He Listens (Chapter 19)
SERIES SUMMARY: Kayla is on a quest to move beyond the hurt of her past as she realizes the impact that hurt has on her present and potential future. This is a modern tale of love that accounts the complexities of blending the lives of two thirty-somethings and all of their respective baggage. Read to see if Kayla will finally share her secret, embrace something new, and most importantly exercise her faith.
“When we were sitting on the porch waiting for Karah to come, I looked in your face and could see that you were hurt. That angered me. That’s why I left. I know that you told me that it was cool, but really it wasn’t. You’ve opened up to me and shared your past pains, and I told you that I never want to contribute to any hurt or disappointment. That includes drama. I can’t promise perfect but I can promise commitment. I just want to be with you. Kayla, if I thought for one second that you would say yes, I would ask you to spend your life with me. But I know that you’re not there yet. I am though. I’ve been sure from the first time I saw you. I thought to myself, “I can’t approach her, what if she married, what if she’s in a relationship?” But none of that mattered the longer I observed you. I wanted you. I think I loved you then. I know my situation isn’t ideal. I have baggage that you don’t. My son is a gift but his mother is a punishment.”
“I have baggage too Kareem”, Kayla interjects.
“Let me finish baby, I know now is not the time for a proposal, so I’ll give you a proposition: Don’t go to New York, stay here with me and let me love you. Give me a chance, give us a chance. Can you do that?” Kayla takes Kareem’s hand, looks up at him, and with a small flood in her eyes, nods. They sit there for a while and hold each other.
“Hey are you hungry?”
“I ate a little bit before I left, but what do you have a taste for?”
“I want some wings and chilli-cheese fries.”
“Looks like a Coney Island run, want me to go?”
“Nah, what time is it? it’s too late for all of that, I’ll just eat some Fruit Loops”
Kareem chuckles, “Me too, I haven’t had Fruit Loops in years.”
They sit at her formal dinning table, right next to one another, eat cereal, and laugh over the day’s events. And as Kayla is cleaning up the table and taking the dishes into the kitchen, Kareem speaks.
“Can I wake up with you in my arms?”
Kayla hesitates. “I don’t know if I’m ready for that.”
“I just want to hold you. I don’t want this night to end.”
“Kareem, I don’t think we should go there and I’m a little shocked that you asked.”
“What do you mean Kayla?”
“We just went to church this morning, today has been roller coaster, I just don’t think we should complicate it.”
“There’s no complication Kayla, I just want to hold you. No funny stuff, no expectations. I know that you are a Christian woman. That is what drew me to you. I respect that, I respect you. I just want to hold you tonight, that’s all. I mean, don’t get me wrong, of course I want to be with you, but in time – the right time. I am in no rush. I know that will happen.”
“Oh you know do you?”
“You know you want me. Admit it, you want me bad.”
Kayla shakes her head laughing and walks into the kitchen.
“You are so silly. Everything is not a joke Kareem.”
“I know but we’ve done enough heavy talk for one day don’t you think?”
The room grows still and Kayla knows that she has only moments to make her decisions. Likewise, she knows that it’s been longer than she cares to remember since she laid down or woke up with a man and for the first time in a long time, she is in unchartered waters.
To be continued…
© LaRonda Moore