No where outside the sanctity of my house was safe. He started appearing almost everywhere I decided to go. Always the same thing.
“Lil can we talk? You look really nice today. Lil please just for a minute.”
How did he even know how to find me? I had no idea, all I knew was that I had had enough. I hadn’t thought it possible, that I would ever want to avoid him more than I use to, but in the few months following the infamous bomb drop, I learned how wrong I was.
I started to feel like I was constantly being watched and nine times out of ten when I turned around he was there. So there was little to no surprise when I had that all too familiar feeling during my trip the county library.
“You know, this could be considered stalker status. I am one phone call away from filing a restraining order.” I snapped impetuously.
My patience was beginning to wear thin and up till that point, I felt I was keeping things in control. I hadn’t really yelled; well other than that one time, but even then I wasn’t being mean. I had asked nicely, even went as far to say please, although maybe I did scream it. My attempts to play nice didn’t seem to be getting me anywhere, because here we stood yet again with Disco breathing down my neck. I was going to have to try another tactic.
“What in Berry’s name do you want Disco?”
“I don’t want anything. I just want a chance to talk to you. You know like a friend.”
“We’re not friends, sooooo I don’t see how that will be possible.”
“I know… but couldn’t we try to be? I promise on everything that I won’t be mean. I promise.”
“It’s a little late for that now. I think you met your mean quota about three years ago.”
“I know, and I’m really sorry. Please just let me show you there is more to me than that.”
“And how would you suggest we do that? Only way I can think of would be for you to time travel back to before you felt the need to torment me. Since that isn’t possible-
“Go out with me?”
“I’m sorry. What?”
“Like a date. Let me take you out. This Friday.”
“You’re joking?” I stood there in disbelief. This guy didn’t stop!
“No. I already have a date this Friday.”
“None of your business, but if you must know. Pompadour. Now if you will excuse me, I need some fresh air, this stalker climate is a little too much for me.”
I started towards the stairs, but made the mistake of looking his direction. His face had contorted into a face of such pathetic anguish, I felt a stabbing pang of guilt push it’s way in. Imagine someone running over your puppy and that puppy had a pet kitten that they had run over too. That was just about what it looked like. I turned my attention to my bare feet and watched them carefully as I descended the steps. One step at a time Lil, this would be a bad place to have an accident.
Once I returned home, I had a very important phone call to make. I had to let Pomp know we were back on for our date. I had kinda flubbed a bit of that to get Disco off my back, but decided that maybe a date (not with Disco) was exactly what I needed.
“Hey Pompadour, it’s Waterlily.”
“Oh hey! How are you Lily?”
“I’m good. I was wondering if you were still up for coffee? Maybe this Friday?”
“Ya! That sounds great!”
“OK, awesome. See you then.”
Friday came quickly and before I knew it, I was reading myself for my date with Pomp. I had even convinced Saph to help me put together a nice outfit for the occasion. It felt kind of odd knowing that Pomp wasn’t the guy who had been sending me all those gifts, but he seemed like a nice enough guy. It couldn’t hurt to get to know him a little better.
Something still weighed heavy on my mind though, and for some reason I couldn’t seem to shake it. Literally… I decided that maybe Mom would have a better idea on what I should do about the whole Disco situation. So with an hour left to go before I had to leave, I tracked down Mom for a little heart to heart.
“Hey Mom. Can I talk to you?”
“Of course you can. You know that. Now, what is on your mind love?”
“It’s this whole Disco thing.”
“Mom, he will not leave me alone. I can’t go anywhere with out him showing up and disrupting my peace. How does he not get that I hate him! And that I have hated him forever.”
“Hate is a rather strong word love.”
“I know. But you know what he use to do to me. He use to make me cry all the time!”
“Mmmm yes, I remember… Now, can I ask you something love?”
“Why does it bother you so much?”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, for someone who doesn’t care, you sure get awfully hurt when he has something mean to say. Why do you think that is?”
“Because he is mean!”
