Dante balled up his napkin and sat it on his dinner plate. He stood to welcome Anja to the table, taking her hands and kissing her cheek.
“You’re all dressed up,” he said.
“It’s a fancy restaurant, aren’t you supposed to dress up?”
“Sure, but Anja…”
“Is it too dressy?”
“It’s a date dress, honey.”
“You think I should have saved it?”
“I think”—he pulled her chair out for her—“with the two of us being together in these contexts, no morally righteous guy would approach you.”
“Oh, but Dante, please don’t say that we should start going places alone.”
“Anja, you’ll never have a romantic encounter with me around.”
“I’ll also not be safe going half the places I go in this city without you,” she said.
“The truth of that is surreal.”
“I have this funny feeling, Dante, that you think I’ll replace you with a boyfriend.”
Dante gulped down a mouthful of red wine. “I hope you do.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” Anja waved her napkin to swat him.
“Am I holding you back from meeting Mrs. Right?”
“There is no Mrs. Right for me, dear.”
“There is somebody for everyone, Dante. Don’t be such a sourpuss.”