Dinner with a Stranger
He stood near the door and watched her, an elegant regal woman of
color. She sat comfortably at a place in the middle of the room. It
was appropriate, he mused, that she be the center of the room's
attention. For at that moment, she reminded him of nothing less
than a queen holding court amid her loyal subjects.
She crossed her legs, and he could not help but admire their sleek
lines and rich mocha color. He stood mesmerized as the single
elegant red pump which he could see bobbed rhythmically up and down.
At once his view was blocked as a potential suitor approached her
seeking an invitation to her table designed for two. His easy smile
was no doubt meant to charm, his good looks to impress. But his
efforts went for naught, as the regal beauty rebuffed his advances
with a gentle smile. The watcher nodded approvingly. She would not
be won over so easily. He scanned the room, evaluating other
potential suitors. There was no one he deemed worthy of her
Including himself . . . Still, he meant to try.
Confidently he entered her presence - knight before queen - and stood
waiting until she chose to acknowledge him. "Yes?" she asked
imperiously, her head tilted back in order to look into his eyes.
"I have not seen you here before. Are you dining alone, lovely
She considered him for a long moment, then took her eyes from his to
look fleetingly at her watch. "I am waiting for someone," she
replied. "He is very late- again." Against her will, the slightest
trace of amusement could be heard in her voice.
"He must be a fool," he responded, his voice low and sensual, "to
ever leave a woman such as you waiting."
At her most regal, the dark beauty stared coolly at him. "Your
assumptions are incorrect."
"Are they?" He sat down uninvited across from her. "Then why are
you here alone?"
"I do not discuss such personal things with strangers, however
handsome they might be," she replied sternly.
"You admit that you find me handsome." He nodded. "Great romances
have begun with less."
"Are you always so forward with all the women you meet?" She crossed
her arms and awaited his answer.
"Never," he insisted. "You are the exception to the rule."
"I see that you doubt me. Have a drink with me and I will prove my
intentions to you," he proposed. Motioning to the waiter, he had a
bottle of wine brought over.
"Please don't. It would not be proper," she informed him. "And I do
not believe my husband would approve. He can sometimes be a
"Really?" His eyebrow rose. "Has he cause to be?"
"Of course not," she smiled brilliantly, watching as he poured her a
glass of red wine. "However much I may admire other men, ultimately
I am faithful to him."
Dry-mouthed, he watched as she took a sip from her glass and then ran
her tongue across her lips. "How long have you been married?" His
voice was scratchy.
"It is nearly eight months now," was her quick response.
"And already you are left to dine alone?" Shaking his head sadly, he
reached across the table and took her hand. The massive diamond she
wore sparkled brilliantly. "At least he shares his wealth with you."
She pulled her hand from his. "You deserve more," he insisted,
leaning across the table. "You deserve his attention and his time."
"I have those things," she insisted quietly. "My husband is all I
could want." She saw the doubt in his eyes. "He completes me," she
began, her beautiful face softened by the strength of her love for
her husband. "His words inflame me, and his touch ignites me." She
paused. "But we were separate people before we met, with separate
lives. Nonetheless when we are apart, I feel his love as strongly as
when we are together."
Her companion's eyes darkened with passion. "Let us go home,