“Call me Eve,” she said. “I don’t like my real name.”
“What’s your real name, and why don’t you like it?” her blind date asked, and leaned forward, his elbows on the table.
Her parents were tree-hugging hippies, but naming her Evergreen was a bit over-the-top. Thankfully, her work as a teacher meant most people she interacted with–kids–called her by her last name. Aside from the government, her bank, her paycheck, and her parents, no one called her Evergreen.
If she was truthful, however, it was because the last person who’d meant something to her had called her by her real name. When her parents said her name, she rolled her eyes in exasperation. But not with him. The sound of it on his lips in the darkest hours of the night still sent shudders through her soul.
She returned his good-natured, well-meaning smile. “I’d rather not say, if you don’t mind.”
He didn’t press her further, the smart man, but for the rest of the night she couldn’t completely focus on their conversations. Time can soften the sharp edges of pain, and bring out a nostalgic fog for years gone by. That night she went home and dreamed. Not of the boy-next-door blind date, but of dark auburn curls, wicked dimples, and dark grey eyes the color of Florida thunderstorm clouds.