Misa.

Author’s Note: This story is a continuation of The Girl in The Car. As I post more and more pieces of Stuart’s puzzle, you’ll notice that the stories don’t line up perfectly, but they’re all connected. Enjoy.

She’s a whirlwind, he thought as he watched her twirl around girlishly. He exhaled a defeated breath and surrendered his posture to lean into the tree billowing over them.

“I want to know you,” he admitted.

The air was warm, and she seamlessly moved within it, her body silkily flowing from one moment to the next. Her electric nature lit up his setting sky. He gazed at her in wonder and lust, his eyes lingering on the wide set of hips she squeezed into a pair of frayed denim shorts.

She sat down across from him on the tie-dye picnic blanket he supplied and stretched her feet onto his lap. Amused, he smirked at her brazenness and let his hands tenderly massage her.

“Where are you from?” He watched her intently, intrigued by how comfortable she seemed in her skin. The sun bounced off her shoulders, illuminating smooth dark skin that he wanted to taste.

Rolling her eyes, she grumbled, “You American men are the same, vous tous.

Stuart chuckled. “Excuse me?”

“White boys like you see women like me and get tight in the pants because we’re not what you see every day.”

Taken aback, Stuart clarifies, “I’m not tight in the pants for you. I’m fascinated by you.”

“I’m not a piece of art. Go to a museum if you want to be fascinated by something.”

Misa swiftly pulled away her feet from Stuart’s frim grasp, but he pulled them back. She looked at him in disbelief, and yanked harder.

“Mees. Please. I just want to know you.”

Whipping around and flashing Stuart a disapproving gaze, Misa snarled, “eh eh, stop saying that! Go home to your family and know them.” She began to gather her thing. “I don’t know what I was thinking by being here with you, but no longer will I be foolish.”

Stuart watched her helplessly as she prepared to walk away from him.

“Misa.”

“You said companion and we would not really talk. Goodbye, mister.”

Stuart sighed deeply, making his frustration apparent. He stood up and gathered the picnic blanket he took from his daughter’s closer. Then, almost as if he had just realized how ridiculous Misa was being, Stuart threw the picnic blanket down and chased after her. Once closer, he grabs her elbow, causing her to gasp and stare at him in confusion.

“Dammit, Misa, I know this isn’t what we agreed to, but I want to be your friend. No, we don’t have to talk all the time, but I…I want to know you. And I told you that, I told you when we first met that I wanted to know why you were screaming that night.”

Misa’s face softened. Avoiding eye contact, she looked away from Stuart as his words flowed through her like water. She didn’t want to understand this strange white man. At the very least, she thought she could get a few free meals out of their companionship, so she obliged. But this felt like something different. This man is crazy, she thought to herself.

“I’m suffocating in my world. I wake up and do the same shit every day, I talk about the same things over and over, I’ve been going to the same grocery store for 10 years, like Mees, I’m fucking dying. And I’m not asking you to save me. I’m asking for you to be my friend. I don’t want to have sex with you, okay? This isn’t about sex or me getting my rocks off with some exotic girl.  I have kids and a wife, and…I’m just not that much of a scum bag. So when I say that I want to know you, I mean it. But we can move at your own pace, just please don’t leave. I think we can learn a lot from each other.”

The sun had begun to set. Orange and pink hues had surrounded them, the colors dashing across the sky as they stared intently at one another.

“I am from Ghana.”

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