“So, is it really over between Bryce and you?” Terah asked Mariah.
“It’s been over a long time ago. He was a player. We’ve been together for three years and all that time he was cheating on me. I finally decided that I’d had enough and dump his hide.”
“I’m glad you ended your relationship with him. I never thought that he was right for you.”
“Yes, I remember you used to tell me that. I should have listened to you.”
“You had to make up your own mind.”
“You and Bryce didn’t like each other, did you?”
“No. We didn’t.”
“He was pretty angry when I mentioned that it was you who saw him in the mall with another woman and told me.”
“I didn’t want to hurt you but I felt that I should say something. I’m sorry.”
“Don’t be. You’re my best bud, right?”
He lowered his eyes so that she wouldn’t see the expression in them. “Yes, that’s what friends are for,” he agreed quietly. He wanted to be more than her friend. In fact, for a long time, he had been secretly in love with her and it had been torture for him seeing her with Bryce, knowing what he was like but helpless to do anything about it.
“Let’s not talk about that miserable, lying, cheating dog.”
“All right.” That suited him just fine. Bryce was finally out of her life. God had answered his prayers.
“Any plans for the weekend?”
“Yes. It’s Jeremiah’s Bar Mitzvah.” Jeremiah was his brother.
“A Bar Mitzvah is a coming of age ceremony for a Jewish boys when they reach the age of 12 or 13, right?”
“Yes. Jeremiah is 13.”
“Wow. He’s a teenager.”
“Yes. Would you like to come?”
“To his Bar Mitzvah?”
“Yes. You’ll be my guest.”
“I’ve never been to a Bar Mitzvah so I’d love to come. Thanks for inviting me.”
“Have you ever been to Lincoln Park Zoo?”
He shook his head. “No.”
“How would you like to go with me on Sunday?”
“And then, afterwards we can grab something to eat at Chez Moi.”
“That sounds good to me.” He tried hard not to seem too excited. After all, it wasn’t as if they were going on a date or anything like that. They were just going to hang out together on Sunday. Besides, she had just gotten out of one relationship, it was unlikely that she would want to be in another one so soon after. And, as far as she was concerned, they were best friends, nothing more.
“Great! I’ve to go now. I’ll see you tomorrow at Jeremiah’s Bar Mitzvah.”
“I’ll pick you up.”
He got up and followed her to the foyer. They faced each other. How he ached to take her in his arms and just hold her close. “See you tomorrow, Mariah.”
“See you tomorrow, Terah.” She hugged him. “Thanks for everything.”
His arms went around her and he closed his eyes, savoring the feel of her body against his. He wondered if she could feel its reaction to her closeness. The hug lasted for several minutes, then they drew back. His eyes met hers in a steady gaze. “You’re welcome,” he said quietly. His face felt hot and his heart was thumping like crazy in his chest.
She stared at him for some time and then, reaching up, she grabbed his head and pulled it down. When he felt her lips on his, he moaned and he put his arms around her waist, holding her tightly against him as he responded hungrily to her kiss. They stood there, exchanging wild kisses, then, he broke it off so that he could take her to his bedroom.
As soon as they got there, they quickly stripped and were soon under the sheets, making love. When it was over, they lay there for several minutes, trying to catch their breath. She turned her head so that she was looking at him. “That was incredible,” she muttered.
“Yes, it was,” he agreed huskily.
“I’m not on the rebound, you know,” she said.
“So, where do we go from here?”
“It’s up to you.”
“After having sex, we can’t go back to being just friends.”
“No, we can’t.”
“Would you have a problem being in a relationship with a non-Jewish woman?”
“Not at all.”
“All right then. And I don’t have a problem being with a Jewish man although until now, I’ve only dated black men.”
He rolled on to his side, “They say that best friends make the best lovers.”
“Yes. And we’ve just proved that, haven’t we?”
She smiled up at him. “Yes, we have.”
He lowered his head and kissed her.
They became romantically involved from that day onwards and never looked back.