It was a nice day for a picnic. They drove to a secluded spot under a tree across from a lake. “Here's as good a spot as any.”
The three of them dismounted and Mark tied the horses to the tree. The sun shone brightly, causing the water of the lake to glimmer. The chicken was really good, as was the rest of the meal. After they ate they did talk briefly about his writing, but it was soon apparent that she had something else in mind. She inched her body closer to his as they talked. Then, at what seemed an opportune moment, she grabbed his hand.
It was the first time he had held hands with a girl and, of course, he was thrilled. Her hand felt so warm and pleasant in his. His body began to tingle with delight. He started to reach out with his other arm in order to put it around her, glancing over his shoulder at her mother, across the blanket from them. But, just then, he felt something else--a pricking sensation on one of his legs. He felt another prick, and then another. Looking down, he saw that they were being attacked by an army of ants. He stood up suddenly and yelled “Aww! Ants!” while brushing the ants off of his pants legs. She, now realizing what had happened, began brushing off her feet and lower legs and then stood as well. Her mother, though not bitten, stood up as well, probably to get a closer look at the couple.
“I guess that's a sign that we'd better be going.” he said laughingly. They had, in the process, inched closer to the lake, and, just then, a huge frog jumped out of the lake, almost splashing them with water. He laughed loudly now. “That’s another sign too. Come on.”
“Aww, now,” she pleaded. “Perhaps we could find another spot, where there are no ants—or frogs either.”
“No,” he sighed, “I think it best I take you two home.”
At her doorstep he grabbed her hand and held it for a second. But somehow it wasn't the same. His heart wasn't in it this time. He said “Goodnight,” and they did the same.
As he lay down on his bed his head was spinning as tried to think what to do. He knew down deep that she wasn’t the girl for him. They just didn’t click somehow. But, he realized that apparently she liked him a lot. He could string her along and enjoy her affections for a while. He toyed with the idea for a few minutes.
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