She was still devastated about her car. It had served her well, and had never made a fuss all these years. Now it’d be a miracle if she could muster up enough dough for a new vehicle, even with the insurance. Perhaps she should have taken up the payment offer from that odd guy after all…
Stumbling inside and lazily scattering the groceries across the island counter, she staggered to her bathroom and began applying treatment to her wound. Carefully she dabbed at it with a soft, damp cloth, wiping away the dried blood and cleaning the wound thoroughly before wrapping an annoyingly huge bandage around her head. Luckily, it wasn’t too bad of a blow, nothing serious, and she was grateful that it hadn’t split open enough to require stitches. It’d be healed up in no time, and hopefully it wouldn’t leave a trace for remembrance, either.
Returning to the kitchen to put the groceries away, she slowly stocked up her fridge till it was full a welcoming sight indeed. Luna perched on the table, striped tail twitching as Diane closed the fridge door with sighs of relief and exhaustion. It’d been a long day.
She slinked back to her bathroom, and ran the tap for a nice, hot bath. She upped the heat until the bathroom was engulfed in steam, and moisture bath in itself. Stepping into the large marble tub, she closed her eyes and drifted away, allowing the warm waves to lap over her in a soothing, tranquil motion, calmness and peace relaxing her tensed body until she felt as light as a feather.
She hummed as she began to scrub, daydreaming and thinking of nothing in particular, until she thought of the man. Ian, she recalled, was his name. Ian Maxtone-Graham, supposed owner of The Gate. He irritated, creeped, and amused her all at the same time. She was such a sucker for Brits, and always had been. Not to mention, she secretly admitted that those blue eyes had been awfully enticing…
She shuddered as the bath began to run cold, so daintily she stepped out and drained the tub, slipping into some fluffy, warm flanel PJ’s. She pulled back the covers of her bed, and scurried underneath, Luna wrapped herself around her head like a turban. Only moments after clicking off the light was she fast asleep.
A few weeks had come and gone.
Christmas came with little excitement, spent alone eating game hens with wild rice and chocolate pie for dessert, one of her own personal traditions. She still didn’t have enough money for a car, so instead bought herself a new computer that had been on an unheard of 50% off sale, since her old one had practically been a dinosaur about ready to become extinct, and it was a necessity for her writing.
New Years too had passed without so much as a single bang or firecracker. All she’d done was finish transferring files to her new computer, assisted by a small glass of champagne, and watched the ball drop in the Big Apple. And that was that.
Life was seeming as dull as ever, and something inside Diane itched to come out and take over, steering her around. But she wouldn’t let it. She stuck to her simple daily routine, shoving aside thoughts of change and splendor. She was conservative in this aspect at the utmost.
Numerous times she looked at the tiny rectangular business card she’d been bestowed upon. And numerous times she’d reached for the telephone to dial the number for more information, but her hand would continually falter, and she’d forget about it for the rest of the day. This process repeated regularly.
"What am I so afraid of?" she asked herself aloud one crisp January morning.
"Mrrrow," Luna replied, rubbing up against her legs.
"I might like it. It’d be a new experience. I might actually make some money."
She reached down and scratched the purring tabby behind the ears. "But I’m tired of failure, Luna. I’m sick of consistently not being recognized for my talents. What if this guy is the same?" She paused and chewed on her lip. "But then again… he said he’s studied my work. He even knew who I was simply from my writing, and I’ve never met anyone like that- not even close."
"Mrrow, meow, prrrrrrrrrow."
"You’re right. I’ll go there this morning. How bad could it be?"