by Janice O'Mallery
"My! My! My!" Jessie Gordon gasped, winking her sparkling blue eyes. "Don't you look swell in silk!"
Perhaps she did. Constance McAllister nervously twirled her ash-blonde hair around her slender fingers, accented with long nails and pink nail polish. She glanced down at her turquoise, silk dress, sighing to herself. What a dress! The thin fabric delicately graced the curves of her tall, thin body. The deep V-neckline, open to the waist at the front, revealed the creamy smoothness of her soft and delicate breasts, straining against the fabric. She had a job interview ... she had to buy a suit.
"Don't you look sexy! Come on, I'll buy the dress for you, " Jessie prodded.
"Oh, well ... I don't know ... don't you think it's revealing?" Connie asked, uncertainly. As she lifted the price tag, her mouth dropped open. "Oh, Jessie, there's no way I ever could! It's so expensive!"
"Connie, I'm your best friend ..." Jessie whined, slipping the price tag from Connie's hand.
"I've always been your best friend. Come on, I owe it to you. Besides, you introduced me to Vincent, and he's just so sweet."
"Connie, it's the least I can do," Jessie continued, not eager to let her friend slip away without the dress. "You are a romantic ... a born romantic ... and it's time someone should see that in you."
Connie stepped out of the change room and set the silk dress on the hanger, hanging it on the rack. "Jessie, I came here to buy a business-suit for my job interview tomorrow afternoon."
"You said that before ... didn't you? Don't worry, I didn't forget. Just take this as a gift, from me. Please Connie, you look so cute in it," Jessie whined, slipping her arm around Connie's waist and leaning her lips close to her ear.
"Oh," Connie sighed, rubbing her forehead. "All right!"
As quick as lightning, Jessie reached for the silk dress and dropped it into the shopping cart, before Connie changed her mind.
"Now," she began, pointing to the rack of business suits, "what you're looking for is over there."
Constance pushed the suits apart, searching for one she liked best. Green? Blue? Grey? Black? Beige? Oh! How confusing!
"What do I look best in?"
"Oh, Connie, I wish you were a brunette."
"Never mind ... don't ask. Try pink ... pastel, light, airy."
"This?" Connie asked, holding a pastel pink suit out. "Lovely tailored ... the skirt is just short enough ... short and sexy."
"There's only one thing on your mind, isn't there, Jessie?" Connie commented, holding the pink business-suit in front of her.
"I think I like it," Connie concluded, setting it in the shopping cart.
"Look at the line of people by the cash register ... oh, we'll never get out in time to watch my favourite TV show!"
"Honestly, Jessie, don't you think about anything aside from television?"
"Sure I do ... like Vincent! Well, there are worse things than standing in line to pay," Jessie whined.
"Sure, like not buying anything," Connie replied, laughing.
"You know, Connie, you really have to loosen up, a little."
"I lost my job last week ... I won't get over it for a while," Connie replied, with her recent firing on the top of her mind. They had no right to fire her. Why?
"I mean loosen up in your personal life ... you know, off the job. This dress is too open to wear a bra, but it is so thin that any woman would look naturally beautiful ... you know, the graceful female figure. Vincent is just great ... with his hands ... I was wearing a dress like this when he just slid his hand inside ... oh, so warm and caressing."
"Too bad you and Graham broke up," Connie added.
"You said he was great." Jessie shrugged her shoulder, casually glancing at her wristwatch. "Hey, look at the time! You'd better run to your beauty appointment ... I'll pay up and meet you, later."
"If I didn't have you as a best friend, I don't know what I'd do."
In a hurry, Connie dashed through the parking lot, skirting around cars and dashing across roadways. She opened her purse and fumbled through the contents, searching for her keys, then she took her eyes off the walkway ... her own mistake. Before she knew what happened, she ran into someone, dropping her purse to the pavement, scattering feminine articles across the parking lot, with her keys clattering to her feet. The businessman's papers tipped and fluttered to the ground, then he hurriedly pulled them into his brief-case, lest they flutter away in the breeze. Connie handed the businessman a handful of papers, then their eyes met. "Aaron?" Constance gasped, handing him the papers.
Instantly her heart warmed, rekindling a glimmer in her eye. The days of their heart-warming romance flourished in her mind, reminding her of the one man she wished she had never left. He was handsome, kind, compassionate, and all she could ever ask for ... and all she never had. She cried all night after he left ... there was nothing either of them could do about it.
"Surprised to see me?" Aaron West warmly asked, a soothing comfort in his voice. He closed his brief-case, taking the handle and running his fingers though his light-brown hair: parted to the side and neatly combed in place.
"I thought you left the country?" Connie began, swallowing the lump in her throat.
"I did ... actually, I won't be here for very long. Just wrapping up some business," Aaron replied, his voice as soft as the whispering breeze, reaching inside her heart. He set Connie's purse in one of her hands, and her keys in the other.
"I've missed you more than anything," Connie added, heartbroken, as they both stood up.
"Why did you have to leave, in the first place?"
"Do you still love me?"
"Oh, Aaron, of course I do ... how could I love anyone else?" Connie replied, setting her white purse on her shoulder.
"You were everything to me."
She wanted him back, swallowing hard to clear her throat. All she wanted to do was fall in his arms and stay there, safe ... and sound. Aaron smiled kindly, sliding his hands into the pockets of his grey suit. "I've been wanting to ask you out for a while. Are you doing anything tonight?"
"Oh, how sweet! For you, of course not," Connie replied, her voice as smooth as her heart was warm. Yes, she missed him terribly ... and he knew that.
"How about dinner at the European Promenade?"
"Oh, Aaron, I'd love that," Connie replied, curling her tender lips into the most adorable smile she ever could.
"You're so sweet."
"I'll pick you up ..."
"At my place? Eighteen sixty-seven Rose Arbour Crescent. It's the white house, under the green roof."
Eighteen sixty-seven it is, then. I'll pick you up at seven?"
Connie smiled and nodded, reaching out to take his hand, but he turned and walked away without realizing her gesture of friendship. As she brushed her romantic inclinations aside, she realized that Jessie was standing beside her.
"Well, here I am rushing to get everything done ... so, who's 'Prince Charming'?"
"Isn't he sweet?"
"You're telling me! Well, what happened?"
"He asked me out tonight."
"WOW!" Jessie exclaimed, pursing her lips.
"Good thing I bought you that silk dress."
"Jessie, I can't wear that ..."
"Go ahead, spoil yourself. I can picture you ..."
"Oh, Jessie ... my beauty appointment!"
"Looks like you'll be needing it, after all," Jessie called, walking towards the bus stop.
"I'll call you later."
"Hum, I don't think so," Jessie hummed. "Vincent and I are ... well, see you later."
Connie dropped on her bed, reaching for the turquoise, silk robe: sleeveless and short. She slid it over her shoulders and pulled it down to cover her body, then she stepped in front of the mirror and glanced at her reflection. Sweetly feminine? Yes. The thin material clung to her body, gracefully accenting her feminine curves. She slid her fingers down the open V-neckline, which fastened at the waist with two buttons ... the rosy tips of her breasts dimpling the fabric. Ah, seductive! Connie dabbed a little perfume on her body, inhaling deeply to absorb the exotic fragrance. She set her wallet and lipstick in her matching turquoise hand-wallet, beaded with pearls. She strung a single strand of silken pearls around her slender throat, sliding her feet into her white, high-heeled sandals. The doorbell rang. Connie grabbed her purse and started for the front door, then she stepped into the evening breeze.
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