Today is Friday, February 14th, Valentine’s Day. I just got off of work early today. The boss let us all go home early. Him and the Mrs are going out to a matinée and dinner. Luckily I got paid today although 3 hours of pay was truncated due early dismissal. Fortunately for me I don’t splurge as much as I used to, so no big deal. I head over to Barnes and Noble to buy a couple of books, since they’re having a sale.
To my misfortune, the sale was only for romance and new romance novels. “That completely sucks” I said looking at the sales board. It’s a good thing I still have my membership card and coupons I’ve received in the mail two weeks ago. I walk over to the Fiction section for a few books. I grab a few books, works of Vonnegut, Palahniuk, Hemingway, and Bradbury in the Sci-Fi section. I’m bump into someone, her books drop and I set my basket down.
“Hey are you alright?!” I exclaimed, helping the person out. “Y-yes, I’m fine. I wasn’t paying attention.” the voice of this person, was a woman. I stood her up and grabbed her books. Standing at the same height as I, it was my ex-lover, Helena.
“Miles? Is that you?”
We both hugged each other in excitement. “Long time no see!” she said happily.
“Like wise. You haven’t changed at bit except for your hair.” I responded, noticing her blonde hair grew out and she added dark streaks on them.
“You’ve changed a bit. It looks like you’ve been working out and getting less sleep nowadays.” She notices the dark circles in my eyes. It’s hard to stay awake when you’re on call nearly every day.
“I see you’re taking advantage of today’s sale.” I commented. Helena has eight books and a LED bookmark in her shopping tote bag.
“So are you. You’re still reading Vonnegut I see?”
“Well I haven’t read Sirens of Titan, Welcome to the Monkey House, Bluebeard, Galapagos and Deadeye Dick. I don’t have the luxury of reading that much nowadays. Anyway, what are your plans for the evening?”
“I have a date.”
“Oh,” I said disappointingly. I wanted to try to rekindle things with Helena but now it was futile. “That’s great!”
“I heard disappointment in your voice.” Helena said. “Really?” She puts her hands on her hips, catching my lie.
“I was hoping that we would go out on a date together. I understand that we didn’t work out in our last relationship, but I was hoping we would start anew. At least just have one date. Either way, I don’t mind it.”
“Miles,” Helena puts her hand on my left shoulder, “nothing against you, but I just don’t think that now is such a good idea. We hardly saw each other the last time we dated, you were always busy with school and work, I was finishing up school myself. It was rough, I’ve missed you. I met someone who’s schedule matches mine. We could still be friends. I have no issues as long as you don’t.”
Suddenly, a feeling was releasing from me. I’ve stopped feeling like I wanted to rekindle things with her. Helena had a point. I let out a sigh. “You have a point. You still have my e-mail address right?” “Indeed I do.” A jingle chimed on Helena’s phone. “My date is here. I’ll see you around. Take care of yourself, Miles.” With a peck on the cheek, Helena leaves.
I begin to go to an open register until someone stops me. “Excuse me.” A soft voice behind me spoke. I turn around to see a raven haired woman, short with round shaped eyeglasses with a book in her hand.
“Can I help you with something?” I asked. “You dropped this.” She responded, holding the book out. It was the new hardcover of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451. I raise my eyebrow and wondered is this for me? “You dropped this when you bumped into that woman earlier.” She spoke. She must have been referring to Helena. “Oh, yes, thank you!”
I see she’s holding a few books. “You like Vonnegut too?” I asked. “Yes, I do. What else do you like?” This stranger and I talked as the line kept moving. When it was only two of us left, the cashiers shouted to us asking if we were ready to buy our books. We both chuckled realizing that we wasted time.
“I never got your name.” “It’s Luna.” “I’m Miles. Pleased to meet you.” After our books were purchased we stepped out of the store wondering where to go next. “Do you have a date?” Luna wondered. “No, I don’t you. Do you?” I asked. “Nope, just me and my books tonight.”
“Uh, Luna…” “Yes?” “I know we’ve met and all, but if you want maybe we can hang out a little more this evening. You’ve mentioned you like indie films.” “I have nothing else better to do, so why not.”
“Perfect, one more thing.” “What?” “Happy Valentine’s Day.”