Against better judgement

Kara-Lynne lives in New York City as a writer for People Magazine. Fresh out of college, writing for People has never been the job of her dreams. She's hardly given thought-provoking assignments and when Kara's given the task to publish a story on popular, pretty-boy and charming 'love expert' Ryan Barre, she expects it to be a simple assignment. However, she realises very quickly that things are far from simple with Ryan.

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If Kara was honest, she was more excited to see Ryan again than she was willing to admit. It almost made her feel guilty that she enjoyed spending time with him. Not because he wasn't a good guy but because it was hard for her to admit to herself that she was way off the mark. No matter how many times she told herself that she doesn't judge people based on their appearance or reputation, it was easier to believe a preconceived notion before meeting the person. And like every emotion that Kara actively tried to avoid, she was doubting the feelings that Ryan coaxed out of her. She knew it wasn't love - infatuation probably, or fascination. Maybe even admiration. 

Hey, 

I haven't had much to talk about lately. When you read this entry, you're probably gonna find it hilarious that I actually wrote about the dude.

Ryan Barre.

You remember him. British, handsome, smart. Love expert (gross, I know). 

Anyway, I'm at that point where you're trying to be rational. I'm drinking hot chocolate and listening to Bruno Mars. And I just had a dance-off but then got breathless. Dude, I hope you've gotten back to working out regularly.

Anywhoooo, British has technically asked me out. I know I'm way more excited than I should be but it's been a while. I can't afford to get involved with him because it'd be unprofessional. So, I'm not gonna let anything happen.

I guess I just needed some reassurance. I got this.

Kara ended her digital diary entry with her initials and started getting ready. She decided to put her hair in a ponytail - she didn't want him to think she tried too hard. A flowery mid-knee flowy dress with long lace sleeves went well with the natural look she decided to go for with her make up. Again, not trying too hard.

"You look nice. Got a date?" Erin, her roommate, popped her head from behind the fridge door as Kara closed her bedroom door. She drank some of her Vitamin Water. 

"Just dinner with a colleague." Right on time, there was a knock on the door.

Her roommate smirked. "Have fun," she winked.

Kara waved and opened the front door. "Good evening. I'm Will," a blue-eyed, chestnut brown haired man greeted her. Ryan had texted her to tell her that he sent his personal assistant and good friend to come pick her up. 

"It's nice to meet you, Will. Thanks for coming to pick me up."

"it's alright. You ready to go?" 

She nodded, just as Ms Pearson opened her door. "Well hello, dear."

"Hey Ms Pearson."

"Who's this handsome man?"

"Name's William, ma'am." He politely took her hand to kiss the top of it. 

"Oh." She looked back at Kara, a cheeky glint in her eyes. "You two have fun now," she said abruptly, closing the door.

Kara smoothed down her hair bashfully. "We should go," she led the way down the stairs.

Will had a nice car. It smelt good too. Like vanilla, one of Kara's favourite scents. She chose to sit in the front passenger seat, much to Will's surprise. Most women wanted to sit in the back.

"Have you been friends with Ryan for long?"

"We lived near each other back in England. Went to school together."

She pursed her lips and was silent for a while. Will wondered what was going through her mind but didn't want to appear too forward when it was only their first time meeting. Instead, he chose to fully focus on the road.

"So can you tell me what Ryan has prepared? Or at least where we're going?"

He chuckled, glancing at the rear view mirror. "I'd like to but I was given instructions not to. I can say that I think you'll enjoy it."

"All this mystery is almost unsettling. How do I know that the both of you haven't been plotting my murder?"

He almost burst out laughing. "I guess you'll have to wait to find out if we did." 

They spent the rest of the drive poking fun at each other and laughing. She was definitely good company. In fact, Will was even considering asking her out for drinks. With or without Ryan. Kara would have agreed. 

When they finally reached their destination, Will persuaded Kara to stay in her seat till he opened her door for her. He escorted her to the kitchen that Ryan had gotten permission to use from a friend who was a chef and once a client. Ryan had asked for Will's help since he had to prepare the ingredients that he needed for his recipe. He planned to cook dinner.

"Hey," Kara greeted, very curious when she saw the ingredients laid out on the long steel table in front of Ryan. He strode around to greet her with a warm hug and a glass of wine.

He slapped Will playfully on his back and thanked him. "I hope Will didn't bother you too much as he drove you here."

She was tickled, a delightful sound leaving her lips as she accepted the wine glass. "His company was...tolerable," she paused, "and for that, he deserves this wine." She passed Will the glass. "I don't drink alcohol." 

"More for me." Will received the wine with a grin and winked at her. 

"Anyway," she continued, cataloguing the ingredients. "What do you have planned for dinner, chef?" She sat on the stool. "And, are you joining us for dinner, Will?" She turned her attention to the blue-eyed man who hadn't expected to be invited.

"I have other matters to attend to," he explained. He quickly finished his wine, set his used glass in the sink and headed towards the door. "It was a pleasure to meet you, Kara. And don't worry, Ryan cooks fairly good food. Just don't hold too high expectations," he teased. 

"Oh get lost, mate," Ryan chuckled.

"Have a good night!" Kara offered a friendly smile and waved as Will pushed the door open and looked back one last time.

 

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