Saturday night found Kit fussing in front of a full-length mirror in her bedroom, trying on the third outfit of the night and feeling more and more frustrated with herself as time wore on.
She had already nixed a silky purple knee-length dress for being too dressy, and a red tee-shirt and slacks for being too boring. She stood there now in a dark green blouse and her favorite pair of black jeans. The blouse was classy without being too dressy; the jeans made it all more casual and went a long way toward covering up her less than desirable features.
The voice in her head, the voice of doubt that sounded suspiciously like her ex-boyfriend, kept telling her that it wasn’t the right choice. She hadn’t been on a date in over a year, and right now it felt like it had been decades.
Her ex, James, had done an emotional number on her. Between his manipulative nature, his thinly veiled comments about her body and what he wished she’d change about herself, and his perpetual dalliances with other women, Kit had felt like a shell of her former self when she’d finally gotten the courage to kick him out.
She’d been afraid ever since to let another man in. Afraid of another man seeing her flaws and judging her as less than.
“Breathe, Kit,” she whispered to herself as she tugged on the fabric of her blouse. “It’s not a real date. It’s…It’s the neighborly thing to do, show the new guy the sights.”
The butterflies in her stomach didn’t feel all that neighborly to Kit. They felt like first date jitters, like the kind of nerves you felt before you went out with a smart, funny, sexy man. Who happened to also be your boss.