Saturday, August 24, 2019

The Calm After the Storm

By Tim Smith

Any good romance story involves a storm of emotions. Things are never sunshine, lollipops and roses between two people in a relationship, no matter how strong the attraction is. Something always comes up. It can be something minor, like food preferences or what to watch on TV. It can also be something bigger, like family acceptance issues or sexual preferences in the bedroom.
Many of the storms in my rom-coms usually occur when the couple has reached that point where they know they want to be together, but one of them holds back. It typically revolves around one of them having been burned before, and not willing to take the plunge into commitment. These things have a way of working themselves out in time for the happy-for-now ending.
Here’s an example from one of my romantic sex comedies, “The Sweet Distraction.” The male protagonist is a writer, hired by the woman’s Mafia Don father to write his memoir. There is a strong attraction and she thinks this is for real, but he’s the one resisting. He finally experiences his “Eureka!” moment and realizes he has to make amends for pushing her away. To wit:
George opened the door to Cookie’s bedroom then entered. She stood at the window, gazing into the courtyard. The early afternoon sun filtered in, outlining her shape with a soft glow, one that made her freshly washed hair take on a luster. “Hi,” he softly began.
She turned to look at him with slight surprise and offered a tentative smile. “Hi.”
“How’ve you been?”
She turned to look out the window. “Fine. Did you lose the dialing instructions for your phone?”
“No, I didn’t.” George took a few steps closer then rested his butt against the vanity table. “I wanted to apologize for not calling.”
“Thank you. You may go now.”
“Back to being a princess?”
She shrugged, her back still to him. “You have to go with whatever works.”
“Don’t you want to know why I stopped calling you?”
“I know why. You’re so damned arrogant you thought I couldn’t possibly fit into your little world. You assumed that I couldn’t adjust to your lifestyle and I wouldn’t be happy. You got what you wanted. You’ll have your best seller and the career you’ve always lusted after. You can go on being in charge of your fate.”
“Okay, maybe I am a little too independent for my own good sometimes. Maybe it gets in the way of my better judgment or makes me pass up good things when they’re staring me in the face. But I’m not arrogant enough to think I can live this way for the rest of my life.” He paused. “Cookie, what I am is honest enough to admit when I’m wrong. I loved being with you and I’ve missed you. It’s just that I began to feel like I was being crowded.”
She turned to look at him. George detected the sorrow in her eyes. “If I made you feel like that, I’m sorry. I’ve missed you, too. You’re the first man I’ve ever met who wanted me for who I am, and not because of who my father is. That meant something to me.”
George pushed himself to a standing position then placed his hands on her upper arms while peering into her eyes. “I still want you for who you are, if you’ll have me.”
Her face dimpled into a smile. “You mean that?”
“Yeah. Cookie, I don’t give a damn about this book, or the next one, or the one after that. They can all be best sellers but it won’t mean anything if you aren’t there to share it with me.”
“And I just want you to be happy without thinking you have to change yourself to suit me. I don’t care if you want to live in a cabana and roast hot dogs for supper, as long as you’re being what you want to be.”
“Does that mean I can keep my comfortable sofa and favorite chair?”
“Of course, but I’d really like to do something about those living room curtains.”
George paused. “I’ll think about it.”  

If you like that and want to read more, you can find “The Sweet Distraction” at the link below.


  1. This is sweet. Not yucky sweet, but warm-the-heart sweet.

    And you're right: even the closest relationships have their storms. I just had a fierce fight with my husband of 37 years yesterday... but decided that there wasn't any point in staying angry, even though I truly believe he was wrong.

  2. Thank you, Lisabet. I like your attitude about not staying angry. Had my last sig other adopted that philosophy, we would still be together. The hell of it is, like the character in the excerpt, I freely admitted that I was wrong, but my apology fell on deaf ears.


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