Walking into her favorite bar always felt good. Today even more so. She hadn’t been able to focus on her work at all. It wasn’t a problem yet, God knew she frequently slacked off in the beginning of the week. But this time she couldn’t blame it on a case of the Mondays. And if she didn’t deal with the distraction, Anna was sure she would find herself working the weekend to catch up. Talking to Leah would help. It always did. Leah had a way of turning mountains into molehills. Of course Anna had never talked to Leah about a problem Leah had had a hand in creating. Nor involving someone dear to Leah. She had to admit she was a little uneasy about it.
Leah was already seated at a table in the corner, reading something on her Kindle, half a beer in front of her. Anna really wanted something stronger, but getting drunk seemed like a bad idea. She ordered 2 more beers and joined her friend.
Leah looked up from her Kindle as Anna sat down with a deep sigh. “You look really tired” Leah observed. Anna noticed she looked a bit uneasy as well.
“I’ve been a mess today” Anna confessed
“Tell me what’s going on” her friend urged. Anna told her, as honestly as she dared, about the date with Sean, her day at the office and her conversation with Ron. To her surprise she saw Leah get more at ease as her story went on. When she finished talking Leah didn’t respond for a few seconds, deep in thought. Then she said: “I’ve never known you to get so distracted by a man.”
Anna buried her face in her hands, embarrassed. “I know, I know. What’s wrong with me?”
“Oh nothing is wrong,” Leah said. She sounded distant, like she was still thinking things over “The way Sean tells it, I was afraid you wanted me to tell him to get lost.”
“Oh you know…He came on too strong, you probably think he’s a creep, that sort of thing.”
Anna stared at Leah in disbelieve. “How…What? But he declined to come in…”
Leah nodded “I heard. You set a boundary, so…” her voice trailed off. Leah blinked and seemed to come back to the now, her eyes a bit wider with a realization. “You haven’t Googled Sean yet, have you?”
“No, why would I? He’s not exactly a stranger. I think you would have mentioned if he was a crazed serial killer…I don’t need to see the Facebook pictures of his ex”
Leah drummed with her fingers on the table. Anna knew her friend. It meant she really wanted to say something, but was stopping herself. After a few seconds she said: “He did expect you to. Everybody Googles everyone these days. I think he thought you would be running a search as soon as you got home on Sunday”
Anna blushed. “I was…busy”
Leah grinned. “Uh-huh. All evening?” There was the finger drumming again. “You know I don’t like Ron all that much, but he might be right this time. You might be falling in love.”
Anna sighed “What if he’s right about the drama as well?”
Leah shook her head. “You’ve had one dance, one date, one kiss. Now is not the time to worry about ever-afters.” The line sounded practiced. Anna ignored it. She had an other question in mind.
“Did you intend to set us up?”
Now it was Leah’s time to blush. “I put you together because I thought you’d be a good match. I had no idea either of you would make such a big deal out of it. You usually don’t. Neither does Sean.”
“…But if we were to get serious…”
Leah put her hand over Anna’s and smiled “You have my blessings. Prematurely, but you have them. Happy?”
“Yes” Anna said relieved. She did feel lighter already. Although, that could have been the beer combined with the fact she had hardly eaten anything. With that thought Anna suddenly realized she was hungry. “I have to get something to eat. Do you want to come with?”
Leah finished her beer “I can’t today. We’ll have dinner later in the week, okay?” It sounded like a cop out. Judging by the tapping fingers, Leah just wanted to prevent herself from saying something she would regret. Anna decided not to mention it. She would get the information soon enough. Leah could never keep quiet for long. She just nodded.
Leah got up, searched in her purse and pulled out a small piece of paper and put it on the table in front of Anna. “Sean got himself a local mobile-phone plan. He wanted me to give you his number. Call him.” Anna reached out to take the paper, but Leah pinned it down to the table with her index finger. “After you Google him, okay?”
Anna giggled. It seemed like such a stalker-ish thing to do. “Okay, okay”
Leah quickly walked out of the bar while Anna rummaged through her purse for her phone so she could enter Sean’s new numbers into her contacts. The paper was the size of a business card. the quality of the paper suggested business card as well. After she entered the hand written digits into her phone she turned the card over, expecting to find his work telephone number as well.
Suddenly it felt like the room started spinning around her. She stared at the black and blue lines with a red heart in the upper left corner. There was a web address written in the singe white bar through the middle of the card. Anna’s mouth had gone dry and she felt her heart beating in her throat. She looked out of the window and saw that Leah was looking at her as well. With one eyebrow raised she held up the card with the printed side facing her friend.
Leah nodded and drew a ‘G’ in the air with a finger. Anna went back to looking at the card. She had forgotten all about her hunger. Now she urgently wanted access to the internet and a search engine. For the moment nothing seemed as important as running a Google search on the man who would give her his number on a business card printed with the BDSM pride flag.