My first girlfriend in college was a very nice girl-spunky and good hearted and kind to most everyone. She had that fresh scrubbed look common to the Midwest, with cheeks that soaked up the cold fall air like Jonathan apples.

One cool evening as she studied Economics in her dorm room I pretended to study Astronomy while I painted her toenails with her roomate's nailpolish:
Fire engine red!

A series of wind gusts knocked out the power and we were thrust into semi-darkness (since the emergency power in the dorm had kicked on without a hitch). I told her to sit still and not to rub her still wet toes all over the room, but she hopped up and pulled something out of her bedside table.

It's OK, I've got this

as she switched on a bright blue flashlight. She used the light to find some candles and we were soon bathed in a soft yellow non-study light.

I asked how she came to be so resourceful and she made me pledge not to laugh

Cross my heart and hope to die! with right hand held over heart, opposite hand in the air.

When I was little, I was deathly afraid of the dark. I would scream at the least little thing and needed a night light in my room until I was 10. Once when I was 6 the light burned out and I screamed for my Dad to come and save me from the monsters in my closet. He fixed the light and left the flashlight in my room as a back up plan. I kept that light under my bed for years. I thought he had forgotten it, but last year, on the day I packed up for school, he gave me a package with a brand new light. He said it was good to have something to keep closets safe wherever I went.

She looked away, but the candlelight caught her eyes. I couldn't/didn't laugh and when she knew I had restrained myself- she reached over and blew out the candles by the bed.

I woke up at about 2 am and made sure I had turned off the lights for when the power would come back. I was about to sneak out when I noticed something by the door. There, attached to a wall outlet was a small orange Tigger nightlight, barely illuminated by the emergency lights that snuck under the door. I guess she still needed a back up plan.

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