I’m driving, headed to the nearest shopping mall, when I see a dark blue Mini Cooper cut in front of me at the stop light. Jerk, I think irritably. But despite the rude driver, it’s a cute car. I’ve always had a soft spot for Minis, especially the ones with a British flag painted on the roof. Even if my husband says they can’t compare to the original Minis.
But what does he know? I still think they’re cute.
I glance in the car’s rear view mirror to see who’s driving. It’s a guy. Is it Mr Bean? Just then, Mr Mini Cooper glances in his rear view at the exact same moment I do, and our gazes clash, and I freeze.
Oh, my sweet, overused credit card… This guy isn’t Mr Bean. This guy has Colin Firth eyes.
My gaze locks onto his. My breath comes in short, belabored gasps and my fingers grip the steering wheel.
He probably has a butt bigger than the Millennium Falcon, I tell myself. Or bad breath. Or he has the IQ of a snail.
But I don’t care about any of that. He has Colin Firth eyes.
The light changes and he signals a right turn. Impulsively, I do the same. Hey – why not? I’m perfectly within my rights to follow Colin…I mean, the Mini, to the parking lot, aren’t I? Of course I am.
If this were a rom-com, I think as he parks and I pull in a few spaces over, we’d back our cars out at exactly the same time and rear-end each other. We’d yell, and he’d rant about stupid women drivers, and I’d come back with a real zinger of a retort. Then we’d have a drink and talk and, after complications and misunderstandings and some really amazing sex, fall in love, get married, and live (mostly) happily ever after.
But we don’t, and he doesn’t, and I don’t. He’s not Tom Hanks and I’m sure as hell not Meg Ryan.
He’s Colin Firth. At least, his eyes are.
I sit in my car and wait, idly tapping my fingers against the steering wheel, engine off, until his car door swings open and he steps out. First I see his shoe. Expensive, polished leather. Then I see his leg, clad in dark blue trousers. Fitted suit jacket; tight rear end. (Don’t judge; you’d look, too, if you saw such a fine specimen of…but, I digress.)
So far, so good. He’s not the size of a Rebel Alliance vehicle and he looks intelligent. His eyes – now hidden behind a pair of sunglasses he’s just thrust on – come to rest on me. My pulse ratchets up.
Oh, my God, I think. He looks just. Like. Colin.
But realistically, what would Mr Firth be doing at the Peach Blossom Shopping Mall in Atticus, Georgia? Looking for a new watchband at the Timex kiosk? Hardly. Or maybe he needs a new package of Joe Boxer undies from K-mart? Right. Maybe he’s craving one of those warm-from-the-heat-lamp Auntie Anne’s pretzels-
I look up from my buttery pretzel reverie, startled to see The Man Who Might Be Firth standing beside my car door, eyeing me with what can only be termed annoyance.
“Yes?” I say warily. After all, this guy could be anyone. A psycho. A serial killer. Ted Bundy was quite a dish, after all, and look at what a murderous freak he turned out to be-
“You’re following me.”
I sputter. I gasp. I draw myself up and retort, “Am not!” (How’s that for a zinger of a reply?)
“You are.” His words are firm. Implacable.
And…oh my God…he has a British accent. I’m melting right into the fake leather seat, seriously.
“I think you’d best get out of the car,” he adds, brooking no argument as he opens my door, “or I’ll have to notify the authorities that you’re stalking me.”
“Stalking you?” I squeak. “Are you crazy?”
“No,” he says grimly as he takes me by the arm, “but I think you might be.”
I glare at him and try to jerk my arm free, but his grip doesn’t slacken. “What are you doing?” I demand, and pull back like a recalcitrant three-year-old.
“I’m taking you to the police station. Get in.” We’ve arrived at his car. He throws open the passenger door.
“Hell, no,” I retort. “I’m not going anywhere with you. I don’t even know you! And I’m definitely not getting in that – that little British tin can of yours. Let me go right this second or – or I’ll scream so loud they’ll hear me all the way over in the multiplex across the street.”
He pulls me hard against him. Although my heart’s racing, I can’t help but notice how good he smells. Like Old Spice, only more expensive. Then he kisses me. Tongue. The works.
It’s the best kiss I’ve ever experienced. It’s like every screen-worthy kiss you’ve ever imagined…and then some. My knees wobble.
“Oh, my,” I gasp as I tear my mouth away from his. “I want you. Now!”
He quirks his brow. “But we’ve only just met, Miss-?”
“Never mind. Take me home this instant. Yours, or mine. Doesn’t matter.”
We leave my green SUV parked in the lot and drive back to his. (Well…okay, ours.)
We barely make it through the front door before I’m tearing off his suit jacket and yanking at his tie. We don’t make it to the bedroom. In five minutes, it’s over. It’s the best sex we’ve ever had.
I sprawl back, my breath coming in short gasps as a smile curves my lips. “That was amazing.”
“Glad to oblige. Now,” he says, dropping the British accent as he rolls from the sofa and reaches for his trousers, “where’d you like to go for dinner? We have to get your car and bring it back home.”
“Anywhere’s fine. But I promised your mom I’d pick the kids up at six.”
He leans forward to kiss me. “I’ll do it. That’ll give you time for a nice, relaxing bath before we get back. Love you.”
I kiss him back and grin. “Love you more. Even if you’re not a famous British film star.”
He leaves, and I run the bath water, still smiling.
Who needs Colin Firth, anyway?