He had too much of an effect on her and she didn’t want to get involved with a celebrity, she liked her private, quiet life. “Oh no, I got too much I need to do, and you need to get back to your panel group, just ignore the woman.” She called back to him over her shoulder as she walked away from him.
“Please Jenny? I can’t give up now.” He said catching up with her and cutting her off, “Just this one more thing? I’m sure it will work this time. Come on.”
He held his hand out with anticipation.
She glanced at his hand then up at him shaking her head, “I don’t have the time right now. I’m busy. ” She went back to look over the lanyards and souvenirs making sure that there were plenty.
“Please just one more try. I have to get rid of this crazy -ex.”
“You didn’t say that your ex- girlfriend is your stalker.” She crossed her arms looking up at him.
“Yes, my crazy ex-girlfriend is stalking me.” He rubbed his forehead saying, “Cliché, right? Like I said, I thought if she saw me with someone else, she would go away and leave me alone. You know, like as if I gotten on with my life kind of thing, but apparently it didn’t work, she’s still here.”
She shrugged her shoulders saying as she walked away from him, “Once you find a real girlfriend and really get on with your life she should go away.”
“Right now, I don’t want a real girlfriend.” He followed her saying, “I just want the crazy ex one to go away.”
He ran his hand through his hair as he released an exasperated breath. He stood beside her and watched as she dug in a box then added more Yoda dolls to the table.
“Listen I know I’m asking a lot from you, and we don’t really know each other….”
“No, we don’t.” She interrupted him placing the box of Yoda dolls back under the table.
“But I just need your help one more time. I’m sure this idea will work.” He touched her arm catching her eyes, “Will you please follow me on this Jenny?”
She smiled, liking the nickname he gave her and the way his voice sounded, when he said it. She was lost in his dreamy deep husky voice. She thought back to how she used to leave his show on the television set while she went to sleep every night just so she could listen to his voice. Now here he was talking to her. She bit her lip and contemplated if she should get involved any further. She understood his predicament having been through a situation like his and just maybe his next idea would get rid of his stalker.
“Please will you help me again?” He asked.
He didn’t clue as to what else he could do if she didn’t help him, especially now that Patricia had been watching them this whole time. He only knew that his next plan had to happen now and with Jennifer, otherwise Patricia wouldn’t buy it as the truth.
She envisioned his television show and the movies he acted in danced around in her head. She wondered to herself why she was helping him, debating if it was because his a famous actor, or because she could relate. She gave in, still not sure which reason she leaned more towards. Thinking that it was probably both.
“Ugh, okay, okay I will help you.”
He smiled brightly and grabbed her hand, then dragged her to the center of the room. He scanned around the area making sure to spot his ex-girlfriend. She had moved to a nearby table keeping an eye on him.
Jennifer stared at the crowd gathered around them, as they pointed and called out Keith’s name. Her hands began to sweat. She hated being the center of attention. She hated everyone staring at her, feeling like an item on display for all to judge. It made her extremely nervous.
She had always loved going to parties and seeing other people happy and having fun as long as they didn’t expect her to join in. Her happiness came in seeing other people happy.
She took her hand from Keith’s and swiped it on her pants then put her hair back behind her ear, before placing her hand back in his.
“Keith what are you doing? What’s this idea?” she asked him as she looked back at all the people gathered around them.
“Can I have everyone’s attention please?” He called out over the music and crowd of people calling his name.
“Keith, what are you doing?” she asked with a plastered smile on her face and gritted teeth.
More had gathered the screaming crowd making it impossible for him to hear her. He kept a tight grip on her hand to keep the crowd from breaking them apart.
As he shouted, “I have an announcement.” He then turned to her and dropped to one knee in front of her still holding on to her hand.
The crowd made a circle around them ogling them with ‘oohs’ and ’awes’.
She turned a bright red, as she scanned over all the people with their phones out photographing and recording them. Her forehead broke out in sweat. She felt lightheaded and dizzy. The room began to slowly spin. She leaned into him for support, placing her free hand on his shoulder to balance herself.
He looked up and noticed her pale face and nervous jitters. He kissed her hand, bringing her attention back to him.
“Oh, my Jenny, I know we haven’t known each other for very long.” He couldn’t help but to quickly glance at the floor and chuckle under his breath.
