Daria’s dream of a happy new life in the District seemed to be falling to pieces. She tried to forget Darren Randall, but it was impossible. After a while, she took to crying in the shower, but she always sang in the shower so at least she had a new ballad in the works.
One night she was randomly surfing the web when she received an instant message from Darren. “Hey neighbour!”
Daria smiled for the first time in ages. “Hey you.”
“I’m sorry I haven’t been online. We just had a new baby.”
“I know. Congrats.” Daria didn’t know what to type or what to feel. She looked over at Darren’s house across the way. She almost started to cry, but the little chime that indicated a new message made her look back at the screen.
“Can we meet sometime?” he had asked. She agreed to meet him at the park the next day.
She wasn’t sure what to expect, but her heart soared when she saw Darren jogging across the park toward her.
He ran up to her and gave her a red rose, saying, “I treated you terribly, Daria. I never meant to be cruel to you.”
Daria accepted his flower and kissed him.
“Oh, Daria…” he sighed as he pulled back. “We have to talk.”
Daria blushed. “Forgive me, I–”
“Please sit down,” he interrupted her.
In a hushed voice, he explained, “I couldn’t see you after that night at the Solar Flare because I’m married.”
“I know,” she interrupted him, trying to just smooth everything over and act like it never happened. “I want us to be friends, Darren. I shouldn’t have kissed you.”
“I don’t want to be just friends with you, but that’s my daughter over there on the monkey bars!” Darren whispered with urgency.
“The little blonde girl?”
Darren grinned with pride. “Yeah, her name’s Iris. I take her here all the time, and I go jogging while she plays. I think you should go jogging down that path over there,” he pointed over her shoulder, “and I’ll catch up with you soon.”
He winked at her and she was off, jogging with a huge grin. Soon he was following behind her, and they were quite literally on the path of no return.
Darren made burgers for them at the secluded campsite. “You don’t have to go?” Daria questioned him.
“I can go if you want me to.”
“But do you need to?”
Darren gave her a serious look and told her, “I’ll worry about my responsibilities, but I don’t want you to.”
“Yes, sir,” Daria said with a silly stern tone. Then she batted her eyelashes and playfully asked, “And what would you have me worry about?”
“Your outfits,” he teased.
“What’s wrong with my outfit?” Daria struck a pose.
“I’m not sure I want my girlfriend wearing such sexy things in public,” he explained.
“Girlfriend?” Daria was instantly serious. “You really mean that?” Darren nodded and she convinced him to let her take a picture of them together on their first date.
“Don’t post that on Simbook!” he insisted afterward.
“I understand, it’s a secret.” Daria pulled him close.
She kissed him passionately and suggested, “Let’s make it a really good one!”
“There’s still so much I have to figure out, Daria,” he said, once again becoming serious.
Sitting down, she said, “I totally understand that. To be honest, I’m feeling so many things right now that it’s a bit confusing. It doesn’t need to be so intense.”
“I’m really glad you understand.”
“I think perhaps I should go home now, but let’s see each other again really soon?”
He promised they’d go on another date soon, then playfully chased her up the path toward the park. Their first date ended in giggles and flirty feelings for both of them.
Daria went home and decided to try to take it all in over a glass of chilled wine.