I could get used to it. Cooking together like it’s an everyday thing, talking about our mornings like we already know each other – she couldn’t thank me enough for a bit of cleaning few hours before, but I guess she was forgetting a couple of details, like hosting me.
She’s nice, she’s kind, but there’s something about her. It doesn’t necessarily have to be bad, but there’s just more to it – and I wanna find it out.
Lunchtime was relaxing. We didn’t open the item, yet; we were just drinking coffee on her balcony while she gave me one more cigarette of hers.
I felt happy.
This is still madness, but I feel happy.
Sudden, loud music interrupted our conversation, clearly coming from the kitchen. When we got there, it stopped.
That song. I know that song. I remember that song.
While I felt petrified in my own thoughts, desperately trying to grab that only gran of sand of my memory, Charlotte brought me back to the present:
“Where did that come from?”
“Apparently, my phone. If that’s mine, of course”
“Was it in your bag?” – where else?
“If that’s mine, too. Yeah. From the bag” – she immediately walked towards it, while I added:
“Apparently I didn’t notice it” – like it mattered.
She had the most curious frown.
“What is this?” – now that her eyes are on me, I can clearly see that is far from a frown. Is she scared? She seems too cold to be scared. She seems surprised, but focused. I guess.
“The phone?” – I can’t take all this mistery anymore.
“This. This is your phone” – why does she suddenly sound so sarcastic?
“Yeah, that is it” – her expression changes like my mood. Why does she suddenly look angry?
“This is not a phone, this is a phone!” – she took out of her pocket a very, very old one.
“I don’t know what this is, but it’s certainly not a phone” – I was petrified.
She wasn’t angry, she was freaked out.
“I’m afraid that is a phone – I looked like I just saw a ghost and I am about to go inside a haunted house, but am I to blame?
“Charlotte, are the computers at your University’s reception new?”
“What on Earth has that have to do with this?”
“Please, please just answer me” – I didn’t even wanna hear it. Judging from my face, I guess she put aside her own questions to answer to mine. Am I so obviously on the edge of a mental breakdown?
“For all I know, yeah” – she sounds resigned, she obviously just wants to figure things out.
It got worse: I was even more scared and she was even more confused.
“What year is this?” – I had my eyes shut. I cannot believe what I just asked and I did not want to see her reaction.
“What?” – nor hear it.
“I’m serious. Just – I just can’t.
Just answer it.”
My eyes are now wide open, but my sight got blurred. I think I was about to faint.
I sat down.
I felt her touch, heard some sounds, but I couldn’t understand what was going on.
I have no idea what it’s going on.
It’s too much, it’s just too much. Too fast.
I didn’t even realized my tears were sliding down until I felt her hand wiping them away.
I looked upon her face and asking myself how I couldn’t notice her eyes were so blue became a priority, but I guess I just need another cigarette.
She suddenly seems so peaceful, just staring at me with both her hands on my face.
I didn’t even try to figure out her look, this time. I was just enjoying that somehow-calming stare.
“I guess I’m gonna steal another cigarette” – our sudden giggle turned into a laugh, both mechanic and genuine. We are freaking out, but not in the worst way.
The atmosphere on the balcony is peaceful; we avoided words, giving space to each other thoughts, but we are probably just waiting for nothing.
“It all makes sense, now – but I couldn’t keep them for myself anymore.
“At least, most of it. Waking up in the middle of nowhere, with nothing on me. Even this confusion makes more sense. The exhaustion…”
“Well, now we know time traveling is exhausting” – my laugh was genuine. I don’t know how I could cope with the whole thing without a bit of her irony.
“I dreamt of that song, tonight. I realize it just now.” – I spoke between the drags, but my eyes haven’t moved an inch.
“Do you know the title?”
“No clue. One of the many question marks” – and there, another drag and my cigarette was almost finished. Fuck.
“I guess we need to talk” – I swear to God I am gonna get a lung cancer if this thing doesn’t slow down.
“Do I need to worry?”
“No – she giggled, but that wasn’t as cheerful as the previous ones.
“I mean, it shouldn’t be a concern considering what we’ve just discovered. It isn’t really about me, more about my family” – her stare came back to being sweet, but almost ashamed. Why?
“Go on, then. I don’t think it would make the situation any worse, would it” – that might not have been my greatest attempt to solace someone.
“My family has interesting roots. I still don’t know the whole thing, I tried to keep myself out of it, but my family does practice some sort of witchcraft” – she admitted it like it was her biggest secret, but I think it’s sort of cool. Considering the situation, what’s common is still yet to be defined.
“I guess the surprises are not gonna be over for a while. Why do you seem ashamed of it?”
There it is, that’s her laugh. More like a liberating one than a cheerful one, but I can’t complain.
She definitely got it out of her chest, apparently expecting a different reaction from me. It’s good.
“It’s surely not a small talk kind of item, but nothing sounds weird anymore, does it?” – That’s it. She’s definitely back. I smiled.
“That might explain why I had to come to you. Maybe someone can help, who knows.”
“Yeah, not really – first off: great. Secondly: where did she go again?
“The only one who had a clue of what she was doing was my granma, but she passed away a few years ago. This is her house”
Oh, well, that explains the mixed furniture.
I am living in a dead witch’s house? Did I get that right?
“Is there someone else?” -
“My mother, maybe. I think it’s time for a non-announced visit”
“No. Who are you?” – I love this girl. Her humour cracks me in half.
“I will find a way to thank you, I promise” – she caressed my arm again, looking at nothing in front of her, again.
I did the same – maybe this is actually gonna work out.
This madness - as I feel a bit guilty to call – just looks like the greatest show on Earth, now.