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Chapter Three

    Isaac pulled into the parking lot of Insomnia, which was full of the younger crowd--high schoolers and some of the college people.  I hope she's here, he thought.  It would figure that he would come back on a night in when she wouldn't be singing.  Why are you even thinking this?  You don't know even know Renae.  But he was still drawn to her.  He let out a sigh and stepped out of his car.  Walking through the double glass doors, his fear washed away.  He went up to the counter, ordered his coffee, then found a table right in Renae's line of sight.  He loved watching her with her eyes closed, pouring herself into the music.  It was a slow, soft love ballad that she must have written.  After strumming the final chord, she looked up at the audience and smiled.  "Thanks guys," she said, and then her eyes met Isaac's.  Ike couldn't hold in the coy smile playing on his lips.
    "I'm going to take five," she announced.  She took the change out of the guitar case and set her guitar inside, then headed for the counter.  Isaac jumped up and was beside her as she asked for some water.


        Talk about strange.  One minute, she was singing "For You", the  next minute she's staring straight into Isaac's eyes.  Hey, you've got to admit, Renae, it wasn't a bad view, she thought to herself.  She walked up to the counter.  "Water, please, Jacob," Renae asked, feeling Isaac's presence next to her.  God, he smelled so good!
    "I'll pay for that," he replied boldly to Jacob, the guy behind the counter.  Renae turned to him and smiled.
    "That's okay; I get them on the house," she informed.  She enjoyed watching the tiny blush come across his cheeks.  She sat down on a couch nearby, and Isaac sat next to her.
    "You came back," she commented, trying to act cool.
    "Yeah.  I'm sorry about giving you my number out of the blue like that last night.  I don't normally do things like that," he explained.
   Yeah right, she thought.  She tried Anne's tactic.  "I'm sure you don't."
    "You don't believe me?" he asked.
    "Frankly, " Renae sighed, "it sounds like a line you're feeding me." Keep your distance, she thought.  Stand your ground and don't waver.  "And I'm not a fish."
    "I'm serious.  I'm sorry if it seems like a total come-on.  I don't mean for it to be.  I loved your sound and the way you played, and I just wanted to get to know you," Isaac said.  The truthfulness in his voice made Renae turn her head to look at him.  Sincerity was written on his face, and Renae felt like crap.
    "I'm sorry," she said.  "Let's start over completely, okay?  My name's Renae." She stuck her hand out.
    Isaac reached over and grasped her hand firmly.  "I'm Isaac.  It's nice to meet you."
    "Okay, well, hey, I've got to get back up there, so I'll see you around."
    "Well, I was wondering, do you need a ride home or anything?  Or do you have a car?" Isaac asked.
    "Umm, well, I was going to have my roommate pick me up," Renae answered.
    "Can I take you home?" Isaac asked.  "I promise, I won't do anything, just take you straight home."
    Renae smiled.  "Okay, sure."  She then went back to her guitar and started playing again.


    It had been a good night for Renae; she had definitely gotten more than the past few nights.  And Isaac was waiting for her, to take her home.  During breaks, they had exchanged a few words, talking about music and playing.  He was an awesome guy--very sweet and kind of goofy.  She latched her guitar case and picked it up.  Isaac walked up to her from the bathroom.  "Did you have enough coffee tonight?" she asked.
    Ike laughed.  "Yeah, I think so."
    "Well, did you want to go out for a bite to eat?  I'm kind of hungry," Renae suggested.
    "Sure, no problem."  So the two headed out to his car.  Isaac opened his trunk so Renae could put her guitar in, then he opened the passenger door for her, waited for her to sit down, then shut the door.  What a gentleman, she thought.  Isaac slipped into the driver's seat and asked where she wanted to eat.  "Anywhere that has food!" she replied.
    "Okay, that narrows it down," Isaac said.  Renae laughed.  The closest thing that was opened was a McDonald's, so Isaac pulled in.  The two walked inside and got their orders, Isaac paying for the meals after much insistence.  They sat down in a booth to eat.
    "You know, I don't think I've even asked you your full name yet," Isaac pointed out.  "What is it?"
    "Renae Rolands.  Now, the same goes for you."
    "I'm Isaac Hanson."
    Renae held a fry in midair.  "Very funny.  Now seriously, what is your name?"
    "I'm dead serious Renae.  I'm Isaac Hanson."  He looked dead  straight into Renae's eyes, and she saw that he wasn't kidding.
    "Oh," was all that could come out of her mouth.
    "Please don't scream," Isaac pleaded, wincing.
    That got her back into full speaking mode.  "Do I seem like the screaming type to you?  I was just surprised, that's all.  I am a fan of you and your brothers' music, and I never thought I would be sitting in a McDonald's pigging out in front of you.  Why didn't you tell me before?"
    "Well," Isaac hesitated.  "Number one, it didn't occur to me.  Number two, I figured that you were a fan last night when you sang 'Wish That I Was There', but I didn't know how you would react."
    "Oh my gosh!" Renae gasped.  "You're not filing a lawsuit against me, are you??  For using your song??  Oh my gosh...I never thought of that..."
    "It's okay," Isaac said.  "No one's getting sued, okay?  I just wanted to get to know you better, maybe even become friends."  Renae watched as that gorgeous smile crossed his face, and she couldn't help but smile.
    "Friends would be cool," she commented.  They finished eating and headed back to the car and drove to Renae's apartment.  Isaac stepped out and walked her to her door.  Renae turned to him before inserting her key in the door.  "you know, you don't have to walk me to the door."
    "I want to.  It's common sense to walk a woman to the door," Isaac replied.
    Renae blushed slightly, for she had never had a guy treat her like this.  "Well thank you.  See you around?"
    "Hope so," Isaac said huskily, sending flutters through Renae.  What are you doing Renae?????  You don't know this guy hardly.  Get a freakin' grip!
    "Well, good night," she replied.
    "Good night," Isaac answered.  Renae opened the door and closed it as Isaac made his way down the stairs.  After locking it, she leaned against the door.  What are you doing, Renae?  What in the world are you doing?