Then with a performance worthy of an Oscar, he looked up into her eyes with his own sensual ones saying, “I can’t stop thinking about you. Your smile takes my breath away. Your laugh brightens my day, and those baby blue eyes see into my very soul. I’m not just in love with you. I’ am captivated by you. Enraptured by you. I’m crazy in love with you. You have me in every way. You own my heart, my mind and my soul. I promise if you say yes, you will make me the happiest man alive. Will you please do me the honor of being my wife?”
The crowd broke with shouts of cheers. While tears streamed down the young women’s faces. Older women fanned their selves while others fainted.
Her eyes widened in full blown panic.
The crowd blurred before her as she scanned the room. Everyone smiled back at her in anticipation waiting for her answer. But all she could hear was the pounding of her heart.
All color drained from her face as she swayed.
He watched hoping that she wouldn’t run. That she would just go along with his scheme. He rubbed his thumb over her hand and squeezing it gently for her to focus on him.
She turned scared eyes to him.
He gave her a nod of encouragement.
She was so petrified and mad at him, but right now she needed his strength. She let out a shaky breath, keeping her eyes locked on his, not daring to look at the crowd again.
She repeated the cries of the crowd, “Yes, I’ll marry you.”
She quickly let go of his hand, needing to get away from him and the crowd. But he picked her up before she could make a move and spun her around. He let her slide down his front and leaned in placing a soft peck on her lips.
As he was about to let her go their eyes met.
Something had changed between. Mesmerized by the attraction he felt towards her, he leaned back in and kissed her again.
She closed her eyes moaning as he slid his tongue across her bottom lip for entrance. She gasped, opening her mouth for him to explore.
His hold tightened on her as he buried his hand in her hair.
She reached up and placed her arms around his neck, twisting her fingers in the waves of his hair. For a moment the crowd no longer existed, and she had forgotten that she was mad at him.
But eventually the noise broke them out of their trance and away from their made-up world. As the crowd cheered louder and hollered their congratulations, he let go of her, but his eyes remained glued to hers. He stared at her bewildered. Wondering what had happened? Why did she have such an effect on him? He didn’t even know her and already he was seeing his future. But he didn’t want to see his future. He didn’t have a place for anyone in his heart. He shook his head allowing the real world to seep back between them.
The flash from the cameras caught his eye. He turned away from her and waved to them, thanking them for their support.
The crowd went wild with the attention he gave them, with many giving him a thumbs up signal.
Jennifer cut her eyes off him taking deep breaths to steady herself. As she glanced at the crowd and all the cameras flashing, she glanced back at him. She asked herself why she ever agreed to this. She told herself that she was such a sucker.
He was trying to say something to her, but the noise of the crowd roared around them. He leaned in close to her ear asking, “Do you see her?”
His warm breath on her skin ignited her body again. She needed to avoid him and shook her head. “No, I don’t think so.” She replied, though she still didn’t know who she was looking for.
He craned his neck looking over the crowd that surrounded them and spotted Patricia. He could see Patricia’s hands bawled in tight fist. Her eyes pierced at him. She turned and shoved through the crowd towards the exit doors near the back of the building.
“I see her, she’s headed to the back exits. Maybe the proposal did it. She looked livid but at least she’s gone now. I hope for good.” He smiled victoriously.
“Good, I’m glad it worked.” She smiled sarcastically up at him ready to leave. She dropped her fake smile saying, “I have to get back and check in with my employees. I want to make sure everything is okay.” She turned to walk away adding, “And you have to get back to your panelist group.”
“Wait, what are you talking about?” he asked as he gently grabbed her arm pulling her back to him. He leaned into her and waved his hand towards the crowd saying, “Look at all these people. This is a big crowd, Jenny, and they think we just got engaged. I can’t just go back over there and be a panelist and you can’t just walk around here like nothing happened. We both will be bombarded with a bunch of questions. We have to wait until things die down a bit.”
“You should have thought of that before your big grand gesture of a marriage proposal!” She fixed slanted eyes on him.
“Can we not do this here in front of every- one. Please?” he asked through gritted teeth and with a fake smile.
She put her best fake smile on then in her sweetest southern albeit sarcastic tone she said, “Well fine sweetheart! Let’s move somewhere more private to talk.”