The enemy within 02

The enemy within 02

Anotace: Posílám druhou kapitolu mé story. Začátek byl asi trochu nezáživný, málo děje. :-)

Sbírka: The enemy within

2


 

Wouldn't you mind if I left earlier today? Elijah has to be at the hospital at half past six p.m. and I have no one to babysit Theo," Eva took a look in the diary. "No one else should come today."

 

Sure, feel free to go,“ Lena nodded, glancing at the clock. It was half past five. „I'll tidy up a little then I'll leave too. We had a lot to do the past two weeks.“ Eva took her purse and waved at Lena. She bumped into Eric in the doorway.

 

Hi,“ he took her shoulders, his lips twitched.

 

Hi, I'm sorry,“ she pulled back and he stepped aside to let her out. Eva left, glancing at Lena meaningfully.

 

Hi Lena. I know it's late,“ he ran his hand through his hair. „I wondered if you could trim my hair a little. Just the ends,“ he took a strand of his hair with his fingers.

 

Of course, have a seat, please,“ she gestured to the chair. He did as she said. She took a comb and scissors and started working. She was surprised how special it felt to touch his hair even though she was used to do it. She felt pops and cracks and a wave of electricity surged through her hands to her body as she touched his cheeks when she combed his hair in the end. „Done,“ she looked at him in the mirror and met his eyes. He didn't smile but there were sparkles in them.

 

Thank you. How much do I owe you?“ he stood up and pulled his wallet out of his breast pocket.

 

It's OK,“ she shook her head. „Don't mention it.“ He stared at her for a moment, money in his hand. „I mean it,“ she gave him a small smile. He nodded slowly.

 

OK, thanks,“ he put his wallet back in his pocket. „So do you think I could invite you for lunch in return?“

 

Um..., why not...,“ she cleared her throat, tucking a strand of her hair behind her ear. He nodded and put his hands in the pockets.

 

Oh I almost forgot,“ he pulled a dessert plate out of the right pocket of his jacket and handed it to her. „It's yours. The cake was delicious.“ She took the plate from his hand and their fingers touched. She raised her eyes to his and he pulled up one corner of his lips in a hint of a small smile.

 

Thanks. Actually it's my mom's plate. I'll pass it on occasionally.“

 

Good. I won't keep you any longer,“ he gave her a long gaze before he left.

 

She breathed out, realizing she forgot breathing most of the time. She grabbed her purse and without tidying up she closed the salon and headed for her car, lost in thoughts.

 

*

 

Eric pulled a bottle of water out of the fridge and walked on the back porch. He was full of memories as he saw the girl, Lena, at the party. He needed to see her again so he went to the salon today to get his hair trimmed. It was needed though.

 

Little did he know when he moved back to Fort Lauderdale after many years that his memories could haunt him. But he didn't care. He loved this place just because of them. But at the moment of his loss he couldn't stay here anyway.

 

As he looked in her eyes he realized that he should stay away from her. His life wasn't the same like before when he was happy. And he sensed Lena had a beautiful and pure soul and she looked so much like Katherine that it took his breath away. No one deserved having a guy like him by their side.

 

He sighed, walked inside and put the empty bottle in the trash can. It was nine p.m. but he wouldn't go to sleep yet.

 

*

 

So he invited you for lunch but didn't say exactly when.“

 

Yes,“ Lena locked the door of the salon, nodding.

 

Did you give him your phone number?“ Eva asked and when Lena shook her head no, she continued. „It's strange, isn't it?“

 

Not really,“ Lena shrugged as they walked to her car. „Obviously he knows where to find me.“

 

It's true but how did he know where do you work?“ Eva objected.

 

I don't know. Did he ask my uncle John?“ Lena got in the car, fastening her seat belt. „Look, I admit he's a little weird but I don't intend to marry him tomorrow,“ she gave Eva a smile, starting the car.

 

OK. I just hope you know what you're doing,“ Eva responded sceptically. Lena drove the car and in a few minutes she stopped in front of Eva's house.

