While boarding the bus that would take us from the airport to the rental car agency, a tall, dark stranger offered to help me with my bag. A stranger who would fit no other description than gorgeous. Of the stomach-flopping variety. His eyes were as black as his hair and fringed so thick that individual lashes were impossible to discern. Would have looked girly if not for the slight stubble.

He stood up to help with my bag, smiled, and sat back down without helping any other passenger. My female co-worker took the last remaining seat across the aisle, next to my boss, leaving me with no choice but to sit next to my gorgeous stranger.

“Just helpin’ ya out.” As she nodded towards the tall, dark stranger sitting next to me.

“On the bus ride? Oh yeah.” She laughed at my wink and double teeth-click.

My boss heard this exchange and loudly asked to be filled in to the conversation. “What am I missing? Help with what?”

She rolled her eyes, “Nothing. Don’t worry about it.”

And yet he continued, “Help? Why does Molly need help? Is there a problem? Molly, what’s going on? Why do you need help on the bus?”

My co-worker eventually whispered to my boss, explaining her intentions, but it was pretty much dead at that point. Especially considering my boss kept smiling all-knowingly across the bus aisle as if waiting to observe me work my game. Very tactful.

My eyes stayed clear from the dark stranger. Mortification often makes me awkward.

When the bus finally reached its destination, I was more than ready to leave the bus and the watchful eyes of my two co-workers. The gorgeous stranger immediately grabbed my bag first from the luggage rack, made direct visual contact with those beautiful black eyes, passed back my carryon, and smiled kindly as if he understood. If the situation hadn’t been bloodily slaughtered, he would have been a fun opponent.