SUMMARY: What followed after Utopia Now.
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Thanks to Ceeg for the beta read.
Also thanks to my daughter Kim for thinking of the title! I really
Lee stood there for a moment as her answer soaked in. 'What did she mean by that?' he thought to himself and then smiled at the possibilities. It was then he realized the he wanted to know the answer.
"Um... Amanda... Amanda wait!" He had to run to catch up to her.
Amanda ducked into the elevator/closet moving the coats to allow for better access. 'Sometimes he can be so dense,' she thought to herself shaking her head. She put the picnic basket down so she could rearrange the coats again. Just as she finished she heard his voice calling after her.
"Amanda wait!" Lee rushed over and held the elevator doors so they wouldn't shut. He pushed the coats to one side and stepped into the elevator. He glanced down at her and smiled.
"Um... Amanda you know that comment you just made... 'not exactly'. What did you mean... exactly?" His voice faltered slightly. He wasn't sure if it was, because he was nervous to hear her answer, or because she stood so damn close to him that it unnerved him.
Amanda just stared ahead. 'What do you think I meant, Scarecrow?' She couldn't believe he had to ask her. Sometimes he could be so... so... exasperating. Her pulse began to race. She wasn't sure if it was because the 'infamous Scarecrow' didn't get it, or because he was standing so... close to her.
Lee could see that she appeared to be ignoring him. "Amanda, please. It's a simple question... what did you mean?" he was now getting a little agitated.
Amanda continued to stare ahead. She was enjoying this immensely. He could get so flustered when he talked about his private feelings, which hasn't been too often. She almost laughed. Instead she rolled her eyes knowing full well that he couldn't leave it alone.
That was all he needed. He knew she was listening to him. He pushed the emergency stop button and then grabbed her by the arms and turned her so she was facing him. He felt her stiffen slightly under his touch. He let her go. "Look, all I want to know is what you meant by that comment... that's all." Their faces were only a few inches apart.
Amanda wanted so much to melt into his embrace, but she couldn't bring herself to do it. 'It means I care about you, I want to be close to you... I want to take our friendship to a whole new level' she thought to herself. She took a much needed step back, reached in front of him and hit the lobby button. The elevator continued on its way.
"Amanda..." he said as he stopped it once again. "Please?" He really was hoping she would tell him that she cared for him, wanted to possibly be more... than... friends. He let out the breath he didn't realize he was holding. He looked at her, waiting for her response. Finally it came.
"Gosh Lee, if you have to ask, what's the point?" she said quietly as she started the elevator again.
Mrs. Marsten stared at the secret elevator panel at her desk. She noticed someone kept pushing the elevator's emergency stop button. A smiled played on her lips. She knew it had to be Scarecrow and Mrs. King. In all her years here, they were the only ones to ever use it.
The elevator finally stopped at its destination. Amanda picked up the picnic basket and walked out into the Georgetown Foyer. She quickly walked to the door, but before she could get there she felt a gentle hand on her shoulder. "Amanda..."
Surprising even herself she wheeled around and looked him straight in the eye. Pointing a finger at him she said, "Look, we almost shared a kiss..." The words caught in her throat when she remembered where they were. She closed her eyes and then dropped her head in defeat.
Without missing a beat Lee turned around and pointed an accusing finger at Mrs. Marsten.
"You didn't hear that," he choked out. He couldn't believe this was happening.
Mrs. Marsten caught on to the situation, so she decided to play along. She held up her hands as if to say 'Who me?' and then pretended to 'zip' her lips shut.
Amanda took this opportunity to escape from the whole situation. She quickly slipped out the door and nearly ran to her car, which was parked right out front. When she came to it she couldn't help but look back to see if he had followed. She saw him standing in the doorway looking quite... dejected. He put his hands in his pockets and then slowly turned and went back inside.
Amanda felt a pang of guilt. She probably should've stayed and talked things out, but her mother was starting to get suspicious. She needed to get home and smooth things out before they got out of hand.
Lee didn't say anything when he shut the door. He leaned on it for support, fairly shaken at what just transpired. 'This can't be happening!' he thought to himself, running his fingers through his hair. He suddenly remembered where he was. He straightened up, cleared his throat and walked past Mrs. Marsten's desk. He took the steps, two at a time, up to the Q-Bureau. On the way up he thought to himself, 'This is not over Amanda King... not by a long shot'.