“You look amazing in that dress,” Parin remarked when he saw Carina. It was Saturday night and he was taking her out for dinner. He made the date with her yesterday evening when they went for a drink.
“Thank you. I don’t have to tell you how good you look.”
He took her for dinner at The Parlour, an intimate jazz and cabaret bar where diners could enjoy live entertainment over dinner and plenty of cocktails.
She was very impressed with the ambience and décor of the restaurant. It had an aphrodisiac atmosphere. They got a cozy banquette table for two in the middle of the space which was close enough to the stage for them to enjoy the music but far enough for them to hear each other when they talked.
“Have you ever been here before?” she asked him.
“No, but I’ve heard about it and thought that it would be the perfect place to bring you. Do like it?”
“Yes, I do.”
For the starters, she had Celeriac Waldorf salad while he had the Caesar Salad. For the main course, she chose the Dover Sole and he opted for the Rose Veal Chop.
“If you don’t mind my asking, what was the business Darain wanted to see you about yesterday?”
“It has to do with a woman.”
Parin’s eyebrows rose. “A woman?”
“Yes. Do you know someone named Sarika?”
“Yes, I do. I haven’t seen her in a long time. Our families have known each other for years. What does Darain have to do with her?”
“He’s in love with her but can’t do anything about it because of her boyfriend.”
“What does he expect you to do about it?”
“Nothing, except find out what I can about her and let him know.”
“What does he hope will happen–that she and her boyfriend will split up and then, he could make a play for her?”
“Something like that.”
“And how are you supposed to get this information? Do you know Sarika personally?”
“No, but a friend of a friend does.”
“Oh. I think Darain should forget about her and find a woman who’s single like him.”
“I agree but he’s stuck on this one.”
“Well, I hope he comes to his senses and drops the matter before he gets himself hurt. Even if she and her boyfriend were to break up, there’s no guarantee that she would even want to start another relationship. How long is he prepared to wait for something that may never happen? Maybe I should talk some sense into him.
“No. Don’t say anything to him. He might get upset that I told you.”
“All right, I won’t say a word to him.”
“Is she beautiful?”
“I guess she is.”
“How come you aren’t attracted to her too?”
“She isn’t my type.”
“And who is your type?”
Carina smiled. “I’m very pleased to hear that.”
“And what about you? How come you’re not attracted to Darain? He’s handsome and a very sharp dresser. Did you know that he was once approached by a modeling agency and he turned them down flat?”
“No, I didn’t know that. He never mentioned it to me. And as handsome as he is, he isn’t my type. You are.”
Parin smiled. “Good, I’m very glad to hear that.”
Just then, the Black Cat Cabaret took to the stage with ‘High Society’, a theatrical experience with singers, comics and burlesque. It was quite a treat. It was being at the theatre but with the added benefit of enjoying a delicious meal at the same time.
For dessert, she had the Dark rum & vanilla cake and he had the Baked Alaska. When they were finished, they lingered for a while longer and then, he signaled for the bill.
“Thank you for a wonderful evening,” she said when they left the restaurant.
“You’re welcome,” he replied. “The evening isn’t over, though. How would you like to dance off the meal you’ve just had?”
“Sure. It has been a while since I’ve been to a nightclub.”
He took her to The Ministry of Sound Club where they enjoyed mocktails and dancing. It was after midnight when they left. As they walked to where his car was parked, he said, “I really don’t want this night to end.”
“Neither do I.”
“How about we take a drive down to the Tower Bridge, park somewhere and go for a walk?”
“That’s sound great.”
They strolled along the well lit pathways from which they could see central London and the Tower of London. They had both been in the area but never at night. It was a lovely, balmy night. Other people were walking along the bridge too but it wasn’t crowded. They spent about an hour and a half there and then, it was time to take her home. It was after one in the morning.
Outside of her flat, he said to her, “I’d like to see you again.”
“Sure. What do you have in mind?”
“How about dinner at my place this evening?”
“I’ll see you at 7.”
“Yes. I’ll see you then. Goodbye.”
He lowered his head and kissed her on the shoulder, making her catch her breath. “Goodbye, Carina.”
She leaned against the door frame and watched him as he walked to the bank of elevators. He turned and waved before he disappeared from view. She heard the elevator door open and then close. She moved away from the doorway and went inside. She couldn’t wait to see him.
Sources: GQ Magazine; Hotels.com; A Walk and a Lark