Two Dreams Ch. 04-05byvictoriawhita©
***Shasta felt like a giddy middle schooler with her first guy. David was so much better looking, and a better kisser than...what was his name...oh yes, Shwartz. Back then she thought it didn't get any better than shy, sweet Shwartz. She was glad she hadn't held onto that belief too long. She floated back to her desk, all smiles. If she kept this up her teammates would clearly read, "I'm falling in love," written on her forehead.
***David had moaned out her name. He may never get work done ever again. He'd be fired because he couldn't concentrate and it would be her fault. She had accomplished her goal. He wasn't sure he'd tell her and give her the satisfaction of knowing that just yet. Even his last girlfriend...what was her name...who cares what her name was...didn't have this much control over his thoughts and life. Before she had been a distraction, now Shasta was more like an invasion. One he was enjoying very much. He sat at his desk turning often to her desk to watch her read, move, and think. He pretended to work but knew he wasn't tricking himself.
***Shasta worked with a smile most of the afternoon. She'd get some work done, and then doodle on her paper, and catch herself, and get back to work. He looked good, as she stole glimpses across the room, and each glimpse reminded her how good he looked. As time passed she was surprised that her pulse rate that naturally elevated from the lunch time rendezvous, hadn't decreased, and a headache was approaching. She ignored it, and walked to David's desk before leaving to get plans for the evening. "Are we on for this evening?"
***"That's all I've been able to think about all afternoon" David answered. David was rewarded by an innocent smile from Shasta. "Can I spoil you tonight?" Shasta said she wasn't up for a big night but she did want to see him, how about movie and popcorn? He liked that idea as there were things he wanted to do in the dark with her. They planned to meet at the 34th street theatre, and hope there was something playing they both wanted to see.
***David called Shasta at home half an hour before they were supposed to meet at the theatre. Shasta couldn't answer the phone because she was curled up on the bathroom floor with nausea flooding her stomach for the second time. This couldn't be happening. What was wrong? Why was she sick? She felt ugly, smelly, sick, cold, and hot. She had hoped she would get better, at least enough to go out and sit through a movie, but this wasn't going away. She threw up a second time, feeling at least temporarily relieved from the nausea.
***David was surprised Shasta hadn't answered. He had wanted to be a gentleman and had decided to check out the movies at the theatre to call her, so that if she wasn't interested in any, then they could try another theatre.
"Maybe she was just in the bathroom," he thought and called again. Shasta answered, but when he told her his plan she started almost crying.
"I'm sorry David, I can't come, I've got some bug and am not feeling well. Can we reschedule?"
She sounded terrible. How long had she been sick, and not called him? He wanted to help, he wanted to be with her. The questions surprised him as it popped out of his mouth.
***"No, you can't come over here!" Shasta cried into the phone. She was a mess, there's no way David would see her like this. They'd only had one real date, well maybe two, or maybe three. She sat on the floor with the phone in her hands too drained to stand or move to a chair.
"Good Night David, we'll reschedule tomorrow." She quickly hung up the phone before she could change her mind. She didn't want to worry about how she looked or acted tonight.
***Shasta would obviously need some taking care of through this sickness, and he wanted to be the one doing it. Couldn't she see that? He called back almost immediately. The phone rang and rang in his ear, he was obviously being a bother. David hung up missing Shasta more now that a lonely evening stretched ahead of him.
***Often when she lay in her bed sick she had longed for someone to take care of her like she'd seen her father do for her mother, like her mother had done for her. Now David's second call showed that she could have enjoyed that. Although she loved being with David she was still afraid if David saw her at her worst that he would be disgusted by what he saw and flee. She put her hand on the receiver as it rang but never picked it up. The ringing stopped and Shasta's thoughts turned to a warm shower and comfortable bed.
***David resisted calling Shasta in the morning not wanting to wake her, thinking he could call at 10 am or so and ask to come over for lunch. But as he walked into work thinking he might get some work done for a change without distraction, he saw Shasta was already working at her desk. He wished she'd stayed in bed to get some extra rest, but here she was, maybe it was just a 24 hour flu. He pulled up a chair beside her desk, to make plans for the evening, asking her how she was feeling.
