Each time I close my eyes I wander off into the prison of dreams.Where I was doomed and haunted. I kept thinking of that damn card, I couldn't make any sense out of it. I had it sent to Mr.Graham for further investigation.
Stretching my arms and sinking deeper into the chair, I rested my eyes for a brief moment. The heat of the sun coming from the large window painted a red color on my eyes. I could feel myself zoning out again and the memories of yesterday's event were caught in a loop.
The faint sound of Ylva’s heels coming towards my office made me manage to pull myself out of my thoughts and adjust my form sitting more professional in the chair. The last thing I wanted was to alarm her of my wellbeing.
Ylva shuts the door behind her and hands me several documents and coffee.
“ Thank you,” I said and she gave me a slight smile.
“No worries, I thought you would work on that tomorrow since staying for the night isn’t an option,” Ylva said as she walked towards the aquarium. I raise my eyebrows and title my head slightly.
“ Why? Has the schedule changed?” I asked, my attention was turned back to my computer. I look up at the direction of the aquarium once the room turns silent. It happened once before and it was a chaotic day, I have since changed the old schedule to eliminate the problem. Her blue eyes stare at me puzzled.
“ Your parents booked a table for your birthday tonight,” She said matter-of-fact, I placed my pen on the table and reached for my phone.
It's my bloody birthday and I had forgotten all about it, I ran my fingers through my hair. My phone had been off since I entered the office, missed calls from friends and family rolled in.
“ Happy birthday, I wasn't supposed to tell you but you hate surprises”
“ Thank you, yeah surprises are getting on my nerves,” I said as I fell back on my chair. Thankfully Ylva has always been helpful. Saving from heart attacks. I start to go through the documents piled up on my desk.
“ Hendrix Auto representative has sent the location for the reveal party, they are waiting for your opinion on it,” She said as I reviewed the blue paper with their signature.
“ Manhattan high line? Interesting” I said as I signed the paper. Out of all the places in New York City it had to be there. A hefty price to shut down the road there. I slide it to the edge of the table and Ylva collects it.
“ Understandable, I will leave so you can finish this, I will be working on some emails,” She said as she headed to the exit.
“ Alright then, I will see later” I replied as she exited the office. I stared at my reflection on the dark screen in front of me. My skin looked pale and my hair framed my face making my face look sharper.
The sound of the door opening caught my attention. It was a tall and muscular figure who was familiar with the office.
“ Mr. Smith is outside getting the car ready, we have an hour before the visiting hour's end,” Mr. Grant said as he glanced at his watch. It had become a routine for us to finish the day by visiting the bored Ruben. His friends were there a couple of times and I saw his father leaving once. I would just stop by before heading to meet my parents.
“ I’m done, I will just turn off the computer” I pressed the power button on the system unit and grabbed my bag.
We drove in almost silence, all that could be heard was the low music pumping through the radio.
I arrived at the hospital with Mr Grant and Mr Smith. It has been a week since Ruben’s injury. The automatic doors slid open and we were struck by the strong smell of bleach. As we made our way towards Rubens room we were surprised to see an empty room.
Mr. Grant walked towards the receptionist and came back with the information that Ruben had moved a floor up, so we followed him as he had the directions to Rubens's room.
“ It seems his condition is getting better since they moved him from the emergency floor” Mr. Smith said, he sounded relieved and he wasn't the only one that felt that way.
We were once back in the elevator to the 5th floor.
I tried to calm my nerves down but as soon the doors opened anxiety took over. With heavy steps I entered the bright room.
I looked around his room. There was a half-eaten tray of food on his desk and he was surrendered by get-well cards and a bouquet of flowers. He sat on the edge of the bed and his warm eyes searched for mine. It always shocked me how just last week I had no clue if he would open his eyes. And each visit I saw him getting better, I returned his smile after a while of just staring.
“ Look at you, they let you wear your clothes” I said referring to his black t-shirt and jeans. He scoffs and stands up. I, on the other hand, placed my bag on the little chair beside the entrance.
“ Took them long enough” He muttered while standing up from his bed, his frame almost towering me. He smelled like spring, soft and fresh flowers. His gaze was directed behind me.
I caught a glimpse of him signaling them to leave the room. I met his gaze and a smile tugged on his lips. With my hand gently placed on his chest I pushed him down, he had a habit of forgetting to rest.
“That’s better” I said as he sat on the bed. I then made myself comfortable on the leather chair.
‘’ Move your chair closer to me” he said, he didn't wait for my response as he reached for my chair arm with his uninjured arm. Instead of getting out of the chair, I watched his movements, curious about what he was up to.
“ Now close your eyes”
He noticed my suspicious expression after those words left his mouth.
“ It will only take a second,” He argued, and I responded by closing my eyes. He chuckled and I felt the chair twirl.
“ Done” His voice breathed past my ear, I was about to look behind me to see what he was up to. But the dangling object in front of me caught my attention.
No way, it can not be.
“ Happy Birthday” He said, I could hear a hint of pride in his voice.
“ You aren’t an asshole after all” I said with a smile while admiring the gold necklace that was decorated with tiny green stones. The Ellie Bill necklace was in my palms.
“ I remember it as you giving it up?” He teased me while he turned me back to face him.
“ You might have to check for memory loss then” I replied while putting on the necklace.I could already tell It looked great with my white dress-up shirt.
“ It’s so pretty, the artist has a timeless taste” I said as I continued to adore the piece.
“Timeless indeed, you certainly enhance its beauty” His words emphasized the last word. A cough broke our eye contact.
It was the nurse informing me the visiting hours are over and Mr. Grant was waiting outside.
Taking a deep breath in slowly out, I didn't know if I wanted to thank the nurse or curse her. Ruben reached for my hand as I stood up.
“Don’t waste your birthday, alright?” Ruben said as I prepared to leave. I laughed and gave him thumbs up when he released my hand, and bid our goodbyes for the night as I left.
Closing the door after me I felt overwhelmed with the possibility that someone would come back. That feeling always lingered as I left the hospital, I became frustrated with not keeping my emotions under control.
Walking through the dim corridors I made my way to the main entrance. It was crowded with people in the waiting room, I saw the exit signs and the automatic doors slide open.
Breathing in the cold air, I looked around my surroundings. Mr Grant and Smith were a couple steps ahead of me and a small puddle started to form in the porthole glistening by the street lamps. In the corner of my eye i noticed a dark figure staring at me intensely.