With each step Melissa realized the bag was winning the struggle with gravity. She stopped just inside the front door, and let the bag drop to the floor. Stretching her back out helped a bit, but she still had to manage the rest of the way to the car. Just as she was about to give up and ask for help, she heard a step behind her, and turned to see Jack watching her.
“You haven’t quite made it away with all the loot, I see.”
“Nope, this is as far as I got this time. Next time I hope to make it as far as the parking lot.”
“Need any help?”
She shook her head, wanting to give it one last try. “No, that’s ok. I’ve got it.” She bent to retrieve the handle she’d dropped and stretched it up, trying in vain to lift it again. It barely budged, only shifting around a little and managing to make her face flush red in embarrassment as much as in the effort. With her lips tightly shut, she worked to pull it forward, getting the door open ahead of herself, and backing through to the porch outside, dragging the big thing behind. Jack watched, arms crossed, trying to hide a big grin. He was downright patronizing with his wide shoulders and big muscles all going to waste over there.
She put one last mighty tug in, and wound up pulling a shoulder muscle, grunting in a very unladylike fashion, and giving herself a headache in the process.
“Ok, fine, you can try.” She dropped the handle she’d been tugging on, and threw her hands up in surrender.
Without saying another word, he grabbed the short handles of the bag, and hefted it up to his shoulder as if it were filled with downy soft kittens.
“Show off.” She smirked at him, and he did nothing but leave that big, lopsided grin on his face.
Before she began staring at his shoulder muscles and acting stupid, again, on top of already being a helpless damsel in distress, she turned and led him across the lot to her big, brown Chevy Suburban.
“That’s your car?”
Melissa looked from Jack to her truck, back to Jack again. “Yes, it’s mine. Why is that so shocking?”
Jack shrugged, still holding her bag on his shoulder. “I don’t know. It’s even bigger than mine is. What do you do with all this room? And can you see over the steering wheel?”
“First, yes, I can see over the steering wheel. I have little blocks duct taped to the brake and gas pedals, and I sit on a booster seat like a five year old.” She rolled her eyes when he nodded his head like he believed her. “Ok, not really, Jack. I’m not that short. And I use this truck for lots of things – picking up stuff, giving people rides to church, you know.”
“Ahhh, I see now.” He grinned, opened the back end with a flourish and went to toss the bag inside, then stopped when he saw what else she had in there.