“Is this Margaret?” It was definitely Alan. “It’s Alan. Look, love, I just got out of the meeting, and I’m on the way to the hotel to change. My driver tells me I should be there by six, six-fifteen at the latest. I’m looking forward to seeing you.”
“Me, too,” I echoed, clutching the phone to my ear. I held it there long after he hung up. Alan Rickman. Dinner. My landline rang again, but I ignored it. I was not going to let my mother ruin my mood, which she would do in a heartbeat. I went into the living room and flipped on the television to take my mind off my nerves. It seemed like forever until my buzzer rang. I glanced at my watch and saw it was six-fifteen on the dot. I turned off the television, jumped to my feet and raced to answer it.
“It’s Alan. I just made it.”
“I’ll be right down.” I was touched he actually got out of his car to buzz me when he could have just called me on his cell from the car. I grabbed my purse and a wrap and flew out the door. I almost dropped both wrap and purse when I saw Alan looking natty in a black sports coat and slacks with a brilliant blue shirt.
“You look lovely,” Alan said, offering me his arm.
“You look very handsome as well,” I replied sedately. What I wanted to do was drag him upstairs and have my way with him. I didn’t, however, and contented myself with stealing sideline glances at Alan who looked so damn hot. The car, which was a black Cadillac, looked great, too. I was glad it wasn’t a limo; I found them to be too pretentious. Alan ignored the driver who was standing by the back door and ushered me into the car. He went around to the other side and settled in besides me. A feeling of unreality crept over me as I sat next to my favorite actor. I gathered my thoughts so I could add something to the conversation.
“So, what play would you be doing for the Guthrie next season, or shouldn’t I ask? Wait, don’t tell me, all I really want to know is if you get the girl in the end.” I cringed at my flippant tone, but it was how I dealt with uncomfortable situations.
“Yes, I would get the girl in the end,” Alan said, a slight smile on his face. “Why is that so important to you?”
Thus emboldened, I plunged into a narrative of how I felt it a shame that British actors were used primarily as villains unless they were stereotypically hot such as Jude Law or Kate Winslet. I went on to say how much I preferred foreign films because the actors were usually people who looked like normal people, albeit good-looking normal people. They were people I could meet at a pub, perhaps taking home for the night. When I watched American actors, I could only see them for who they really were. Actors. Grossly overpaid actors. Some who couldn’t even act and were liked more for their looks than their abilities. In addition, American actors were so overexposed, it was difficult to get past their images.
“But I ramble,” I said, screeching to a halt. Alan had been scrutinizing me as I talked, making me feel as if what I had to say was of the utmost importance. “I tend to do that when I get heated.” I wished I could take back that last word as it gave the sentence a double meaning, but Alan chose to respond to my surface statement.
“It’s a good thing, I think, the ability to care deeply. It’s also rather refreshing to talk to someone who cares more about substance than the glitz and glamour of Hollywood.”