Third time’s a charm?

Love at last. (Photo taken from Google Images via Creative Commons License)

Love at last. (Photo taken from Google Images via Creative Commons License)

Written by Izzy

“Care to join me?” They say, a wry smirk tracing across their face. Care to join me? Are you kidding me? A sound between a chuckle and a cough comes out of me. I can’t tell whether I should be amused or embarrassed, but I guess I have no choice when I already am both. I shrug and jump off the counter, ignoring their extended hand.

Despite the pang of guilt that shoots through me, ushering me to say something, anything, we don’t say a word to each other on the way to the living room. Thankfully, the assumed awkwardness is cut in by cheering and loud talking as we get closer to the ‘spin the bottle’ circle. They sit down first, and I sit as a couple people away from them, managing to score a seat next to one of my friends, Sam. Plus, I do not need to sit next to their ‘care to join me’ vibe the entire time we play. Again, what was that? I take a quick look around the circle. Only 17 people are actually playing, making the opportunityno, chancethat I match with the perfect stranger incredibly more likely.

Sam notices me sitting down and gives me a little fun nudge before turning their focus back towards the game. I try to keep my mind fixated on the game, or the music, or anything really other than this slightly awkward situation I’ve put myself in. Before I have a chance to focus in too deep on the rhythm or the way the couple across from me are looking at each other, a frat boy quickly starts the game off. “Let’s hope I get you, Sarah.” He says with an annoying wink. The girl across from him, presumably Sarah, rolls her eyes. Fortunately, or maybe unfortunately, the bottle lands on the girl next to him. With a content and unbothered smile, he gives the new girl a peck on the lips before ushering her to start the next spin.

The next couple of rounds go by quickly, seeing as I know none of these people. Or at least, most. Sam’s having fun at least, being part of 2 rounds so far. I, however, am just sitting here antsy. I think it’s mostly because the unnamed, ‘care-to-join-me-because-we-made-eye-contact-in-a-random-cafe’ stranger keeps hyper-focusing whenever the bottle lands even remotely near me.

Waiting for my turn, or even theirs, I begin to think about how stupid I’ve been acting.

Sure, they may have caught my eye. Fine, I may have a small, raging crush. Yeah, they are incredibly alluring and entrancing for reasons I can’t quite determine… But we don’t know each other at all. But I want to know. I really, really want to know. And I can’t avoid that itching, begging feeling inside of me any longer.

I sneak a short glance their way and am immediately met by my own racing heart. Their face, highlighted by the purple, raving lights expresses the sweetest, most enchanting smile I have ever seen. Their eyes glisten and glow, lighting me afire and making me burn, burn, burn. What I would do to have their face turned towards mine, whispering their secrets of the world to me.

I’ll admit this: I want to know the stories they hold inside their heart, I want to know what they consider the biggest mystery of the universe, I want to know how their eyes twinkle when reading their favorite book or doing their favorite hobby, I want to know their dreams and their desires, and I want to know them. More than anything, I want to know why my soul immediately decided that it’s them.

With this decision in mind, I wait until the perfect moment to make it a reality. I bite my lip in impatience and unrest until one bottle spin later, the bottle lands on them. My breath catches a bit. As the bottle spins around for the second time, I finally wish for it to land on me. Instead, it lands on my friend. Fine.

Before the slightly bewildered look on their face can even change, I take the bottle and twist it my way. Some people in the group give a gasp, while others playfully cheer.

“Ooh, exciting, right?” I jest, before making my way over to their spot in the circle. And honestly, I don’t know how I controlled myself before with the way they look at me. The look in their eyes suggests a look of surprise mixed in with excitement. I raise my brow. “The bottle landed on me, so I guess we have to do this now, huh?”

Before I can even catch my own breath or warn myself on how amazing their lips would feel on mine, I lean in and give them a short kiss. Before I pull away, I cup my hand around their ear and whisper, “How about we get a drink sometime?”

Written by Mary

“Care to join me?” I say, a wry smirk turning up the corners of my lips. Trying and failing miserably to be anything close to suave and attractive and looking like I maybe, sort of, just a little have any sort of sex appeal to offer.

