Missed Opportunity

Today, I met the most aesthetically pleasing person I’ve ever seen. Well, I didn’t meet him. I didn’t even speak to him.

Why didn’t I speak to him?

I was in a bookstore with my childhood friend, buying this brownie mix flavored concoction to sip on as I read this book that was twenty dollars too expensive for me. I turned around to take my seat as I waited for the drink to be prepared, and there he was.

I couldn’t avoid eye contact fast enough.

He was with a friend, and the two of them had a unique aura about them, but he was the one that stood out to me.

I can’t even remember how tall he was. My memory is terrible, you see. I’m losing more of it as I write.

I remember his hair, how the darkness of it contrasted the fairness of his complexion and how neatly it was combed back to my left, his right. I remember the ambivalent curve of his mouth and how his cheekbones reached for his eyes.

His eyes. I remember his eyes.

I think they were brown, but the color wasn’t important. They were calm. They weren’t cold or hard, just steady and unconcerned. They were intelligent. They were trained on something between his friend and me, probably the counter with all of the snack options.

And, for a moment, they flashed to me.

I don’t know where they landed after that, because I ducked my gaze and shuffled away to my cafe table with my flustered internal monolog.

I caught glimpses of him, sometimes on accident, sometimes on purpose, and I suppose I might have looked silly if he had ever actually looked up to meet my gaze, but his calm, probably brown eyes were always focused on something away from my direction.

I stood with my childhood friend to leave, resolved in knowing that I would never meet this man. I would never know his name and I would never hear his voice in any volume over the hushed tones he was using to speak with his friend. I would never understand the intelligence I saw in his eyes.

After we stepped outside, my friend nudged me and told me that the person that I had been catching glimpses of turned around in his seat and watched as I left.

It’s not that we might have been fated; I’m unconcerned with romance, as I have romance of my own already. It’s not that I think we might have made good friends; I know nothing about him. I just want to know what he was thinking about. I want to know what made his expression so pensive, and if I had spoken anything at all to him, would I have known the reason I was so intrigued by this stranger? Was I even right to intrigued?

There are a thousand useless questions bubbling around in my mind. None of them will ever be answered, because I will probably never see him again. But of all of the questions that will never be answered, just one of them causes me this insufferable quantity of frustration.

Why did you turn around?

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