The Odd Gift
Gift giving can be joyful, especially during this time of year.
But it can be awkward when a gift is given but the recipient had different expectations.
Check out what Chuck's present to Sophia is, and how that feeling plays out in the scene below from Cinnamon Bourbon and Deception .
The Odd Gift
“And why not?” Chuck asked petulantly as he opened the door to the house, knowing full well what she’d say, but feeling like he had to ask anyway.
“You are too busy!” Sophia began, adamant. “Remember how concerned you were about Tomas becoming distracted by Violet? You’ve already had one chemical leak, you’re gearing up a barely tested process, and gambling with not only investor’s money, but yours, too.”
That gave Chuck an idea. He smiled at his thought — it was an odd segue, but maybe it would work. Not the most romantic, but clever. He turned around, softening and lowering his voice. “And why do you care about my money and health?”
“Are you from Mars?” She put on her incredulous look. “I’m concerned about you. You are the most important person in my life.”
“Then wait here.” Chuck hustled into the bedroom and started throwing socks out of his drawer. He wished he’d gone ahead and bought that opal ring he’d been looking at, but maybe this would work.
“I know it’s here somewhere.” He dug further, finding his Thanksgiving turkey socks. Then he pulled out a small box out from under the Superman socks.
Practically running back into the living room, he held the box behind his back. “So, you’d like to be able to advise me on what I can do?”
Sophia was giving him that “you’re being strange again” look, but she nodded, definitely curious.
“Then wear this.”
She looked at the box, then at Chuck, wide eyed. “This is how you…”
“Open it?” He urged her.
She slowly opened it. “It’s … it’s…”
He’d done it! For once, she was speechless, he thought wryly. Maybe she would say yes if he asked her the right question, the proper way. But after what he’d overheard, he wasn’t sure and didn’t want to chance a rejection.
“It’s an electronic ring — goes with your phone, so you’ll never be out of reach, even if you can’t get your phone out from where it hides in your purse.”
She just stared at him. He could tell Sophia was trying to look nonplused but her jaw was suspended as if she had an invisible giant jawbreaker inside.
“You were expecting something else?” He loved teasing her, but she looked so puzzled, it wasn’t as much fun as he had imagined. One thing that attracted him to Sophia was her honest and forthright character, even though sometimes she could over do it. She was the exact opposite of his ex-wife. From her reaction, she thought he was toying with her. He was, in a way, but felt justified because he’d heard her tell Liza that “I can see how a wedding ring like that could get in the way” in the kitchen.
“Well, maybe … I never know with you.” She shrugged and tried the ring on. “It’s unusual, but I like it.”
“True.” He agreed and turned his focus to the ring. “You won’t see one like it, because it’s in beta testing. You might have to fill out a survey…”
“Survey?” Eyebrows up. “This gift comes with complications?”
“Yes, remember, like when Tomas tested his coating on your car? That worked out pretty well, so I thought you’d like to be the first on this.”
“Oh gee, thanks, perhaps it will also help save my life.” She sighed. “Actually, it is pretty cool, I’ll be happy to answer surveys. Friend of yours, I presume?”
“You bet. Inventors Club buddy.”
“Ah, then I do like it.” She held her hand out to survey the ring, glancing sideways at him. “Does this mean we’re going steady?”
It was Chuck’s turn to feel at loss for words. “Yes, I wasn’t thinking exactly that, but you’ve captured the feeling exactly.” He put his arms around her. “I think I’ve been going steady ever since that storm blew you back into my life.”
“Well, maybe it was when you and the cat fell asleep in the chair by the fire, and the dog curled up next to you.”
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