Prompt: What is something you look forward to each week?
Miranda was in her room quickly brushing her hair. She had gotten out of her class late due to her professor rambling about how he spent Spring Break in Panama. He wasn’t even going to the beach. He wanted to see the Panama Canal because he’s such a huge Theodore Roosevelt fan.
“Miranda! Jake’s down here!”
That was her roommate, Terra. She kind of hates everyone including Jake. And probably Miranda a little bit. A computer had paired them together in a dorm and they had been together since then. Even though Terra was a bit of an introvert, she always paid the rent on time, she was always a great listener, and Terra was a great cook. So really no complaining there.
“Ok, I’ll be right down!” Miranda yelled down.
Miranda’s hair was only partially down and she still had no idea what she was going to wear. Jake had told her they were going to some concert in the park for date night. The weather was warming up and they thought they’d go out and so something fun.
“What do I wear to a park concert? Miranda asked out loud.
“Miranda! Your boyfriend is down here!”
“I know, Terra! Thanks!”
Miranda knew that Terra and Jake were probably sitting down in the living room not talking to each other and this made her laugh a little bit.
Eventually Miranda threw on a blue, frilly sundress and some strappy shoes. She finished her hair and came down the stairs to see Jake and Terra sitting in the living room.
“So yeah that’s why I don’t like cats,” Terra finished.
“Oh….that’s…nice,” Jake said obviously wanting to get out of this conversation.
Jake turned towards Miranda as she came down the stairs. When he saw her, a huge smile appeared on his face.
“There she is,” Jake smiled.
“The one and only,” Miranda smiled back. She did a little spin at the bottom of the stairs.
“Just like a model,” Jake laughed.
“You guys make me want to throw up,” Terra said picking up her mug and heading towards her room.
“Bye Terra!” Miranda waved.
“Bye!!” Jake chimed in.
Terra didn’t say anything as she walked into her room and slammed the door behind her.
“She has her own little charm, doesn’t she?” Jake asked as they made their way out of the house. He flung his backpack onto his back.
Miranda elbowed him, “Hey, be nice to her!”
“Did you not just walk down into that conversation? The fact that I sat there and listened to her stories makes me the nicest person in the world.”
Jake pulled Miranda close to him and gave her a kiss on the head, “You look beautiful tonight.”
“Oh shut up,” Miranda pushed Jake aside with a laugh.
“Yeah and I’m the mean one!”
Miranda gave Jake a face sticking out her tongue like a small child. “So where is this concert anyway?”
“There’s this outdoor amphitheater place with a huge grass area,” Jake said.
“Wow. Super specific,” Miranda said. “Is this close to the museum?”
“Actually it’s the opposite direction of that, close to that authentic Mexican restaurant –”
“-with that waiter!” Miranda finished!
“Yeah that one!” Jake laughed. Both of them broke into laughter over the memory of a date night they had a few weeks ago where they had an amazing waiter who cracked jokes and embarrassed both of them that night.
Miranda wiped some tears from her eyes, “So are we going to take a bus?”
“I thought that it was nice enough that we could just walk down there. It’s not too much farther than the restaurant,” Jake said.
“Well I kind of wore these strappy heels,” Miranda said glancing down at her feet.
“Yeah good point,” Jake said. “Ok, we’ll take the bus.”
Jake and Miranda walked their way down the street towards the bus station. It was almost a staple of date nights that they would stop by this bus station and then go towards the date night destination. During the winter, the bus was used a lot, but now that the weather was warming up, they did more walks around the city.
Eventually a bus showed up and they got on heading towards the outdoor amphitheater. Jake made sure to point out the Mexican restaurant as they drove by it and they both shared in another round of laughter. There were only a few people riding the bus, and most of them didn’t pay them any attention, but there was a middle-aged lady near the front of the bus that gave them the stink eye. Miranda and Jake didn’t notice. They didn’t care. They were having too much fun.
It was only a 10 minute bus drive until they reached the outdoor area and both Jake and Miranda hopped off the bus. The area was exactly how Jake had described it. The city had carved out a large plot of land which was covered in grass which could have been used for soccer fields. There were a few cement paths crisscrossing it, but for the most part it was just a large field of trimmed grass the size of a city block. On one side there was a stage area that was covered with a large white dome-looking thing that Miranda assumed covered the musicians or performers and their gear if started raining.
Miranda and Jake crossed the street from where the bus had let them off and they started heading towards the stage area. Looking around, Miranda saw that there were a lot of college students and people her age. Some were running around and playing ultimate Frisbee while others were sitting on the grass conversing with one another.
“Did we bring something to sit on?” Miranda asked.
Jake swung around his backpack off his back. He reached in and pulled out a rolled up blanket which was tied together with some string.
“I did come prepared,” Jake said putting the blanket back into his bag.
“Yeah you are the planner,” Miranda said.
“I try,” Jake said giving a little bow.
“You know, I can kind of see where Terra is coming from with the whole throwing up thing,” Miranda smiled.
“Oh shut up,” Jake said giving her a little push. “So what do you want to do first?”
“Well what are my options?”
Jake looked down and checked his phone, “Well the concert won’t start for another hour. So we can either go join some ultimate Frisbee.”
Miranda gave him a look and then gestured to her sundress.
“Not in these clothes, I’m not,” Miranda said.
“Yeah you’re right, we would be too much competition for them,” Jake smiled.
Miranda just rolled her eyes, “Yeah whatever.”
“I did see some food trucks on the other side. How about we go grab a bite to eat?” Jake suggested.
“I never turn down food,” Miranda said. She linked her arm with Jake’s and they both started strolling towards the smell of food.
