Chapter 27: Mexico- Midnight stranger
After the dinner with the Martins, Diego would make appearances at Lucas and Lydia’s house every now and then. He really was persistent. He tried to get Mia’s number from his siblings but she begged them not to give it, he still kept on trying. One day Mia was in the market with Lucas to buy groceries with him when Diego showed up again and this time with a bouquet of flowers.
“For you, mi angelito.” Diego said and Lucas snickered beside her.
“Diego this is sweet of you, but I have told you many times, no.” It’s cute and all but Mia couldn’t let him have his hopes up and then crushed later. She saw it in his eyes how serious he was even though she told him many times that it couldn’t happen. He looked kind of sad. From her peripheral view Mia noticed a cute girl about his age staring at him. When she saw Mia she looked away and blushed. Mia smiled as a plan came in her mind. “If I can get you a date with a girl will you stop trying to impress me?” Diego looked confused but finally agreed.
Mia grabbed the flowers and dragged Lucas with her towards the girl. She looked kind of scared but luckily she didn’t run away. “What are you doing?” Lucas whispered in Mia’s ear while they were walking. “I’m trying something I hope won’t back fire.” They stop in front of the girl and Mia turn to Lucas. “Can you ask her if she speaks English, if she doesn’t you’re translating.” He asked her and she nodded. Mia handed her the flowers and told her they’re from Diego. She blushed and looked away. “He said to give these to you and if you want to get to know him better he would like to take you out.”
“Why didn’t he come talk to me himself?” she asked with a sweet voice.
“Because he was nervous you would say no.” Mia hoped she sounded convincing.
“I would like to go out with him.” She says after a while. And Mia whispered to Lucas to go get Diego. He was dumbfounded that it actually worked.
Diego walked over and introduced himself. “Hi, I’m Diego.”
“Lucia” the girl introduced herself.
“Nice to meet you Lucia. Do you want to get ice cream with me?” she smiled and nodded. He smiled back. And said “Tu mano parece pesada puedo sostenerla por ti ? (Your hand looks heavy can I hold it for you)” they linked their hands and walked away.
Lucas looks at Mia and clapped. “Are you some kind of cupid or so? That was legit cool. I’ve never seen Diego so flustered. He actually admitted the girl is cute. How were you so sure she would say yes? Are you a mind reader?”
Mia laughed. “No you idiot. It’s called common sense. I noticed her looking at him for a while and I thought why the hell not, if it works at least your brother will be off my back.”
They continued their shopping and talking. When they reached home Lydia was already there and looked frustrated.
“Hey is everything okay?” Mia asked while putting away the things they bought.
“No, nothing is okay. I am seriously going to murder someone.” She exclaimed as she continued pacing in their living room. Lucas and Mia both took a step back, because she is a scary woman when angered.
“Want to talk about it?” Mia tried hoping she wouldn’t explode.
“That pinche boss of mine. He told me to get my act together or I’ll get fired. And for what you ask? I slapped a client because he tried to grope me. Cortaré a su dick de mierda que juro al dios que lo haré sufrir. (I will cut his fucking dick off I swear to the god that I will make him suffer)” Lucas looked horrified at the last bit and Mia looked over to him asking for a translation. He shook his head and whispered “You don’t want to know.”
“Okay Lydia look at me calm down. He’s not worth it.” Mia tried to calm her and stop her from pacing like a mad woman.
“Why don’t we three go out today? Some alcohol in our system may do us all a little good.” Lucas suggested and they agreed. She needed to get it out of her system before she really does something bad.
“I just hope she doesn’t make a plan to murder her boss under the influence of the alcohol.” Lucas muttered after a while.
