Authors: Shara Azod
“Since when do you watch football?” Janie, her part time waitress asked as Lita flipped on the TV while they were cleaning up after the Sunday brunch crowd.
“I don’t, but I promised someone I would.” Actually, Lita had promised Colton before he left for a business trip.
She was still wondering why she had agreed to watch the game. Last Thursday had been fun. Okay, it had been the best night of her life, but all it could ever be was one night. No matter what Colton had said, he never took her anywhere public. It stood to reason he didn't want to be seen with her even though he quite obviously liked to be with her in private. Damn it, she was supposed to be turning over a new leaf. She’d left South Carolina being sick and tired of being with men who wouldn’t proudly claim her, yet here she was falling back into the same patterns. Sooner or later she was going to have to-
“Hey, isn't that one of your regulars?” Janie rudely interrupted Lita’s self-bashing to excitedly claim.
With a scowl on her face, Lita turned to the TV, then quickly fell into shock. There was Colton Jeffries, at least his picture being flashed on the station with various stats and other information Lita couldn’t begin to understand.
“Turn that up,” Lita asked, dropping heavily into a chair.
Janie quickly turned up the volume, then sat down next to her. Lita wanted to scream at her to get away. She was dating a freakin’ football player, one in the playoffs, and she had never had a clue. It was just too embarrassing. But she was too shocked to do more than listen.
“Colton ‘Colt 45’ Jefferies has led Los Angeles to its first Super Bowl in fifteen years! Rushing for over a hundred yards, scoring three touchdowns himself. We are joined now field side by this game’s VIP. Colton, you had a magnificent game out there. What was the strategy? What had you fired up out there today?”
“Well, Brent, I recently met someone and I promised myself if I got us to a Super Bowl, I would ask her to marry me.”
Lita’s heart stopped right there. Marry him? Met someone? No, it couldn’t be her. It was someone else. This was some cruel, fucked up way of breaking things off with her. But damn the smiling sportscaster for asking the question while she sat there.
“That is one lucky girl! Care to say anything to her now?”
No way, it couldn’t be. There was no way in hell he was going to say her.
“I love you, Lita. Make me the happiest man on earth and agree to be my wife.”
“Holy shit!” Janie exclaimed next to her. “Lita did you hear that! Is that why he came in here so often? I didn’t even know you were dating!”
Lita couldn’t say anything, couldn’t move. She managed to wave Janie away, but she could feel the eyes of her tiny staff watching her as they trickled out of the restaurant. She didn’t know how long she sat there, but it was well past dark before she finally managed to drag herself back home.
He should’ve called first. Colton had mentally kicked herself a thousand times on the way back to LA. He shouldn’t have proposed over the television like that. Especially given he had specifically asked her to watch. Honestly all he’d meant to do was say hi. That was the only reason he had the interview set up immediately following the game instead of waiting for the regular press conference after. He wanted to prove to Lita he was far from being ashamed of her. He’d hoped she would understand the reason he hadn’t wanted to go anywhere too public was because people tended to recognize him. Usually he didn't mind autographs, it was the life he’d chosen. But when he was with Lita, he wanted for their time to be spent just the two of them. The last thing he wanted was a crowd or a bunch of people trying to get close.
It was late by the time he finally got to Marina del Rey, and he was going to have to get up early for training, but he had to see Lita. She hadn’t answered any of his phone calls, he was starting to worry. Feeling like an awkward teenager, he rang the doorbell repeatedly, then banged on the door when that went unanswered. He was desperate by the time she appeared at the door, terrified she would turn him away.
“Look, I know it must have been embarrassing to hear me announce your name on the TV like that, and I swear I didn't mean to put you on the spot. I just-you thought I was ashamed to be with you, when I really just didn't want to be mobbed when we were out on a date.” It was a mouthful, but he managed to get it all out in one breath before noticing the way she was dressed. Or rather wasn’t. His mind suddenly went blank as she pulled a very then wrap around her, her nudity underneath obvious. “I- uh, just want to- to let you- Shit, Lita!”
His mouth was on hers before she could blink. Pushing her backward with his own body, he pinned her against the wall, lifting her in his arms.
It took a few moments, but gradually her words sang past the fog in his head and he managed to take a half step back.
“Sorry, sugar, you just look so good.” Actually she looked edible, but maybe she didn't want to hear that.
“At least let me close the door.” The door right. He stepped aside, hands in his pockets as she closed and locked the door. “Actually was expecting you.”
That drew him up short. “You’re not mad?” He had been terrified she might be.
“No, I am the happiest woman in the world. All this time I really thought you didn't want to be seen with me, when all this time, you just didn’t want to be seen. I feel special that you wanted to spend time alone with me, and I am really glad you didn’t try to use your fame to impress me.”
Colton couldn’t keep a smile off his face. She understood! Not only that, but she accepted it. “Does that mean you’ll marry me?”
“It means I’ll let you try to convince me to marry you,” she laughed. “Now come to bed. Don’t you have practice or something?”
“No, I’m ready to love you for the rest of my life right now.”
And he spent the rest of the night proving it.