Sundays were meant for relaxing. Not for having panic attacks.
Clara had used to love Sundays. She would stay in her pyjamas the entire day, watching television and eating chocolate. She loved Sundays. Or at least she’d used to.
Then she’d decided to become a wedding planner, and Sunday had become the day of her nightmares.
Friday and Saturday were quite awful too, but for some reason Sunday had been the day that Clara had the hardest time giving up. Suddenly Sundays weren’t for hot chocolate and long baths, but rather for listening to complaints and working as hard as ever. Tuesday was her most relaxed day of the week, but it just wasn’t the same. She missed her Sundays, and this particular Sunday was particularly stressful.
It was in the middle of a very prestigious wedding party for a very demanding, but very wealthy couple, and Clara couldn’t wait until she no longer needed to hear the bride’s shrill voice yell at her. The entire day had been one little problem after another, and it was first now that Clara felt safe enough to take a deep breath and relax.
The food had been popular enough, and thankfully people were dancing. She didn’t even want to think about how Bridezilla would react if people weren’t dancing.
Taking a glass of champagne from a waiter passing by, she let her eyes drift shut, enjoying these minutes where everything went according to plan.
“I don’t think I’ve seen you before,” a voice sounded. “Friend of the groom?”
Clara looked up into a pair of very blue eyes. The exact same shade of blue as the bride. And the exact same shade as the several hundred roses that Bridezilla had demanded.
“No,” she answered, trying to place him. He had to be related to the bride. A cousin maybe. “I’m the wedding planner.”
“That explains why I haven’t seen you before then.” He smiled. “I’m David.”
Ah. The brother of the bride. Upset his family when he quit law school and decided to become a scuba instructor. Clara had heard plenty of complaints about this so-called black sheep of the family. Personally she couldn’t see the big deal, but she supposed it was different in a family like this. Her own parents just wanted her to be happy.
“I’m Clara,” she introduced herself.
“I’m kind of thankful you’re here,” he told her, grinning slightly.
“Well, let’s just say I’m not very popular at the moment. I just bought my own bar, which I’ve been told twenty times today is horribly disgraceful, but as if that wasn’t enough, I also came without a date.” His grin broadened.
“Oh. Why didn’t you bring a date?” The words were out before she could stop them. But it just seemed like he was much too attractive to not be able to get a date for a wedding.
“I couldn’t do that to some poor, unsuspecting woman. Throwing her to the wolves like that. That would just be cruel.”
Clara smiled. “The wolves?” she asked, feigning ignorance.
He laughed. “Come on now, don’t think I’m gonna fall for that. I know how my sister treats the people she considers ‘the help’. You have seen the worst side of her. Calling her a wolf is almost frighteningly accurate.”
She smiled at him, making sure that no one else was around to hear their conversation. She rather fancied being paid.
“For what it’s worth,” she said. “I don’t think there’s anything wrong with owning a bar. I think it’s brave starting up your own business like that.”
“Like you did, you mean?”
She blushed, realising belatedly how arrogant that may have sounded.
“I didn’t… I mean…” She grimaced. “I think it’s great that you do what you think will make you happy. Few people do.” She hesitated for a moment. “Your sister and her husband doesn’t seem particularly happy,” she said.
“Oh, they’re not. Almost everyone in my family are miserable. It’s a tradition. I don’t think I’ll ever be forgiven for breaking it.”
She looked up at him with thoughtful eyes. She liked the way he looked. A healthy tan that showed that he spent much of his time outside. Laugh lines forming around the eyes despite the fact that he couldn’t be much over thirty. An easy grin and laughing eyes.
“And what makes you happy?” she asked, taking a sip of her champagne.
He actually seemed to consider it. “Being my own boss,” he said. “Competing with myself. Learning new things. Friends. Sex.”
She just barely managed not to choke on the champagne. “That’s… honest,” she said.
He just looked at her in seemingly anticipation.
“What?” she asked.
“Well, it’s your turn,” he said. “What makes you happy?”
“Oh.” She’d been so busy with this wedding, she’d completely forgotten what it felt like to have a conversation and not just be talked to. “The same pretty much. And flowers.”
“Flowers?” He lifted an eyebrow. “Why?”
She shrugged. “I just love them. They make me happy. Does it matter why?”
“I suppose not.” He seemed to hesitate for a moment. “I love bad coffee,” he said then.
She couldn’t withhold a surprised laughter. “What?”
“You know that really awful instant kind? I love that. I hate that fancy stuff.”
She smiled at him. “I love Harlequin romance novels,” she said. “And getting wet.”
There was something unmistakably naughty in his grin. “You like… getting wet?” he repeated, and she smacked him lightly.
“I meant getting wet in the rain,” she said.
“What a disappointment.” He feigned deep sorrow, before lightening up again. “I love squirrels.”
“Hmm. They’re just so damn cute.”
She smiled at that. “I love children’s champagne.”
“I love sushi despite hating every other kind of fish.”
“I love trampolines.”
“I love Sundays.”
She stopped, stared.
“What?” he asked.
“I used to love Sundays,” she said in a far more serious tone.
“Well, I used to hate them. Back in school Sunday meant classes started tomorrow. Now, Sunday means that the busiest time of the week is over, and I can relax again.”
“I miss Sundays,” she admitted. “I miss watching television all day while wearing my fluffiest pair of socks.”
“Well, then what are you doing next Sunday?”
She smiled at him. “Amazingly enough, nothing. For the first time in three months.”
“What would you say to come over to my place and watch television all day?”
“Television?” she repeated, wondering if his words had a double meaning.
“Television,” he repeated firmly. “I have every season of New Girl on Blu-ray.”
“Cross my heart. You only need to bring the socks. And popcorn. Gotta have popcorn.”
“Well, then I suppose I could consider it.”
“Please do. Damn, my sister is signalling after me.” He grimaced, before pulling out a card. “My phone number is on here. Give me a call.”
She watched him walk away, unable to hide her grin. She felt a light flutter in her lower stomach. How long had it been since a guy had actually given her butterflies?
Perhaps Sundays weren’t so bad after all.