Mary stood motionless, afraid to turn around. She looked at Cindy and Preston as if she was going to need their help to extract her from an uncomfortable situation. It didn’t sound like Stewart Sarno, but that was what she envisioned. Until a few minutes ago she was a self assured business woman, but a few minutes surrounded by her former peers left her alone, afraid, and unsure.
“If I’m right,” Cindy said, “It’s the elevator man.”
“What? Marry said looking at Cindy with disbelief.
“Look,” Cindy said motioning around with her head.
Mary felt blood rush to her head and legs became weak. Her impulse was to hide behind Cindy and Preston.
“I’ve never seen him before,” Cindy said. “He’s good looking.”
Mary turned around. It was Robert. She took a deep breath and stumbled backwards. Preston and Cindy grabbed her arms.
“I’m okay, I’m okay,” Mary said nervously, “I get this way in tall buildings. This is a tall building, isn’t it?”
“I hope I’m not crashing the party,” Robert said.
“This party was a wreck long before you got here,” Cindy said.
“This was the man I told you about on the elevator,” Mary said and introduced Robert to Cindy and Preston.
“This is terribly awkward for me,” Robert said, “but would you at least spend some time with me over at my reunion. There’s an old classmate who insists on dancing with me and if I had someone… No, that’s not true.. well it‘s partially true… but I just want you with me.”
“Just show her to me,” Mary said with feigned anger, “if she gets anywhere near you I’ll punch her lights out.”
“You don’t have to go that far,” Robert said, “but it may be necessary.”
“It sounds like fun,” Mary said.
“Look,” Robert said. “I have an idea and if it doesn’t sound good I’ll understand. I have couple of friends at the other reunion. What do you say we all go out together afterward.”
Cindy and Preston looked approvingly at each other.
“Sure,” Preston said. “I like meeting new people.”
Robert held Mary’s hand. “I can assure you of a good time.”
“Any room without Stewart Sarno is a good time,” Mary said.
“I’ll have to meet this guy sometime,” Robert said. He smiled at Mary. “This means so much to me. I don’t know how I could possibly repay you.”
“I’m the one being rescued,” Mary said. “There’s no way I can repay you.”
“Than let’s keep it that way,” Robert smiled, “we’re indebted to each other.”
And that’s how Mary and Robert met.
That’s hardly the end to the story.