Steven and Samantha(Steve and Sam)
Samantha entered the coffee shop on Monday morning and she ordered a grande latte. She sat down at a table.
“Sam?!” the male barista shouted from behind the counter.
“That’s me,” she said as she walked up to the counter.
They touched hands as she grabbed the cup. Next. He’s cute. She saw his nametag. I stand corrected, Steven’s cute.
The young blond barista returned to making drinks. Samantha walked back to her table and sipped her latte. She set it on the table and opened her laptop, but she couldn’t stop gazing at the barista and then back at her laptop screen.
She returned to the coffee shop the next few mornings in hopes of talking to Steven, but he wasn’t working those days. So, she kept returning until she saw him again on Friday.
“Hi, can I have a pumpkin spice latte-grande?” Samantha asked.
“Sure, that’ll be five dollars and nine cents,” Steven replied.
“Hey, you changed your nametag!”
“Yeah, I’ve gone by Steve for a while now, so I finally changed it.”
“That’s great, Steve.”
Steve handed her the latte and they touched hands. I hope I see her again. Could I be any more obvious?
They both shook their heads in disbelief at hearing the other’s thoughts.
Monday morning came around again and Sam returned to the coffee shop. She saw Steve working behind the counter. He was taking a customer’s order, he looked up at Sam, and smiled at her. She smiled back.
She waited in line and once she got to the front of it, Steve said, “Let me guess, pumpkin spice latte?”
“You remembered, but no, I’ll have an Americano with two sugars.”
“Mixin’ it up today?”
She saw him again Tuesday, but at the little grocery store on the corner by her apartment.
Sam walked under the store’s sign “The Market”, but the second “e” fell off, so now it’s just “The Mark t”. She walked in and grabbed a handbasket. She picked a good green bunch of bananas and set them in her basket. A kid yelled, “But I want it!” as she walked into the cereal aisle. I’m glad I don’t have kids and I never want them. She selected a box of bran cereal. She didn’t see Steve enter the aisle, so she was surprised when he reached for the same cereal box.
“Steve? What are doing here?”
“The same as you, shopping for groceries.”
They still held the cereal box.
“Do you want it? It is the last one.”
“No, I mean, I’ll get the off-brand bran.”
“Take it, it’s not like I’m shopping for grandfather or anything.”
“Yes,” he admits.
“Just take it.”
“Okay, if you insist.”
“Why are you shopping for your grandfather?”
“He lives in a retirement home and can’t walk right, so I offered to shop for him.”
“That’s so nice of you. How old is he?”
“Wow, you must be his favorite grandson.”
“I’m his only grandson. But he has dementia and he doesn’t know who I am half the time.”
“Oh, I’m sorry to hear that.”
“Well, it was nice talking to you.”
“Wait, I just moved into a new apartment and my friends and my new neighbors are throwing me a housewarming party. You should come.”
“Really? I don’t even know you.”
“Yes really. It’ll be fun and the place is nice.”
“I’ll be there. When is it?”
“This Friday at eight.”
“Okay, see you there.”
“Give me your number and I’ll text you the address.”
“Let me just put it in your phone.”
She handed Steve his phone back.
“Thanks, I’ll see you Friday.”
On her trip around the store, she picked up potted flowers for Steve’s housewarming.
She checked out.
Three went bay and Friday finally came. Steve texted her the new address yesterday. She drove there and parked behind his building. She walked in and pressed the button to be let in.
“Come on up.”
She took the elevator up to the seventh floor and walked over to apartment 7F. She knocked on the door.
“Sam! Welcome, let me take your coat.”
“I got you this for your new home,” Sam said as she handed him the potted plant.
Sam walked in and she looked at her hands, they were shaking.
Steve returned from the coat room and touched Sam’s shoulder. I’m not ready for this. I’ve been waiting for this.
