It was now or never.

A wisp of golden hair fell down her face in slow motion while she held him in her eyes.

His lips lingered inches from hers, but it seemed like miles. They both knew it was the moment of truth, yet were too nervous to make The First Move.

She hoped it would be him, that he would Man Up. She didn’t really know what to expect, but the longer he waited, the more uncomfortable she grew.

He just wished an Act of God would force their lips together so he wouldn’t actually have to make a decision.

He desired her. The street light danced through her hair, and her (mother’s) perfume slunk its way into his nose. The theater flashed behind her, casting a soft wash of color on slender shoulders. A soft summer breeze combed their hair. It was the Perfect Moment, just like the movies.

He felt vulnerable. His body screamed at him to run, run far away… abandon ship and return to safety, somewhere. He’d always looked forward to kissing a pretty girl, but now he found the notion terrifying. What if she turned her head away? What if she laughed at him, cutting down his self-esteem with each cackle? He imagined himself standing alone under that streetlight, defeated, as her mother picked her up and they disappeared.

He licked his lips, tasting the tang of nervousness. He felt the window of opportunity closing in on him. His heart was pounding in his chest.

He knew it would feel worse to wimp out. He’d go home, walk upstairs, and hang his head, alone, on his bed. Alone with feelings of failure, of what could have been, had he been brave. Feelings that would gash him, that would burn, fester.

Gulp.

Yet… imagine how it would feel to…to…

Kiss her?

Think of the triumph! What untold adventure lay on the other side? He imagined himself a champion, holding her with confidence, her back arched as he lay The Kiss perfectly on her soft glossy lips. And he would go home, gallop upstairs, and stand victorious, relishing the success of his conquest. Just like the movies…

Her wisp of hair finally rested at the crest of her nose. She looked at him expectantly.

It was now or never.

His eyes rested on her lips…

…And he bid adieu to all rational thought.

To the fear screeching and clawing at him inside.

Closed his eyes. Moved his lips into the void.

Fireworks.

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