Unexpected Interest Ch. 03byCoCoNiy101©
Hola! So I'm here with another story and I'm thankful for all of those who are continuing to stay with me. I hope you like this chapter and may I say I'm begging for critisim, begging. Anything at all would be greatly appreciated.
"Why is it that mother's day is tomorrow and I haven't gotten Bobby's mom, my sister, or my own mom anything? I need to get to the mall like, yesterday." Natasha said frantically through the receiver to Olivia. Natasha was brushing her teeth, on her way out the door to hunt for the perfect gifts to give. She was in the process of persuading her friends to meet up with her because she was missing them deeply. Work had been chaotic for her this week and she'd barely had any time to breathe so it was no surprise when she forgot about Mother's day gifts entirely.
"Are you asking me and Summer to join you?" Olivia said, wanting to hear her say the words. Natasha rolled her eyes in the mirror, able to watch herself.
"Yes Olivia. I am." Natasha said sarcastically, her words came a little garbled because she was brushing her tongue but her friend still know what she was saying.
"I'll call her and see if she wants to meet up but I'll be there in 45, I have a date later and I can't be out too long with ya'll."
"A date with who?" Natasha asked in disbelief. She felt a small pang in her stomach that she hadn't heard of the man the day she met him. Usually, she'd have already known everything there was to know.
"This guy, I'll tell you about it later." Olivia said sounding annoyed, but Natasha knew it was an act. She secretly wanted nothing more than to talk about her new boy with her best friends.
"Alright, see you." Natasha said, wiping her lips.
The two hung up and Natasha applied her lip gloss and grabbed her purse. She checked for her keys and headed out to the car. She called her mother yesterday to break the news that she wouldn't be spending Mother's day with her this year. She sounded content with the decision but Natasha knew her mother too well. She would need to make it up to her somehow and fast. Natasha drove somewhat slowly, thoroughly thinking out the possibilities with meeting Bobby's family. Her palms grew wet with unease. Her worst thought was that they would have a problem with her skin color. She didn't know how she'd deal with that situation, maybe she'd just wait it out. But knowing herself too well, she would want to leave immediately.
Natasha walked into the big mall and found both of her friends walking up towards the entrance from the parking lot. The weather was beautiful and she wished she could spend the day outdoors without a hat and shade over her, but she knew the sun wasn't her friend. She smiled happily; excited to be spending time with them and they both returned her welcome. They walked through the door and strode in a horizontal line.
"Have you gotten gifts yet?" Natasha asked.
"Yeah, I didn't wait until the last minute so..." Summer said, but she laughed when Natasha gave her a death glance.
"I got mine 2 days ago." Olivia said, brushing some hair out of her eyes.
"Well I have no clue what to get. Plus I have 3 people I'm shopping for so I didn't plan on breaking the bank." Natasha said.
"Pandora has a sale going on." Summer said, shifting her head towards the kiosk in the middle of the mall. Natasha pivoted her direction in its path, feeling the gravitational pull of the 40% off sign wearing on her. A cute old woman stood behind the counter, ready to greet the women before her. Natasha smiled lightly, all set to absorb her words.
"Hello ladies. What can I do for you today?" She asked pushing her glasses a little further up the bridge of her nose. The kiosk was shaped in an oval with a hollow center.
"I want to know if everything is 40% off?" Natasha asked, glancing at the glass counters full of sparkling jewelry.
"Everything in this section." She said, walking over to the left and pointing out a medium sized portion of the glass counter. Natasha smiled lightly and thanked her.
"Do you think I should get his mom something like this too? I don't want it to be too intimate; it'll be my first time meeting the woman." Natasha said.
"I think she'd be fine with a simple piece. As long as it doesn't say ' you're the best mom ever.' That would be weird." Olivia said, placing her hand on her small hip. Natasha nodded, taking in her words. That was true; she didn't want to creep her out. Nor did she want it to seem like she was kissing ass even though that's exactly what she needed to be doing.
"Maybe you should get her a gift card for a mani-pedi." Summer said. Natasha took in this suggestion too, but she didn't know whether she was into that kind of thing. Not everyone was fond of religious nail appointments like they were.
"What about Macy's? Everyone loves Macy's." Natasha asked hopeful.