“Let me introduce you to a few people. This is Jeremey from next door, my friend Kathlene from work, and this is my friend Cadence. We’ve known each other since high school.”
“Nice to meet you.”
“Make yourself comfortable.”
She sat on the couch and saw that the hockey game was on. She didn’t follow sports, but she watched it anyway. She wanted to look distracted, so she wouldn’t have to talk to anyone. But someone came over and sat on the couch with her.
“Hey, what’s the score?” Anthoney from upstairs asked.
“Nine to two,” Sam replied.
“The Ice Melts.”
Anthony continued to watch the hockey game.
Sam built up the courage and confidence to finally talk to Steve.
She walked up to him and tapped him on the shoulder.“Hey, Steve?” I can’t believe I’m doing this. Hello?
“Yes? Oh, hey Sam. Are you having fun?”
“Yeah,” Sam lied. “I think gonna head home early.”
“But you just got here. Have some food and I’ll take the cake out soon.”
“Jerry brought a chocolate ice cream cake,” Steve pointed at Jerry standing across the room at
the food table.
Sam nodded and walked over to the snack table.
“Hi, Jerry,” Sam said as she grabbed a chip.
“I brought the cake.”
“I know, Jerry.”
Sam snacked a little more before she returned to the party. I came here to talk to Steve, but he’s talking to his new neighbors and friends. I could just walk out without saying anything, but I gave him my coat. What it all worth it? Maybe, he is cute.
Sam saw Steve look at her from across the room. She smiled at him and he smiled back. She winked at him and he walked over to her.
“Hey, are you okay?” Steve asked.
“I’m fine,” Sam replied.
“Well, I’m going take the cake out now. Do you want to see it before everyone else?”
Sam helped him remove the wide cake from the freezer, but she slipped on an ice cube. Steve held the cake and set it on the counter. He grabbed her hand and helped her up. I hope she’s okay. I’m fine, I’m fine. What else could go wrong?
“Are you alright, Sam?”
“Yeah, I’m just a little wet from falling bottom first into the puddle.” She stood up and looked at her backside, the water left a stain on her black leggings.
Everyone walked into the kitchen because of the incident. Everyone asked if she was okay.
“I’m fine, I just slipped on an ice cube,” she told everyone.
Steve used paper towels to clean up the water on the floor.
“Don’t worry, the party must go on.”
Steve threw out the paper towels and grabbed a knife from the drawer. “Now, who’s ready for cake?”
Everyone raised their hands in excitement.
He’s so kind, but he has a busy life. Is there room in it for me?
Steve cut Sam a slice of cake and she walked away.
She ate it on the couch and a drop of ice cream drips onto the upholstery. While everyone else is is still in the kitchen, she flips the cushion over. She stands up and walks over to the table to grab a napkin.
What am I to him? A friend, a customer? I want to be so much more than that.
Sam thanks Steve for the cake, the food, and for inviting her. She grabs her coat and leaves.
Sam doesn’t go to the coffee shop for a few weeks, she focuses on work.
Her work friend wanted to meet at a coffee shop downtown. Sam blurted out, “How about Iced Love West Ave?” That’s where Steve works. Why did I say that?
But before she could say anything, her friend replied, “Sure.”
So, the next day, they met for coffee at Iced Love.
Sam and her friend Patrice entered the coffee shop. Sam glanced at Steve and he looked up. They locked eyes.
“Pat, order me a pumpkin latte,” Sam demanded.
“What? Come with me and order it yourself.”
“No, I want to save the table.”
“There are other tables in this coffee shop.”
“I know, but I like this one. It’s — so close to the window. We will be to see people walking by.”
“What about that one over there? It’s closer to the window.”
“Come on, the line’s getting longer.”
“Then come with me.”
Sam pointed with her eyes (moved her eyes diagonally) toward the barista, Steve.
“What? Oh, you like the barista,” Pat shouted a little.
“Keep your voice down,” Sam whispered.
“What you haven’t told him you like him?”
