First and Second Date...the Time Between
Chapter 5

Copyright© 2010 by ryan801army

It was Sunday in Utah now. For most people in the area, that meant starting the day out by going to church. My family had tried the LDS (Mormon) thing for a while, but it hadn't stuck. The only time I'd been to the LDS church in the last few years was for the few times I'd done scouts, scout camp outs, or just going over to play basketball. We were definitely in the minority; not going to the LDS church. There were times it felt like 90% of the population of Utah was LDS. It wasn't too bad though, the majority of people weren't the annoying types. The LDS church did teach good values, so it had that much going for it. As with any religion though there were definitely a few who took things a bit far.

Sunday in my family didn't mean much. If it were winter we'd be up on the ski slopes to see if we had to teach, or if we were able to just ski for the day. Since it was summer, my family was going out to Willard Bay to go waterskiing for the day. My family except for me, that is. I'd decided this morning that I was going to sleep until I woke up on my own or when the dog decided he needed to wake me up. That meant for today I was getting up at about 10 to take him out for a walk. Heading out through the garage I'd noticed that the Explorer and the boat were already gone. It wasn't too surprising, meant they'd probably left about 9:30 or so and were just now getting to the lake. That way it was early enough the dock shouldn't be too crowded to get the boat into the water. We hadn't had the boat for very long. My dad had picked it up the summer before for about $1,000 so it wasn't anything fancy. It worked though, just didn't look too good doing it.

While I walked Grizz, I replayed the events of the past few days through my mind. I'd arguably had a date the night before and I definitely had a date coming up in a few days. It looked to me like it definitely was paying off to act instead of just thinking about it. Acting seemed to fit, too. I was acting like I was confident and knew what I was doing, so far with Nicole. Well, at least other than telling her I'd given her my first kiss. It made sense; I'd heard through different sources that confidence was a good thing in the dating world. It appeared it just didn't always have to be sincere confidence. As long as you could act like you were confident, how you felt inside didn't matter. I definitely didn't feel confident, but if I looked it, maybe I needed to go into acting.

Work started a little earlier today; 2 instead of the 3 it'd been the last couple of days. I'd given Grizz a pretty good walk. We were out for about a half hour total. Since there wasn't much else to do I decided I'd give my knees a little break from the pounding of running and take a bike out instead. The bike I used was my dad's since he didn't use it very much and it was a pretty good mountain bike. The nice thing about a bike instead of running was that I was able to cover more distance in a shorter time. I could take a route out towards the Air Force base that was a pretty good distance. It also had some hills that worked well to help get a good workout.

After the workout was done, I hit the shower and got myself cleaned up. The rest of my family wasn't going to be home anytime soon, and, with it only being about 11, I decided to head to work and hang out for a while. Like I'd done the last time I went in early, I wore a different shirt when I went into the park. I decided I'd take a walk along the midway to see who was working the earlier shift. As luck would have it, Tenille was working one of the skeeball games.

She smiled and waved at me when she saw me coming up. "Sounds like I should thank you, I won a bet because of you." She looked to be in a good mood today from what I could tell and looked pretty good herself, too.

"Yeah, I heard about that one. You thought I'd play it straight and just tell Tanya I'd been checking her out. Good call. I'd decided I didn't have anything to lose in just telling the truth about it." It was true there hadn't been much point in doing anything otherwise.

"I think it impressed her that you were honest about it, and I know it didn't hurt your case any that you admitted it. She was flattered you were checking her out. You may have to keep that in mind, if things don't work out with you and Nicole."

Good lord word could move fast. I wasn't used to rumors being spread about me. At least this was truth and not rumors. "I didn't know word was spreading that quickly, I only just barely asked her out this weekend."

"Well, you're a good guy, so word travels fast when someone like you looks to be off the market." She said that with a bit of a smirk. I had a hunch it wasn't just that word was spreading, or that it was being spread by girls like she was trying to make it sound.

"Word travels fast, hmmm? This wouldn't happen to be word that you got from Josh now, would it?" Josh had gone to the same junior high with us as well, so we both knew him, and since we were both runners, she knew we were friends as well.

"Yeah, I heard about it from Josh. You should've bought the part about it coming from other girls though, that part is true. Word does spread fast, when it's a good guy getting taken." I chuckled a little after that comment.

"I'm not sure how well I fit good guy status yet. I'm working on it, though. I wanted to try to do more before school started, especially as far as dating was concerned. I hadn't gone on a single date over the school year."

Tenille shrugged, not looking concerned about it. "There's nothing wrong with that. Just means you were taking your time on things. Maybe you'll appreciate it a little more than the guys who things go easy for. Sometimes the guys, who things come easy for, take it for granted and turn into worse assholes than they were to begin with."

She was right, of course. It was nice hearing some of the same thoughts I'd had about some of the asshole guys and how they were still able to get girls. One of the football players at school had even been known to have smacked around two past girlfriends yet that didn't stop him from having a date every weekend. "Yeah, I know what you mean on that one. Sometimes people think that just because something comes easy for them, it means that they shouldn't have to try."

