My scarf was plastered around my moist neck but was as comforting as a warm duvet at sunrise. Yawning, I swipe off grains of gravel on my numb knuckles, beneath them were their imprints stamped on like a disapproving tattoo. Distant sirens played in the background constantly; something always buzzing up. I chuckle to myself, a room full of masked people, annoying but kept the mystery.
You could say we are all lost people, wanted to be found…. So we decided to play hide and seek.
“Look at me…” I mutter to myself.
I wore khaki uniform and soldier-like boots, they were smothered in mud and had dried into solid, uneven blocks. It’s even harder to breathe through this mask; and I used to think gas masks were the last thing anyone needed at that time.
Out of the corner of my eye, I observe the man sitting next to me (which in all honesty is funny to me- we HAVE to wear masks but sit next to eachother). My eyes travelled up his body. He wore incongruously large boots (Timberland PRO Direct- definitely not penny picking every detail) accompanied with black jogging bottoms and a vest. By his proud posture, he looked like he was the man every girl would gawk at. Let me set the scene for you:
“The sunlight roasts the multicoloured marshmallow-like cars that jiggle on its chocolate pretzels upon various roads. In the driveway stood a man, stripped off to a tight t-shirt and Bermuda shorts, his muscles popped right out. Suddenly, the girls heads turned as droplets of water showered above him; each droplet streaking his glistening body.”
My mouth is almost too dry to speak. One ear listening to the tête-à-tête of people and one twitching along to the music through my headphones. The waiting room is a weird place with mixed emotions but confusing ones; are people in here for an interview or visit friends at a reasonable places.
I stared at the black-framed wall clock for the ninth time this hour, scrutinising the second hand, which seemed to linger an extra minute at every passing second. I took my gaze off of the clock, silently vowing to not look at it once more until absolutely necessary, and pulled out my 300-page essay on building and construction. Skimming through the the pages filled with highlighted rows of sentences, some of which have words circled with blue ink and several arrows pointing to small notes jotted down on the margins of the text. Keeping my book on my lap, I caught a glimpse of the wall clock out of the corner of my eye and turned around instantly to see how much I had left. Staring at the clock as my jaw dropped as I mentally calculated that I had less than five minutes to get ready for my interview,
Something to distract me? I look around and then pause on the man next to me. No, no… don’t Kat. Don’t. You know that when you do, something bad will always happen.
“Hi, how are you?” I say to the man next to me.
“Okay… nice talking to you.” I sarcastically whisper, smiling at the palm of my hands. “When did life become this stupid.”
“When a big celestial garbage truck dumped 8 billion living, self-aware beings onto a remote, isolated planet called ‘Earth’ and said, “okay, everyone… have at it!” The man next to me laughs whole-heartedly as he pulls out his headphones.
Headphones! Kat, you idiot!
I laugh away and lightly snort, which fuels on our conversation.
“I’m so sorry,” I laugh.
“It’s fine… it was cute,” he says breathlessly.
We hold each others gaze, addressing each others features, I stared at his walnut-like eyes- innocent and beautiful. My eyes rested on the tattoos that played peekaboo up his sleeves.
“Mrs. Phoebe Lewis?” The receptionist powerlessly called.
Grasping my purse, I smile at the man, “It was nice talking to you.”
He holds out his hand to shake, I move forward with my elbow and gingerly tap it.
Striding the distance between her and the chairs, I felt my heart deflate, “well that moment was over too soon…”
“You can go in to see her now. Are you sure you don’t want to…” she said.
Abruptly cutting her off, “No, no. I’ve waited long enough.”
I walk down the hallway and into the room.
“Mrs. Phoebe Lewis. What a delight, A-grade student and top worker!” The man says from behind the desk.
“That would be an over…” I say as I look at his extra-polished name tag- Mr. Johnson.
“No… no. You’re an angel for our company.” He interrupted.
“Would you like me to read about the economic views on construction or would you like my views on construction?”
As I spoke he paid close attention to my words and nodded with little comments of agreement.
“What are your views on cops then? I take it very serious.” He says.
“Okay well. Huhum.” I say as I clear my throat. “Some say there are good cops and bad. But I say that’s an oversimplification. The can be honest, courageous, corrupt, devious, malicious, altruistic, cunning or stupid. My dad was a cop and he was all of those things.”
Mr. Johnson lightly chuckles and rests his hand over mine, “the job is all yours.”
I stutter and feel my head whizz in surprise, “Umm… uhh… umm.. oh thank you. Thank you so much!”
“You’re going to have a partner. I’ll introduce you two both to eachother.” He said.
He called in a man by the name of Steve. I look over at the man.
“You!” We say in unison.
“I’m glad actually.” I say and hug him.
“You know eachother?” He asked.
“We.. uh. We spoke in the waiting room.” He says.
“Enjoyable I presume.” He says on a sour note. “I’ll be visiting you two on your sites, make sure you’re always on you’re A-game.”
“Sure.” I whisper. “What have you done Kat? You’ve created a triangle of love.”
I like both!