The next few days were dragging by as Jason was looking forward to Tuesday and his date with Ariana. He was supposed to work Monday and Tuesday night but was able to switch his shifts with his coworker Arlene. He usually started working at 9 o’clock at night so he figured on the Tuesday of his date with Ariana he didn’t want to take a chance of having to leave Ariana and going to work that night. He wanted to be sure to have enough time to spend with her if it came to that. Arlene was o.k. switching shifts with him; he would work for her on a weekend.
Ariana’s days went by quickly. She had a good time at the date with Brian but realized during the evening that was all this was, a date, nothing more. Brian was a nice guy but way too busy for her. He was working a lot and she was working quite a bit, they would never see each other. He would be a friend. Brian realized the same thing and even though they kissed at the end of the night, they both knew nothing more would come out of the date.
Friday and Saturday Ariana had jobs with two different men. Friday was the job with Trent Bryson at the Venetian, the dinner turned out to be more of a party and there was dancing and drinking. Ariana never drank any alcohol on the jobs, she watched Trent get somewhat drunk though but he kept himself under enough control to make her evening pleasant and also making sure she got a taxi when the party was over. Saturday was a job with one of her regular clients, Robert Anderson, a business man from Chicago, who came to Vegas every couple of weeks for some gambling and fun. He would always request Ariana for his escort and an overnight stay and she usually had good evenings with him. He was a friendly man, almost like a dad Ariana never had. She knew what to expect from him at his hotel suite and he was always gentle and respectful to her.
Sunday she was off and stayed at home. She was lying on the couch when her phone flickered and buzzed announcing a text message. She grabbed it from the table and saw the display with Jason’s name and number, “Hi Ariana, how are you?”
Ariana felt her heart skip a beat and she smiled to herself, typing, ”Hey Jason, I am all right. How are you?”
It didn’t take long and the reply came, “I am doing o.k. I am just hanging out at home watching some TV.”
“Me too, what are you watching?”
”J….I am looking forward to Tuesday!”
Jason shook his head with a smile as he read her “Me too” reply for the second time.
He typed, “How was your weekend so far? Did you work?”
”I did, I worked Friday and Saturday, how about you?”
”I worked all weekend and will also work tonight. Where do you work at?”
Now it took a moment for a reply until the text came in, “We can talk about it on Tuesday, o.k.” Jason was a bit surprised at her reply, “Are you a secret agent or something? J”
“Something like that J”
Jason smiled but he was curious now what her job was. He replied, “Well, if it is like that I won’t tell you what I work either until Tue.”
”I wish it would be Tuesday already…”
”I know, I am not good with patience.”
“Patience is a virtue…I have to go now.”
”O.k. ...I will see you on Tuesday then”
Jason stopped for a moment, “Maybe? Why maybe?”
”Just kidding, I will be there, sweet boy!”
Now he was really surprised at her little comment “sweet boy”.
He replied, “Well, I will let you go again.”
“O.k., thanks for texting. See you on Tuesday then!”
“Yes, take care and have a good rest of your Sunday.”
”You too, don’t work too hard.”
”I won’t…Bye Ariana.” He thought for a split second if he should call her some pet name as well but refrained from it. He read over the “sweet boy” comment again and shook his head to himself, wondering about Ariana and what kind of woman she was. He couldn’t wait for Tuesday and dragged himself through his Sunday shift and slept half the day on Monday.
Ariana had not spent too much thought anymore on the texting with Jason. She liked that he texted her and she felt he was a nice guy and even though she was looking forward to Tuesday, she was not as impatient as Jason was. For her it meant hanging out with an attractive guy and seeing where it would take them. The “sweet boy” comment had just come to her, because he seemed like a sweet guy and a hot one just the same, a hot guy she wouldn’t mind getting to know a little bit better in a physical way.
Tuesday morning Jason sat in the kitchen with his dad having breakfast. He kept thinking about the date with Ariana and felt upbeat. His dad was reading the newspaper they always got from their neighbor Bob, an older man living in the trailer next to them. Bob subscribed to the newspaper and Darryl paid him half of the subscription fee so they could share the paper. Darryl was still old school when it came to catching up on the news. He liked a paper and his coffee in the morning. Jason sat at the table with his lap top in front of him, really the only valuable thing he owned aside from his phone maybe.
Darryl asked between sips of coffee, “So today you are going to meet up with that woman then?”
Jason looked up, ”Yeah, at 2 o’clock at a Coffee Shop on 3rdAvenue”
“You have to take the noon bus.”
“I know, I will get ready in a little while.”
They went back to reading and had their breakfast in silent harmony. Around 11 Jason wheeled over the carpet with the usual difficulties toward the bathroom in the back hallway. A friend of Darryl who was handy had cut the door out for Jason so he could fit through the bathroom door easily with his wheelchair. Now it only had a curtain on it for privacy. The trailer was not very practical at all for him and to get into his bedroom he actually had to park his wheelchair outside his room and transfer into a smaller simple wheelchair to get to his bed at night. The door frame was slightly too narrow but electric lines prevented the cut out of the bedroom door frame. He pushed the curtain to the bathroom aside and wheeled in. He was dressed and ready, but checked himself in the mirror, brushed though his hair and put on some cologne. He used a catheter one more time to empty his bladder. Jason used intermittent catherization which meant every couple of hours he had to empty his bladder by inserting a catheter tubing into his urethra and letting the urine flow into the toilet. It is something he disliked very much just like the bowel program he had to adhere to. On a day like this he decided on extra protection though and had also slipped on a pair of incontinence briefs. The last thing he wanted to happen is peeing on himself without knowing and finding himself in a very embarrassing situation. He disliked all of these things but had no choice. He had no sensation at all below his belly. Even though his injury had not been easy to deal with, Jason was thankful that he at least had his hands and arms left with sensation and normal function. Being a quadriplegic would have been an even more difficult situation. He had met other paraplegics and quadriplegics on the Internet and some in real life and hearing how some of the quadriplegics were dependent on another person for lots of things made him thankful every time that he still had his arms and hands left. Another tough fate were quadriplegics on ventilators. Every time he had a rough time dealing with his own disability he pictured their fate and reminded himself how lucky he was. He had been on a ventilator for a couple of weeks when he was first brought into the hospital after the accident and it was horrible. He had prayed every night he would be able to come off the ventilator and be o.k. somehow.
