An Umbrella For Two

January 31, 2017
By Allie428 BRONZE, North Reading, Massachusetts
Allie428 BRONZE, North Reading, Massachusetts
4 articles 0 photos 0 comments

The first time I saw the girl on the corner of Shaftesbury Avenue, it was raining and the streets of London were quickly flooding.  Nothing atypical for British weather, however, it struck me strange that the young lady carried no umbrella with her.  She wore a lovely red rain jacket and boots to match but from where I stood just outside the bakery shop, I could tell she seemed irritated that her coat had no hood.  She stood by the edge of the sidewalk waiting for the traffic lights to change, and continuously brushed the hair out of her face. That’s when I glanced at the umbrella in my hand, considering.  Before I could let my confidence waver, I hurried past the few pedestrians passing by to reach her just in the nick of time.
“Excuse me, miss. Do you have a long ways to walk?”
At the sound of my voice, she lifted her head slightly and met my eyes, a shy smile forming on her lips.  “Just a couple blocks.  It was foolish of me to leave home without an umbrella today.”
I grinned back at her.  “Maybe so.  But that’s alright - I wanted to offer you mine.”
Her expression registered pure shock as I extended the small offer of kindness her way.  Before she could resist, I gently pushed it into her hand, and her fingers brushed mine for a brief moment. “Please, take it.  I was on my way home anyway.”
Then she smiled a complete smile, and the beauty of her face was a radiant light, a stark contrast to the dull, gray background of the city. “Thank you.  Maybe someday I can repay you.”  Then she turned, and I watched her cross the street safely and happily with a new umbrella held high above her head. 
Days after our first encounter, my mind kept wandering back to our conversation and the last thing she said -- maybe someday I can repay you.  It almost sounded like she wanted to see me again. Every other afternoon that I passed by Shaftesbury Avenue, I kept hoping to bump into her again, maybe to offer to buy her a coffee or at least exchange numbers.  I laughed at myself when I was alone in my apartment, shaking my head at the prospect of crushing on a girl whom I didn’t know a thing about. But there was definitely a feeling inside me, one that sent butterflies up my stomach every time I remembered her smile.
About a month and a half passed before I saw her again.  I was inside a bookstore during a heavy rainstorm when I caught a glimpse of a red raincoat across the street.  The coat was connected to a young woman’s body, pushing open the door of the bakery shop.  The sight of her nearly made me topple over -- I shoved the books I had been looking at back on the shelves and rushed out the door, about to cross the street when I noticed something different.  She was not alone this time -- a man accompanied her and had his arm wrapped protectively around her waist.  And her hair was no longer a mess from the rain, because her date had brought an umbrella for two. 

The author's comments:

This story was inspired by my love for the city London, rain, and romance.  My biggest goal as a writer is to make any reader feel several different emotions over the course of one story and to make the main characters seem relatable.  I hope that I have accomplished doing so in this fictional short story. Thank you for reading :) 

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