Chapter 1- Morning Mishaps
I sighed getting off the bed, rubbing my eyes and face. Another sleepless night.
Nothing Im not used to..
It sucks to lay on the bed, head filled with brutal thoughts and being able to do nothing about it.
At nights I wait until the morning arrives and at mornings, I wait until the night arrives. And that, my friends is how my life passes these days
As the sun rose, I got off the bed, getting ready to start another day of mental agony.
I tied my long hair up in a bun as I walked into the bathroom. A bathroom that has two buckets and a small toilet area covered with an old torn piece of curtain and my accessories. My accessories, tooth brush, tooth paste, shampoo and a soap.
A chuckle escaped my lips as I realized the life I used to live and the life Im living right now.
Thats right, karma really is a bitch. I shook my head, before undressing myself.
I stepped out, wearing a t-shirt and a jeans, that looked as worn out as it did two days ago. Managing life with two jeans and 3 t-shirts, is a task, I tell you.
I finger combed my hair and put it in a ponytail. I wish I had a mirror to see how I look like. Im sure I wouldn't like the reflection I'd get, but still.
I walked out of my bedroom and entered into the kitchen. Sighing as I knew theres nothing I could make breakfast with.
Great, no breakfast again huh?
I pat my tummy, "I think you should start your concert, tum tum", its as if my stomach understood my language, it started growling, "There you go", I smiled and walked over to drink some water to feed my stomach, not wanting to leave it empty.
I opened the sink tap, only for wind to pass through it, splashing little bit of water making me step back, in confusion, "What now?..", I muttered as the tap now started leaving drops of water.
"Ms. Bennett, you have already reached the red line for your water and electricity connection, if we dont find your full payment by a week from now, we're afraid we'd have to disconnect your water and electricity connection..",
Shit! Has it been a week?!
But I showered! Without a second thought, I ran to the bathroom and opened the tap and saw the same results making me huff.
I switched ON the bathroom lights, and sighed as I realized the electricity has already bid farewell to me.
"God..", I breathed out on the verge of giving up. I just woke up god..
But then again, I find myself on the verge of giving up every single day.
But what am I gonna do now?
"Shit..shit..shit", I panicked as I realized that today I have to pay the house rent. How am I gonna do that?!
I cant be kicked out of another house in a week now can I?
My eyes lit up as an idea popped in my head. I work at Mr. Dawson's local cafe for daily survival. I'll try working extra time and try, asking for extra money. He is a nice old man afterall.
Since I dont have a phone or anything, I just locked the front door and started walking towards the cafe, which is a 15 minutes walk from here.
I barely eat..
I survive most of the time drinking water..
And I walk..A lot!
Hence, a good body.
Karma is nice sometimes..
Mr. Dawson on the other hand, is one of those rare people who care for me. In his late 60s, he runs that old cafe just for the sake of tending his wife who is in the hospital bed, fighting blood cancer. He worked alone, until I joined his cafe. People barely come to this cafe. Its just 2 or 3 unfortunate people who just give this cafe a try, for pete's sake.
You may now understand, why its hard for me to pay my rents and bills. The money Mr. Dawson earns for a month isnt enough for himself, still he spares me a buck or 2, keeping most of the money for his wife's treatment.
Why that cafe, then?
Others were not so kind enough to hire me..
I had no qualification in my hand. Im a degree holder in business management and fashion designing. But in my cruel past, I lost all those certificates and stuffs, that would prove my education. But eh..nobody is gonna believe my words without showing them the proof. However Mr. Dawson was so helpless, that he hired me. Besides, to make some coffee and serve them, we dont need any certificates now do we? Who is gonna believe me that I lost my certificates in a....
Well, thats a story I would narrate to you all later, now we find a way to survive...
My footsteps slowed down as I neared Mr. Dawson's cafe. My eyebrows furrowed in confusion and my head swam in thousands of thought.
"Good morning, honey!!", I jumped as my eyes fell on the overly excited stout woman across the street, right next to this under constructed-almost completed building, waving at me with a wide grin.
Something about people being excited in the mornings always annoyed me.
Still, her contagious smile and adorable waving, immediately drew a smile on my face as I waved back at her.
She owns this bookshop right next to that huge ass building with her daughter of my age. Such a nice woman she is..
My eyes flew back to Mr. Dawson's cafe..
There was a huge lorry, infront of the cafe while some men were carrying the things from the cafe, and loading them into the lorry. By now, the cafe looked almost empty. What confused me more was, Mr. Dawson standing by the doorway and looking at all these with a small smile on his face.
Why am I having a bad feeling about all these?
Why is my sixth sense telling me that Im not gonna like what Mr. Dawson has to say...?
I slowly walked towards him and my heart jumped when his eyes fell on me, his smile widening, "Ah Althea..I was waiting for you dear..", he said stepping forward making me force a smile towards him.