Tenille nodded her head in response, looking to be pleased I was thinking along the same lines as she. Probably much the same look I was giving her, in fact. "Yeah, I hear bad things about Brad from some of my brother's friends."

Tenille had a brother Brandon who was a year older than I was, making him a senior next year. I didn't know him very well, but just enough to know who he was. "I know what you mean on that one. Sometimes I wonder why Brad's even able to get a date. I don't know how. Maybe girls think they can change him or somethin'."

"Could be that or maybe they don't accept what other people say and think they need to see it for themselves for it to be real." She had to take a break from our discussion for a minute to give some change for the skeeball machines. That was one of the nice things about this game - people could play on their own all they'd need were quarters.

Tenille turned back to me after making the change. "Just keep in mind that a lot of girls really do like a guy they don't have to turn into a nice guy. You already are a nice guy. So don't try to change that part of you and you'll do alright."

"I'll take that as good advice. I'm not sure I'm the type that would be able to pull asshole off very well even if I wanted to." It was true I probably couldn't do it. My mom or my grandma would probably kick my ass if they heard about me mistreating a woman. And with my family, if they didn't, my dad or uncles definitely would. "I'll let you go though, looks like it's getting a little busy here. I'll talk to you later."

It was definitely starting to look like the least I would get out of this summer were more friends. Tenille and I hadn't been all that close before, but here we were talking more and becoming better friends. There was Tanya to consider as well. We'd have at least orchestra together, so we'd have to see how that would go. Tenille and I seemed to be comfortable just talking to each other. It could definitely be nice having a good friend that was a girl, without any of the dating worries involved.

Walking farther down towards the south end of the park I saw another petite girl in front of a game, she was a brunette as well. It looked like Tanya was working the baseball game. It was one of those games where you had to try to guess the speed of the ball you were going to throw. So with that being the object of the game, of course, a lot of guys would just use it to see how fast they could throw. I gave her a wave but continued walking. There was a crowd of guys bragging back and forth about who could throw the hardest. Of course since Tanya was working the game, and looked better for how much money she made, she was egging them on as well. She did give a quick wave though in response.

There wasn't much more at this end of the park so it was only a couple minutes before I was starting to head back towards the north side. Tanya still had her crowd going, so we exchanged another wave, and I just kept moving. I'd been walking around the park enough now that I was down to about 45 minutes before I was due to start work. Being that close it couldn't hurt to head to the parking lot to change shirts and get ready for work. That thought was interrupted though when I was bumped to the side roughly.

Looking over at who had caused it I was greeted with the grinning face of Josh. "Hey man, you looked like you were pretty involved in your thoughts there for a minute. Nicole already got you thinking of her that much, hmmm?"

I could only chuckle a little bit at that. I'd actually been thinking about Tanya but since he wasn't that far off... "A little maybe, yeah. You saying that 'cause you heard about last night or just 'cause I've got the date with her coming up?"

"Some of both, actually. I heard from a friend that the two of you were holding hands and then were out by her car kissing last night before she left. Good job." Now HE'D heard about that? Good lord in teenage circles word could travel fast. I wasn't sure I'd be able to keep up with the rumor mill around here at this point.

"Yeah, we left after that and ended up down at the DQ getting some ice cream after work. We ended up staying there and talking for about an hour before she had to go."

"Sounds like I might have to start worrying about locker room stories coming from you next year, what with Johnny graduating this year. Course, you do realize that about half of his stories were bull, right?"

I hadn't realized it. It didn't really matter one way or the other to me, so I hadn't really thought about it. I just shrugged a little before answering. "Pretty sure I've got a long way to go before I'll have anything that's locker room material, my friend."

"I know what you mean. I gotta split though, but I'll talk to you later. Keep up the good work!" At that he was heading off to one of the rides we were walking past. Unlike me he was already in his full work uniform. Of course I knew his good work comment wasn't about work at all, it was about Nicole.

Once I got out to the parking lot, I did pretty much the same thing I'd done last time; taking a quick look around to make sure no one was staring, then ducking in, stripping off my shirt, and changing into my work shirt. Evidently I hadn't checked well enough though, when I heard a whistle as I pulled my work shirt on and started tucking it in.

"I didn't realize you had such a nice chest. Maybe you should take your shirt off more often." Of course the whistle and statement had come from Nicole. I hadn't seen her, but maybe she'd just been in her car when I looked and I'd missed her.

I didn't think I had all that nice of a chest. As a runner there wasn't much fat, if any, but I also hadn't done much upper body really, aside from the occasional pushups or sit ups. I definitely wasn't the type to look bulky, it was more of a lean look that showed definition, especially in my legs. "Well, I'm glad you think so." She stepped in for a hug and a kiss, which, of course, I was glad to give. "Looks like someone's in a good mood to be just getting to work."

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