 

You don't like him, right?“

 

I don't know. I just have a bad feeling about him,“ Eva opened the door and got out. „I wish to be wrong. See you tomorrow.“

 

I know what you mean,“ Lena looked in her eyes. „Thanks. See you.“


*

 

Lena felt like having a vegetable salad so she stopped by the grocery on her way home. She stopped in front of her small house, got out and pulled the shopping bag out of the trunk. Walking to the house she saw a familiar figure sitting on the steps. Without stopping she walked upstairs and unlocked the door.

 

Really?“ she turned to him. „What are you doing here? How do you know where I live? Are you watching me?!“ she frowned.

 

No, I'm not. I'm sorry, I didn't want to startle you,“ he stood in front of her, his head slightly lowered, his eyes raised to hers. He looked calm but as if on alert. „I just...“

 

You didn't,“ she interrupted him. „You made me angry,“ she walked inside, leaving the door open. She put the shopping bag on the counter in the kitchen and returned to the front door. She was about to shut the door but there was something in his eyes that made her change her mind. „Come in,“ she stepped aside and closed the door behind him.

 

Don't be angry, Lena. I forgot to ask you for your phone number the last time we met. I just wanted to ask if tomorrow would be OK for lunch but I missed you at work. So I called to John, your uncle, to ask him where you live,“ he explained, speaking slowly, watching her moving around the kitchen as she put what she bought on its place. She finished and poured coffee into two mugs. She handed him one with a small smile.

 

I see. I'm sorry for snapping at you,“ she gave him her phone number. „Next time you can call.“

 

Thanks,“ he took a sip from his coffee with his eyes still on her.

 

You know, tomorrow is Saturday and my mom asked me to help her with something. I hope you understand that I can't tell her 'no' now,“ she responded to his question. „But we could go for dinner if it's OK with you.“ She watched him and couldn't understand why she invited him inside. She felt something coming in waves from him as if a mighty spell. He was special. She couldn't find more accurate term.

 

Sure I understand,“ he broke her reverie. „What about Sunday? Sad to say but I'm busy in the evening. Which reminds me..., what's the time?“ he looked around and his eyes widened when he noticed it was almost eight p.m. „I have to go. I'll call you, OK?“ he put his empty mug in the sink and left without noise.

 

She went to the kitchen unit and started making dinner. She thought about him, cutting peppers and tomatoes. She recalled her uncle's words about Eric, that he was calm, patient and balanced man. She didn't think so. She put the pieces of vegetables into a bowl and turned the stove on. She place a pot with water on it and added a little of salt. She glanced at the clock. It was half past eight. Suddenly she realized that he always started being restless around eight p.m. Like at the party. He had to go home at the same time as today. Why? As the water started boiling she put spaghetti in it.

 

She started pacing the kitchen, thinking. She didn't know why but she became interested in him. She had a feeling she saw something in his eyes that bothered him.

 

After dinner she took a shower and crawled in bed. She took a book to read before sleep but her thoughts kept flying away to him. So she turned off the lamp. She closed her eyes and slowly drifted to sleep with his beautiful sad eyes in front of hers.

 

*

 

Lena arrived home from Weston around six p.m. when her phone started ringing. She pulled it out of her purse.

 

Hello.“

 

Hi Lena, it's Eric,“ she heard his likeable voice. „I'm sorry for leaving so quickly yesterday.“

 

Hi, it's OK. I just arrived home. We can meet if you aren't busy.“

 

Um... don't you have time for lunch tomorrow?“ she sensed a hint of disappointment in his voice.

 

I do,“ she shook her head. „I just thought... it's not that late. But it's OK.“

 

Can I pick you up tomorrow at twelve p.m.?“ She nodded slightly.

 

Sure, you can,“ she responded, thoughts whirling in her mind.

 

OK. See you tomorrow. Have a nice evening,“ he hung up. She put her phone on the kitchen table and walked on the back porch. The man had something to hide, she was convinced about it. But what was it?

 

*

 

He arrived in time. It was twelve when she walked down the stairs to the place where his Range Rover Evoque was parked. He was standing next to it wearing black jeans and a black T-shirt, his long hair flying in the breeze. For the first time she saw him smile, as he laid his eyes on her. She wore a red dress without sleeves, her hair loose. She had to admit he looked very handsome and his smile was charming.

 

You shouldn't be here. You're not good for her. She's beautiful and pure and you know who you are. You should stay away from her. You'll be disappointed. Run away! Leave her alone, before it's too late.