“I’ve talked to him, I even went to his housewarming party, but he thinks of me as his clumsy friend.”
“Why would he think you’re clumsy?”
“It’s a long story. I’ll just say, I slipped on an ice cube and fell.”
“Oh, I’m sure he likes you. Someone just has to make the first move. Let me talk to him, I’ll be your wing-woman.”
“No!” Sam sad before she pulled her turtleneck collar up over her mouth.
Pat waited in line and when it was her turn, she said, “I’ll have an iced mocha and my friend over there will have a pumpkin latte.” She turned her head and looked at her friend.
Sam sat there in embarrassment.
“Let me guess, grande?”
“How did you know?”
“I remembered, your friend told me.”
“Oh. Well, she likes you.”
“Tell her — I like her too.” Steve blushed.
“I will.” Pat smiled. She walked back to the table.
“What did he say?”
“I told him you like him and he said he likes you too.”
“What should I do now?”
“Give him a little wink.”
“When he’s looking — and now.”
She winks at him and he winks back.
“Drinks for Sam and her friend!” Steve shouts in a flirty tone.
Sam walked up to the counter and grabbed her drinks. She noticed he wrote her a note on her cup.
Meet me at my place,
Sam smiled as she held the drinks in her hands.
“What! What?” Pat asked in excitement and anticipation.
“He wrote me a note.” Sam showed Pat the front of her cup. She felt as excited as a teenage girl in high school who just got asked out by her crush but more adult.
Pat made some excited squealing sounds.
Sam left her house around eight at night to meet Steve. She drove there in excitement and nervousness. She didn’t know what to expect. Would there be dinner and an aftershow?
She pulled up to the front of his building and walked out, her red long-handled purse over her shoulder. She tugged down her tight black dress.
She pressed the button, so Steve could let him. “It’s Sam.”
“Come on up.”
She went upstairs and Steve welcomed her into his apartment.
“I prepared dinner for the two of us,” Steve said as he adjusted his black bowtie.
A red table cloth lay on his round dining room table and plated spaghetti with marinara sauce sat on top of it. Everything was set in place for a glorious night.
“Dig in, while I get the refreshments,” Steve said.
Sam took her fork and twisted it around the spaghetti noodles.
Steve returned with a bottle of wine and two glasses.
“Wine? What no cheese?” Sam joked.
“I have cheese — oh.”
Steve poured his date half a glass of wine.
She thanked him and she continued to eat. Steve sat down and started to eat.
“So, tell me about yourself. Did you grow up in Psychosha?” Steve asked.
“No, I grew up in Riverton, then I moved to the city after college to get an office job. Did you grow up in the city?” Sam asked.
“Yes, I’ve lived here all my life. I have two jobs in the city. One in an office and the other in a coffee shop.”
“Really? What do you do for office work?”
“Mostly data entry.”
Sam finished her pasta.
“You must be hungry since you finished your spaghetti so fast. I hope you saved room for dessert.”
“Is it ice cream cake?”
“No, I made brownies.”
“Are you trying to fatten me up, so you can eat me?” Sam joked.
“No, where would you get that idea?” Steve joked back.
Steve finished his pasta and brought out the tray of brownies.
The next morning, Sam woke up in Steve’s bed. She was in shock and vaguely remembered
what happened last night. She pulled off the covers and got dressed in last night’s clothes.
“Sam? Where are going?”
“Home. This was a mistake. You seduced me and used me.”
“No, I really like you.”
“Yeah right, I liked you too. I thought we had something special.”
“We did — we do.”
“Sorry, not sorry, I’ll see you — never.”
“Sam, wait!” Steve shouted as he struggled to put on his black jeans. He tripped.
“Don’t call me,” Sam said before leaving.
Steve waited a few days to call her, but she didn’t answer. She never responded. She must have changed her number. She went to a different coffee shop.
You need to get to know someone before you — you know.