I texted her in 2018, after seven years of no contact between us. As it turned out, she was going to be in San Francisco that night. And, available to see me for fifteen minutes.

The moment the plan was made to meet at the mall, I tensed up. I didn’t know what to expect… or what she would be like. I was glad I was going out that night to some fancy event. I’d be dressed my best. She’d hinted she was going out for a date. I didn’t care. I just wanted to see her face and know how she was doing after all those years.

The moment we saw each other, the moment our eyes met was… electric. I’d been waiting for a short while. There were people buzzing all around. In front of me, a glowing red sign that read Panda Express. And suddenly, her. Time stopped. So did she. Her twinkling eyes were the only thing that seemed to be moving.

“Hi…” she said as she approached me, her voice wavering as if she was in awe of the fact that I was actually standing in front of her, real. Her eyes didn’t stop twinkling.

“Hi…” I couldn’t believe how beautiful she looked. I held my hands out for a hug.

Our hug seemed to last forever. She didn’t want to seem to let go.

I felt like I did the first few times she and I met… lucky. Like I couldn’t believe she’d picked me. Like I was the luckiest person in the world.

“You… look good,” her tone was half surprised and half damn-I-knew-I-did-good.

Me? Hah. Have you seen yourself? You look like a kajillion bucks. That dress. You in all black? Phew girl.

“Thanks. You do too.”

The rest of our time together that evening was filled with a whole lot of staring and eyes twinkling. I don’t think it would be fair to say that was a quick fifteen minute meet and greet. We were quickly back in the swing of things. She tested me quite a bit. I picked up on it and called her out on each one right away, all while “passing” her stupid tests at the same time. I knew who she was.

She couldn’t believe I still existed. I don’t think she’d met anybody like me in all that time.

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