When Your Dreams Become Reality...Then What?

Please enjoy this excerpt from my upcoming release, Dream. Wake. Love. Repeat.

Cayman Drew made me feel like a little girl. We talked every day. I told him things only my brothers knew about me. He’d missed his calling. He could have been a journalist, drawing all kinds of information from me. Cayman surprised me with how much he shared about himself, too. My parents were getting antsy about my whereabouts. After work, I called during my commute but headed straight home and didn’t take their calls throughout the evening. I reserved evenings for my new friend. When he told me he wanted to get better acquainted, he meant it. It was a mission he intended to accomplish. I wasn’t naïve. The conversations were leading to something more, but Cayman kept his end game close to the vest. Who was I to complain? He was Cayman Drew, and I had the time.

“I’m going to ask you something.”

“OK,” I dragged out. “What’s the lead up about?” I pushed a forkful of mashed potato into my mouth.

“It’s a big ask.”

“You’re making me anxious, man.”

“Don’t be.” He stood up and shook his arms out to his side.

“Jesus, Cayman. Speak!”

We laughed together with an easy familiarity.

“I am performing in New York on New Year’s Eve, and I want you there with me.”

I sat the fork down and wiped the corners of my mouth. His eyes widened, and he clasped his hands together over his head. His Adam’s apple bobbed in his neck like a cartoon frog.

“You’re right. It’s crazy. It’s going to be cold and miserable out there. We’re practically strangers. Forget I asked. I’m sorry. Don’t get weird on me. Please.”

Get weird. His ask floored me. Flattered, but floored. Was I still dreaming?

“You want me to bring in the New Year with you? In New York City?”

His broad grin radiated through the phone. “Yes. I could use a friend there.”

A friend? The word deflated me. Did he use it to comfort me? Had I bared too much and landed in the friend zone? Would friends spend such a romantic holiday together? “You have complete agency over your happiness.” I heard Big D say. I straightened my back and looked directly into Cayman’s eyes.

“Will there be sex?”

The usually composed man plopped into a chair and puffed out his cheeks, then scratched at his temple in an equally exaggerated sigh. I could see an imaginary word bank form above his head.

“It’s not that serious. Forget I asked.” I wanted to crawl under the table out of sheer horror. He didn’t see me that way. Of course, he didn’t. He’d dated exotic women. Ones mixed with Filipino and Thai and Somalian. I was a boring, medium brown girl with a great haircut.

“No. No. Wait. Let me get my thoughts together,” he said.

“It’s all good. I overstepped. You’ve said enough.”

“No, I haven’t. I don’t want to say the wrong thing.”

How freaking dumb could I be? I reached to hang up.

“Danna, please, don’t do that.”

I stopped cold.

“I want to,” he sputtered. “Of course, I want to. But I like you and I like what we have.”

“Which is a friendship.”

“That’s how I would characterize it. How would you?”

I stood and walked around the room. My legs were lead—like a woman headed to the gallows. I was an idiot. Tears stung my eyes.

“Danna,” he groaned. “You told me not to think of you sexually.”

“I did not!” I shrieked, sounding like an absolute loon.

“OK. What did you say?”

“I said the men at work or the hotel staff—not you.”

Cayman sat still, either processing what I said, or perhaps what he’d heard. I wasn’t sure what he was doing, but I was dying a slow, painful death at the end of his quiet.

“I’m not some crazed groupie, fan, Cayman. You came to me. You found me.”

“You’re right. I did.”

“Then why?”

“I told you. I love the way you make me feel.”

“As a friend.”

“As a human fucking being, Danna! Not as some means to an end. I’m not famous with you. I’m just a nameless man who you cared enough about to save.”

His outburst rung through the still of my house, striking me hard. I sat down again, facing the phone.

“Of course, I want to make love to you again. Hell yes,” he said, aloud but clearly to himself. “But, to keep it one hundred, if I had to choose, I’d choose the larger part of you. I’d choose this.”

“What?” I hated the way anger and shame skewed my face. Even in the small mirror image on the phone screen, I saw it. “What are you saying, Cayman?”

“I’m saying, I misunderstood what you wanted. Yes, I want to make love to you. But I want your friendship, and openness, too. I’ve told you, my relationship choices haven’t been the best, and they always started with sex.”

I couldn’t argue his point. He had been completely open about his failed marriages.

“Things are moving fast. I get it. And I hate myself for saying this, but I want to be upfront with you.” He took another long breath and ran his hands over his face. His chest swelled. “Can you promise me sex won’t make things crazy between us? Tell me this isn’t some kind of fantasy come to life situation. I’m a real person with real emotions, Danna.”

I couldn’t believe the words coming from his mouth. “Wow. Yes, you are…. Yes. You are. Goodbye, Cayman.”

He called me back twice, then stopped. After another few minutes, a text came through.

----I thought slowing down would change things. This felt different.----

I didn’t reply. I didn’t have the words. He did.

----You don’t want people to only see you sexually. Neither do I.-----

I sulked off to bed and buried my desperate head under the pillows.

I hope you enjoyed it and will buy, read, review and share it!

February 9th on Amazon.com

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