"Mr. Dawson, umm...what's going on?", I asked pointing to the lorry and the moving men, my face null with nerves.
"That..uhh..why dont you come in, sweetie?", he said hesitating lightly, making an ugly feeling churn in the pit of my stomach. I nodded and walked inside along with Mr. Dawson.
"Take a seat, will you?", he gestured towards the only chair in the cafe and I shook my head, "Its fine, you sit please..", I said and he smiled at me before taking a seat.
I looked at him, fearing whatever that would come out of his mouth, "I dont know how to start...", he said sighing as I just looked at him while playing with my fingers.
"Im moving out of town, Althea", a thunderbolt literally just dropped on my head at his words as I just stood there not knowing how to react.
"Im sorry, I should've told you this earlier, two weeks ago to be precise..but with the rush of life, I forgot informing you..", his voice was filled with sorry and I looked at him not knowing if I should yell at him for not telling me this earlier or just hug him good bye..
If he told me this earlier, by now I would've looked for another petty job and survived. He is telling me this in the last moment, and what am I gonna do for the bills and rent?
"Wh-what even happened, Mr. Dawson? Why suddenly-",
"I had to Althea..I was not planning to leave this either..I was bought to this situation..", he said rubbing his face.
My eyesbrows furrowed, "I dont understand..", I said and he looked up at me with a soft smile, "You see that building over there?", he said pointing over the, sky reaching building infront of the cafe. The building which was lately under construction and now almost polished with some final pending touches to it. Few men were still working on it..probably would finish it by today.
I nodded, "Well, the owner of the building apparently wants to purchase this land", he said and I was left speechless, probably in anger.
"How can they sudd-",
"Relax child..I was angry at first too, but the men were nice enough to deal this gently..",
"The owner came here?", I asked, sitting on the floor, right beside his leg. He shook his head, "He didnt, but his men did..or his friends, I dont know", he said and I looked at the building, that just took my only job away.
"I told them that this is how I survive and my wife's current condition and all that, pretty much strictly declining their proposal..and they made a phone call to the owner and he wanted to speak to me..", I was just looking at him with my mouth agape, listening to him.
Listening to his tale of taking my job away..
"The owner was a young gentleman, really tactful and kind with words and has a unique way of approach. He said he'll take the incharge of my wife's treatment in return of....",
"..this land..", I completed his sentense, gut wrenched about the way this morning turned out to me.
How tactfully did he buy this land..
Things people do with their brain amuse me sometimes..if only I used mine in the same way, I would've been chilling at my own mansion and not on some cafe's floor, listening stories of how unfortunate excuse of a soul I am to lose everything I have.
"Im sorry, Al-",
"Its fine, Mr. Dawson..it-its not your fault..anybody in your shoes would've done the same..", I assured him with my words in a low voice, my future playing as a movie infront of my eyes.
"What are you gonna do, now?", he asked and I chuckled.
He is questioning the exact same thinv I've been questioning myself since years now.
What am I gonna do now?
"I-I dont know..", I said standing up sighing, forcing a tight smile towards Mr. Dawson who was giving me a look of pity.
Im tired of it. Im tired of all the pity looks I recieve. It makes me feel so small and tiny. I'd rather them giving me hateful looks than pitiful looks.
He stood up, removing his huge spectacles, "You've been a real sweetheart, Althea..you made things easier for me all these days, even when I couldn't give much in return. Such a hardworking young lady you are, I whole heartedly wish you the best of life ahead of you, because you deserve every bit of it..", he said holding my shoulder while I held in the urge to scoff at his last sentence.
I mean, yeah right..I screw things up big time and expect to have the best of life...pfffft naaah...
Still, I nodded, "If anything, I should thank you giving this nobody a job here and letting me work..if it wasnt for you, I dont know how I'd make it..", I chuckled, "..I never imagined this day, but Mrs. Dawson has to come first. I hope you take good care of her and yourself, I'll miss you..", I said with my nose stinging lightly at the thought of this sunshine of a man, leaving. For a better cause of course..
"Aw..I will miss you too, darling..I'll never forget this energetic woman facing life at the ripe age of having fun. You're special. I just know, there is something big in store for you..", he said and my broken heart still managed to flutter at his kind words.
"Im happy for you, Mr. Dawson..", I said with a smile as I have one last look at the cafe that I grew used to these past few days.
Nothing is permanent for me, is it?
My eyes instinctly fell on the building infront of me and I did a double take at the men, fixing the real huge name board.
I froze in my spot as my eyes widened at the name on the board. I forgot breathing. I couldnt move my eyes away. I could feel Mr. Dawson calling me, but I couldnt blink. My heart raced at its fastest as I saw Karma glaring at me from the name board in the name of..
"Mistakes are forgiven, Sins are punished.."