I wasn't looking forward to it. Everyone would be curious as to how the “date” with Alex had gone. And by everyone I mean Emily. I didn't think the other guys would care much. I had tried to sleep late by hitting the snooze button an extra time but with frustration I climbed out of bed and headed to the shower. I dressed for work and arranged and rearranged my hair until I thought it looked fine. When I couldn't stand it anymore I headed out the door. I didn't want to leave for work until the very last minute. If I could avoid any of the Alex talk I would.
When I arrived at my counter at the bank I found a note.
Stacey, you were right. We make better friends. No hard feelings. Alex
I tried to find Alex, but was told that he wouldn't be in. Maybe none of the others knew.
At lunch Emily cornered me wanting details. “So how was it?” She had asked giddily.
“Not worth talking about, Em.”
“Oh come on. I bet you're going to see him again.”
“Not even close, Em.” I assured her. “If you want to go out with him, he's all yours.” Emily was clearly surprised. “He's not at all what he seems.”
She left it at that just shrugging off my responses. I'm sure she'd fill in the other girls. The gossip would spread like wildfire. I noticed that Emily was folding and unfolding a magazine.
“What do you have there?”
“Huh, oh this.” She said tucking it under her arm. “It's just one of those tabloid things. Remember how I thought they were filming a movie here?” I nodded. “Well, I was right. Some of the worlds newest up and coming actors are going to be right here!”
“Ya, I thought so.”
After that conversation seemed to lighten up, but still I could not wait for this day to be over. Friday afternoon dragged by. I felt like I was looking at the clock every five minutes. My mind was trying to go elsewhere. I could not wait for the next day. I kept having to yank myself back from daydreams. It was very hard to stay focused and I was so glad when it was finally five o'clock and time to go home. The next day was much easier to look forward to knowing that Reese was going to be involved in it. I almost sprinted from the building to my car.
I was so glad to be free of the day. I turned on my stereo, immediately my head was bopping and I turned it louder. I stopped at Safeway and picked out a salad for supper, much like I intended to do on that other Friday, I grimaced. No. I was not going to think about that stuff now. I was on the weekend freedom tour.
That evening I tried to stay busy by cleaning my kitchen. I scrubbed it from top to bottom making sure to get all the crevices clean. When I was satisfied with my work I took the dish cloth and towel to my laundry basket. I saw how it was over flowing. I really didn't feel like traipsing all the way down to the laundry room. Does anyone ever really feel like doing laundry? I sighed. It was now or never.
I grabbed my basket and sorted through the lights and darks. I made sure I had my laundry soap from under my kitchen counter and launched a small search for the keys to the laundry room. I smiled at myself when I remembered I had tossed them into my junk drawer after the last laundry run. After rummaging around, moving and removing items I finally came up victorious. Proclaiming myself ready, I headed down to the main floor.
On this Friday night I could hear various sounds emanating from different apartments. Some sounds were just blaring TV's while others were loud discussions. I was thankful that my neighbors seemed to be working class people like me who lived quietly. So quietly at times I felt like I was detached from what was going on in the rest of the world. I didn't own a cell phone, a computer and only had the most basic of cable packages. I didn't live under a rock.....but it was close.
I had tossed Dusk into my laundry basket on the way out the door. With the washing machine thumping away, I slumped into the folding metal chair in the corner of the room and began to read. I had only stopped to switch the clothes from the washer to the dryer and when my eyes were beginning to blur I looked up in thought. Edwin, the main character was the perfect man. I doubt any man really could live up to that. Well, maybe Reese could. I got butterflies in my stomach when I thought of him. Tomorrow, I thought happily.
When I had folded all my clothes and paired each sock I left the room and started back for my apartment. When I got close I could hear the phone ringing. I jogged in the door and balanced my laundry basket on my hip as I reached for the phone.
“Oh Ann, I was just about to hang up.”
I turned around and set the basket down on the floor, then walked back and shut the door to my home kicking it shut with my foot. “Oh, hi Will, I was down doing laundry.”
“That's not terribly original.” He joked. “That rates right up there with washing your hair on a Friday night.”
“Don't think I didn't consider doing that too!” I joked right back.
“I feel so at ease talking to you, Ann.” Will confided. “Its like your my own personal therapist.”
I frowned. “I would prefer to be a friend, Will.”
“Well, I don't think you'll have to dish out that much advice anymore, anyway” Will paused. “It seems as if things are working out.”
“That's good.” I leaned against the counter in the kitchen.
“And I do consider you my friend.”
“That's good too.”
“In fact, Ann, I was thinking that it might be fun to meet one of these days.”
The idea hung out over the sound waves as I mulled it over. “I might not be able to live up to my telephone persona.”
“Maybe I gave you the wrong impression. Not a date or anything like that. Just a friendly chat over coffee.” Will said.
“I'll think about it okay?” I was much too intrigued with Reese to bother thinking about anyone else, even if they only wanted to be my friend.
“That's fine. I understand.” He was insulted.
I felt bad. I had given him the wrong idea. “I'm sorry, I didn't mean to be insensitive.”
“No it's okay, really. We'll talk about it again.”
“Okay.” I said softly.
“I'll talk to you later, Ann.” And Will disconnected.