I look down at the city of Augusta , the city I've come to love so much. Moved here with my step mom and big sister 15 years ago and so much has changed over the years but the same old city. I sigh and abruptly woke up from my day dream when someone yells me name "Tessa! are you fucking listening" my boss Gregory Queens snaps his fingers in my face "Yes.. yes Sir" I reply quickly and the stares around the conference table doesn't go unnoticed. "What was I fucking saying Tessa tell me.. huh" he yells.
Oh God here I am once again, I don't even know why I still work for this man after five years of yelling and absolute nonsense. Gregory was a 45 year old with black hair and grey eyes short and pudgy with fat fingers there was nothing special about his looks he just had brains and a bad sense of humor and he never completed a sentence without the word "fucking "
"Stop fucking staring at me and tell me what I fucking said" he continues to yell. I sigh and stretch "Come down Sir
you were talking about the mysterious kills in town and something about front page but consider your problem solved solved I will start working on it can we go now its been 45 minutes already" I smile sweetly and he growls his face full of anger. Eyes widen more as I get more stares and winks, I loved this part of my job where I get to mess with my boss but there's nothing he can do. He knows I'm a very important asset and loosing me means loosing rates which gives him his money besides I'm his advisor what more could he ask for.
His face turns red and oh the sight is to die for when he puffs his large cigar and dismisses everyone "not you Tessa"
I roll my eyes and sit in my seat.
He puffs more smoke as he glares at me like he's planning all the ways to kill me before he sighs "one of these days I will kill you"
"At least when I die I will get away from you " I mumble. "I heard that"he said stares at me. "Do you hate this job that much"he suddenly yelled. Here we go again, he asks this question every single day and I give him the same answer. "I love my career I just hate this place"
"Oneday your fucking mouth is gonna get you in fucking trouble"he shook his head. "I know Boss but today's not that day"I chuckle. "Get out" he barks. "Oh thank God " I stand up quickly and pick my notepad and cellphone from the glass table. "Make yourself useful get me some coffee.... "
"I'm not getting you that boss remember what happened the last time you took coffee I'm getting you tea" I said. "You're now my fucking nanny huh? " he yelled again.
"I wish I wasn't "I say loudly as I walk out to my desk. I place my notepad on my desk and check my blogs and email to see the same old stuff before a headline blings in "Four bodies found at the Capitol Park this morning" I read out. This never ends those it? There have been random kills on the streets which started almost a month ago usually victims are scarred beyond recognition and police investigations have come to nothing even forensics can't really prove anything with the DNA that gets found so wierd yet it thrills me the more to dig into this case. Over the past five years I've written articles on mafias, drug cartels, corrupt politicians and many other stuff but never have I written on a murder case. You are wondering how I don't have people after me after bringing all these dangerous people down? One or two people have tried to harm me but I pull through it what horrible thing haven't I been through. Which is my secret to keep but I've never been shot, I keep wondering how been shot its gonna be like when someone draws my attention "You've also seen the news I guess"
I turn to find Freya my coworker, room mate and bestfriend. I bit my lower lips and push my glasses "I can't stop thinking about it "I tell her. " Its getting more stranger than I thought... wanna grab some coffee" she said mid sentence. "Sure I even gotta grab Greg some tea"I said standing up. "You're now his nanny"she laughed and I sigh as we take the elevator to the last floor downwards to get out of the building. I phone beeps and I check the notification"its Charlie she's waiting at the coffee shop" I said.