“Yes he is, but he can’t possibly be the only one who has ever made fun of you right? Kids are kids and they do stupid things.”
“I don’t think I have ever heard about anyone else being mean, so I imagine you just slough it off or ignore it right?”
“But for some reason, this Disco boy seems to cut you right to the core. So I will ask again. I wonder why that is?”
I knew what she was driving at, but I was nowhere near ready to admit it, and besides even if I had liked him way back when, I certainly didn’t now. I couldn’t think of anyone else that I liked, that I had urges to bash them over the head with baseball bat, so I was pretty sure I knew what I was talkin about.
“Well what does he want?”
“Huh?” I pulled back quickly from my daydream.
“Disco. When he runs into you. What does he want.”
“To be friends.”
“Well maybe you should try.”
“What?! No way.”
“He really seems to be serious about making things right by you. Maybe you should give him a chance.”
“Oh would you look at that. Time for my date. Bye Mom!”
“Hehehe Bye dear. Have fun!”
7:00 oclock on the dot Pompadour made his way across the grass and over to Berrybucks where I had been waiting for about 10 minutes. He looked just about the same as he did the first time we talked. He obviously hadn’t gone out of his way to dress up, which was fine by me. The less date like, the less stress there were would be.
“Hey Pomp…. I mean is OK that I call you Pomp? I probably should have asked first.”
“It’s fine. It’s fine, that is if I can call you Lily.”
No one ever called me Lily, so it was kind of a fun change of pace.
“Ya sure go for it!”
Once we had purchased our coffees, we settled into one of the tables just outside. The sun was just starting to go down, and it was just warm enough that we were still comfortable. We conversed for a good 30 minutes or so and everything seemed to be going great. I got to learn more about his plants and he got learn more about my cross country team and what it was like to be the clumsy barefoot team member.
“Wouldn’t that hurt? Running all that way with no shoes on?”
“Not really. My feet are pretty conditioned to it now. Though I do have to watch for stray rocks and-”
“Uhhhh, Lily is everything alright?”
“Oh. Ya, everything is fine. Sorry I got a little sidetracked there.”
“It’s Ok. I would think glass would be the thing to worry about. Stepping down on a piece of that yeowch.”
“Glass can be troublesome ya.”
“Glass is a problem for me too. Though it’s not my feet, it’s my hands. I run across little shards of glass from time to time. The garden use to be junk yard, did you know that?”
“Really? I had no idea.”
“Oh ya about 8 years ago, the old man who owned it passed away and my mother purchased the land. She wanted to-”
“I’m sorry. Could you hold that thought for one minute? I need to uhhhh, run to the little girls room.”
“Oh sure. No prob I will be right here.”
I pushed away from the table and headed inside. Skulking across the empty dining area I made way to the bathroom. I had no doubt he would follow me, and low and behold my assumption was right. I stood waiting in front of the ladies bathroom door, until I saw his irritatingly familiar face come into view.
“What are you doing here!?” I growled.
“I’m sorry. I knew you would be mad but…”
“But? But what?! Why are you trying to make my life miserable! Do you want me to cry? Is that it? Do you get your thrill from my tears? Because if that is the case, I am about to start bawling from frustration so get ready!”
“No! That’s the last thing I want you to do.”
I let my hands grab hold of my head, trying desperately to push away the growing migraine. “Disco you are literally driving me insane.” I yelped.
“I know, but if you would just let down your wall and give me a chance, I think…No I know we could be good together. Please? All I am asking for is a chance. I know I don’t really deserve it, but for the sake of chance. Could you maybe? Just for one night?”
I stood for several long minutes thinking about my answer carefully. I had exhausted all options and it would seem that Disco had learned a few tricks from my sister about getting his way. I looked at him once more and places my index finger only an inch or so from his face.
“One date. One! But on one condition.”
“If I go on this ONE date, you have to promise that after it’s over, you will leave me alone. You won’t call me, you won’t follow me, in fact if you see me, you will run the other direction far far away from me. Got it?”
Here’s hopin this works…