31: “Sorry?”

Ramsay had gotten a membership at Frank’s terrifying gym and it was mostly due to Gym Crush, the beautiful woman he’d seen there the first time he’d gone with Frank. He would never be admitting that out loud to anybody ever though. Frank was pleased because he’d gained a gym buddy. In fact, Frank was under the assumption that Ramsay had joined his gym solely so that they could go together.

“Thanks, man,” Frank had said when Ramsay had casually told him he’d joined his gym. Ramsay had been worried that Frank would see right through him to his true intentions. He needn’t have bothered, as it turned out. Frank clapped him on the shoulder.

“Really, I appreciate it,” Frank had continued sincerely. He seemed to be under the impression that Ramsay had joined his gym as some act of kindness, like he was offering to be Frank’s gym buddy to help him get over the loss of his grandfather. Ramsay, who didn’t know what to do with emotions at the best of times, had merely nodded and accepted Frank’s kind words, hoping that it would never come up again. Fortunately, Frank wasn’t an overly emotional man either so Ramsay was cautiously optimistic that it wouldn’t.

Gym Crush went to the gym every weeknight, except for Fridays, at seven and Ramsay felt super gross that he even knew that. Ramsay had yet to speak to Gym Crush. He didn’t know what her name was, hence why he referred to her as Gym Crush in his own mind. It really didn’t matter as he would never, ever be uttering the words “gym crush” out loud to anyone ever. All he really knew about Gym Crush was that she was beautiful, with and without clothes on. He felt really weird about that as well, like he would never be able to admit to her that he was interested in her without her thinking that it was only because of that time he had seen her partially naked. That was too creepy to move past. He was creeped out about it and it wasn’t even the truth.

So Ramsay admired her from afar like the semi-creepy weirdo he was. He tried really hard not to be obvious about it. He would glance at her as casually as he looked at everyone else in the gym. He made sure to actually spend more time looking at other people than to her so as not to make it seem like he had gotten a gym membership and rearranged his personal life schedule just to see her once an evening five days a week, even though that was exactly what had happened. But he ended up being too good at making it seem like he didn’t care about Gym Crush because Frank eventually just came right out and asked if Ramsay was interested in the super buff lady who also had the same gym schedule as them.

“So you’re super into Courtney, eh?” Frank asked him as they were leaving the gym one night.

“Sorry?” Ramsay returned, taken aback. For a moment, he panicked thinking that Gym Crush’s real name was Courtney and that he’d been found out.

“Don’t be,” Frank shook his head. “I’m just surprised. She doesn’t really seem your type based on the fact that you once had a thing for Priscilla’s sister.”

Ramsay was still confused because Gym Crush and Tallulah actually shared a lot of the same attributes. They both had the same beautiful, long, black hair and big, beautiful eyes.

“But I actually know her so I can introduce you two tomorrow night,” Frank continued. Ramsay was both terrified and thrilled.

He spent the entire following day in a state of anxiety, trying to think of charming things to say that would simultaneously woo Gym Crush and make her forget that he had once seen her partially undressed by accident. By the time he and Frank entered the gym, he hadn’t come up with much. He had mostly just worked out a lot of ways not to bring up the fact that he had once seen her without her top on. It was harder than he assumed it would’ve been.

“You ready, bro?” Frank asked, clapping him on the shoulder and laughing at Ramsay’s returning grimace. He didn’t even bother responding. Frank led the way into the weight room where Gym Crush was doing bicep curls on a yoga matt. Ramsay cleared his throat as quietly as possible and braced himself. But then Frank kept walking right past her and her yoga matt. Ramsay looked back at Gym Crush, not sure how to proceed. She happened to look over at the same time and they made eye contact before she snapped her head away, looking embarrassed. Ramsay did the same, looking back to where Frank was now walking over to the buff woman. She was doing dead lifts next to the mobster with the forearm cross tattoo. He was red-faced and sweating profusely, shooting envious and bitter looks in the direction of the buff woman, who appeared to be lifting massive amounts of weight with total ease. Frank stopped in front of her with a wave and she dropped her weight, smiling back. They began chatting as Ramsay walked up behind Frank to join them, powerless to do anything else.

“Hey, man, this is Courtney,” Frank said casually, gesturing to the buff woman, but turning to Ramsay to give him a sly wink. Frank turned back to the buff woman, who was apparently Courtney. “This is my roommate Ramsay.”

Courtney shook Ramsay’s hands and grinned at him. She had a genuinely winning smile. Ramsay felt himself returning it, which really was a small miracle in itself. He barely ever smiled. The three of them chatted for a while, though Frank and Courtney did most of the talking. It somehow culminated in Frank inviting Courtney out for beers after their workouts. And then, after the three of them had been chatting at a nearby bar for a while, laughing and bonding over beers, wings, and nachos, Frank excused himself to go home, claiming to need to get up early. It was such a convincing excuse that even Ramsay wouldn’t have known what he was doing if he hadn’t flashed Ramsay another sly wink on his way out the door. Ramsay had to hand it to him; he was a truly excellent wingman.

Ramsay and Courtney stayed at the bar for another full hour. She was incredibly engaging. Ramsay didn’t even realize how much time had passed until she finished the last of her beer and told him she had to go.

“This was really fun, though,” she said with another winning smile, standing up. Ramsay followed suit, feeling slightly disoriented, like he couldn’t quite tell where he was or how he’d gotten there.

“Yeah, it was,” he found himself agreeing.

“We should do it again sometime,” Courtney added, still smiling.

“Yeah,” Ramsay agreed. Courtney took her phone out of her pocket and asked for his phone number, which he gave to her because he honestly couldn’t think of a reason not to. Then she flashed him a final winning smile and they walked out of the bar together.

When Ramsay got home, Frank was waiting for him in the living room.

“I’m pretty good, eh?” Frank asked, wiggling his eyebrows. Ramsay merely nodded, feeling very confused.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s