"True, but you can't just put 25 dollars on it. This is something you have to put money on and then you have to tell the person you're giving it to the value." Olivia said, bringing up another good point. If she got a gift card, there would be a thin median between 'I'm super cheap/ don't care a lot about you.' And 'I want you to love me.' Natasha huffed in aggravation and wiped her hand over her face slowly.
"Just get a plain bracelet for her Tasha. Not too flashy, just simple." Olivia said, wanting to help her friend out. She could only imagine how difficult it would be to purchase a gift for someone you've never met, and then expect them to like it. Natasha had the option of putting her name on Bobby's gift, but she didn't feel right doing it. She wanted something that would showcase her on personal style.
"Okay." Natasha agreed, turning back to the counter. She looked into the blinding white cushion cradling the jewels inside the glass and her friends looked beside her too. There were a lot of different types of jewelry, none of them universal for Bobby's mom. They were flashy, plain or ugly. Olivia gasped as she spotted the perfect bracelet. She pointed at it and Natasha quickly moved her gaze.
It was just the thing Natasha had imagined. It was charmed all over with deep purples, golds, pinks and some wooden charms too. Each charm was unusual and held a pattern on each one.
"Excuse me." Natasha called to the woman who had helped her earlier. She leisurely walked over to the women from behind the counter.
"How much is this one?" Natasha asked, pointing to it from outside the glass. The woman looked into her glasses.
"It'll be 34.99 with the 40% off." Natasha had forgotten what kiosk she was standing at but then realized that this bracelet was ideal and was worth the money. After she asked to have it the woman placed it in its proper box and put it into a small blue bag. She continued to look for her mother's and sister's gifts afterwards. For them she wanted a necklace, earring and bracelet set.
After another 10 minutes of looking, Natasha settled on 2 sets for her mother and sister. For her sister she purchased something bright yet sophisticated. The earrings were silver hoops that each held a smaller hoop inside, but detained a small deep yellow stone on the end of each double hoop. The necklace and bracelet matched. For her mother, she got something even more sophisticated. Her necklace was simple small circular charms around the chain that held soft tribal colors and patterns and the other 2 pieces in the set matched perfectly.
The 3 were now on their way to the food court to enjoy a dinner together. Natasha settled on a Salad Works salad while her friends got Chinese. Natasha couldn't deny that their plates looked good but she just wasn't in the mood for anything heavy.
"So what's with this man?" Natasha asked, putting a fork full of food up to her lips. Olivia's eyes lit up at the topic and she repositioned herself in her seat.
"He's this cute mixed guy I met at a stoplight." She said. Natasha smiled at her enthusiasm. She must have rubbed off on her friend with branching out and trying different types of men. 4 months ago neither Olivia nor Natasha would've ever considered the possibility of dating outside their race, even mixed.
"What does he look like?" Natasha asked, curiously. He must be cute.
"He's tall; 6"1, light brown eyes and olive skin." Olivia said. Natasha laughed as she went off into a daze.
"Don't fall too soon too fast Livi." Summer said.
"Shut up, no one's falling anywhere." Olivia said, snapping back to the real world and at Summer too. Summer didn't take it seriously and continued to eat her food.
"And you? You been looking pretty joyful lately." Summer said eyeing her speculatively. Natasha gave her a look that indicated she had no reason to be so skeptical. She was fully capable of taking care of herself. But the sentence did inference a few other things.
"So how was I looking before? Miserable?"
"No, but not like this. You look unexplainable..." Olivia chimed in. Natasha felt a little bit like she was being backed into a corner. But she fought against the two girls.
"So what?" Natasha asked focusing her attention back in her plate.
"You're going pretty fast." Summer said lightly shaking her head at her. Olivia was feeling an argument coming their way so she decided to change the theme of the conversation promptly.
"How's crochet going?" Olivia asked. Natasha shrugged.
"Alright, I've taken a break though; it's getting warmer out, anything made of knit isn't needed." Natasha said. She remembered the matching scarves she made for her friends last Christmas that she was happy to discover they loved. It was a black ribbed circle scarf with tints of metallic gold laced in.
"When's your next tennis game Summer?" Olivia asked. Summer was a part of the YMCA's Elite sports club and they often had matches that packed the whole field bleachers. Natasha and Olivia habitually went to see her play but they both missed the last one since the seats had been utterly sold out.
