Ch 3

May was standing looking out across the river at the magnificence of the sunset. She took a deep breath and let it out slowly, closing her eyes and allowing the warmth of the summer evening to spread through her body. She opened her eyes again. Suddenly she felt herself being barged into. Almost knocked over by the impact, she just managed to regain her balance by grabbing hold of the iron railings in front of her. To her left someone had stopped in his tracks, panting heavily. "Oh dear," he said. "I'm terribly sorry - people are always telling me that I rush around too much. I never take much notice of them though - it's more fun to act light-hearted." Here he smiled. "I'm Dan, by the way." He held out a hand. May shook it uncertainly. After all, it wasn't every day you got to shake hands with someone who'd bumped into you. On closer, yet subtle, inspection, the person who had bumped into May was a young man, perhaps in his early twenties, with thick brown hair and brown eyes He was handsome, but May reasoned he'd probably already have a girlfriend.
"Anyway, before I dash off again, how much do you want?"
"How much what...?" May wondered what she could possibly need from this stranger.
"Money. Let me just find my chequebook." He started searching his pockets.
"Chequebook...?" How odd.
"Yeah... The things you use to make cheques to people..." Dan looked at May quizzically.
"I know what a chequebook is. I don't understand what you're getting at though."
"Oh! Sorry - I have to give you some sort of give you some sort of compensation - to get you through the strife of being barged into unmercifully."
May laughed. "You don't need to give me money."
"Of course I do." He looked quite serious.
"No... I'd be fine without."
"Are you totally sure? You're absolutely certain that you don't need any money." Then he added, "You're not going to sue me, are you?"
"No! Of course not," May laughed. "Please tell me this is some kind of wind-up."
Dan put his hands up and said, smiling, "Yup, you got me! It evidently wasn't that funny though."
"It was alright, I suppose. You just don't expect that sort of thing. Anyway, haven't you got somewhere to be dashing off to right now?"
"Nothing's more important than making acquaintances with beautiful girls, in my opinion." He smiled, obviously speaking sincerely.
"Aw, so the practical joker's a charmer too! Your girlfriend must love you."
"Who's to say I have one? And by definition, aren't girlfriends supposed to love their boyfriends?"
"Oh, I thought a handsome guy like you would be snapped up instantly by the first hot chick that saw him. And I didn't mean love in that context - I meant love as in ‘Wow, I love this chocolate' but about your personality rather than chocolate."
"I see..., I think." He paused. "You called me handsome." It was a statement, rather than a question, and May blushed.
"Well ..., I won't deny something that isn't true, and you can think what you like about that."
"I think that's very brave. The possibility of rejection puts most people off telling people they like are handsome or pretty."
"Well that makes two of us, since you called me beautiful first."
"That's the cockiness of boys. Always saying daring, outrageous things."
"I don't think it's that bad." May looked out across the river again, holding onto the railings before her as if to retain a grip on reality as she was lost in the beauty of the sky. "It's a beautiful evening," she said, half to herself, in a daydream, and half to Dan.
Dan was silent; perhaps himself slightly lost in the beauty as well. "You never told me your name," he murmured.
"Maybe, I didn't want you to know." May always found herself saying random things in the late evening - it was her time for contemplation, so she was always slightly distracted. She was especially distracted at beautiful moments such as sunset - but, later on she would come to realise the beauty of everything that had happened this evening, and all that was about to happen.
"Hmm, I don't think so."
"Yeah, I was being random - it's May."
"Oh, I thought it was August..."
"No," May laughed, "my name. It's May."
"Quite befitting, then."
"Befitting?"
"The name of a pretty month for the name of a pretty girl." Dan smiled, charmingly.
May laughed at this. "I've always thought it was a bit plain."
"Plain? No, definitely not. Beautiful spring-time images spring to mind, like the flowers of the season."
"Like...?"
"Flashes of all the colours in the rainbow, followed by a montage of pretty flowers, like daffodils and ... I don't know, roses - I don't know much about flowers."
May drew in a sharp intake of breath. "I love daffodils. They're my favourite flowers... You're so lovely..."
"Aw, thank you. You're just as nice for saying so." He glanced at the watch on his wrist and almost yelped. "Oh dear! Is that the time? Mum will kill me! Do you fancy dinner?"
"Now?"
"Well, when we get to mine, of course. Or shall we feast upon imagination?"
"I'm actually quite hungry. We could feast upon imagination for dessert though."
"That sounds wonderful. Follow me, fair maiden. A banquet awaits us!"
May laughed. What a wonderful evening this would be.

The End

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