Imperfect Strangers

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First Of Many


When Oaklynn saw the car that I had rolled up in, she let out a little excited scream, flashed her license, and demanded the keys. I didn’t put up a fight because, firstly, I found driving tedious sometimes, and secondly, she said she had always wanted to get behind the wheel of an Aston Martin. How could I say no to that?

Along with my car keys, she helped herself to a pair of my Police sunglasses that she found in the console, then was kind enough to hand me a pair of aviators too. We cruised down the highway, the top-down and the wind in our hair. The music was turned way up as we sang along to Sugar by Robin Schulz, then kept the sweet momentum going with Maroon 5′s Sugar, followed by Harry Styles Watermelon Sugar. Guess you can say we were on a sweet tip.

“I see a pattern here pudding-die,” Oaklynn giggled, at ease behind the wheel.

I think I just had an idea of what to get her for a graduation present.

“Cute and clever. I knew there was a reason I liked you,” I smiled.

“If you say so sugar.”

“It’s sweet that you think I’m sweet,” I gave her an engaging grin and winked, eliciting a sexy laugh.

Her voice softened and a smile touched the corners of her mouth. “You are though.”

At that moment, I wished I could have seen her eyes. “And you’re the sweetest of them all kit-kat.” I rested my hand on her knee and gave it a little squeeze. Then realized that I could do that now-she was my girlfriend.

“Case in point,” she threw me a quick glance before focusing on the road again.

“Pull over.”


“I said pull over,” I repeated.

“Why?” she asked but still obeyed my orders as she navigated to the side of the road.

“Because,” I said, unbuckling my seat belt and jumping out of the car, walking over to her side and extracting her from the driver’s seat. “Because,” I reiterated, pushing her back against the car. “You can’t unleash so much mushiness and expect me to be unaffected...When you say stuff like that I have no choice but to retaliate...” I hesitated only a moment longer before I cupped her face in my hands and kissed her.

She placed her hands on my chest and looked up at me with a smile. “I think your reasoning is justified, Commander.”

“Just like I said..cute and clever..” I kissed her again more deeply and then rested my forehead against hers with a sigh. “Get back in the car before I jump your bones on the roadside.”

She feigned a gasp of shock. “Noo...You wouldn’t..?”

“Oh, I would..I so would,” I stated. “I’m driving.”

“Why?” she stuck out her lip before she stomped off to the passenger seat and jumped in.

“I’d let you drive but you have no idea where we’re going my little furball,” I said, adjusting the seat to accommodate my long legs.

“You could have just told me.”

“And spoil the surprise,” I raised my eyebrow. “Never.”

We had lunch and headed to our afternoon excursion at Central Park. I felt like I owed her a do-over after I messed up our rendezvous last time.

“So we’ve come full circle?” she laughed as I took her hand and walked down the winding path.

“I thought we could start on a clean slate,” I said. “We get to see Central Park from a new perspective on a private horse and carriage tour. A professional photographer will be tailing us to capture every moment -well we will obviously take our own pics and stuff-but I want to remember this day and every other moment we get to spend together. They are special to me and I will never take them for granted.”

She stopped and gazed at me intently. “Do you want me to retaliate too?“Her eyes watered as she became overcome with more emotion. “Because this mushiness is really provoking me to-you’re too sweet Kylo King.” She threw her arms around my neck and hugged me tightly.

“You bring out the best in me kitten,” I gently stroked her hair, my voice soft and close to her ear. “Your carriage awaits. Literally,” I stepped back as the horse-drawn carriage pulled up.

“O.M.G.!” she covered her hands over her mouth and jumped up and down excitedly. “I’ve never been on a carriage-I feel like I’m Elizabeth Bennett or something!” she squealed.

The look on her face was priceless. I would spend my life savings to see it over and over again.

I helped her onto the carriage and settled down beside her. The tour started from the southwest corner of Central Park and ended near Columbus Circle and the Time Warner Building. For comfort in all weather conditions, the carriage was equipped with a convertible roof and blanket-we made sure we had snacks as well. It was cozy, intimate and would give us a chance to talk, while we got to know each other better. We were well acquainted with the park so we told the driver his wealth of knowledge wasn’t necessary today, all he had to do was drive and mind his own business.

“Thanks for this,” Oaklynn said again, her head resting on my shoulder. “It’s the nicest thing anyone has ever done for me.”

I couldn’t tear my eyes off that beautiful face, which was all aflame with the adoration.“We haven’t even begun to scratch the surface babe.”

“I guess I can understand now- why Courtney didn’t want to let you go.”


She shifted and looked at me. “What?”

“Do you want to talk about it?” I asked. “I don’t mind telling you-”

“You don’t have to. Your break-up was all over the tabloids,” she answered.

“But wouldn’t you rather hear it from me?”

She looked uncomfortable for a moment. “Do you still love her?”

I knit my brows and shook my head. “No. I’m over that. I’m over her.”

“Then why did you leave with her?” she questioned, curiously timid. “On the day of your birthday party-”

“Oaklynn? Look at me?” Turning her head, I lifted her chin and gazed into her eyes. “Yes, I did leave with her but nothing happened.” At least that’s what I think-that night is still a blur. I need to ask Cash to fill in the blanks.

“Even if it did-you don’t owe me an explanation,” Oaklynn was saying. “We weren’t together at the time.”

“I will never intentionally hurt you. I hope you believe that?”

“I do,” she sighed and rested her head against me again. “I’m sorry for-

“Don’t be,” I said and kissed her hair. “Don’t ever be afraid to tell me what’s on your mind. We should always be honest with each other-agreed?”

“As long as you promise to do the same.”

“I promise.”

We spent the rest of the journey in a comfortable silence.

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