This is a short one. Hope the next one makes up for it 🙂

Eliza is out on a first date, when the lights go out and someone other than the man she’s out with takes advantage of the dark to kiss her more passionately than she’s ever been kissed before.

The mystery kisser has to be one of the men sitting nearest to her, and Eliza is determined to kiss as many frogs as she needs to, until she finds her prince.

Previous chapters are here.

Chapter Four

Alan drove them back to campus and walked Eliza to her dorm. Unlike when he picked her up, his touch on the small of her back caused no tingles. She was ready for this date to be over.

“Thank you for the lovely evening,” she said.

“It doesn’t have to end yet.”

It so did. And it would, as soon as she let herself in. Her keycard evaded her fingers, as she plundered through her clutch bag. He obviously thought she was giving him some sort of signal, because the moment she found it and turned to say goodnight, he leaned in.

No matter how much she’d hoped for it at the beginning of the night, there was no way she’d accept a kiss from him now. She turned her face to the side, offering her cheek. Then she slid her card down the slot and entered her dorm.

She took the steps up two at a time. She’d texted Krista from the car, to make sure she’d be awake. Her best friend’s help would be essential to finding her mystery-man.

Krista took the news as expected.

She started bouncing and squealing, in as good a cheerleader impersonation as possible. A nasty fall from the bed didn’t deter her. She jumped on her feet and resumed her bouncing around the room.

“Long-ass draught is finally over,” she said, time and again.

“Will you quit that? Stand still for a minute. You’ll hurt yourself.” Eliza couldn’t bite back a giggle. “Long-ass draught isn’t over. It was just a kiss.”

Just a kiss? You said it rocked your world.”

“It was pretty world-rocking, but it was still no love declaration. I don’t know why the guy did it.”

“Ummm… because he wanted to kiss you?” Krista looked at her like she was an idiot. At least she’d stopped moving. “You have a secret admirer.”

The possibility made her giddy, but— “You don’t know that. He might have acted on a dare.”

“Yes, you’re right.” Krista tried to sound serious, but the humongous grin on her lips seemed about to split her freckled face in two. “Was your childhood traumatic, Ms. Green? Lie down and tell me everything,” she said in a pompous accent. Nodding to herself, she mimicked taking notes on her open palm with an invisible pen. “So, you believe there was a dare for someone to kiss you if the two of you were ever in the same room and electricity happened to want some time off? I can see why that would make sense.”

Eliza rolled her eyes. “No, Krista, but maybe cutting the lights out was part of the dare.”

“And maybe someone bought the bar, so they could turn the lights on and off for people to kiss you. I mean that’s more likely than someone secretly having the hots for you, right?” She brushed a red lock of hair off her face and tucked it behind her ear.

Eliza tried to glare, but she couldn’t keep a hopeful smile from blossoming on her own lips. “So you think I have an admirer?”

Yes.” Krista sounded exasperated. “And it’s so cool. We can… Do you think we could get a saliva sample? My uncle Aaron could run tests, and—”

Eliza arched an eyebrow.

“That’s a no?” Krista asked, crestfallen.

“That’s a no.” Eliza had always loved her friend’s analytical nature and the way she lit up when she came up with solutions to problems, but this wasn’t an actual problem. What happened, happened. That kiss was good, and now it was over.

Eureka.” Krista’s dark eyes sparkled.


“Not you, eu. Never mind.” Krista waved her hand. “I have a plan.”

Eliza scooched back on the bed, until her ass hit the headboard, and she crossed her legs Yoga style. She placed her hands on her ankles, arched her back, and rolled her head. Then she cracked her knuckles. “Shoot.”

“Simple. We make a list of suspects, and you go out with all of them.”

“Hmmm… As far as plans go, this one is rather easy,” Eliza said. “The list of suspects exists. But there are a couple of hitches to your plan.” Her friend’s face fell, and Eliza hastened to say, “Your otherwise brilliant plan.”

Smiling again, Krista motioned with both hands for her to go on. Her excitement was palpable.

“One, I can’t start asking men out, and two” —Eliza made a moue of distaste—“I’ll have to kiss them all, to know who’s the one.”

“You always have to kiss a guy, before you know if he’s the one.”

Eliza couldn’t disagree with that. She grabbed one of her notebooks and jotted down the names of the possible kissers. “Okay. So how do I go about it?”

Krista took the list and looked at the candidates. “Let’s start with the ones we know. I can totally ask Bill out for you. You figure out which of the frat guys could be Prince Charming.”