"The early bird always one step ahead" Freya said as the elevator blings open and we walk out into the sunny morning. We cross the road to our favourite coffee shop where Charlie waves vigoursly to get us to come over.I sit down and the first question Charlie throws at me is"Tess did you cut your her again? "
I roll my eyes, there we go again "Yep"I reply quickly. "Tessa why won't you leave your hair alone for all the six years I've known you your hair has never gotten to your neck and I don't know why you hide those beautiful golden eye behind these glasses" she whines so like Charlie. "I like my hair short and these glasses are my favorite simple " I wave the waiter and we place our orders. "You gotta wake up girl, freshen up, go shopping, buy more clothes, make up and allow your hair to grow you would look so gorgeous if you let these thick tawny blond curls grow "she says. "Whatever" I mumble and tweet on the DailyHerald platform. Charlie Moon is a free spirited person, she has wild red hair with blue eyes and a round face, she has the perfect body and wears all kinds of clothes pencilshirks , minishirks, tight dresses, long heels and lots more like Freya too Freya loves the fashion trends and wears anything she wants with makeup that makes both of them look more like models than reporters unlike me I prefer baggy jeans and shirts sometimes loose jeans and one all two tops Charlie's forces me to put on. I love fashion and clothes, heels and make up but 15 years ago I was shook to my very core when my step father raped me. Since then I've made it my life's work to dress unattractively as possible not to draw any attention my tawny blonde hair which I never let grow past my neck is combed backwards, I never dyed or added extensions to my hair I always wash it up naturally and cut it up to make sure its never past my neck. I wear glasses too to complete my look and like today I feel so comfortable in my loose jeans, black shirt with my black leather jacket. A lot of people wonder if I really am Theresa Scarlet because you might mistaken me for a boy from afar but I don't give a damn I comfortable with what I am and what I wear. My two bestfriends know what happened to me so they try not to bother me too much even though now and then they bug me to apply some lipgloss or mascara or some flat shoes instead of boots, I wore these brown flat shoes these morning just to satisfy Freya because I'm 5'6ft I wouldn't want to get any higher.
"One laite for Charlie, two coffee for Tessa and Freya not forgetting your tea and blue berry muffins" Ernie the waiter delivered with a wide smile. "Thanks Ernie" I smile. "You're always welcome Tessa... I... I mean all of you"he fumbles and waves us quickly Charlie and Freya giggle as always"Ernie will die the day you just give him a handshake"Freya starts. "Shout up"I say sipping my coffee. "He likes you so much Tess can't you see the way he looks at you? "Charlie teases. "No now please both of you stop it"I say buy they ignore me totally. Freya's phone beeps and she frowns now its my turn to laugh. "Duty calls" I mock her. "You are lucky today but guess what we are roomies we can tease you all night till day break" Freya winks. "And the next day and the next day and the next day and..... ". "Okay, okay Charlie I get it.. let's get going" I stand up grabbing the brown pack with Greg's order."its on me today "Freya pays the bill and we dash out of the shop, cross the road and head into the building.
Now in Greg's office I listen to his ranting about the tea and other unimportant stuff as I wait eagerly for the important stuff I've been wanting to hear all week. "These fucking muffins are gonna make me fat" he complains but eats it anyway. "C'mon Sir tell me why I'm here" I say quickly the way he's sucking the blueberry of his fingers are getting unbearable. "Never rush me when in the middle of a fucking muffin session... tissue"he orders with a frown and I sigh grabbing the whole box to him. "Sometimes I wonder why I even tolerate you"he huffed. "So can I start the article? "I ask quickly. "What article? " he reigns ignorance and lits his cigar. " On the murders around town" I say in an obvious tone. "Oh that one.. I changed my mind you are doing something different now"he said blankly. "What.... but.. b.. but why Greg you know I was into this particular story"I said. "I don't fucking care Tessa I handed it over to Ted Benson you are to follow another story"he said pulling out something from his large desk.
"You gotta be kidding me Sir, Ted... Ted Benson I'm way better for this story than he is" I draw down my arguments. "Yeah, yeah duh.. Whatever you are the best at what you do that's why I want you on this new story" he throws various magazines to me and one look at their covers I frown and he laughs when he sees the look on my face. "Keith Stone? really Sir really" I furrow my brow and he imitates me laughing. "Really Tessa you are down this story on Keith Ashmore Stone, he's one one Maine's successful businessmen, his empire of glory and money at just a young age of 28 he seems to have it all he's a bachelor too" he winks and i'm disgusted. "Why don't you write this story yourself you seem to know more than I do" I said placing the magazines in his desk. "I wish I could but I want your to write about this man of all his glory I bet he's has a formula to all that money of course he will be consented so write more glory about him with your marvelous hands"he opens his hands dramatically. "Greg are you already in love with this man he isn't anything special"I said folding my arms. "You stop fucking questioning me and just write the story can you see he's and his empire and family are trending, he's on Forbes, Vogue, Times, People he's trending and trend means publicity and publicity means higher rates and higher rates mean.... "
"Money " I end his sentence for him. "Now be a good girl and write everything you find on him, take as long as you want two weeks, a month, six months whatever but make sure you give me the best story ever I want some juice no paper has ever written "he said dreamily. "As you wish Greg"I give up and turn to leave. "Wait " hope flickers as I turn quickly waiting for him to tell me to drop this story and write what I was thinking of but instead he says simply "take the magazines along they might help and don't imitate any... "
"I know how to do my job Greg" I frown as a I grab the six magazines and walk out not after I hear him say "Nice jacket "followed by laughter. "Such a prick"I mutter as I walk to my desk and slouch in my chair placing the magazines on my desk and stretching a little before researching on my computer.
