression thunderous. “I wish people would stop assuming that this has anything to do with her.”
“Then, what does it have to do with?”
“Who’s the guy, Natalia?”
“The guy I saw you with on Friday evening.”
She racked her brains trying to figure out whom he was talking about. “Oh, you mean Manny.”
He folded his arms as he waited impatiently for her to answer his question. “Who is he?”
“He’s a co-worker.”
“How come you never mentioned him to me before?”
“I have mentioned him to you before.”
“Are you dating him?”
“Of course not! Brody, he’s the guy I told you about who’s getting married and whose wedding I invited you to go to with me. Don’t you remember?”
“Oh.” He remembered now. His face turned red with embarrassment.
“Is this why you were in such a bad mood? You saw me with Manny and assumed that there was something going on between us?”
“You two looked very chummy.”
“Well, we’re friends as well as co-workers.”
“Where were you and he going?”
“We were meeting his fiancée, Santina for dinner. I invited you to come but you told me that you were having dinner with your mother. Don’t you remember?”
He dragged his fingers through his hair. How could he have forgotten that as well as the invitation to the wedding? He felt like a total fool at that moment. “I’m sorry,” he said.
“You know I should be mad at you for thinking that there was something going on between Manny and me.”
“I’m sorry. I acted like a jerk.”
“Brody, why did seeing Manny and me upset you so much?”
“Does it matter?” he asked evasively. “Let’s just forget the whole thing and watch something. How about a film noir?”
“We’re not doing anything until you answer my question.”
He stared at her, his expression darkening. “I was jealous, all right?” he muttered. “Satisfied now?”
Her heart began to pound. Brody was jealous. His shocking admission was like music to her ears because it meant that he had feelings for her. She walked up to him. “There’s no reason for you to be jealous of Manny or any other guy,” she told him. “Don’t you know by now that I’m crazy about you?”
“Yes, really. I have been ever since we met.”
His eyes darkened. “Natalia…” he whispered her name before he reached up and cupped her face. He lowered his head and kissed her for the first time.