Chronicles of a Serial Dater - Book 3: A New Adult Romantic Comedy

Contents

CoaSD - Book 3

Author's Note

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Thank you!

This book is work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. This book contains explicit material and is intended for readers 18 years or older.

 

The author acknowledges the copyrighted or trademarked status and trademarked owners of any wordmarks mentioned in the following fiction.

 

Copyright ©
2016 by Adele Huxley

All rights reserved.

 

No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the author, except in the case of a reviewer, who may quote brief passages embodied in critical articles or in a review.

All requests should be forwarded to:
[email protected]

Chronicles of a Serial Dater
is a series of 7 short stories designed to keep you laughing all summer long, with a new release nearly every week. Mark your calendars with these dates!

Book 2 - July 27th

Book 3 - August 3rd

Book 4 - August 10th

Book 5 - August 17th

Book 6 - August 24th

Book 7 - August 31st

Bonus online content will also be released with each addition, adding to the interactive fun! Be on the lookout for any chapter ending with this image:

Believe it for not, all the dates, conversations, and horror stories in this series are real. Readers just like you were kind enough to share their funniest and worst dates for our entertainment. At least something good came out of them! So if you’re reading these and at any point think, “Come on now, this is too ridiculous,” just remember…

The truth is always stranger than fiction, and nothing is stranger than online dating.

You can still get in on the fun! If you have a funny/bad/horrible date you’d like to share, or even some hilarious online conversations, email me at
[email protected]
with the subject “SUBMISSION”

I picked up and set down my phone a dozen times, resisting the impulse to text Anette and Lourdes with my every thought. I’m a firm believer that people need to learn how to sit and be by themselves, not constantly seek distractions and instant gratification. But I was nervous. Beyond nervous.

I’d been chatting with Devon back and forth for a while. Actually, I think we matched up on the second day of me exploring the app but it’d taken us this long to arrange to meet. He was funny, interesting, and not at all pushy about hooking up. In fact, it was me who proposed getting together finally and seeing if we had the same chemistry in person.

Cue record scratch, brakes screeching, and a loud gasp from the audience. He’s what now? In all the hours we’d spoken, not once did it come up that he was disabled in any way. He had briefly mentioned he’d spent time in the Marines and had been deployed to Iraq, but nothing about any injuries. I quickly put the dots together and surmised that he didn’t like bringing it up. It’s not that I
care
if someone is in a wheelchair, it just took me completely by surprise. But I’m an open-minded person and certainly not the type to cancel over something like that.

But my mind raced as I sat in the frozen yogurt shop waiting for him.
How disabled is he? Can he use his arms or is it just his legs? And what about the… other parts? Will they work too? Can I ask him that or… Oh God, I’m so freaking rude for even thinking that. He’s a wounded vet, Talia! You can’t just ask a wounded vet if his junk still works!
You get the idea.

Even though I was actively trying to avoid distracting myself with my phone, my nose was buried in it the moment Devon came in.

“Glad you found the place,” a man suddenly said beside me.

Like in a slow motion scene from a movie, I started at his shoes and worked my gaze up his body, ending at Devon’s handsome, smiling face… looming a few feet above me. I was stunned into silence, only able to sputter out a generic hello as I stood.

“You’re more beautiful in person,” he said as he stooped a little to give me a friendly hug.

“You too…” I mumbled, my mind unable to catch up. “I mean, handsome, not beautiful.”

He had a great laugh and a powerful presence, which I found disarming. He scanned the shop and said, “Want to build our own sundaes and get to know each other?”

“Absolutely,” I grinned, feeling a little giddy yet incredibly confused.

Aside from expecting him to arrive in a wheelchair, the date began amazingly. He had a chiseled jaw, striking eyes, and a smile that his dentist must’ve framed in their office. Despite his charm and obvious good looks, I couldn’t let the disability thing go. It niggled the back of my mind the entire time we talked. We were halfway through our fro-yo when I finally had to ask. At least I had a little tact and didn’t blurt something embarrassing out.

“So, do you not need a wheelchair every day or…” The question trailed off.

He nodded as he swallowed a big bite. I tried not to stare as he licked a blob of chocolate from the corner of his mouth. “Ah, well, about that. It’s kind of my way of testing how shallow someone is. If they back out at the last minute after I’ve told them, then I know they weren’t worth my time in the first place.” And I’ll be damned if I didn’t hear that record scratch one more time.

I felt my forehead crease as I let that wash over me, my temper revving a little at the thought of being tested like that. “But maybe it’s something they would’ve been okay with if you’d been upfront about it? It could be the surprise that bothers them, not the idea of you having a disability.”

Devon’s brows rose as if considering that angle for the first time. “Hadn’t thought about it that way. You know how this whole dating thing can be. There are a lot of crazies out there,” he shrugged, waving his spoon in the air.

I had to concede that point and relaxed a little. I’d only been in this strange new world for a few weeks now and I already understood the need to protect yourself, both physically and emotionally.
Maybe he didn’t go about it in the right way, but I guess I get it,
I thought. The last of my reservations softened and I let myself get into the date.

The conversation was light but easy. He asked plenty of questions and genuinely listened to my responses. After sitting and talking over empty cups for a half an hour, Devon clapped his hands together. “So! What should we do next? We could go for a walk, go window shopping, or I know a place a few blocks away where we can play shuffleboard.”

I made a show of thinking hard about my choices, rubbing my chin for effect. “I vote shuffleboard, unless you’re some kind of secret shuffleboard pro and you’re just trying to hustle me,” I grinned as I stood.

He held his hands up defensively. “I swear I’ve only played shuffleboard in a past life when I was a retiree in Florida.”

“Well, I suppose that’s not much of an advantage,” I joked.

Our fingers casually brushed as we strolled down the street chatting. I kept trying to sneak peeks at him he wouldn’t notice. Broad muscular shoulders and soft spoken, he looked like he could handle himself in a fight but could easily charm your grandmother. The sheer confidence rolling off him was incredible and alluring. I’d never been around a guy like him.

The shuffleboard place was a hipster paradise, but I loved it. A long bar lined the back wall of the bright, open space. People our age filled the six lanes, laughing and drinking while flinging discs down lanes with bizarrely long sticks. There was a little wait for a space to open up, so we grabbed a snack from one of the food trucks parked out front.

I felt excited and comfortable all at once. It was like we were friends already but were both eager to get to know each other.
This is what a first date is supposed to be,
I thought. We traded stories, kept the conversation light, and found lots of things to discuss. So far, there’d been no hint of a secret fetish or a desire to quiz me like a trivia night master.

When we got our lane, Devon offered to buy drinks. “Just a Corona or something light like that,” I said, happy to be with someone polite for once. He gave me another look I couldn’t quite read, but passed it off as date jitters. I’m not gonna lie. I watched him walk away, studying the way his clothes moved against his body. What? You would’ve too, I promise.

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