Thank you to brittanylm7 for the idea for this chapter! As always, please submit your input and any constructive criticism you may have. Enjoy!
Today was the fourth of July and Nathan and I were going to a big get together at one of Nathan’s teammates’ houses. I had invited my best friend, Kate, to assure myself that I would not be standing all alone as Nathan chatted with his friends. Also, she did not protest to meeting a bunch of ripped swimmers. She was meeting us there, so I put on my red white and blue tank top along with a navy blue cardigan and some jeans shorts. My hair was a little wavy and hung down to my shoulder blades. I walked out of the bathroom to find Nathan in a Team USA swim shirt along with a pair of jeans and his regular sneakers. He was leaning down in order to tie his shoelaces and I embraced the opportunity to embarrass him.
“Nice view from back here. Ow ow!” I said to him, laughing a little. I scoffed sarcastically a little, standing up. “Don’t look at me like I’m a piece of meat.” “Sorry. Can’t help it.” I smirked as I grabbed my wallet along with my sunglasses. Nathan grabbed his keys and left for the party.
It was about seven o’clock and the party was full of socializing, burgers, hot dogs, and lots of festive decorations. I was chatting with a few of my teammates and I looked around to see where Jennifer was. She was with her best friend Kate, chatting it up with Graeme. After introductions were made, Jennifer seemed to make an excuse to leave, leaving Kate and Graeme to continue to talk. She spotted me and smiled, pointing at the two of them and giving a subtle thumbs up. I chuckled to myself. She is so funny and just amazing.
I excused myself from my teammates and walked over to Jennifer who was putting some chips on her plate. “Funny seeing you here,” I said to catch her attention. She turned around and smiled. “Well howdy, stranger.” She pretended to tip an invisible cowboy hat, which caused me to laugh. That’s one of the things I love about her. She never takes herself too seriously and we have the same sense of humor. “The fireworks are about to start soon. Do you want to get a good seat?” “Sure,” she responded. I took her hand, leading her over to the deck, pointing in the direction of where the fireworks were supposed to be. We plopped down in some lawn chairs and stared over at the dark horizon.
Everyone began to crowd around us as the fireworks began to start. There were many oos and ahs as the colorful bursts of life lit the sky. I turned to my right and saw Kate still standing with Graeme. She must have seen me looking at her because she turned to me and mouthed “thank you,” gesturing to Graeme. I gave her a quick smile and a thumbs up and turned back to see the fireworks.
As I continued to watch the fireworks, I saw Nathan looking at me out of the corner of my eye. I turned to him and smiled. He smiled back and gentle caressed my cheek and planted his soft lips on mine. After a few seconds, Nathan pulled away quickly when one of his teammates hit him on the head with a paper plate and said, “Cut it out, you crazy kids.” He rubbed his head a little and I started laughing. I intertwined my fingers with his and leaned my head on his shoulder. We both watched the fireworks for the rest of the duration and when the finale finished, everyone applauded.
I started talking to some of my teammates and I had told them about my intentions on proposing to Jennifer. At first they teased me about it, but then congratulated me. “I just don’t know how I want to do it. She’s not big on extravagant gestures or really intricate things.” Graeme said, “Then just do something simple. When the time is right, you’ll know it.” Jennifer came up behind me and hooked her arm through mine. “Hey, we gotta get going. Sorry to take away your bro here.” I said goodbye to all my teammates and left for home.
After a little bit of listening to the radio, Jen spoke up and said, “you know you could’ve proposed during the fireworks.” She nudged me a little. I scoffed, sarcastically. “Oh I can beat that by a long shot.” “Oh really? I hope you’re up for the challenge.” “Challenge accepted.” She laughed a little. I have to think of something clever, yet simple. It might take some time to plan it out, but it will impress her.