And the story continues...
Once out the door, she breathed the night air deeply. She took great joy in the fact her little studio was just a few blocks from the theatre. On clear, crisp nights such as the one that had fallen that evening, she reveled in her walk home. She skirted through the alley, lost in her thoughts about the performance and almost crashed into one lone orchestra musician who was having problems starting his car.
He had just popped his hood and whipped open his door to get out and lift the hood further. In his haste, he practically took poor Cosette to the ground. She let out a startled cry as she was suddenly interrupted from her daydream. The musician quickly looked up and stared into the most beautiful hazel eyes set in the most beautiful face that he had ever seen.
“Hey, oh man,” he started to apologize. “I am so sorry. Can’t get my stupid car started and I wasn’t thinking there was anyone else around.”
As Cosette regained her composure, she placed her fingers at the base of her neck; a nervous gesture on her part. “T-that’s okay,” she stammered. “I didn’t think anyone else was around either and I was lost in my own thoughts.”
The musician stuck out his hand. “Name’s Marius. I'm a percussionist with the orchestra.” He looked at her and a light dawned in his mind. “You were the Sugar Plum. You were incredible tonight.”
Cosette blushed as she took Marius’ hand. “My name is Cosette. And, yes, I was Sugar Plum.” She dipped her head down as she said, “Thank you.”
They stood there for a moment, unaware that they were still holding hands. Cosette felt a heat creeping up her arm. She looked down and realized that their hands were still locked. She quickly took her hand back.
“What seems to be wrong with your car?” she asked.
Marius looked back at his car as though he had forgotten it was there. “Oh, I don’t know. I think the battery’s dead or something.”
Cosette walked around to the front of the car, set her bag on the ground and bent down under the hood. She fiddled with the wires leading to the battery and found one to be loose. “You have a loose battery wire under here!” she called out to Marius.
Marius opened the trunk to access his tool box. Grabbing a wrench, he walked around to the front of the car. Adjusting the nut on the terminal, he asked, “How did you know that? You’re a ballerina.”
Cosette stood, faced him and smiled. “I was raised with four brothers. I know my way around a motor.”
Marius finished tightening the nut and stood to face her. He stood for a moment, losing himself in her eyes. He couldn’t remember ever looking at such a beautiful woman before. Though there was little light, her eyes seemed to capture whatever was available and just sparkle like diamonds. For a moment, he stood, perplexed by what to say next.
Cosette waived her hand in front of Marius’ face. “Um, hello? You should be good to go.” She hoisted her bag back on her shoulder. “I better go. Early call to the stage in the morning. Need to get some sleep.”
Marius shook his head slightly and ran his hand through his hair. “Uh, yeah. I should probably go as well. Now that my car’s fixed. Double performances tomorrow; going to be a long day.” He slammed the hood, put his wrench away and closed the trunk. Before getting in the car, he stood at the open door and called out, “See you tomorrow, Cosette.”
Cosette looked over her shoulder. “See you tomorrow, Marius.”