Pick Me! | Chapter 2
My mind slow and groggy with sleep gradually turned into the pounding ache of a wine hangover. I gripped the side of the attached upholstered sofa cushion as my stomach lurched and churned with a sudden sickening feeling as consciousness slowly came back to me. I was laying half on, half off the living room sofa still in my disgusting scrubs and an empty bottle of wine wedged between my back and the cushions.
My phone dinged at the same time my iPad lit up with notifications.
“What?” I questioned aloud my eyes going cross with the brightness of the screen before the sinking dread filled me with ice and sudden flashing memory of the night before. “Jesus H Roosevelt Christ!”
I didn’t look at the numerous notification bubbles until I opened the home screen, where an obnoxious red oval told me I had 103 messages.
“Jesus H Roosevelt Christ,” I whispered again in astonishment. “Why so many?”
With trepidation, I clicked on the message icon and scrolled through to see just how many people made up the 103 messages. My eyes widened in shock, “FIFTY!”
My hand shook as I clicked on the first message…and then nearly launched the iPad across the room to get the offending thing away from me. The fear of breaking the screen was the only rational thought keeping me from tossing it as yet another grotesque message and an even worse image was in the following five! After the tenth message with nothing but disgusting, thoughtless images and slurs inside I responded.
Hello Red & Black Jack,
Do the world a favor and hide your tiny gnome dick then go home.
Hot Shot Lady Doc
I copy and pasted the message and continued to send it to each and every dick pic sent to me, which was an alarming twenty people out of the fifty that sent messages overnight.
Finally, after the multitude of disgusting messages, several vulgar and suggestive message–one of which said “What’s long and hard and full of Seamen?”, there was one person I vaguely remembered sending a message to last night that seemed to have responded.
Hi Hot Shot Lady Doc,
Or may I call you Claire? I am most definitely a real man, I definitely am not one of those people who creep on the internet to prey on women like yourself, and I would love to have coffee with you. I think my time as an army surgeon and your current profession would give us a fantastic base to start on. I’m free any time tomorrow, or this weekend. If you are serious about the meetup please call me at +44 07778 008897.
I look forward to meeting you.
Army Doc, John Grey
My brow furrowed in confusion. “What the fuck did I even say to him?”
I reread his message then anxiously scrolled up to see what prompted his unusual first sentence.
“Oh dear God.” I groaned in horror as ice filled my veins. “Please tell me I didn’t do that.” I closed my eyes but the drunken words were burned into the backs of my eyelids.
Hi Amry Doc!
Are you a real man? OR just one of those crazies who want to kidnap and rape me?
Yuor picture is very cute adn yuor cute and yeah.
We should have coffee!! I love coffee!
I’m sorry I’m a little drunj it’s my bithday!!! Happy lonely Birthday to me!!! My best friend gave me wine and this dating app for agift! She’s nice but I don’t know about it but guess I should give chance. So coffee soon? Please!
“At least I spelled my name right,” I grumbled and flopped face first onto the leather of the couch. With half of my face still pressed into the couch, I messaged the very kind Army Doc back.
I’m so sorry for my drunk messages last night. Thank you for being kind enough to reply. I don’t know why you did. I know I asked last night, but I’m reaffirming I’d love to get coffee. I’m free this afternoon, it’s my only day off this week from the hospital. Where and when are you available to meet?
I moved my head back towards the cushion where the stench of the hospital and stale wine mingled with the rich leather. I let out a huff and pushed myself up from the couch, a shower was definitely in order.
The pounding water and fresh steam of the shower helped clear the fog from my head and bring my body back to a semblance of normalcy. In the hour and half, I had spent under the water, two new messages had arrived from the dating site. Still wrapped in a towel, I thumbed through them.
Please think nothing of it. If it weren’t for my brother I guarantee I would not have had the nerve to respond to someone like you. I would be honored to meet you in Oxford if that works for you. Would Vaults & Garden off of High Street near All Souls and Radcliffe Square be easy for you to get to around 15:00? I have a noon meeting at All Souls and will be in the area for the full day before driving back to London.
My heart picked up a beat and I felt my face flush in excitement as an uncontrollable smile lit up my face.
15:00 at Vaults & Garden would be wonderful. See you there! I’ll be the one in–
I stopped and looked at my wardrobe, debating the possible combinations and hating every single option.
“Get a grip, Beauchamp! It’s only coffee!” I said confidently before blindly reaching for a hanger.
I’ll be the one in green.
The second message was from one of the original men who I matched with and apparently hadn’t made a fool of myself with.
Hi Hot Shot Lady Doc,
Christ, these dating apps and usernames really make it difficult to take even myself seriously. I’ll start out with my name is Jamie and I’m–
I failed to read the rest of his, what I’m sure was a well thought out message, and snooped on his profile. In the picture, he had on a garish red jumper with giant blue balls knit into it. Did he think this was endearing? I tried to ignore the jumper and focus on his face but found my eyes kept creeping back down to the ridiculous article of clothing.
Name: James Fraser
Occupation: Wining Fraser - Owner/Distributor
Looking For: Something unseen, yet felt between
Interested In: Women with a kind heart, and sharp mind
“Oh, well now why did you have to go and say something cute Mr. Fraser?” I huffed in mock exasperation scrolling back up to focus on his face. A strong jaw, sharp cheekbones, with a long straight nose let to piercing blue, smiling eyes. Eyes that seemed to smile and be illuminated from behind, made my heart skip a beat and butterflies to flutter in my gut. A tumbling mass of red curls framed his face and the lone stray curl that curved towards his left eye made him even more enticing. I wanted to know this man.
I gazed at his likeness for longer than what would be deemed appropriate, lost in his smile that lit up his entire face, like that moment in time he could not be any happier. “Now I have to go back and read your message, you’re too adorable not to.”
Hi Hot Shot Lady Doc,
Christ, these dating apps and usernames really make it difficult to take even myself seriously. I’ll start out with my name is Jamie and I’m new to this whole online dating experience. I’m 28, no kids, never married. Is that the kind of thing people mention on here?
I don’t know.
I’m the owner of Wining Fraser, a small wine distribution business based out of Edinburgh. I love what the wine business does. Not only do we get to experience a new world with every company and every bottle, we–I–get to bring joy to people. I suppose that’s why I’m using this insane way of finding a date. I’ve lost myself in my work and figured now was as good a time as any to attempt to find that missing something or I suppose, someone.
I do hope you’ll respond back, and I look forward to getting to know you.
I caught myself laughing at his choice and use of words. I feel much the same. Here I sat, 32 barely making enough time to sleep from insane work schedules, failing at anything that required care and attention. I wouldn’t doubt that if I were to buy a houseplant the poor thing would die, not from my lack of a green thumb, but my lack of love to give to it.
After rereading Jamie’s message and began to compose my reply. I caught myself giggling like a schoolgirl, and had to make an effort not to let the butterflies fly away with my words.
Please, just call me Claire.
I understand when you said that work seems to be your entire life. I too am guilty of that very action. My lack of social and romantic life led to my best friend signed me up for this app on my birthday of all days. Sometimes I wonder where time has gone and how at 32, I feel as though I’ve simultaneously been around for much longer and not long enough to know what I’m doing. Have you ever felt as though your life passes you by no matter how hard you try to stop and take a moment to savor it?
At first I was wary of even starting this app, and now I don’t want my life to fly by any more than it has without my say so. I want to savor every moment, and sometimes that means taking a risk, like saying hello to a handsome stranger.
I too, look forward to getting to know you, Jamie.