***Shasta smiled as she heard David's voice as he talked to a team mate across the room. Hearing his strong voice made her forget for a moment what a terrible decision she had made by coming into work that day. She felt great when she woke up having slept well, but after eating a light breakfast her weakness and a slight nausea had returned. How would she get through the day? At least at work she'd be close to David, and at home she'd be alone. That was a good reason to stay. Now she heard David's voice call her name and she couldn't help smiling as she saw David's face.
***It was obvious that Shasta hadn't returned to health over night. She said she was feeling fine, but her movements were sluggish, her face pale, and her eyes seemed unable to focus quickly. David knew Shasta was independent and could make up her own mind about being at work, but he worried for her and wanted to take care of her. He would watch her throughout the morning to see if she was really as 'fine' as she claimed. To be honest he would have watched her anyway.
***For Shasta the morning passed slowly and she considered heading home but each time she looked over and saw David's smiling face, she decided to stay. When Kristal announced the team meeting and trip to the Daytolla Elementary School she wasn't sure if that would help her keep her mind off her illness or make it harder to pretend she was fine. She sat in on the meeting but couldn't get her mind to stay ahead of the conversation and just barely followed along.
***Now David was worried. Shasta usually had ideas about everything at their team meetings but now she was silent following the discussion only with her eyes. He wondered if he could talk her into going home. She seemed determined to stay so probably not. After the meeting, he approached Kristal quietly, asking permission to take Shasta home. Fortunately, Kristal had also noticed that Shasta was out of sorts.
***Shasta stood at her desk not able to decide what she should and shouldn't take for this trip to the Daytolla Elementary School. She stared at her pile of work knowing it was important but not remembering why. David's voice interrupting her thoughts scared her as he asked, "Do you want to drive together? Kristal wants us to take our own cars so we can leave separately." This was strangely different but she didn't have energy to question it so she grabbed her keys and they walked to the parking garage.
***They walked to the cars quietly, and David reached into his pocket. "Shasta I seem to have left my keys upstairs." She offered the use of her car. David's plan seemed to be working. He took the keys out of her hand, volunteering to drive before Shasta could fight. As they pulled out of the garage, David explained that he thought Shasta was still sick and he wanted to take her home and tuck her into bed, if she'd just give him directions to her house.
***Shasta got tears in her eyes realizing that David had read her mind, and was making sure she'd get home safely. He deserved a kiss for that later.
"Won't the team be expecting us at the school?" She still felt an obligation to do her part.
"Kristal knows you're sick and agreed that I could take a side trip to take you home and then meet them there a bit late." David had thought of everything, but was she ready to have David know where she lived? She trusted David not to abuse the knowledge but were they getting too close too quickly?
***"So, I'm being kidnapped, is that right?" David could hear the hint of laughter in the words.
David replied taking her hand, "That's right, you're all mine, and don't you forget it." Unfortunately, the road was too busy for the kiss that he would have liked to plant on her lips right then. It would have to wait. She gave him directions to her home.
***She wondered if she pretended to be really sick or fall asleep if he'd carry her inside and snuggle with her a while. Nope, it was just better to keep a little distance. Her emotions were already out of control and having this fabulous man offer to look after her in her sickness was breaking down her barriers. She walked with him to the door, but didn't let him in. She wasn't ready for him to see her sick, in bed and exposed.
***David had longed to see her apartment, carry her to the bed, tuck her in, bring her a drink, and maybe even cuddle with her as she fell asleep. He barely had the time to fit in one quick kiss before he got shooed away. Fortunately, he had her car and car keys and had a good excuse to return them to her later. With Shasta safe in bed at home and not across the room, he was less distracted and for the first time since his amazing dream he got lots of work done.
***For the second time that day he drove to Shasta's place, and this time he stopped at the video rental, florist and Chinese take-out, before showing up at her door. He knocked lightly but no one answered. The key ring in his hand had other keys attached. He tried the keys, and was surprised that the door slipped open on his second attempt. He peeked in, calling her name. Still no movement or noise. She was obviously still asleep in the bedroom, and so he took a moment to look around the apartment as he made his way to the kitchen.
