City Lounge: Paris (Book One, Chapter Fifteen: Walk Around Paris)

Chapter Fifteen: Walk Around Paris:

Simone and I spent the rest of the date just walking around the city.

“Are we really going to go anywhere?” I asked.

Simone turned and looked over at me. “Did you want to go anywhere?”

“Not really.”

“Me neither.”

I shoved my hands into my pockets and shrugged. “Alright, we’ll just walk around the city, I guess.”

“That’s the idea.”

I looked down at my hands in my pockets. Here I was again, following Simone’s lead just like I did with that traitor. Only this time, I didn’t mind it. In fact, I decided to try and get to know Simone more on this walk.

“So, you’re a freelance photographer. What do you take pictures of?”

“Paris, mostly. Sometimes of food. It’s whatever the client wants to take pictures of.”

“What made you get into photography in the first place?”

“Papa.” She broke into a little smile. “In the summer, I would go to Bern to see him. When I was four years old, Papa let me play with his camera when he took me out on assignment.”

“You must really love your dad.”

“Yeah.” Simone raised her arms above her head. “Papa is a great man. Mama said that he was the best lover that she ever had. She said that the sex was that good.”

“Then why didn’t it work out?”

Simone lowered her arms. “It just didn’t work out. Sometimes when something is so passionate, it just burns out too quick. Mama happily keeps him in her fondest memories.”

I let off a low whistle. “I wonder if I will be like that with my ex.” Simone “bumped” into my side.

“She’s not allowed, remember?” she asked. “I am going to make you forget about her!”

“Okay,” I said. “But why?”

“You’re doing it again.”

“Doing what?”

“You are asking unnecessary questions again.”

“What can I do? You won’t really tell me much about you.”

She put her arms around my shoulders. “I just did a few minutes ago. Now, tell me about yourself. Where are you from?”

“Texas.”

“Which part?”

“Dallas.”

“Mmm.”

I looked at her as we rounded the corner, leaving the park. “Why do you say it like that?”

“What do you mean?”

“You didn’t show impressed when I said, ‘Dallas’.”

“What do you want me to say about it? It’s a city.”

“Paris is a city too.” I looked up at the sky. This actually felt… nice. We weren’t rushing around, being loud, or partying. Simone and I were just walking around and enjoying the city. Being in the actual city was kind of an awakening experience when Paula and I first arrived here. Paris wasn’t exactly as beautiful as if was on TV.

“Hey Simone,” I spoke up.

“Yes,” she said.

“Why do travel agencies always only show the pretty pictures of a city?”

“To make money.”

“But Paris isn’t the cleanest city in the world.” As if for comedic timing a balled up newspaper blew by us. “As you can see.”

“That’s just how it is.”

“Why do foreign countries hide all of the good food? I mean, if you always give us the cheap tourist food. If I want to find the good stuff, I have to find some locals and follow them around.”

“That’s just how it is.”

“It’s almost like a twisted joke to me.” We stopped at a crosswalk. I turned and looked at Simone’s profile. The setting sun seemed to make her face glow. My cheeks turned a soft rosy red.

“Do you want to hear something?” I asked in soft voice as I looked down at my hands stuffed into my pockets.

“What is it?” Simone asked. I gulped as I lifted my head.

“I really want to kiss you right now!” I said in a high-pitched voice. I happened to look a see her looking at me with an eyebrow raised.

“Why don’t you?” Simone asked. I about jumped and fell backwards on the pavement.

“Wait… you want me to kiss you right now?” I asked. “Here?”

“Yes. What’s holding you back?”

My heart skipped a beat as I looked around at the crowds of people walking home from work. Something in her voice had a powerful hold over me. I leaned in, planning to give her a quick kiss before we started walking again. I should’ve expected her to pull me in closer and make that kiss last about fifteen seconds. I didn’t know whether to pull away or let her suck me in. When she finally let go, Simone had to pull me along when the walking figure appeared on the stoplight.

“Better?” she asked over her shoulder.

“W-W-W-Why did you do that for?” I asked with a red face. Her laughter made my face so much redder.

“You sound that you wanted to kiss me, didn’t you?”

“Well, yes, but…”

“But?”

I dropped my shoulders, defeated. “Did you have to be so aggressive?” Simone held back her laughter in response.

Night began to set onto the city and we picked up a sandwich from a street vendor. Simone paid for both, of course.

“You don’t have to pay for both of us, you know,” I said. “Let me treat for a change.” Simone turned her eyes on me with the jambon-beurre inches away from her mouth.

“I told you, don’t worry about paying for things,” she said.

“Yeah, but…”

That indigo queen took my cheeks in her crumby hand. “Don’t worry about it.” She bit into her sandwich and started walking again. I brushed off my cheeks and looked down at my jambon-beurre.

“At least let me treat you to something nice,” I mumbled.

“Hey! Keep up or I’m leaving you behind!” Simone shouted. I raced to catch up with her for the second time today. The rest of the night descended into meaningless chatter and more questions. I did get to learn more about Simone. I met her family, learned that she was freelance photographer, and she loved her dad. Hearing her voice made me want to fly away to Paris’ starry night sky. Her laughter filled my cheeks with a rosy flush. It was a good thing I had the weekend off this week. I would get to enjoy the crazy ride with Simone a little bit longer. I really wanted to see to what she would pull next. We arrived at a fancy apartment complex right next to the fancier part of Paris, an art district, in fact. Simone walked up to the glass doors and turned to me.

“Do you want to come?” she asked. My whole face turned red as I broke out in sweats, nodding. Simone smiled as she let me into the lobby. I followed her to the elevators. We rode up to the seventh floor. I was in a happy daze from the moment she asked if I wanted to come in to the point that she unlocked her front door. I followed the indigo queen into her living room.

“Would you like me to make you some coffee?” she asked.

“Yes, please,” I said. Simone gave me a short kiss on my lips.

“Make yourself at home,” she said. I sank down in the couch as she walked into the kitchen. A warm, fuzzy feeling filled my chest. I’m in her place. This is Simone’s living room. I happened to turn my head and notice the microwave in the kitchen.

My jaw dropped as my eyes widened.

“What the hell?!” I shouted. “It’s six in the morning?!” We practically had been walking around almost all of Paris all night!

End of City Lounge: Paris: Book One

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