 

He heard a voice in his head at the moment he saw her coming to him. She made him smile after several years. For the first time in a long time he forgot about everything that haunted him and his heart and his mind were focused just on this girl. He forced the voice in his head to shut up because he couldn't stay away from her, he just couldn't. He desired to get to know her more. He needed to live again at least just for a while. But he had no intention to hurt her. Frankly he didn't know what he wanted. The only thing he knew was that he wanted to be with her. And now he had several hours to spend in her company.

 

Hi, glad to see you're in a good mood today,“ she walked around the car to the passenger's door. He followed her to open it for her, waiting till she slipped in.

 

It's not that I can meet every day so amazing and beautiful woman as you are,“ he teased. „So yes, I'm in a very good mood.“

 

You flatterer!“ she chuckled. He jumped behind the wheel, winking and driving to the city.

 

*

 

Once seated at their table they started studying the menu.

 

"Are you ready to order?" the waiter stepped to them. Eric glanced at Lena. She nodded.

 

"I'd like the chicken with mushrooms and soft butter sauce, please," she jerked her chin to Eric. "And what about you?"

 

"I'd like the pork medallions in bacon with pepper sauce, please."

 

"OK. What would you like to drink?" the waiter asked, writing his notes.

 

"Coke, please," Lena responded.

 

"Make it two," Eric confirmed. The waiter nodded and retreated to the bar. In a few minutes he was back to bring them two Cokes.

 

Thank you,“ Eric nodded his head.

 

Lena took a sip from her glass and looked at him over the rim of it.

 

"My uncle told me you moved to Fort Lauderdale recently," she uttered.

 

"It's true. It's been three months. You know I was used to moving from town to town but last few years I worked for John in Miami. Now I'm freelance so I can travel to work where I want. Or rather where they need me to work."

 

"I see. I'm freelance too. I opened the salon with my best friend Eva. But we needed to set opening hours because of orders of our customers.“

 

Yes. Otherwise they would want you to work anytime they wish,“ he nodded, sipping from his glass. The waiter interrupted them bringing their meal.

 

Your parents have a beautiful house and garden,“ he said when they started eating.

 

Thanks. And it's not just the place with the grass that you saw at the party,“ she raised her eyes from her plate to him. „There's a big place with trees and garden beds behind the house. My mom was about to sell this place when I moved to my house closer to the city five years ago. But I convinced her not to do it because I know how much she loves the garden. I promised to help her to take care of it. That's why I had to go there yesterday. She's not that old but my father's a businessman so he spends a lot of time at work and is hardly at home,“ she smiled faintly. „I'm talking too much, ain't I? And what about your house and your parents if I can ask.“ She put a bite in her mouth.

 

No, you aren't,“ he laughed shortly. „I like it,“ his face slowly became serious as he started speaking. „I live in my house on the periphery of Fort Lauderdale on my own. My parents passed away many years ago. My house stands in the middle of nowhere,“ he gave her a small smile. „There's a meadow and forest behind it. And a lake where does come drink its water.“

 

Sounds amazing,“ she said softly and finished her meal. „I hope you'll show me the woods and meadow some time.“ His eyes flew to hers, a vortex of surprise and fear in them. „I'm sorry,“ she ran her hand through her hair. „I'm too forward. Forget it, please,“ she shook her head. He swallowed the last bite and put the plate aside.

 

No need to be sorry. I'd like to show you my house and the wild surrounding it,“ he smiled gently. She looked at him and saw he was calm again. No hint of tension in his eyes. She was impressed and her confidence became a certainty. She'd like to know his secret. The waiter collected their plates, asking what else they'd like to have. Eric ordered a bottle of champagne and the waiter let him choose the sign. Eric chose Cattier, Glamour Rosé. The waiter brought a bucket with the bottle of champagne with ice and two glasses.

 

To what do we drink?“ he lifted his glass.

 

To our meeting?“ she clinked her glass to his.

 

To our meeting,“ he confirmed. „And to your beautiful doe eyes if I can,“ he took a sip, lowering his eyes to the glass.

