Nona Essex had no idea she would find the woman to ignite the embers of her heart after a break-up at her sorority sister’s wedding reception. But her annoyance at her tablemates’ complaints soon turns to arousal when a honey-voiced lawyer named Vaughn sweet-talks the doubters and sparks Nona’s interest.
Conversation leads to an invitation to satisfy some late night cravings with the woman. Dinner together inspires Nona to reconsider opening herself up to the sexy woman named after a jazz legend.
“I think the bride and groom looked great and the ceremony a perfect testimony of their love and appreciation of the family and friends that support them,” a dapper dressed woman seated directly across from Nona said. Her voice reminded Nona of honey. Its sweet unhurried appeal soothed some of the irritation building up inside her chest. Nona assessed the penny-colored woman with the small diamond nose piercing. Confidence radiated from her frame in a way Nona found more intoxicating than the alcoholic concoction sitting in front of her.
“I remember Baldwin telling me about Dinah when she started working at the hospital. I don’t know what impressed him more, the fact she spoke Portuguese or that she attended college on a bowling scholarship.” Nona’s stomach shimmied when she saw the woman smile. A slight gap-toothy grin had always been her kryptonite.
“I can honestly say the happiest I have ever seen him was when he talked about spending his life with the new Mrs. Chamberlin. I wish them both all the happiness their hearts can hold. I’m sure we all wish them well. I mean, who can be mad at a wedding?”
The woman directed her gaze toward the trio, who seemed dumbstruck someone dared to have something good to say. Even the men Nona assumed to be their spouses seemed to enjoy the women’s complaining ceasing. Nona rubbed her lips together to avoid her tablemates seeing how much she enjoyed their discomfort. This reception is definitely starting to get better.
“So you are a friend of the groom? Well, he looked very handsome,” the woman with the perfume problem replied. Waiters delivering the first course interrupted whatever insincere statement she had planned next.
“Baldwin and I have been friends for over twenty-five years,” the woman continued. “We played the trumpet in the high school marching band. I have to say he was much better than I was. We kept in touch after graduation and would get together if we happened to be home at the same time. Dinah and he stayed with me last year in Asheville when they attended a conference at Mission Hospital. The two seemed so in love I was not surprised at all when I received the invitation to the wedding. This is actually my first time on this side of the state. I have never been a big beach person but I have to say having their ceremony where they shared their first kiss was a stroke of genius. And to think it was all Baldwin’s idea. It’s always the ones you never suspect that turn out to be the most romantic. Don’t you agree, ladies?”
Nona chuckled softly as Page-Boy and Cat-Eye Glasses looked at their respective spouses. Flickers of memories softened their features as they seemed to recall happier times. Even the perfume bather seemed to glance at her plus one with somewhat of affection. The woman noticed the impact of her words and winked at Nona. A tingle traveled throughout her limbs in response. Nona speared a cucumber from her salad and assessed the mood shifter in front of her. Based on her appearance, Nona calculated the woman had to be in her late thirties, maybe early forties. She tried not to stare at the woman’s enticing mouth but it had been a while since a woman piqued her curiosity.
It wasn’t just her words that captivated Nona. The ballroom light complemented her silver-streaked low fade haircut. Her smooth skin reminded Nona of the benefits of plenty of water, good genes, and quality moisturizers. Shoulders appropriately for resting your head on when sitting side by side watching TV stood out in an ash-colored blazer and boysenberry shirt. Nona took a sip of her water to clear her mind. She didn’t even know the woman’s name and she was already imagining a scenario of domestic bliss.