He guessed that she hadn't eaten all day and could use some nourishment. The kitchen had dishes piled up, and he washed the dishes while waiting for sounds from the bedroom so he wouldn't scare her. He set out plates, hoping she liked Chinese, and set the flowers in a vase.
Still no movement from the bedroom, so he peeked in the door and saw her fast asleep. Could a kiss wake her up? Was he selfish for wanting her awake? He watched her for a while first. Her long hair was all spread out around the pillow, she lay on her side almost curled into a ball, her mascara was smudged under her eyes, so he knew she had just dropped into be hours before. She slept in a queen size bed with the blue bed cover half dropped to the floor and only the sheet pulled up to cover her. His thoughts started straying the longer he stood there. What would it be like to wake up beside this beautiful face tomorrow morning? In his mind he was waking her by kisses, his hand wondering over her body, and his body rubbing on hers. He could handle waking up next to her every morning. The depths of his thoughts surprised him and he strove to collect himself.
***The kiss came into her dreams, pulling her from her deep but fitful sleep. She started to smile enjoying the kiss, before reality made her realize that she was home alone and thus being kissed was not a good thing. She jerked awake pushing the kiss and kisser away from her, defending herself as quickly as she could. The sleep drifted from her eyes as she saw the figure fall backwards.
***David was completely caught off guard so he half slid and half fell onto the floor. Shasta was stronger than he would have guessed. What was he thinking letting himself into Shasta's apartment? Now he'd be in jail instead of in the bed. That was stupid. Afraid of Shasta's further vengeance he called out, "It's just me, David."
***It was David? That explained why she had enjoyed the kiss at first, but what was he doing in her bedroom? Was he a stalker or what?
"David, What are you doing in my bedroom?" She yelled out at him as he stood from where he had fallen. She was still stunned from her abrupt awakening and didn't care if she was being rude.
"Shasta, I'm sorry to scare you, I just wanted to see if you were okay, and I knew you wouldn't let me in if I called, so I just used the keys from the car key ring to let myself in. It was stupid, I'm sorry, but I just missed you." The words flooded out and she thought how well the repentant look fit him.
She couldn't help but smiling at him and his words. "I suppose that's a good reason but," her face turned to attempt to look angry, "now get out of my room."
***He slumped out of the room, his cheeks blazing red. At least she hadn't kicked him out of the house. Maybe he should just leave. No, he needed to try to make up for his mistake. He should have tried knocking louder. He sat quietly waiting for Shasta to appear.
***She laughed to herself as she remembered the repentance in his expression. "He really shouldn't look so adorable when I'm trying to be mad at him," she thought.
She realized that now that he was here she wanted to look good for him. She took her time getting dressed, how embarrassing that he had seen her so scruffy from sleeping. It's a wonder he hadn't run the other way instead of kissing her.
She tried to look angry when she left her room searching for him. She saw him sitting casually on her couch with fresh daisies on the coffee table in front of him. She smelled something cooking. Surely he hadn't also seen her messy kitchen. How embarrassing! She forgot all about looking angry and sat beside him. When he started to apologize she responded, "Next time just wait for an invitation."
***David started to apologize again, but Shasta's angry look disappeared and she leaned forward and kissed him lightly on the cheek. He would wait as long as it took to get that invitation. Shasta seemed to enjoy the daisies, as they asked each other about their day. Both were tired from their day and so David let Shasta pick a movie. He was relieved that Shasta enjoyed Chinese food and even used the chopsticks well. It had been a good choice. They watched the movie together at first just holding hands, but as they got comfortable Shasta snuggled into David putting her head on his lap. David lost track of the movie as he enjoyed watched Shasta's profile, and enjoyed unclipping Shasta's hair and running his fingers through it.
***Shasta rubbed his leg while David stroked her hair. Instead of spending the evening alone like so many other nights, here was David going the extra mile to take care of her. The message spoke to her deeper than any words or kisses they had shared. Maybe David was serious about her. She got distracted from the movie enjoying the sensual touches on her skin. She let her body relax and mind melt into thoughts of David with the movie just in the background for the evening.