The rest of the day pass over uneventfully till I realize two perfect manicured hands on my desk. "Hey"I smile slowly "staying off late again? "Charlie arched a brow at me and I yawn and stretch from the stiffness. "Nope I'm going home "I reply. "C'mon today is Friday Tess you can do all the sleeping on Saturday"Charlie says. "okay then I will continue with my work" I state quickly. "Really Tessa, remember we told you about the Phoenix club? " Freya frowns. "Uh..huh" I say slowly. "And now you are bailing again for I don't know the 100th time"Charlie says. "Guys I'm sorry I.... "
"20th avenue pick a cab I placed you a dress of your approval on your bed "Freya says sharply. "Oh she's kinda mad"Charlie says to me. "You know Freya she hates it when someone let's her down "I bury my face in my palms and groan. "Tell her I'm gonna call you when I get there"
"Really"Charlie jumps excitedly. "I'm gonna tell Freya... Freya c'mon wait up"she runs after her.
"Oh I'm gonna regret this"I whisper to myself and stand up to leave.
"Oh I regret this"I mumbled to myself as I stood outside the club. I called both Freya and Charlie to come get me but I'm still wondering why they've been so long and its only been five minutes since I got here. One minute and i f they don't come you're outta here, I tell myself to relax and start counting in seconds "60.. 59.. 58.. 57.. 56.. "
"Tessa you came"Charlie rushes over behind her is Freya with a small smile. "I'm glad you came out of your shell"she smiled. "Girl you look good in those"Charlie compliments the thight blue jeans and tight white sleeve dress. "Isn't the neck too you know... "I try to pull the v-neck up a little to cover the cleavage "there's nothing wrong with the dress I choose for you "Freya steps closer and pulls the dress down "Perfect c'mon let's go"They both drag me inside where the music is so loud and the stench of alcohol is everywhere along side the smell of cigars and lots of smoke. There are a lot of people dancing here and there
"Oh jeez I'm gonna get sick"I mumble as we sit at a corner where people are not dancing but people passing by alot.
"You sit here and I will get us something to drink... Charlie don't leave her"Freya warns before she leaves. I look around and I see a group of men staring at us intently. Oh its Charlie they are looking at I'm just the weirdo seated with her. They begin to laugh and this time I'm sure they are laughing at me, oh this was a stupid idea as if my problems couldn't worsen. Two guys come and pull Charlie away "Tess don't go anywhere okay I will be back"she says. "What are you, her nanny"one of the guys laugh. "Whose dresses like this to a club" the other laughs. "Hey.. Shut up she's my friend"Charlie snaps before I can't hear more of what they say even though I know they will still laugh at me. I feel so small and more scared as I look around to see no one familiar. I stand abruptly and decide to leave. I walked through the crowd and suddenly someone hits my ass and I jump crushing into someone else and spilling whisky on my white dress. "Oh I'm... I am so sorry "I stutter while I give the lady on the floor a hand but she throws my hand away frowns at me when her friends help her up. "Are you blind, will you watch where you are going next time"she scowls at me. "I'm so sorry okay here have a tissue"I offer. "I don't need your filthy tissue"she glares at me. "She ruined your dress"one of her friends start to say. "I bet she sneaked in"another says. "Call security "the woman says and in no time two huge guards appear. "Carry her out"the woman snaps and I frown feeling humiliated, all this wouldn't have happened if I stayed home. "Please don't touch me I know the way out"tears gather in my eyes but I refuse to let them fall. I start walking away when I hear the woman say "next time watch your step human"she spat the human word so viciously and I wondered to myself isn't she human?