"End of this month is our last game, then I'm starting field hockey." Summer said, signaling that they would need to attend those games as well. Natasha didn't mind; she loved watching her play. She was so excellent and such a star player that Natasha was happy to be calling her best friend's name from the stands. The people watching her and noticing the support Summer gave the team then looked at Natasha with a look of something that has no definition. But Natasha knew she liked the feelings those looks gave her. It was like a mother watching her son score on a high school sports team. She suddenly understood how parents could be so proud.
"We'll be there." Olivia said, speaking for them both.
Natasha's mind kept wandering to the aspects of tomorrow and couldn't help but bring it up to her friends. Her fears were getting the best of her.
"I'm scared for tomorrow ya'll. I hope Bobby told them I'm black." Natasha spoke.
"Natasha, they won't care. You're a sweet, cute successful girl. They'll have no choice but to love you." Summer said, and Natasha couldn't deny that it felt good hearing that come from a white person.
"Just be yourself girl." Olivia said. "Nothing more you can do than that. Plus don't be too flashy with your outfit"
It was true. Natasha couldn't do anything more than be who she was. If they didn't like her for that, oh well. It was nothing she could do but ride the waves and flow with the punches that may come with her visitation tomorrow. But the comment about her outfit only added more pressure.
"What the hell am I going to wear?" She said more to herself.
"Dress casual. You'll be fine with that part." Olivia said, turning back to her meal. Natasha pushed her plate away, powerless to eat anymore.
*** * * * *
"Baby you okay? You don't look good. Take a nap and I'll wake you up when we get there." Bobby said from the driver's seat of the BMW. He sounded truly worried and Natasha almost took him up on his offer. She had barely slept last night but her sleep deprivation was being clouded with pure anxiety. Bobby could sense her nervousness and wished she could be more relaxed. He coaxed her with a light rub on her thigh but this time it did nothing for her emotions. Natasha would have loved to take a nap during this 3 and a half hour ride but she didn't want to risk messing up her hair or makeup while sleeping. Her wide legged jean Capris were crisply ironed and simple peach sleeveless but not tube top, wrap blouse hugged her accordingly. She matched the outfit with a gold collar bone necklace and plain hoops.
"No, I'm okay." Natasha said.
"Please? For me?" Bobby asked. She honestly looked terrible. Her eyes had luggage bordering them and her skin didn't have its usual glow.
"I'm staying up." She said sternly. Bobby stroked her thigh with much larger rubs and Natasha was being overcome with exhaustion. She reached into her large tote and grabbed her hook and yarn. She was working on some straightforward stove mittens for her kitchen. The fabric was flame resistant and was probably the most expensive yarn she'd ever purchased but she decided she wanted to splurge.
"What you making?" He asked, keeping his eyes on the road but his hand active on her leg. Natasha was feeling herself settle down when she began crocheting. It was a sunny day, and Bobby was glad. They were cooking out on the grill today and it wouldn't be enjoyable if no one was able to go outside.
"Pot holders." She said, humming Adele with the radio. Bobby turned it up a little for her and she sent a smile his way. He returned it and wished he could kiss her, but the streets were doing some abnormal turns that he needed to keep his eyes on.
"I love seeing you knit. You look so classy." Bobby said, his voice went down an octave and Natasha felt her loins clench a little in her seat.
He barely said anything! Calm your horny ass down. Natasha thought, rolling her eyes at herself.
"It's crochet." Natasha said. He chuckled and shrugged his shoulders.
"Did you tell them about me?" Natasha decided to ask. She placed her work in her lap but making sure not to lose her place. She clenched it tightly and held her breath a little; in dread of what Bobby might reply.
"Of course I did." He said.
"Well, what'd you say?" Natasha asked.
"I just told them I had a girl and I was bringing you to spend Mother's day with us." Bobby flashed a quick worrisome look. "Why? Was there something specific I was supposed to say?" He asked.
"Yeah, maybe it was be easier to tell them that I was black." Natasha said, feeling even more distraught.
"What?" He asked. The disbelief in his voice was saturated in his words. He removed his hand from her leg and Natasha felt suddenly cold. He moved it back to his own thigh, letting it sit there lifelessly. He clenched his jaw and tilted his head.
"Why?" He asked her bitterly.
"Why what?" She asked, trying to keep her voice unchanged. She didn't want to argue with him over something like this especially being a few hours away from facing his family. She needed him supporting her when she was standing around looking helpless.
