Julep had made it through another week of work without incident. Though, it was close a few times…biting her tongue was becoming more difficult. She was looking forward to a chill weekend and really couldn’t wait to get a chance to work on her new home chemistry lab. At five minutes to five, Leonard approached her.
“Julep. Do you have any plans this weekend?”
“Me? Um…no, not really.”
“There is this incredible new restaurant in town – Ereganto. The menu is scientific, bordering on science fiction, and I wondered if you’d want to check it out with me?”
“Sounds incredible! I would love to. Saturday; pick me up at 8?”
“Saturday at 8 is perfect. I’ll need to meet you there though, if that’s ok.
“Sure. I’ll meet you there.” Strange, she thought. But oh, what did it matter if they went separately? At least if she hated it she could duck out early this way.
* * *
“Hello. I’m meeting someone here. The name is Hofstadter?”
The Maitre D’ looked at his screen and then glanced up at Julep. “Are you asking me or telling me?”
Internally, she growled. Externally, she smiled. “Telling. Leonard Hofstadter.”
“Hmmm. Right this way.”
Once they found Leonard and she was seated, she took a moment to look around. This place was beautiful! Lots of greenery with a bit of an Asian vibe. Trendy and experimental – sometimes a scary combination.
“I’m really glad you could come. Its a beautiful night and I thought you might like to sit outside. I hope that’s ok?”
“Its fantastic. Thank you for asking me. I can’t wait to see what vegetarian options they have.” As if on cue, the waitress appeared out of nowhere, almost in a puff of smoke.
Julep was happy to discover that a majority of the dishes were vegetarian and she made a note to come back and sample more later. The prices were a bit on the high side so she might want to space it out a bit though.
As they waited for dinner to arrive, they talked about his roommates. Sheldon seemed to be a bit of a nut with very particular tastes and laughed about the roommate agreement he’d had to sign. He mentioned their neighbor, and friend, Penny. She was an actress, though she’d not appeared in anything Julep had seen.
Colorful and so delicious! Definitely worth the money later on.
Julep started to wonder what was in that wine because she found herself being a lot more forward than she expected and she playfully blew Leonard a kiss. Thankfully, he didn’t seem to mind.
Still a little on the shy side, he’d also begun to feel the effects of the wine and Julep wondered if they would be heading home together. Wha…where did that come from? I’m not that kind of girl. I better splash some water on my face.
“Excuse me, Leonard. I need to visit the ladies room.”
He smiled at her. “Of course. I’ll be here when you get back.”
Julep went back outside and found their table cleared and Leonard nowhere in sight. As she stood there, befuddled, her phone buzzed as a text appeared on the screen.
Julep’s first thought was disappointment but she knew it was for the best. She still wasn’t feeling like herself and wasn’t sure if she could have trusted herself if they were alone.
Still. It was a really crappy way for him to leave. In the back of her mind she had to wonder why he couldn’t have waited an extra minute to tell her in person.