By the time they reached the club the mood was already set everyone was dancing, drinking and having a good time. After a few drinks Lydia and Mia started dancing. They had so much fun, somehow they ended up dancing on the table. They got off the table when Lydia had to use the bathroom. When the girls came back they went to the bar for more drinks. That’s when Mia’s eyes landed on the sexy doctor from the hospital. He flashed his million dollar smile at them and Mia pushed Lydia towards him. They talked a little bit, he bought her a drink and they went off to dance. When Mia searched for Lucas she saw he was making out with a blond near the stairs. It was really getting hot in here. Mia felt like she couldn’t breathe, she didn’t know if it was because of the alcohol or because of the smoke in the air. She turned to the bartender to ask where the roof was because she didn’t want to go outside alone, but before she could say anything he put a drink in front of her.
“I didn’t order this.” Mia screamed over the loud music to the bartender.
“He did.” The bartender said pointing to a guy at the bar.
“Give it back to him. Tell him I’m not interested. And can you point me to the roof or something before I pass out. I need fresh air.” He nodded and asked Mia to wait for a bit. He gave the drink to the guy who sent it for her and walked over to her. He led Mia to the roof. Finally she felt like she could breathe better.
“Are you feeling better now?” he handed Mia a bottle of water. She eyed the bottle hoping it wasn’t laced with anything. She put it down beside her, deciding not to take the chance. She was sober enough to know not to except drinks from strangers, not to except drinks unless they were made in front of her. But she also knew people injected sealed bottles with drugs.
“Yes. Thank you very much.”
“Don’t mention it miss.” He looked over to Mia and she smiled back. “This is the part where you would usually say your name.”
Something in the way the guy presented himself told Mia that she could trust him a little.
“Yes usually, but I won’t. Why can’t we just be two strangers who talked? You see when you know something about someone you get attached to that person. By a simple name that already happens. Don’t you want to have a long meaning full conversation with something, knowing that it will be the only thing that person knows about you.” He looked in deep thought and spoke up after a while.
“You know I’ve never done that before, but it does sound intriguing. So what do you want to talk about?”
Mia stared into the night. “Do you ever feel alone?”
“Yeah, most of the time. But that is also because I live alone.” He chuckled.
“No, not like that.”
“Like you’re between people and you still feel alone. You have friend but you still don’t have anyone to talk to. You have so many thoughts in your brain but can’t say any of them. You can function like a normal human being ad midst people, but as soon as you’re alone you feel yourself break. You feel all you insecurities creep up in you and you doubt everything around you?” Mia looked at him and it felt like he could understand what she meant.
“Like no matter what you do you’re never enough. Or no matter how many people are in your life you still feel like no one cares enough.”
She nodded. “There is always is always this darkness that doesn’t seem to go away. It stays with you throughout all the shit that happens in your life.”
“Yes exactly. It sucks.”
“I agree. But you know what’s worse?”
“It welcomes you when everyone leaves and for some kind of twisted reason it makes you okay with it. It’s like you can be afraid of your insecurities without being judged.”
He stayed silent for a while then said “I’ve never looked at it that way.”
“Everyone has their own demons, their own battles they fight. The strong deal with it with a smile on their face without anyone knowing it. The brave try to fight it but they turn for help when they really need it. And the weak get so lost in it they can’t find their way out again. So it’s really up to you to decide are you strong, brave or weak.”
“Wow are you some kind of philosopher? But you know when you have been too strong for too long it’s totally acceptable to let loose for a while or seek some help. Because even the strong have their breaking points. And the worst is that people always expect for the strong to remain strong, to remain okay. No one ever asks if they are okay because they always seem fine.”
“True. Very true. But you know the strong refuse to let others see them break.”
They sat in silence for a long time. It was a silence where you didn’t have to say anything and it would still be comfortable. Mia noticed him look at his watch, maybe he had to be somewhere.
“It was nice talking to you stranger” he said as they walked back into the club. He walked Mia outside and put her in a cab.
Lydia and Lucas texted Mia that she could catch a taxi home. When Mia reached home she changed her clothes and crashed on the bed. She grabbed her notebook with her bucket-list in it and crossed off –Have a long meaningful conversation with a stranger. Her eyes scanned at all the items she had written and all the items she already crossed off. She felt a sense of accomplishment and fell asleep to the thoughts of what tomorrow would bring.