Chapter 6: Got It Bad
So this is it. Zoe’s dating blog, The Bachelorette Blogger. It took some time for Trevor to find it. But he was determined, ever since he saw Zoe running on the trail a few days ago.
Scrolling through the posts on her site, he notices that Zoe’s name isn’t anywhere. He wonders if he’s snooping on a part of her life that she wants to keep private. But she’s a mystery that he wants to unravel, a box that Trevor wants to open. And reading her blog may help.
If any of his friends could see him now—legs stretched out on the living room floor, computer on lap, beer nearby, scanning Zoe’s posts—they’d shake their head at him. “You’ve got it bad,” they’d say. And they would be right.
Maybe if he didn’t know Zoe’s mom, and if she weren’t so nice, Trevor wouldn’t be as interested. Maybe if Zoe weren’t so beautiful and confident. Or if she didn’t flirt with him, or if she flirted too much. Or if he wasn’t so turned on when he saw her running, deep in her workout, at a full-sweat. Trevor grins at the memory.
You’ve got it bad.
He’s only seen Zoe twice, yet his desire to see her again keeps growing. And there’s that connection between them that keeps growing, too.
Despite that, Trevor can sense Zoe’s tug-of-war. She’s interested, he can tell. But she’s resisting. The hang-up must be that silly matchmaking bet with her mom. If Zoe loses, she’d have to shut down her blog, she said. Skimming through the site, he can see why she’s reluctant to lose the bet. Not only is the blog robust, with lots of images and content, it goes back three years, and it has 512,114 followers. Engaged followers. Each post has more comments than he can count. And there are even ads for monetization.
This isn’t just a little side hobby. This is a complete lifestyle, and Zoe’s mom wants her to let it go.
Trevor smooths his beard with his hand, clicks on the latest post. It doesn’t take long to realize that he is the “him” that Zoe is referencing. Contestant Number One, she’s calling him. C1 for short.
“I saw him on the trail today…”
“I’ve never had a guy look at me like that before…”
“I’m not supposed to like him, but there’s something there…”
“I don’t want my mom to win this bet. I can’t lose this blog.”
Trevor frowns, glances down at the comments. There’s one that jumps out.
“Screw the bet. What are you afraid of?”
Zoe’s five-word reply hits him in the gut: “Falling in love, I guess.”
Trevor sits next to Zoe on a bench outside a frozen yogurt shop. They’re overlooking a pond. The sun is shining, and they’re enjoying the shade of an umbrella. It’s the kind of weather where Trevor could stay there all day, refilling his yogurt cup every couple of hours.
“You kept our bet.”
“I take bets seriously,” Zoe responds.
“Why didn’t things work out with California Boy?”
“Drew? He’s from Connecticut. Why do you want to know?”
“Keeping an eye on the competition.”
“He’s not your competition,” Zoe says.
“Good. Then I’m in the number one slot.”
“No. You don’t get a slot.”
She wiggles her spoon at him. “I met you through my mom. You don’t count.”
“The matchmaking bet,” he groans.
“Yes.” She dips her spoon into the pina colada side of her yogurt medley. “I just didn’t want to go out with him again. It was like…something was missing.”
“Good. I mean, oh that’s too bad,” he adds with a not-so-sympathetic voice. “Who else are you dating besides me?”
“You and I are not dating.” Zoe’s trying to act serious, but her sly grin gives her away. “Trevor, you promised we weren’t going to consider this a date. That’s why I agreed to meet.”
“I lied.” When he winks she shoves his shoulder lightly.
“My mom can’t know.”
“Fair enough.” He crunches down on a piece of chocolate wafer cone.
“How are things going with the home decorating?”
“Great. Your mom’s expertise is just what I need. She’s doing everything she can to make my place inhabitable, complete with proper man furniture.”
“She said you want throw-pillows. Are throw-pillows considered man furniture?” She used air quotes.
“Let me define man furniture. Man furniture is something that’s not DIY. It requires more than a flimsy Allen wrench and a three-step, stick-diagram for assembly.” He clears his throat dramatically. “And by the way, throw-pillows do not fall under the definition of man furniture, because they’re accent pieces. Completely acceptable.”
She grins. “I see.”
He wants to invite Zoe over after all the decorating is done. He wants to have her in his home, to have her scent sway through his hallways, flowers and spice drifting over the smell of a new leather couch.
“What else have you and Marcy said about me?” he asks.
“What? Nothing.” She turns away from him, but he can tell she’s smiling.
He can almost hear it.
Check out the next chapter:
Want to start at the beginning?
Read Chapter 1 of The Bachelorette Blogger.
Or catch up on Chapter 5: I Run. Sometimes.