The Monday ride

The Monday ride

I flicked the butt, paused the music, tied the lace, and stepped out for my usual breakfast place down the lane. The streets are eerily silent for a Monday dawn.

I grab my newspaper. The front page said, "A woman stood facing the wall; not an odd sight for the times we lived in," followed by a picture of the same and the quote by Dr Beatrice, "Mental illness is normal. Please call for help at 1800 346 9382."

I flipped to sports and movie news, walking. As I reached, I said hi to Trevor. He knows my order and how I like it. I was settling down myself with "Anna of five towns." I couldn't help but overhear a lady next table softly telling Jane, "There was Pizza, except there was no pineapple on it. Hope you get it right this time, honey."

When Jane went inside to get her order, I saw the lady, and she looked somehow familiar. I laid back a little, engrossed myself reading. The line said, "Anna bearing bacon and hot plates," and I hear a "hello." I look up, and the lady is bearing my bacon and espresso.

Looking at me puzzled, she asked, "would you mind if I join you for breakfast?" I welcomed, "Yeah, sure! Please have a seat.", and I made self sit straight, turned the book down. She chuckled and said, "Hi, I'm Anna. I'm new to the town."

I said with a slight laugh, "Did you just made up the line from the title, eh?" She smiled a little, "my name is Anna, indeed. Would you check up my ID?" With the small talk beginning, we started to talk about each other's life. It was almost like an unscheduled blind date.

While we were talking through our breakfast, Jane came with two separate checks. She paid hers and, I did my usual, paid, and wrote a small story for Jane. I've been writing new tales for Jane every day for three months now. Her excitement for the story is always delicious.

Anna loved it and asked Jane if she can read it. Jane read it aloud, "Hey Jane, I woke up unbelievably aware of time. It was a pleasant decorated time with Simba cuddled himself somewhere on the bed. I opened the window to the beautiful dim, lit sky. I turned on music, and your voice echoed with the lights.."

Anna interrupted Jane, "Hey, you sing! That's beautiful!"
Jane said with enthusiasm, "Thank you, miss. I'm performing here during dusk, please try to come?"

I checked my watch, smiled at Jane, called a taxi, "Anna, thank you for the time. I hope we'll meet soon."

Anna said, "Hey, are you going downtown by any chance? I'd love to share a ride!" I nodded and waved her to enter, "see you evening, Jane!"

While we were in the taxi, Anna asks me, "So, do you write as a profession?"

"Oh, no. I'm a makeup artist. I usually do it for advertising models."

"Oh my...really! I moved for a small ad direction gig here at Virgin Arts!"

"Hey, I work there too!"

We had a big laugh and realised we're just neighbours in the office and we might be working together today. Amidst our conversation, the taxi got pulled over. We have our confused looks. The taxi driver is panicking and sweating all over. He said whimpering, "I was in speed limit. I didn't break.."
The uniformed lady said, "Sir, we have this taxi on our suspect list for murder. May I check the vehicle?"

She opened the hood of his trunk, expecting the worst. I'd say she's disappointed by the clean one. She let it go, and he started the vehicle.. we were perplexed at his anxiety. He pulled aside after a few minutes, got down and had a full bottle of water in a panic state. We got worried at this moment. Anna got out and asked, "Sir, are you alright? You look nervous."

I was looking at them from my seat and couldn't hear anything they're talking. They talked for a couple of minutes, and Anna took the wheel. I ask Anna, "Hey, what's happening? Are we in trouble?"

Anna hushed me and signalled she'd tell me later. We're only a few minutes to our studio. He is still panicking, popped some pills, and sweating profusely. We've reached the gate, got out and wished him safe. While walking, I asked Anna, "What's all that about?"

Anna, with her normal voice, "Oh, it's nothing. He just thinks he murdered his daughter while drunk and couldn't find her body."

Words refused to come out of me, I'm frozen!! And got myself together, "He did what!???"

"Calm down. He is just mentally unstable. He couldn't have killed his daughter. The man is barely able to stand up."

I couldn't take my mind off him..and Anna, how's she so unaffected by this! Who is this lady!

I entered the restroom to prep myself for the day, washed my lens. I could hear a small cry, "I wish she's still with us. Not a day went by when I didn't think of her."

I couldn't help, but ask, "Hello! Are you alright?"

Agnes came out of the toilet and said, "Thanks, Kelly. I'm alright."

"Who were you missing?" I ask her with a lot of thoughts in my head.

"Oh, Anna was an ad director here a few months ago. She got killed by her drunk father."

I lost myself. I froze again! "Hey, I just saw Anna. We..we..shared a"

Agnes said, "Kelly, are you alright!?!"

I don't know. I couldn't understand anything, can't believe anything around me. I rushed out! I didn't see the taxi! I looked around, and I see Jane! Trevor is talking to her!! What's happening to me!

I fuzzed out! Jane came to me, "Hey, Kelly.."

I look around, there's bacon on my table, the chair fell down, coffee spilt over.

Jane is comforting me, patting my shoulder and Trevor is looking over. Simba is at my feet. I signalled that I'm fine.
I stood facing the wall and heard a camera shutter from behind.