In the beginning of June Tyson got home from his mission. Tyson had been a friend of a mutual friend of both Hannah and I, and he had always had a things for her. I had never really noticed this "thing" because I hadn't been interested in Hannah enough in the old days to really care if he did or not.
It didn't take Tyson and I long to realize we were rivals here, even if I was just "hanging out" with Hannah at this point. Hannah, Tyson, and I got together and did things a few times through out the summer as a group of three, which sometimes was probably pretty awkward. I was just "hanging out" with Hannah until the end of July, when I realized that Hannah would be leaving again in less then a month for school.
I really needed the time to hang out, I was still pretty hung up on my relatively recent dumping by Liz to get normal emotionally, and to realize that Hannah was superior to Liz. It was around this point that I realized I was going to have to find a way fend Tyson off.
At the beginning of August Hannah, Tyson, and I went on an awesome camping trip with our other mutual friend, David. It's still one of my favorite vacations I've taken, we went to my favorite little camping spot in South Central Utah that pretty much no one knows about(on a tangent I've always said I would go and live in this canyon in a post-apocalyptic situation because of the available vegetation, water supply, and especially it's seclusion. It's something you have to be prepared for!). I would say this trip was also one of the more major battle between Tyson and I, and an example of my weakness ending up being a strength.
Being fresh off his mission Tyson was focused on getting the girl. Tyson was on Hannah's hip the entire trip, from the drive down to the drive back. I on the other-hand relinquish control to my inner-child on adventures like this. I was spending my time, exploring, experimenting, etc. Surprisingly enough this worked in my favor, over the course of the trip Hannah started to feel smothered by Tyson, while simultaneously being mesmerized by my child-like wonderment.
The competition following the trip, after I had committed to pursuing Hannah, was a one-sided one. Not because I was all that much superior to Tyson, but because of something I learned from running. You run your own race. In distance running you have a specific pace, and you have to stick with it, if you try to keep up with someone else you're going to burn out. I guess this is my strategy for girls. It's slow and drawn out, but I run my race, and I let Tyson burn himself out trying to keep pace.
As August came to a close, and Hannah was packing her things, and after three-and-a-half months of "hanging out", I knew it was time to end this competition between Tyson and I, so I started planning my final move. Hannah's birthday was a day or two after she moved up to school, so she felt really bummed that she'd be off at school for it. I told her I'd help her move her things up and I would take her out on a "date" for her birthday when we finished and she accepted.
Tyson, however, was going to fight to the last. He also offered to help Hannah move her things up, and since another car would mean she wouldn't have to make another trip in a couple weeks she accepted. When we were all finished moving and unloading and I was getting psyched for the first "real date" I realized Tyson was not leaving...
As it was getting late, unimaginably late considering the drive back home I had, Tyson mentioned that since it was so late he was going to spend the night in town at his uncle's place rather than drive back so late at night. This was bit of a speed bump in my plan, especially since he had waited it out to block our date. I started to get the feeling that Tyson knew what I was trying to do with this trip up, and when he offered to treat us all to dinner at his Uncle's restaurant for Hannah's birthday, I knew I was going to have to get crafty to slip past him. Since Hannah couldn't exactly say, "Thanks for driving my stuff up her for two hours, now leave", but I was determined to end it this week.
Suddenly, my next moves were clear. Hannah offered me her floor for the night so I didn't have to make the treacherous drive home at two in the morning. I accepted, and after Tyson left I told her we'd just have to find some other time to have our "date", knowing full well my plan for the next day.
I spent a while laying on Hannah's floor, wide awake, realizing how close she was, both literally and metaphorically, I knew what I wanted and I steeled myself for the execution of my scheme the following day.
We all got together for an early lunch at the local Pita Pit before we were heading back home and leaving Hannah at school. We said our goodbyes got in our cars, and drove off...
About five minutes into the drive, and after I had let Tyson gain some distance ahead of me, I pulled into the parking lot of a Wendy's just outside of town and called Hannah. I told her how I was bummed I couldn't take her out on the promised birthday date the night before. Then she apologized and explained how she felt she couldn't just give Tyson the boot after he had helped. At this point my plan was in full effect. I asked her if she'd be willing to let me take her out tonight instead, that I'd "turn around and come back", but that I'd have to leave early because I had work early the next morning.
She accepted and I took her out on our first official date after almost 4 months of hanging out a few times a week. The one hiccup in my plan was that I had originally planned to go for the first kiss after this date.(Two things: Yes I did "plan" a kiss in, I'm a wuss about any such intimate moves and really need the time to build up my courage. And yes I had planned to go for the first kiss after the first date, lame, but my version of "hanging out" is easily considered a form dating by most, including me).
I decided that it wouldn't be proper for the first kiss to be immediately followed by a, "Well, see you later." I've tried that before, that's the fast-track to having the first kiss be your last. So I had to postpone that part of the plan. At least until next weekend...