Nearly 5 years ago, a boy was bold enough to sincerely pour out his heart in a Facebook message to a girl he had never spoken to before.
It was such a pleasantly shocking message, she would have to re-read, print, and then save it (just to have tangible proof of its existence when pinching was no longer enough to convince her she wasn't dreaming).
It was also the sort of message that would make Jane Austen's characters jealous, particularly Elizabeth Bennett. The girl was convinced that the boy had somehow taken a lesson from Mr. Darcy. (After all, what kind of boy refers to himself as a potential "suitor" these days?)
So the girl was smitten. It was love at first read. She decided that all the silly poems she'd written in college about love really amounted to nothing more than artery-clogging fluff, like cookies with preservatives instead of the homemade kind. What she found in this message was something much more delicious and satisfying, but it was only the beginning. This was just the appetizer; dessert would be even tastier.
This boy knew how to use the secret ingredients. He worked his magic. The message lured her in. They spoke for hours on end... upon first meeting at 2 am, in the cold hallway of a college dorm whose architect designed prison cells. Symbolic? Yes. She thought so. The boy was there to set her free...with chocolate, of course.
A few days later, this same boy walked up and down the candy aisle of a Whole Foods in a nameless city to find a chocolate bar for the girl. And this was not just any chocolate bar.
It was the chocolate bar that would initiate the start of something good. But doesn't all chocolate? You ask. (It gets even better...)
Shortly after the purchase, he would cleverly tell the girl, "I bought a chocolate bar for us to share the next time we see each other." Smooth. Just like velvety chocolate syrup melting in a warm glass of whole milk.
Ah, a next time... She said to herself. Yes, she was excited about that.
And nearly every time they met thereafter, he would offer her another chocolate bar and she would save the wrappers.
She still has them, to this day...
She still has the boy!
The girl baked him a batch of gluten-free triple chocolate brownies for breakfast on Valentine's Day 2010 because, years later, they share so much more than bars of chocolate. Let's just say that their diet might be gluten-free, but they aren't missing anything :).
How do we know?
She lets him lick the bowl. He washes the dishes and doesn't complain.