"Why do you think skin color would be a problem with my family?"
"I didn't say it would be. I just think they should know..." She trailed off.
"Why? My family isn't some racist ex- KKK members or anything. Are that the type of people you think raised me?" He said in a more angry tone of voice. Natasha was getting wound up with it and was very close to letting him know. She was starting to learn how Bobby's temper worked; once he was angry, that was it. Natasha was the same way but only her anger took more to be triggered. The slightest thing could make Bobby's veins pop. But they both could be calmed easily.
"I didn't say that Bobby. I just didn't want them to be surprised or anything."
"Surprised? I'm sure they've seen black people before."
"I really wouldn't expect you to understand." Natasha said quietly.
"You're being so ridiculous." Bobby began. His anger was topped with a fresh coat of frustration. "Why can't I understand? Because I'm white?" He laughed a little in an evil, stiff way.
"You're so closed minded. No it's not because you're white, it's because you can't spare a moment to show some empathy." Natasha spat, her voice rising.
"I'm trying to understand-"
"Sorry, forget it." Natasha whispered, cutting him off. Bobby didn't speak for about 20 minutes. Natasha was beginning to dread what would be of today with his family. It wasn't a good sign that Bobby was being so difficult to talk to. Natasha looked out the window and at the trees moving vastly beside her. Soon the car was stopping at a light and Bobby shifted his weight in her direction. Natasha didn't need to look to see his eyes were glued to her.
"Did we have our first fight?" He asked with a smile.
"I'm not mad or anything..." She said quietly. It was true, she wasn't upset. Bobby closed the space between them and planted soft kisses on her neck. Natasha tilted her head to the side and let his soft lips skim over the sensitive skin.
"I really don't like when we argue." Bobby said between kisses. Her chest was rising a little further and Bobby was ready to take his seatbelt off and go even more with her as her eyes fluttered closed.
** * * * * *
"Natasha, we're here." Bobby said, awaking her with a kiss on her full, pouty lips. Natasha opened her eyes to see Bobby bending down outside the car. Her door was opened and he was taking off her seatbelt. Natasha adjusted her eyes and saw the house before her.
It was a cute crème colored residence with brown trimming. The home was a long ranch house and Natasha fell in love with the warm, welcoming dwelling. Bobby was parked across the street; the drive way was full and some cars were parked on the curb. She took a deep breath and slowly planted her feet on the ground. Bobby had their gifts in his hand and they strolled up the length to the front door carefully. Bobby was nervous as well. His grandmother was known to be unapproachable to new women and Natasha's behavior wasn't reassuring him that she'd be able to handle being on the spot.
The door was already open and Bobby held it for Natasha. She made sure to step in cautiously. The house was country styled and smelled of lilac. The living room was empty and Bobby placed the gifts on a nearby chair and took Natasha's hand. She was grateful to have some guidance in this moment of complete ignorance. He led her down a small hall that led into the yellow kitchen. There they found the people. 2 women stood in the kitchen putting foil over pans and cleaning up the area. It seemed they were finished preparing the food and were ready to serve it.
"Nana." Bobby said quietly, announcing his presence. One woman turned around quickly and the other soon followed. Natasha could only assume the one who turned the fastest was his grandmother. Her silver hair was pulled into a cinnamon bun on the top of her head with small pieces loosely hanging around her nape. She wore a floral dress with triangle sleeves. She held Bobby's black eyes and rosy cheeks.
"Nice to meet you Natasha. I'm Gina" She said, and she walked towards her and gripped hee hand in a handshake. Bobby's aunt, Leslie followed her lead and introduced herself. The two sisters must have been twins.
"You too. Happy Mother's Day." Natasha said, making eye contact with Bobby's aunt over Gina's shoulder to emphasize she was speaking to her as well. They both said their thank you's and Bobby held the women, giving his grandmother a peck on the cheek.
"I don't wanna' hog you too much. Meet everyone and I'll catch up with you later." Gina said with a smile. Bobby took her hand and guided her around the kitchen to a screen door that was connected to the dining room. He slid the door back and Natasha entered a black deck. To the right was a big round table with enough seats to sit 10 people and a big umbrella hid everyone under it from the sun. Further up and to the left was a smoking stainless steel grill that was working hard. Behind it was a man with a bald head and plaid shirt on.