Roxanne didn't know how it happened. But when Jade from across the hall and her boyfriend showed up the night before Thanksgiving, it was like Pan was somebody else. And she rolled with it. They were trying to stay out of each other's way until then. He was completely pleasant and whatever she wanted he agreed.
They went to the new Ramen place with Jade and Ari. Roxanne didn't know how to act. Especially, around this Pan who was full of laughter. Even on a good day, this guy did not laugh. She didn't know Pan knew how.
Oh, she remembered the time he got into it at the thrift store with her old boyfriend who was going into the Navy. Pan was downright full of chivalry then. He'd laid down the law. Robbie was to never call Roxanne again (Pan knew how verbally abusive Robbie was to her and would call in the middle of the night). "Besides, we're getting new phones, together." Of course, he found the cheapest phones (and phone plan) on Amazon from China and that was the beginning of their long relationship together.
They were the kind of couple who would buy one meal and share. "So that's how he keeps that girlish figure of his," her mom had teased. She'd almost burst into laughing when she thought of it now, but that night Pan let her order whatever she wanted and then said, "Let's use your debit card."
Sigh, she thought now. He'd be a stingy old fart with no hair, someday. But she would probably be with him. Even if she felt he loved his computer and games more. He promised her a cat too.
"Maybe for Christmas," he shrugged with a smile and they were back together. Under the covers for real now and back to being in the buff. Just the way he liked it.
She so wanted to know what changed his mind. Of course, she wondered what Jade must have thought of them. As it was, they were the silent mystery couple who never said a word to her. It wasn't until now, she thought Jade's girlfriend was Mona. Of course, they were moody at work, but Roxanne thought they were just keeping it real. She guessed Jade might get a good laugh over that.
But then they were invited to Thanksgiving at Mona's boyfriend's apartment. It was such a huge meal. Honestly, she and Pan didn't eat this way. They usually ate a lot of beans and flour tortillas, unless he got a hankering for making a burger and he did know how to make a professional one.
Yes, the holidays were looking up. She guessed they'd make it after all. Of course, it still felt as if she was on the road less traveled. She was pretty sure she'd have to go back to nursing school. She was pretty sure she'd have to be the breadwinner.