This is another simple love story. As the title suggests, Sarah Krakovski falls in love with "the guy from the Target store."
On Wednesday afternoon, on her way home from work, Sarah Krakovski stopped at the Target store, in Wexlerville. While searching through the giant store, she came across a young man, tall and lean, and muscular, and dressed in red and khaki, kneeling on the floor, in one of the aisles, in the store's domestic section. He was folding throw rugs and stacking them on a shelf.
She walked up to him and said, "Excuse me?"
The moment he turned his head and looked at her over his left shoulder, Sarah froze. Her dark eyebrows flew upward, her brown eyes bulged like a pair of grape fruit in their sockets, and her red lips fluttered outward. For just a moment, her heart seemed to stop beating inside her chest, as she stared at his tousled mop of brown hair and sparkling, brown eyes, long, sharp, blade-like nose, and smooth, narrow jaw. The red letters on the oval name tag pinned to his shirt said, "Will." He looked to be about the same age as her, maybe a year older---Sarah was twenty-four.
"Can I help you?" he asked her in a kind, gentle voice that made her already warm flesh melt like butter. Her heart started to beat again, and now, it pounded like a hammer against the inner wall of her chest. She felt her temperature start to soar again.
She took a deep breath. "I need a light bulb but I can't seem to find them anywhere. Could you please show me where they are?"
His eyes lit up and he smiled a smile that she thought was cute and adorable, and made him look totally irresitible. She wanted him to take her in his arms, right then and there.
"Sure," he said. "I'd be happy to."
His knees cracked sharply as he rose to his sneakered feet. He towered over her like a Redwood tree; the top of her auburn-haired head barely reached his shoulder. She felt safe and secure in his shadow. And happy, too.
"If you'll follow me," he said in his ever-gallant style, which, she automatically assumed, was his normal work demeanot, and which he offered to everyone who shopped there, old or young, male or female. Still, she felt flattered by his lavish attention.
He led her through a break between two partitions and around a corner. "Well, here we are," he said.
He watched, while she browsed the shelves, settling at last on a four pack of light bulbs. "Is that what you wanted?" he asked her.
Sarah nodded. "Oh, yes. Thank you very much. I appreciate all your help. You're very kind."
"You're entirely welcome," Will said and stopped. Then he said, "Uh, listen. I hope I'm not being too forward here. I've never done this with a customer before. But I think you're a very beautiful lady. I sure would admire to buy you a cup of coffee or a drink sometime. That is, if you don't already have a husband or a boyfriend."
Sarah tried not to look and sound as thrilled and excited as she felt. Without missing a beat, she looked straight into his gorgeous, brown eyes and said, "Ah, you're very sweet. But I'm afraid I'm seeing someone right now. I'm sorry."
"That's all right," he said. But she could see the disappointment in his face and eyes, and hear it in his voice.
Sarah was smiling, ten minutes later, when she walked out of the store. She felt light-headed and giddy like a school girl with her first serious crush. But for the life of her, she still couldn't understand why she'd refused his invitation to go out for a drink, when those were exactly the words she'd hope to hear when she'd first laid eyes on him. She could be quite forward and aggressive when it came to something she wanted---like a man. Like this man. But this time, for no apparent reason that she could think of, when he'd asked her out, she'd choked and her mind had suddenly gone blank, and all she'd been able to come up with was that lame story that she was seeing someone, which was a lie. She hadn't had a boyfriend or dated a man in over six months now, and she was starved for male affection.
All she could do no was frown and sigh, and shake her head, in mild shock and disbelief at her own stupidity for blowing what had obviously been a golden opportunity to go out on a date with a really cute guy. The thought briefly crossed her mind that she march back inside the store and tell him she'd lied, she didn't have a boyfriend, and she would love to go out with him. But she couldn't do that. It would make her look like a fool in his eyes, and she didn't want that.
No, she told herself. She would wait a week, and then come back and ask him if his offer to go out for a drink was still good. That was the way she did things and it usually worked out fine. She was positive he would say yes.