As clear as Day

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Chapter 1

“Yes I know I should have… No, she doesn’t always know what she’s saying. I know Ma, I just- Listen I just called to let you know I’m safe and made the trip in one piece-“Melanie sighed as she closed the truck’s door, hitching her duffel bag over her shoulder, mentally face palming herself for not just sending a simple text to her Mother, she loves her dearly but when her nerves gets the best of her, Mamma Day can be a handful.

"Yes I will. No I just got here- I’m still walking to the door!” Melanie could never understand her Mother’s paranoia, she’s been an only child her whole life, she likes being alone for the most of it, except for the visits with her cousin Scott.

Nearing her door, she decided this afternoon in particular she did not want to be alone…

“Ma, how do I get a spider the size of a poodle off of my door?” she asked her Mom as she retreated a bit further away from the creature “What? Ma I’m not joking! It’s the size of my head I promise! No don’t ask Scott, he’ll only get here in the early hours of the morning plus I’d never hear the end of it.”

Melanie sighed, just below the key hole, sat one of the biggest spiders she had ever seen, one she would not be able to deal with herself.

“Stop laughing you lot! I can hear all off you in the background. No I’m not coming near the thing, yes Dad I’ll do that, thanks for putting me on speaker Ma. Alright, love you too, bye.” She ended the call and moved the sling of her bag further onto her shoulder, turning around to find a helpful soul who isn’t afraid of spiders.

Melanie walked around the parking lot, looking for anyone who would be able to help, feeling more and more idiotic as she goes along. ‘Just my luck’ she thinks to herself, thanks to university not starting for another few days, she couldn’t find anyone. Accepting her fate she walks back to her truck, deciding to either sleep in it or wait until somebody comes along to help her. Option two was wishful thinking, the sun has basically set and the campus is still a ghost town, hopefully the damn spider would be gone in the morning.

After what felt like hours of shuffling around she spotted a figure under one of the lampposts, slight smoke puffing every now and then, she debates on whether it’s worth it to be possibly mugged. ‘Dammit Melanie, it’s either ask Smoky over there or break a bone or two while sleeping’ she mentally threatened herself, finally giving in and getting out of the truck, walking to said Smoky before her nerves got the better of her. ‘Get a grip! You’re not like this, geez is a spider all it takes to have you scared?’ she moaned to herself, she’s never been a scared person, ‘great, I’m becoming Ma’ she groaned to herself.

Before she can scare herself more with the thought, she looks up at her target, now she could see the bold letters of the university on the guy’s jacket.

“Uh Hi, are you by any chance afraid of spiders?” Melanie blurts out, grimacing to herself ‘good grief you are awkward’.

The figure turns around slowly and for a second her mental jaw drops, a defined body under that jacket is there without even being visible, his dark blonde hair rests on his head in a messy bunch, his sharp blue eyes looking straight at her, calculatingly.

His plump lips threaten to lift on the one side, giving her an almost lopsided smile, “No I don’t think so, strange way to break the ice if you ask me.“

Melanie raises her eyebrow at that, a bit cocky but fine he has a point. Without thinking she drags her fingers through her hair with a slight chuckle “I know I look and sound totally bonkers but I have a spider straight from hell on my front door and I am deathly afraid of it, I cannot get into my apartment and will have to sleep in my pick-up. I’ve been waiting hours for someone to pass by and you’re the first one, could you please just remove the thing? I’ll pay you I swear, I have money in my apartment-“

This time she gets a full lopsided smile from him “I’ll get rid of it for you, free of charge. Although I would recommend you to not talk to strangers and not tell said strangers that you have money in your apartment.”

He drawls and that leaves her with a slight blush, seconds later she registers he agreed to help her and almost hugs him, jumping next to him “Thank you thank you thank you! You are a blessed man! I’ll take you to the demon.”

Smoky, for lack of knowledge of his real name, followed her to the apartment and quickly got the spider off of the door and into the garden below. Melanie scolded herself for the way she followed him like a lost puppy, lost in thought until he came upright after letting the creature go.

“Well there you go, your spider problem has been dealt with.” His deep voice rumbled.

She sighed “Thank you so much, how will I ever repay you? What about a coffee? A muffin? Anything?” Melanie felt confused why she sounded desperate or eager, she couldn’t make up her mind.

A deep chuckle got her attention but as her dark brown eyes locked with his blue eyes, his expression almost immediately darkens “I told you I’d get rid of it for you, free of charge. A girl like you shouldn’t even be near a guy like me. Goodnight.”

Before she could muster a reply on his sudden mood change he headed for the parking lot.

Melanie couldn’t decipher the feeling washing over her as he kept walking, something in her wanted to keep him there, just a little longer. She decided to let it go but before her brain could send this thought to her mouth, she got a dose of word vomit “It’s Melanie by the way! What did you mean a girl like me?”

He turned to her with a blank expression his voice sounding deeper than a second ago “Innocent.”

To this Melanie scoffs, ‘okay maybe he had it right but that doesn’t mean I’m going to tell him that’.

“How would you know if I’m innocent? If I’m innocent as you say, does that make you bad?” It was silent for a few seconds before he gave a slight grimace and muttered a goodnight in that deep voice of his again, and again something in her could just not let him go.

“So was it a bad childhood or did you have everything and screw it up because you got cocky?” she blurted out and he froze mid step.

Without turning he answered her question with a question “Psychology major are we?”

She gave a humourless chuckle “English major actually, you play rugby? You sure know how to dodge something like a pro.”

He never answered, just kept walking, as he reached the steps he gave her a sideways glance and bid her farewell “Goodnight Melanie” his voice rumbling while saying her name.

After shrugging of their brief encounter, she slowly entered her apartment and sighs a sad sigh as she sees her calendar on the fridge, she knew something was up when Scott didn’t come to greet her this morning. She dropped her bag on the counter and took out her phone, sending a quick text that she was thinking of him and that she would want him to take care of himself. Scotty had lost someone tragically a couple of years ago and he still hadn’t fully recovered, Melanie sighed as the thought of him losing his soul mate tugs at her heart.

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