Approaching a Stranger

Steam whistles from the espresso machine. A billow of smoke rises up and fills the cozy café. A man in a checkered sports coat and black rimmed glasses briskly enters the warm café. The light from the reflection of the glass door catches the attention of a young woman reading at a nearby table. She sips from her coffee mug as she follows him with her almond eyes.

The man orders a black coffee with 2 creams and 2 sugars. He spots a nearby small table and places his things in a chair. He sits then leans over, exposing a book from his briefcase. He absently scratches his short beard before leaning back in the wooden chair and opening his book.

The woman contemplates him a moment. She closes her book and grabs her belongings. She weaves her way towards the stranger and sets her bag and coffee mug on the table across from him. She plops into the seat. The man slowly lowers his book, his hazel eyes brighten with curiosity. The woman responds with a dazzling smile.

“Hey, I noticed your book. Are you a fan of the author?” She tilts her head to the side.

“Oh yea, I guess so. Well, I like it so far.” He glances at the cover. “This is my first time reading his work, but I like this genre. Have you read this book already?” He places the book on the table between them.

She sips on her chai tea. “I haven’t finished it. I am on the last chapter.” She waves the book she was reading in front of him. “It’s a great read. I’m also a fan of his other books and just the genre in general.”

“He has other books?”

“Yea, about 3 others.”

“Wow, I’ll have to check those out when I’m done with this one. Have you read Margaret Hillstone’s books?”

She nods her head emphatically and leans forward, excited. “Her ‘Stone Hedge’ series is my favorite. I might have read it 3 times.” She chuckles.

He nods his head. “That’s a good series. Have you read her earlier works? The ‘Deep Sea’ series?”

Her eyes widen, eyelashes almost seem to brush her eyebrows. “No! I haven’t seen those!”

His hazel eyes twinkle behind his black rimmed glasses. “If you love the ‘Stone Hedge’ series, you’ll adore that series.”

She casts her dazzling smile, all teeth. Her curly hair falling in front of her shoulders. “I guess I’ll have to find them now. You have enticed me.”

He mimics her smile. “Or you can borrow mine.”

Her brown eyes sparkle with mischief. “That would be so sweet of you!” She reaches a dainty hand across the table, her bangles tinkling. “I’m Lisette by the way.”

He reaches a large hand and wraps it around her smaller one. He gives a slight squeeze, warming her hand and face. “I’m Samuel.”

“Nice to meet you, Samuel. On a similar note, I’m part of a book club, in fact I organized it. We talk about these books all the time and give recommendations as well. We should exchange numbers, so I can borrow that series from you and give you more information on our book club if you would like to join.”

Samuel grins and releases her hand to grab his phone. “I would love that, especially if you’re there.” Lisette blushes and flutters her eye lashes down. She pulls the phone from Samuel’s hand.

“Here’s my number. Let’s keep in touch.” She murmurs.

“I look forward to it.” He responds, a dimple shows in his left cheek as his grin deepens.

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