The Lieutenant Commander
The 'Three Date Rule' had served Caitlyn well ever since her college days. It was basically very simple. Knowing that people might be uptight on the first date, she was willing to allow most men three dates before she decided if she wanted to continue the relationship. After the first date a handshake and a polite, "Thank you," was all that was required of her. After date number two a kiss on the cheek was allowed. The third date required a gentle brush on the lips, and if Caitlyn was interested, it escalated from there.
Most of Caitlyn's dates were three daters. Others were less. Some were more. A few were much more. One resulted in Caitlyn accepting a marriage proposal. That turned out to be a disaster and Caitlyn was out of the dating game for a while. When she returned, the 'Three Date Rule' was fully in force.
Francine, Caitlyn's best friend set Caitlyn up with a blind date. Caitlyn was unsure. This was her best friend's brother, and Caitlyn didn't want this to damage the relationship between her and Francine if she didn't like the man. But her fears were unfounded. From the moment she met Lieutenant Commander Brian De Salvo, she was hoping for date number two and more, much more. But, her attitude changed when she found out that this sailor did for the Navy.
When Brian expressed an interest in a continuing relationship, Caitlyn told him the truth. She was not about to get involved with a man who spent more than half his time on the other side of the world, usually in danger.
But, Brian had an answer. He told her he would resign his commission, quit the Navy and become a civilian. As much as Caitlyn liked this man, she was not about to be responsible for such a drastic change in Brian's life on the chance they might find something special between them.