The night didn't end without kisses and more kisses. David was a gentleman and reminded Shasta of her illness. "I want you to be healthy so I'm going to leave, and pick up where we left off hopefully tomorrow."
Shasta was sad to see him leave, but knew he was right. She lay back in bed, not sleeping right away because of her long nap. She realized that if David hadn't cut things short, she might have opened the invitation into her bedroom that very night. Now away from the safety of David's arms she started getting afraid. Why should she believe the dream that had started this whole thing. Her dream had left her vulnerable, and maybe she wasn't ready for a serious relationship? How could she trust David anyway? What did she truly know about him? Her fear about doing the right thing now that she was alone filled her, and she wished she could sleep. How dare David come in here and take over? How dare he cause her to feel? How dare the words "I love you" be so close to her lips every time he was near? She fell asleep succumbing to her own fears and finally her dreams.
***David had called a taxi the night before even though he wanted to stay and take care of Shasta. That was the truth, as much as he wished the invitation had been to join her in her bed, more than that he wanted to help her, make sure she was okay, and take care of her. Was that a sign that Shasta was the ONE? He wasn't going to judge that yet, but was going to enjoy what ever was to come. Life at work was busy. Shasta came in for half the day, and begged off seeing him that evening because she was 'just going to go and sleep.' He was disappointed, but wanted her better so didn't protest. The next day she came in for the full day, and was looking back to her healthy self. He hoped they'd be a note from her proposing another rendezvous in the closet or something even more spicy. But no note came. Shasta seemed happy to see him, but begged off the next night as well. Work was busier than ever and he didn't push.
***Shasta's heart turned a flip every time she looked at David or heard his voice. But she let her fears about what could go wrong with David take over her mind when he approached her and tried to talk about spending more time together. On the third night she said yes, because she did want to see him and had missed him, but she would be in control this time.
***David was waiting for the perfect night to take his Shasta out for an expensive evening on the town and spoil her but the timing just didn't seem right. He couldn't figure out if he had done something wrong. Maybe she really hadn't forgiven him for walking into her bedroom? When she agreed to go out with him again he was nervous again feeling like he needed to win her over again.
Shasta chose the fairgrounds for their date. They walked hand in hand, and enjoyed the games together but each time he asked to sit so they could talk, she kept moving them onto the next activity. Her kisses were quick pecks. The difference from the nights before spoke to him that something was wrong. She wouldn't stop to talk or rest, she just kept moving.
The best thing that happened was that she'd agreed to go into the photo booth with him. Tucked in his wallet was a picture of the two of them together looking happy.
The next day was hectic at work. David had thought with them at the school site they would have plenty of time together. But their expertise was different and they hardly saw each other all day. Shasta spent the day handling a meeting with the teachers, discussing their ideas for the library and researching catalogs. David spent the day phoning distributors getting proposals. David was disappointed that Shasta didn't seek him out once the whole day, even though she seemed happy to see him.
***David had asked her again for this evening. She had agreed as long as they drove separately. Why did it matter if she drove or not? For some reason it did. She needed a shield, something between her and David and these feelings that flooded her heart about this new man in her life. She needed to back away and put some distance between them. She felt herself falling out of control and couldn't handle it.
***David knew Shasta was pulling back. How could he have been so sure just four nights ago? So much so that he'd discussed with his mom about a new, beautiful, amazing woman in his life. He'd even asked if they could meet her. His Mom had thought she sounded perfect, which had only fueled his interest.
Now with Shasta pulling back, he knew he'd have to as well. If she walked away, no denying his heart would be broken, but maybe he could keep it from shattering. Seeing her again that evening at the restaurant brought tears to his eyes as he watched her and thought of her slipping away. They chatted casually through supper mostly discussing work, her health and the weather. She still laughed at his jokes and looked as sexy as ever, but the depth they had built was missing. David decided he couldn't handle being led on, and approached the subject with her.