The beautiful stranger tenses up a bit at the offering of my hand, a nervous chuckle escaping from their perfect heart-shaped lips. Their eyes dart between my hand and the room beyond us, no doubt probably thinking if they want to spend their Friday night playing a game of spin the bottle with a bunch of frat boys and girls and with a complete, utter stranger who’s hopelessly unapologetically attracted to them. Looking back at me, their mesmerizing eyes sparkling in the low light of the kitchen, they shrug their shoulders nonchalantly, jump off the counter gracefully, and saunter back over to the living room, pointedly ignoring my outstretched hand.

Trying to ignore the heat of embarrassment creeping into every pore and square inch of my skin, I follow right behind them, the wash of purple and green strobe lights and the jangling discord of frat party music destroying my senses as we make our way over to the spin the bottle circle forming in the middle of the room. I spot one of my friends Jaeden in the circle and quickly take a seat next to them, and the gorgeous stranger sits down a couple people away from me, next to what looks like one of their friends. Jaeden and I exchange flashing smiles and playful bumps of the shoulders before turning back to focus on the game, and I see the stranger do the same with their friend.

My God, I feel like I’m about to have a heart attack, cardiac arrest, and stroke all at once because my body apparently doesn’t know how to function properly when there’s a remotely attractive being close by.

My attention snaps back to reality when one of the frat boys starts off the game by reaching over to the empty bottle in the middle of the circle and meeting eyes with the girl across from him. “Let’s hope I get you, Sarah,” he says with an irritating wink. Sarah rolls her eyes at his ridiculous spectacle but with the slightest of smiles curving up her lips. The bottle spins round and round and round and lands on the girl next to Sarah, but the frat boy doesn’t seem to mind, leaning over to place a soft peck on the girl’s lips. So long as he gets a kiss at the end of the day, he’s all good.

Another couple of rounds go by in a blur, but I barely pay attention to any of it. Most of my focus is whenever the bottle lands anywhere near the beautiful stranger. So far, the bottle has landed on their friend twice, but not them quite yet. I know I desperately need to stop staring at them because most people would find it creepy and unnerving and wholly unattractive, but it’s like my eyes are its own sentient being, refusing to heed my pleas.

And so I pray to God to the heavens to the universe to anyone that will listen for an excuse—any excuse—to kiss them tonight.

The bottle lands on me. I almost don’t notice because my eyes are rudely still on the gorgeous stranger, but Jaeden nudges me back to my senses just in time to realize the bottle is pointing directly at me, and everyone in the circle has their eyes on me, including the stranger, whose expression I can’t quite make out. As the bottle spins round and round and round for the second time, I hold my breath, staring at it intensely and willing it to land on the stranger who is way too attractive to be real. Instead, God seems to defy my wishes as the bottle lands on the stranger’s friend. Perfect. Just perfect.

As I’m about to lean over to their friend, they grab the bottle and twist it toward them. There are gasps and cheers around the circle, and their friend snaps their gaze toward them, surprised but ultimately amused.

And me?

Is it possible to have a heart attack, cardiac arrest, and stroke all at the same time?

If so, then I’m definitely going to need some medical attention very soon.

“Ooh, exciting, right?” they jest, as the circle of people are still shocked at this bold move by the stranger. As they make their way over to my spot in the circle, I feel like fainting and throwing up and thanking the Lord God Almighty because the look in their eyes as they draw closer and closer to me makes my skin tingle and toes curl. When they’re finally at my spot, their face only inches away from mine, their eyes lazily stroll up and down my body before grazing my lips with its stare and finally stopping to rest on my eyes. They raise a brow. And the music and dancing and people in the room seem so far away right now, they could be in a whole other universe for all I care.

“The bottle landed on me, so I guess we have to do this now, huh?” they whisper, a playful smile gracing their lips.

Before I can even think about how to respond to that, they lean in and crash their lips into mine, their kiss soft but passionate, and it’s over just as soon as it began, but just before their lips fully untangle themselves from mine, they whisper against my mouth, “How about we get a drink sometime?”

And all I can do, all I can think is thank you thank you thank you God.

I guess prayers do come true.