I pull away before Simon’s lips touch mine.

“Whazzup?” he asks with a surprised look on his face.

To tell the truth I’m feeling a little surprised myself.

“I’m just not one to rush into things,” I smile. 

“Okaaaaay,” he says, but I can tell he’s not really getting it.

There’s a long silence and I can tell he’s waiting for me to explain. I take a slow breath in as I try to work out what I need to say. It’s weird, but I can hear my mom’s voice in my ears: “Give yourself space to discover and think”.

It’s hard to come up with the perfect sentence when Simon’s holding both my hands and looking passionately into my eyes, so I just open my mouth, start talking, and hope for the best.

“Simon, you know I think you’re so unbelievably ummm…(hot, gorgeous, sexy flash through my mind, but I settle for)…cool. And I have from the moment I met you. But we’ve only had one burger together. And I think I’d really like to have some time to at least find out…um.. what other kinds of food you like before we…you know…um…think about…kissing…properly.”

 Could I have phrased this any more romantically if I tried?! My cheeks are on fire with embarrassment. 

Simon laughs, quietly at first but then much, much louder until eventually he has to wipe the tears from his eyes.

“I think I know where you’re coming from Hope. Well, I hope so anyway,” he chuckles.

He takes my face in his hands and strokes my cheeks with his thumbs.

“You’re really beautiful, you know,” he suddenly says, to my surprise. 

“Thank you,” I whisper. 

I find that I’m really close to him again, and I’m staring at his Adam’s apple.

Simon takes my hand and kisses it. 

I blush again as he looks into my eyes. Dang, but he’s super hot.

“I’ve got an exhibition at Red Eye next Friday evening,” I venture. “Why don’t you come along?”

“I’ll see you there,” he says.

“Thank you for dinner. And goodnight.” I say as the lift doors open and then shut behind me.

By the time the lift doors open on my floor I’m wondering if I’m going to regret not kissing Simon tonight for the rest of my life. We’d had the most amazing time together. But on the other hand, there must have been something holding me back, otherwise I’d still be downstairs kissing his face off in the foyer. Right?

WHAT DO YOU THINK: Have you ever turned down a kiss? Was it a good move or do you still regret it?