One more check in the mirror and he actually felt good about the way he looked and hoped that Ariana would feel the same way. Soon thereafter he was sitting at the bus stop with a couple of other people waiting for the bus. It was another hot day. He had made sure to wear his gloves to not burn his hands on his rims which got hot quick. He felt nervous but happy and was glad to see the bus arrive on time. The bus let out the ramp for him and he wheeled up and parked with his break on in the area for wheelchairs. His bus ride took about 45 minutes because the bus stopped at various spots on the way.
Ariana got ready about 12:30. She slipped on some jeans, a tank top, and some flats. She didn’t feel like dressing up too much, it was not a dinner date after all but just a mere sharing of a cup of coffee with a nice guy.
Melody sat in the living area and looked up at Ariana as she came into the room, “So, who is the guy you are meeting today?”
Ariana joined Melody on the couch and smiled, “He is just this hot guy I saw at the clinic last week, and he seems nice. He is paraplegic I think.”
Melody looked surprised, “Para-what?”
”Paraplegic, he is in a wheelchair….”
Melody looked even more puzzled now, “You mean like paralyzed or something?”
Ariana smiled, ”Yeah, I think so...and he was wearing these braces on his legs, they looked kind of hot on him.”
Melody looked at Ariana with big eyes, “What the heck? What is going on with you? Braces on his legs…you have got some kind of weird issue going on Ariana?”
Ariana laughed about Melody’s obvious surprise at her little revelation, “I got issues all right, and I think the guy is hot in his wheelchair and with his legs in braces and stuff. He turns me on…”
She laughed, threw her head back, her long red hair flowing and then she said bluntly, “I want to to see how it is to fuck him.”
Melody turned pink, “Ariana...really! Wow! You want to take advantage of a paralyzed guy?” Ariana smiled wickedly, “Maybe I do, we will see if I can reel him in.”With that she made a gesture like she threw an invisible fishing pole and reeled the line in. She laughed and picked up her purse and sunglasses and left.
The closer Jason’s bus stop got, the more nervous he felt. It was all still a little odd to him, the way he met Ariana and the way she had approached him so directly. The bus reached the stop where Jason had to get off. He waited for the bus to come to a complete stop, released the break on his chair and wheeled slowly to the door of the bus. The ramp was let out for him again and he slowly rolled out of the air conditioned bus into the heat, all the while holding his rims back just a little so he wouldn’t roll too fast. It was one block to Café Blue. Jason put his hands on his rims wheeling along the sidewalk with long strides. He was trying to keep his nervousness in check, trying to remember how Ariana looked. She had long red hair, he did remember that but her face had somewhat vanished from his memory. Then again he had barely looked at her face the day she so bluntly came up to him at the bus stop. She did look good, he remembered that. As he was wheeling along, thoughts of their quick meeting at the bus stop ran through his head again. It was still unreal to him in a way, but he was excited to see her again and was hoping she remembered him the right way, paraplegic and all, and wouldn’t change her mind about hanging out with him.
Ariana had decided to catch a taxi to Café Blue, she was running a bit late already and didn’t want to keep Jason waiting too long. Her ride didn’t take nearly as long as Jason’s, she was at Café Blue in 10 minutes, paid her fare and said Good Bye to the taxi driver who admiringly smiled at his beautiful passenger. Standing on the sidewalk she looked up and down the street to see if she would spot Jason but didn’t see him. Not wanting to stand out in the heat for too long she decided to go on in. The Café was fairly crowded, people were chatting, drinking coffee or other beverages, eating snacks or looking at their various electronic devices. She scanned the room for a good seat, particularly a table Jason could easily access with his wheelchair. She found a table with two chairs and ended up moving one of the chairs out of the way to the side. She sat down and looked around, thinking about what to order.
Jason got to Café Blue a little out of breath; he was already 5 minutes late and had been pushing his rims hard to get some good speed going. He felt how his body reacted though with slight spasms in his hips and he was hoping they would not get worse. He finally reached his destination and right in front of the Café entrance he took a deep breath and said to himself, “You can do this dude!” The door to the Café was not automatic and he had to lean over to pull the door out and somehow wheel by the door with one hand. It was very exhausting when places didn’t have automatic doors and he had to push or pull, sometimes almost losing his balance. The last thing he wanted to happen was to fall out of the chair. He had his seat belt over his waist, hidden under his T-Shirt, because he felt like a little kid or an old person with it on. The fact was though, that he did have problems holding himself steady sometimes and he had fallen out of his chair before. That just simply had to be avoided at all costs on a “date” and so he had buckled up. He finally managed to get into the door, when a young man came out at the same time and held the door for Jason the rest of the way. Jason nodded a “Thanks” to him and wheeled into the air conditioned bustling place. He immediately looked around the Café and spotted Ariana waving at him from a corner table. His eyes quickly scanned the path to the table and he felt it was wide enough and no one was in his way, so he wheeled over to her with a smile. Her eyes and other guests’ eyes were on him as he approached the table. Ariana looked stunning, her long red hair falling down over her bare shoulders covered only in a tank top, her arms tanned just right for a red head and her face lit up and beautiful. She smiled back at him and he finally reached the table, somewhat exhausted but trying not to show it