“I don’t know what to do.”
Phoenix shrugged, sitting back into his seat and stared up to the sky. The day was warm, and the inside of the café was crowded, so the two of you had opted to sit outside. The cool breeze ruffled your clothes, and the warm sun sparkled off of the fancy glassware. You could, in theory, call this a “date”… but in actuality, you had no idea what Phoenix thought of you. And it was frustrating.
But you shoved your feelings away, as is so very healthy to do, and smiled.
“Heh. Hey, maybe you should flirt with her.”
He had been trying to get a witness to open up, but she had her lips zipped tighter than a stubborn old lady’s grip. You were joking, of course, but your heart fell when Phoenix leant forwards with a sudden burst of energy.
“Do you really think so?”
“I, uh…” Crap! You had no idea how to steer clear of this mess. Of course, it wasn’t fair to keep Phoenix away from other women. You had no right meddle in his life like that, even if you were kind-of, sort-of, maybe-perhaps in love with him. Instead, you shrugged. He seemed to take that as an affirmation, which just made you panic more.
“Yeah… maybe, that will get me on her good side. You’re a genius! Thanks!”
Glumly, you thought, you’re so, so not welcome.
“But… I don’t know what to do.” He slumped again, and his bright eyes glossed over again. “I have no idea how to talk to girls.”
“Hey, you’re talking to me, aren’t you?” You chastised yourself for feeling hopeful that he might give up, but you didn’t deny the fact that your spirits were lifting.
Once again, your heart dropped into your shoes. Did he not think of you as a woman? God, you just wished he would say something! Even a blunt rejection would feel better than the constant feeling of not knowing. You must have been scowling, because Phoenix was grimacing at you.
“I mean, you’re like, my best friend.”
Best friend?! So, nothing more? Your stomach tightened. Okay, maybe rejection did hurt, after all.
“And I’m really comfortable around you, so I feel really… close to you.”
Close to you?! So, something more? Your stomach tightened. Okay, maybe rejection didn’t hurt as much as you thought it did.
“I see,” you wheezed.
“Can you help me out? What should I say to the witness?” He brightened up again, like somebody had plugged batteries into a toy. You sure felt like your batteries were dying. He leant forwards across the table, and you could suddenly see the flecks of colour in his irises. You swallowed thickly.
“Um, I mean… I guess you could try and bring her flowers…? But-don’t-bring-her-flowers.” You coughed and mumbled afterwards, hoping his subconscious might pick up on it. Your efforts bounced right off of him as he nodded thoughtfully.
“Flowers. Right! Okay, so what kind of flowers should I get?”
You hated telling him how to romance another woman. But, you clenched your fist under the table and grinned instead. You had to be the better person, here! Even if you felt like dumping the scalding cup of coffee in front of you on your face.
“…These are nice.” You flicked your finger at a delicate blossom sitting in the vase of the table’s centerpiece. They were your favourite flower, and it certainly felt wrong to advise your ‘crush’ to gift them away to somebody besides yourself. Your face fell, but you doubted Phoenix would notice, anyways.
“Okay. You’re the best! I’ll let you know how it goes later.” He stood up in a hurry, briefcase by his side. Looks like this metaphorical date is over, you thought, bitterly. He plucked the flower out the vase, and you watched it–and your chances of being with the guy you liked–lift out of sight.
“Bye–” you mumbled with a sigh, totally disheartened by the entire situation, before Phoenix cut in.
“Hold it.” He dropped the flower down onto your plate. You looked at it and then up at him, confused, until he swooped down and gave you a kiss. It was short and somehow full of passion, like a miniature explosion had been contained to half a second. He drew back quickly and left you to try and bring your scattered thoughts and emotions back together.
“O…Objection!” you stuttered, accidentally using the terms you heard so much in the court battles. You slammed your hands into the table and stood to stare at him, your eyes wild and a little hysterical. “What are you doing?!”
You expected him to smirk and say some smooth line to make you fall into his arms, but he was too busy turning an incredible hue of red. You actually feared that he might keel over. “Phoenix?” you asked, your initial shock and glee wearing away to concern.
“I… I don’t know what to do.”