In response to Photo-Fiction #16
She comes in every morning, sits at the corner table with a clear view of the street. She orders herbal tea and she sits. Just watching the people go by as she nurses the warm cup. For maybe half an hour sometimes more, she sits and she watches, just watches, until her phone rings.
She looks at it, breaths a sigh, which I only know by the sad look in her eyes, and the way her shoulder heaves. But then she leaves, melting into the crowd but not really. The people seem to unconsciously part before her. Like they sense the regal-ness of her countenance, or are mesmerized the way I am by those sparkling eyes.
Everyday I watch her go, and my mind plays out her story on the pages of my journal. She’s a princess in hiding, trying to get a read on the people in anonymity. Maybe she’s a spy, and that call is where she meets her handler, maybe the daughter of a rich man, coveted by all suitors, so beautiful beneath those silken veils that to walk without them would be to cause wars, Helen of Troy for the modern day.
In the end, she’s gone, every morning, and a love sick fool plods on to work an accounts clerk in a cheese shop, playing fantasies of the woman who’s face he’s never seen.
He’s there every morning when I arrive. Sipping on his coffee, scribbling in his little book, in a booth near the middle of the room. A non-discript seat, but he is nothing of the sort.
He dresses in a plain dress shirt every morning, with economic ties, jeans and loafers. His face overshadows it though, with dark soulful eyes, and his dark hair always tousled just so.I imaging him to be one of those tech-geniuses that litters the city, but I never see him with any of the tell-tale devices. So a writer maybe? Working on his next best seller? Just his little book, scribbling away as he glances up shyly in my general direction.
From the day I first noticed, I would try to follow his line of sight, see which people he sees passing, what stories he may be plotting in a stranger’s wake. That one might be his fem-fetal with her flaxen hair, the portly fellow with the fedora, his James Bond style henchman. He probably sees that homeless woman over there, as the master mind behind some gigantic plot.
I wonder what he would see if he looked at me? An ordinary girl, the daughter of a butcher, who has to set her alarm so she doesn’t forget to go to classes on time. Struggling in her creative writing class to pull that B that will save her scholarship.
I leave him there each morning, for I know not how long, but I never have the courage to walk up to him and ask what he’s writing. So every morning when the phone beeps, I heave a sigh and feel a little sad, that today was not the day I met the mysterious man in the cafe.