I walk down the street feeling pity for myself all over again as thunder rambles and the rain start to drizzle. "Really.. c'mon God rain "I mumble angrily and picks the pace no cab wants to stop so I plan on walking home with is 45 minutes from here on foot. I continue sulking in my misery as the rain keeps drizzling harder. I start running and bump into someone who almost stumbles over me. Not again" I'm sorry " I hold this person' s arm and he also swats my hand away and stands on his feet stumbles he continues. I notice he's dressed all in black and even his hair is hooded. I turn to leave but I step ob something and I bend down to find a golden ring wrought in infinity symbol. "Hey.. You left your ring hey... "He don't head my call and dashes to a dark alley two blocks away, so fast I wondered and run after him. As if he disappeared into thing air I walk into the dark alley and I have this bad feeling about this place, who knows what is hiding in the dark? I hide behind a huge dumpster when I hear a weird sound like an animal growl. I peek and close my mouth to large wolves were dragging someone who seemed to have passed out, from the black attire I realized its the hooded man I begin to panic.
Wolves but who released them fron the zoo and come to think of it there was only one wolf in the Augusta city zoo. The white polar wolf, but these wolves seemed so queer and from the way the handled the man in a gentle way made it weirder. I must think of something fast before the eat that man and I jump and shout"leave him alone" and realize its the dumbest thing I've ever done now am also gonna be eaten because of my stupidity. One of them growl I stumble back "please don't hurt me I only want to help him, please don't eat him too" I point to the man and as if what I said touched them the two huge wolves begin to ran away but one if them turned but to look at me and I was mesmerized by its grey eyes. It run off before I knew it and I rushed to the stranger in the ground. The rain starts pouring heavily and I curse as u drag his large body and wonder if its even a human being I'm helping he weighs a large horse. I search him for a wallet or something and I only touch blood. "Oh my God,.... Oh my his bleeding somebody help "I scream and shiver from the sight of blood reminds me of my father's blood all over my hands. I swallow hard and try to wake him up I keep his hoodie on and drag him from the dark alley. Luckily I got a cab this time and the driver helped me carry him in and asked "where to ma'am.. the hospital? "He asks as he drives and I don't know what came over me but I hear myself say "no denzel street "
I stare at the stranger in my favorite couch, his breathing was uneven like he was panting I had already cleaned his wound after so much difficulty his wet clothes were still on I wondered I I should take off his clothes, I've been wondering for 10 minutes now and still hadn't made a move. He's hoodie still covered his face all I could see were his soft lips and his chin which was shaved. I kept staring at those perfect lips and had the nastiest thoughts for a split second. He's a stranger Tessa, I scold myself and walk up to him and touched the bandage on his wound then my hands move from my sides and try to pull his hoodie up and in a split second I'm being turned over, I try to scream but his gloved hand covers my mouth"shut up in not gonna hurt you " a harsh voice barks. I nod quickly and realize the position I'm in and begin to panic. My legs are between his and he's kneeling over me. He stands up quickly as if reading my mind and stretchs. "Why did you bring me here"he looks around with a frown at the corner of his lips. I gap at him like he's crazy "why did I bring you here? are you for real at least a thank you would do after I dragged you all the way from that dark alley to my home only God knows you were doing there"I fold my arms as he turns quiet for sometime as if he was thinking of what he said but the next think he says throws me off with fury. "First of all I didn't as for your help and secondly what I was doing there is none of your business "he says rudely and I bit my lips while I clench my fists. "I should have left you to die do you even have any I the kind if creatures...... "I held it back and thought to myself
What will he think when I tell him wolves were about to feast in him, he will think I'm crazy besides wolves are not supposed to be in Augusta in the first place I didn't realize I was seriously biting my lips when he says "stop biting your lips"
"Excuse me" I frown "I mean I'm thirsty and wet can you get me some thing to change into"that was the most insincere request I've ever heard I bet it took him everything to speak calmly but still so fake. I raise an old navy green shirt that belonged to my father and a jeans was my father's too. "Are you gonna stand there as I change and I'm also thirsty"he adds. I takes everything in me not to scream at this man "I havent seen your face yet but you are the most annoying and ungrateful stranger I've ever met" I tell him and he chuckled "and you a the dumbest person I've ever met who brings a total stranger into her home, what if this stranger harms you? "
"A good Samaritan " I tell him and he laughs. "Just get me some water good Samaritan "he smirks. "I'm doing this because you are a soul in distress not because you deserve it"I hiss and storm into the kitchen and grab a glass and pour him some water. "Here you go you ungrateful.... " I look around and there's no sign of him or my dad's clothes it doesn't take me a second to realize he's gone. "All for saving his life such an ungrateful man" I whisper so pissed.