Gareth

Work had been a bitch today. My online graduate classes weren’t any better. I don’t know what I’d been thinking signing up for my Master’s. Promise of more money, I guess. Maybe also because of my dad a little. He expected a lot out of me, and I didn’t want to disappoint him. Especially when he was paying half my tuition. 

I’d been counting the seconds until I got off work, and I could go have dinner at the diner. Olivia worked tonight, and we’d hardly had any chances to talk over the last few days between our work schedules. She was in class when I worked and she worked when I was off. After the second day of not seeing her and only talking for an hour on the phone, I told her I’d come for a late dinner. Tonight was her early night getting off, so we had time to hang out after. 

At a few minutes after six I walked through the door of the diner, the overhead bell signaling my arrival. My eyes scanned the place, looking for Olivia, but I didn’t see her. She must be back in the kitchen. This was a seat yourself kind of place, so I waited until she came out so I knew what section she was working. I’d hoped she had a table open. It wasn’t too busy, so the chances were good. 

I didn’t have to wait long. Within a few minutes of my arrival, she stepped through the swinging doors separating the kitchen from the dining area carrying a tray full of food. She looked beautiful. Her hair was pulled up in a ponytail that bounced when she walked. Her waist dipped in where her white button down shirt was tucked into her black pants. Her hips flared out giving her the perfect hourglass shape.

I waved to get her attention. Olivia’s gaze caught mine and she smiled. I observed her as she delivered the food to a table, and I made my way in that direction. She set the last plate in front of the last customer and turned almost colliding with me. I grasped her waist to keep her from toppling over. 

“Oh, sorry. I didn’t realize you were right behind me.”

“No, it was my fault.” 

We stood there for several seconds, my hands still holding her. I loved the flush that spread across her cheeks. I loved it even more when she lowered her gaze shyly. It sent a rush through me. 

“You can let me go now.” 

Idly my thumb caressed her the top of her hip bone. I smiled with satisfaction when her nipples pebbled beneath the bra she wore. 

“Maybe I like holding you.” 

I didn’t think Olivia’s face could get any more red until she proved me wrong. 

“I don’t think my boss would appreciate it. The customers might start complaining.” 

“Well, we wouldn’t want that to happen. I’d hate to be responsible for you getting in trouble.” With a final glide of my thumbs, I reluctantly let her go and took a few steps back. 

“Thank you. Do you want to have a seat?” She gestured to a row over. “That’s my section. You can sit at any of those tables. What would you like to drink?” 

I nodded my thanks. “Raspberry lemonade, please.”

My heartbeat ramped in speed at her smile. “Coming right up.” 

While Olivia went to get my drink, I took a seat at the last booth. My fingers tapped a staccato of impatient beats on the top of it. I was anxious for her return. It was crazy, these feelings I had. She was a freshman for fuck’s sake. I needed to reel this shit back in. Play it cool. I wasn’t some eager teenager. Movement came from the corner of my eye, and I turned to see her heading toward me with my drink. It might be ridiculous for a man of twenty three to drink raspberry lemonade, but I enjoyed it and really didn’t give a fuck what people thought. 

She set in down in front of me.

“Thanks.” 

“You’re welcome. Would you like anything to eat?” She pulled an order pad and pen from her apron pocket.

“Yeah, I’d like another one of those bacon cheeseburgers. You were right about how good it was.” 

“I’m glad you enjoyed it. American cheese and extra pickles, right?” 

I glanced at her in surprise. “You remembered?” 

Her smile was bright. “That’s how I like mine too, so it was easy to remember.”

“Can you sit for a couple minutes and talk? I don’t mind waiting for my food.” 

Olivia glanced around. “Yeah, for a few minutes. It doesn’t look like anyone needs anything right now. I can’t say long though.” 

“That’s fine. Jump up whenever you need to run. How were classes today?”

