"Does it ever make you uncomfortable?"
"Walking around with those big blue eyes"
I cock an eyebrow at him.
"I've gotten used to it by now"
"No, really, people aren't just coming up to you all the time and telling you how gorgeous they are?"
"Not since I was a kid. I think maybe it stopped around the time I got breasts," I continue in my own acerbic way.
He's standing so close I have to look up to not be speaking into his chest, the downside of being 5'2". Or the upside if you're flirting. Upturned face and big blue eyes.
It only gets cheesier from here on out.
"But there a specific blue y'know. Like the color of the country sky. But not just any country sky. It's like a country sky at a specific time of day"
He's grinning in a way that makes it impossible for me to tell if he's being serious. His hand tentatively finds its way to the small of my back.
"I gottalotta experience with country skies, so I'm gonna need a little more specificity" I find my words running together, losing their enuncation, my California meeting his Jersey. My bad habit of picking up any passing accent only gets worse after 3am.
"The blue of a country sky at 3pm in August"
"Oh, ok, I can live with that"
His hand is pulling me closer and I'm giving in to the anticipation of five hours of flirting. I'm not actually on a date, my coworker/friend's friends came to eat at the restaurant and she introduced me to them when I got off at the bakery. We hung out at the bar at work for a while before heading over to the local dive that's favored by everyone at the restaurant. After dropping my friend off at her apartment, I find myself headed back to Queens with these two boys, feeling bad for the one that isn't part of our flirtation, but not bad enough to stop.
"What are you doing Thursday?"
"Working until sometime between 10 and 11"
"Do you want to get together after?"
"I won't be back to Astoria until 11 or midnightish"
"That's fine. We'll grab drinks somewhere"
"Are you sure?"
"Yeah, I don't have anything else I need to be doing then"
"People usually need to be sleeping then"
"Thursday, we'll hang out"
I walk towards the train, wondering if he'll follow through, not putting too much expectation on plans made tipsily at 4am.
But he does. And Thursday rolls around and I'm drinking whiskey and housemade root beer at Sweet Afton. Laughing, talking, flirting.
"What are you?"
"Irish, Eastern European Jew, some WASP-y stuff"
"Yeah, you look Ukranian"
"Shut up. You know Ukranian girls are gorgeous, take the compliment"
He meets every smart ass comment with a smile, wearing me down until we're actually having honest conversation, though neither of us are the type that can ever let go of our deadpan completely. Somehow it's 4am again. The bar is being broken down and I don't want to be the last asshole there.
"It's kind of chilly"
"Maybe, maybe we should go inside somewhere. Y'know, I've got a bed. It's really comfortable"
I pause. I hadn't planned on going home with him that night.
"I mean, we don't have to, it's just an option I'm throwing out there..."
"Ok?!" he looks pleasantly surprised.
"Yeah, I want to keep kissing you and I don't want to do it on this street corner"
"Awesome. Me too. I want to keep kissing you too" he sounds both nervous and happy. His flirtatious smile replaced with a genuine grin.
And I'm smiling the same earnest smile right back at him.
"This one's going to be trouble," I think.