 

Thank you,“ she whispered. „Mmm, delicious champagne. You know champagne, don't you?“

 

I love champagne. I built a wine cellar in my house,“ his eyes brightened as he started speaking about champagne. Obviously he was on the firm ground with the topic. „Cattier, Glamour Rosé is sweeter than classic Rosé.“

 

She watched him, listening to his words about his visit to a vineyard in France, Europe. She felt that he got under her skin. The more he told her the more curious she became. He was not only handsome and charming, he was intelligent, nice and funny. He wasn't aware of it himself but she could tell that he completely forgot about everything that bothered him as he was concentrated on what he was talking about. He was still surrounded by an unknown secret that she was determined to reveal.

 

I've never been in Europe,“ she smiled at his question that broke her reverie. „But your telling is very interesting.“

 

Thank you,“ he gave her smile back and his lips parted as if he wanted to say something but no words came out of his mouth. He remembered his secret, crossed her mind and no matter what the secret was, she felt desire to stroke his bearded cheek, help him and stand by his side till the end. Her own thoughts startled her.

 

They forgot about time, talking for hours. He ordered coffee and ice cream and he felt unbelievably good in her presence. She listened to him carefully when he talked to her about anything and sometimes he had a feeling that she understood him more than he was able to imagine. She told him about how it felt being a hairdresser, about her mom's garden and he listened to her words with the same interest as she did. At some moments he heard the voice in his head again inciting him to leave her alone but he ignored it. There was no point to return. He understood he started feeling something for her, he was attracted to her as a magnet and he couldn't keep himself back.

 

It was almost six p.m. when he stopped the car in front of her house. They got out and he walked her to the door.

 

Thanks for an amazing day, Eric,“ she unlocked the door and looked at him.

 

You're welcome and I thank you. It was nice.“

 

Yes, it was,“ she nodded. „Why don't you come in with me? We can continue to talk for how long we wish,“ she offered, tilting her head on one side.

 

I'd like to, Lena, but I can't,“ he sighed. „Don't get me wrong... I like you but I... just can't.“ She looked in his eyes, they turned sad again.

 

It's OK, Eric,“ she said in a low voice. „Don't worry about it, please. It doesn't matter why you can't. You just can't. Period,“ she smiled and placed her hand behind her back clenched in fist to resist touching him.

 

Really?“ he lifted his eyebrow. „You're amazing, Lena. So... does it mean I can hope to see you again? Can I call you?“ She could see sparkles in his eyes as she nodded yes.

 

Have a nice evening,“ she opened the door and turned to him, standing in the doorway.

 

You too. Bye for now,“ he waved at her and headed for the car. She was standing there till his car disappeared out of her sight. Then she walked in and closed the door behind her.

 

*

 

Lena was sitting on the back porch, reading a book. She took a sip from her glass of red wine. It was almost ten p.m. and she felt her eyelids started closing. She put the book on the table. She got up and stretched her body. She took the glass and brought it to the kitchen, putting it on the kitchen table. Walking back outside to take the book she had a feeling as if someone's watching her. She looked around and stiffened. She saw two glowing eyes among the trees.

 

She stretched out her hand and very slowly went down the stairs and to the trees.

 

Don't go away, no matter who you are,“ she whispered knowing it could hear her. A head of a wolf emerged out of the darkness. She stopped and looked in its eyes. The wolf from her dreams was standing there. It made one step closer and she gasped. She got down on his level, her hand still stretched out. She didn't think about how dangerous it could be. Her heart was beating like crazy as she watched it coming closer. She didn't make a sound, nor a move. She felt its breath as it started sniffing her hand. She smiled and making a very slow move so it could see what she was doing she stroked its head. She couldn't believe her eyes when its eyes closed and it purred under her touch.

 

You're amazing,“ she laughed quietly, stroking it again. It opened its eyes and she looked in them closely. They were brown and beautiful. It leaned its head against her palm, purring. Suddenly she heard her phone ringing and the wolf straightened, turned around and disappeared among the trees.

 

She ran inside to pick up the phone. But it stopped ringing. Glancing on the display she saw a missed call from Eva. She decided to text her to let her know she was OK and that she would see her tomorrow at work. She sent the text and full of the experience of meeting the wolf she went to sleep.

Autor KeepTheFlameBurning, 15.08.2017
Přečteno 309x
Tipy 1
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