“Not bad. My statistics class is kicking my ass. I’m really enjoying my English class though. It was always my favorite subject anyway. What about you? How was work?” 

“Olivia!” Dan called out from the kitchen.

“Shit, I’ll be back.” 

She took off at a clip. I couldn’t help but admire her ass as she hustled away. For the next twenty minutes I sipped on my lemonade and watched Olivia work. She was great with the customers. Even the assholes. Never once did she seem frazzled. I hoped they tipped her well considering the shit she was putting up with. The next time she came out of the kitchen she was carrying a plate. She set it down in front of me and then took her seat again. 

“I only have one table right now, so I’m good for another few minutes.” 

“Thanks for the extra fries,” I said, glancing down at the huge pile in front of me.

“You’re welcome. So, you never answered me. How was work?” 

I finished chewing before answering. “Today wasn’t a great day. One of my favorite residents passed away.”

Olivia reached across the table and laid her hand on mine. My skin sizzled where she touched me. “I’m so sorry. You have to have a tough job.”

I was so focused on the sensation that I almost missed what she said. “It’s my least favorite part. That’s why I couldn’t be a doctor like my dad had hoped. I couldn’t deal with death day in and day out like that. Especially not that closely. They say you become immune to it after a while.” I shrugged. “I’d hate to be so used to it that it didn’t bother me so much anymore.” 

“It takes a special kind of person to handle that. I know I couldn’t do it,” she said with sympathy. 

I turned my hand over so I was holding hers. “He doesn’t ever say it, but I know my dad’s a little disappointed I won’t be joining him in his family practice. We talked about it a lot growing up. I’m passionate about health care and providing quality service to patients. I just couldn’t be a doctor.” 

“I’m sure what you’re doing is equally important.” 

“Maybe.” I shrugged. “I know that’s why he suggested going into hospital administration. I could still do good things for patients without all the hands on stuff. I’m getting my graduate degree online right now. Gives me a better chance at better jobs. I’d like to eventually work at UNC Hospital.” 

“I think it’s great what you do.” Olivia squeezed my hand. “Eat. I’ll be back in a bit.” 

The rest of the evening, I sat and watched her work. Her last table finally left at eight and she was cleaning up. Once she finished she stopped in front of my table.

“I’m going to have to call it a night. I have to get up early for class tomorrow.”

I rose from my seat. “No problem. Can I give you a ride?” 

“Do you mind? It won’t take an Uber that long to get here, but I’m really beat.” 

“Not at all.” In fact, I was happy to be able to spend a little more time with her. 

“Thank you. I really appreciate it.” 

It wasn’t a far drive to her dorm. I pulled up to a stop in front of it. Olivia turned to me.

“Thanks for the ride.” 

“You’re welcome. You still up for that date on Saturday?” I prayed she said yes.

“Absolutely. I’m looking forward to it. Give me a call tomorrow if you want. Have a great night.” She moved to get out of the car. I stopped her with a hand on her arm. She turned back to me with a question in her eyes.

I leaned across the seat until I was inches from her. Her eyes widened and her breath hitched but she didn’t move away. Ever so slowly I pressed my lips to hers with a soft, feathered touch. It only lasted for a second, but I felt that kiss all the way to my soul. I returned to my seat. She covered her mouth with the tip of her fingers as though holding the sensation of my lips against hers. 

“I’m looking forward to it too, Olivia.” 

Wordlessly, she got out of the car. Before she shut the door, she leaned down and stuck her head back in. Her smile was bashful and sweet. “My closest friends call me Livvie.” 

She closed the door and hurried into her dorm. In the meantime, I sat there in my car with a stupid ass grin on my face. 

“Livvie,” I whispered to myself.

I drove home and crawled into bed. My thoughts drifted to Livvie. Each one more erotic than the last until I slid my hand into the waistband of my briefs. A few strokes of my cock and I was coming like a teenager, her name a growl from my chest. I stumbled out of bed to wash up and then fell back under the covers to dream some more.