There were a few different food vendors all with large lines queued up to eat their food. There was an Asian-style noodle place that served bowls of noodles with a variety of meats and vegetables. There was a southern-style soul food full of deep-fried foods and sides of mashed potatoes and noodles. There were a few hotdog stands that sold hotdogs as well as polish sausages and Greek gyros. Then on the end there was a taco truck serving soft and hard tacos and burritos with a variety of meats and toppings.
Jake and Miranda looked at each other. They knew all the talk about Mexican food had made them hungry for tacos.
“So we’re getting tacos, right?” Jake asked.
“Of course!” Miranda smiled tugging on Jake’s arm towards the taco truck.
They got in line behind the people waiting and eventually made it to the front of the line. Jake ordered some pork tacos with everything while Miranda ordered shredded beef tacos with only cheese and lettuce. They then walked over and found a nice little plot of land to sit on while they ate their food. Jake pulled out the blanket and laid it out for both him and Miranda.
“Well thank you, kind sir,” Miranda did a little courtesy while still holding the tacos.
“You’re welcome, madam,” Jake said.
“Madam?” Miranda looked distraught. “I am not that old.”
“Sometimes you act like an old lady,” Jake said with a smile.
Miranda made a face at him. “Just for that, I’m not going to share any of my tacos with you.”
Miranda sat down the blanket facing away from Jake.
Jake sat down next to her and nudged her with his arm. “That’s ok, I have my own tacos and they have everything I need.”
Miranda turned her head, “So you don’t need me?”
“Yeah I think I’m over you. I have a new love now. Tacos.” Jake said lifting up the Tacos ‘Lion King’ style.
“Worst date night. Ever,” Miranda said.
“I’m sure we had worse,” Jake laughed.
“I’m not too sure about that,” Miranda said taking a bit of her taco. “Upstaged by a taco has to be near the top.”
“Don’t worry. Both of you will always have a special place in my heart,” Jake said.
Miranda gave him a shove and they both ate their Mexican food together on the blanket. Jake pulled a couple of water bottles from his bag and they drank the room temperature water. Eventually the sun began to set and the lights around the park turned on. The sound and commotion of people playing games and running around started to settle down and a band went on stage.
It was the first of a few local bands who went up after one another. The first one had a Mumford and Sons feel to them, the second was a violinist who was really good, the third had more of a Twenty One Pilots vibe, and so on and so on. There were more than a dozen different music groups that performed throughout the night each with their own style which performed covers of other bands as well as their own music.
Miranda and Jake snuggled up under the blanket which was big enough for them to sit on and most of their bodies and they listened to the music. They made little comments back and forth and Miranda rested her head on Jake’s shoulder.
As the evening started to come to a close, the final act got on stage and the group of five musicians played a slow, music with no words that was beautiful and seemed to perfectly match the mood. The sun had set and the stars were starting to peek out from the sky above. The park lamps were dim and the music was soft.
Jake looked down to Miranda who had fallen asleep on him and had started to snore. Jake wrapped his arms around her and kissed the top of her head. The music came to an end and people started to clap. The clapping woke Miranda up to jumped a little.
She reached up to rub her eyes, “Did I fall asleep?”
“Yeah you just slept through the last musical act,” Jake said. “Apparently I make a pretty good pillow.”
Miranda laughed. “Yeah you’ve finally found your purpose in life.”
“Guess I don’t need to go to college then.”
“I’d probably get a degree anyway just in case being a pillow doesn’t pay well.”
“Yeah I need good health insurance,” Jake smiled.
Miranda and Jake packed up their stuff and shoved it into Jake’s bag. Miranda put on her shoes which she had taken off while they were sitting on the blanket. They walked hand in hand towards the bus station across the street.
“Actually I thought we could walk back,” Miranda said.
“Really? What about your feet?” Jake asked.
“I’m sure they’ll be fine.”
“Or you’ll just complain about it tomorrow.”
“Yeah one of those options,” Miranda laughed.
They walked back towards Miranda’s place passing over the bus station. They walked past the Mexican restaurant and they both pointed it out with a laugh. They were completely focused on one another as they walked and the background seemed to fade.
“You know, Jake,” Miranda started changing to a more serious tone, “I’ve really enjoyed these weekly date nights. I always look forward to them.”
Jake grinned, “Is there a ‘but’ to that sentence?”
Miranda eyes grew wide, “No. There’s no ‘but.’ I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoy spending time with you.”
Jake squeezed Miranda’s hand a little bit, “I really enjoy spending time with you, too.”
“Good,” Miranda pulled Jake close and kissed him.
They eventually made their way back to Miranda’s apartment and they stood for a second on the front porch area in front of the door.
They held hands for a second in silence smiling at each other.
“Do you have anything going on tomorrow?” Miranda asked.
“My class tomorrow morning, then I’m free after that,” Jake said.
“Do you have to go home right now?” Miranda asked sheepishly.
Jake chuckled a little bit, “I think I can stay for a little while longer if you want me to.”
“I just thought you could come in and we could watch a movie,” Miranda said.
“Are you going to fall asleep again?”
“Probably,” Miranda said with a small grin.
“I guess my service as a pillow is never done,” Jake laughed.
Miranda gave him a kiss and Jake wrapped his arms around her kissing her back.
“Let’s go inside,” Miranda said.
“Ok,” Jake said. “I wonder if your roommate is still awake.”
“Get a room!” Said a voice from within the house.
“That’s a yes,” Jake said.
Miranda opened the door and led Jake inside and up to her room. They spent the rest of the evening laying in her bed watching sappy, romance movies. Miranda insisted that all guys in couples had to watch them and they built character. Jake outwardly declared that he found them dull and cliché, but secretly thought they had their moments. Miranda fell asleep first wrapped up in Jake’s arms near the beginning of the second movie, and Jake fell asleep before the second movie finished.
(If you haven’t read the first story with Miranda and Jake check it out here)