The City of Lost Souls

Arcanum Corvus is an author. He has a book on the New York Times Bestseller list called, Amissus animarum. There's a catch, nobody know's what he looks like. Matter of fact, nobody knows who he is; well there are a few. Arcanum has a past, and he cautiously exposes it through his characters. There's more to Arcanum than meets the eye. So who is the mysterious author, nobody truly knows.

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3. Chapter Three

     I saved my work I’d done so far on the chapter, and closed my laptop. I shut off my desk lamp, and grabbed my headphones. I laced up my sneakers, and pulled my Northface on my over my head. I grabbed my keys off the table by the front door, and went out into the cold air. I locked the door behind me, and popped in my ear buds. I needed to work out my anger with myself. What to listen to? I skimmed through the various artists that filled my iTunes library. Nothing really was keeping me focused. As I ran the song Abby had suggested for me came on. The lead singer of the band Karmin boomed through the headphones. It was a catchy upbeat tune. I heard it the first time, and kept pace with it. I hit replay, and it started again. This time I listened to the lyrics. 

See, I've been waiting all day
For you to call me baby
So let's get up, let's get on it
Don't you leave me brokenhearted tonight
Come on, that's right
Honest baby, I'll do anything you want to
So can we finish what we started
Don't you leave me brokenhearted tonight
Come on, that's right, cheerio

     I stopped dead in my tracks. “Fuck.” I blurted out. A couple of elderly woman looked at me, shaking their heads. I listened to the rest of the song, while trying to regain control of my breathing. Then the last part of the song played. 

When you gonna call
Don't leave me broken hearted
I've been waiting up
Let's finish what we started, oh oh
I can't seem to let you go
Come on, that's right, cheerio, uh!

 

     I put my hands on my hips listening. My head fell at that point. My eyes were closed, and the thudding of my heart, pounded in my ears. I lifted my phone up, and dialed Abby. It went straight to voicemail again.
     ”Hey you’ve reached Abby. If this is an asshole calling, you’ll need the number of a proctologist. If it’s my friends, leave a message.” Beep. 
     “Abigail please just call me back. I really am truly sorry. Please just tell me you’ll meet me at the coffee shop. I’m sorry, I can’t say it enough. Thank you so much for everything. I owe you.” I hung up. I flipped the song on again, and started my run home. 
     
        When I got home, I headed straight to my bedroom. I peeled out of my clothes, and turned on the shower. The steam filled up the bathroom quickly, and I climbed in. I stood there taking my time, just trying to calm my nerves. I washed my hair twice, then scrubbed at my skin until I thought I was pristine clean. I finally shut off the water, and grabbed a towel wrapping it around my waist. My hair was still wet, but I didn’t care that it was dripping. I went to my closet pulling out a grey sweater, a fitted black short sleeve shirt, and a dark pair of jeans. My shoe choice was simple. My favorite pair of black dress boots. I dried off, and let my hair do whatever it would do. A man with wavy hair, not much to do with it. It styled itself. I didn’t need to shave because I had the goatee trimmed. So I dressed swiftly. 
     
        I headed back downstairs after brushing my teeth, and putting on some cologne. I looked at the couch. I remembered when Abby, had curled up beside me. Her head gently rested against my shoulder. I moved my arm to hold her. She nestled in closer, and put her head on my chest. I didn’t see it as a kind of romance. I just saw two friends hanging out, watching a movie. I totally missed the clue from her. We’d done this before. It wasn’t anything new. So when did her feelings for me change? I rummaged through my memories, and thoughts but came up blank. So often we’d link arms, hold hands, cuddle but nothing romantic. She never made a move. Oh I really screwed up. She’d given me clues, and I totally missed them.
    
         I headed towards the coffee shop, my bag slung over my shoulder. I ducked into the florist quickly. 
     “Hi there sir. How may I help you today?” A round faced woman, who had shoulder length blond hair, stood behind the counter. She wore a navy blue polo shirt, with the name of the florist embroidered on it.
     “I’m looking for Purple Hyacinth. My sister told me to pick some up for a friend.” I looked around the small shop.
     The woman smiled, “Oh you must be apologizing to your wife.” 
     I shook my head, “Nope, no wife.” 
     The woman looked at me, “Girlfriend then.” 
     I shook my head again starting to become annoyed with her stupid assumptions. “Can’t someone just get someone flowers to be nice?” 
     She turned and looked at me, “For one thing, this isn’t the right time of season for them. So they’re more expensive.  Second, you don’t just give them as a bouquet, unless you’re really hurt someone.” 
     I sighed, “My sister sent me to get them. I made a friend, a female very upset with me. Now if you don’t mind, let me get my damn flowers, and be on my way.” 
     She smirked at me, “I can see why she’d be mad at you. Well this way. I will wrap them for you.” 
     After five agonizing minutes, and the woman's interrogation; I had my Hyacinth, and well a purchase I felt like I was screwed over on. 
    
         I got to the coffee shop, and luckily our two favorite seats were open. I set my bag on one, saving it for Abby. The other I secured by placing my jacket over the back of it. I wandered up to the counter, and ordered my drink from the Barista. I sat back down, and pulled out my computer. I put in my headphones, and got back to work. I listened to that song by Karmin once more. I cringed, and kicked myself again. I had some time to kill. I’d showed up early. I wanted to surprise her with the flowers. Two o’clock came, and past. No Abby. Sometime after three, I sent the first text.
     “Hey it’s me. I’m at the coffee shop. Can’t wait to see you.” 3:19pm
     I waited, and no response. I went back to writing. Then again I picked up my phone, sending another text.
     “Hey hope you’re ok. Call me, or text me. Please let me know.” 3:49pm. 
     “It’s me again. Abby you’re starting to worry me. Please let me know you’re ok. It's Friday, I wouldn't be surprised if you were called into work.” 4:03pm
     “Abby I’m bringing Chinese over to your place. I will be there soon.” 5:12pm
     “Hey rung your bell. Are you home? Foods getting cold.” 5:32pm
     “It’s 7:02pm. We were supposed to meet up at 2:00pm at Starbucks. I’m leaving stuff at your front door for you. Ab I’m sorry. I love you. Sleep well.” 
     I set the paper bag of chinese on her front stoop. With that I left the bouquet of flowers, and started down the street. I looked back, but she wasn’t there. So this must be Karma. I just wanted to clear the air with her. I owed her a face to face apology. It wasn’t like I’d intentionally left her waiting for me.
      
        I made the trek back home. I checked my messages, but no reply from her. When I got back home, a fresh coating of evening rain had darkened the granite of my front stairs. I rummaged through my bag, and retrieved my keys. I slid them in the lock, and the thud of the deadbolt releasing it’s stance. I pushed the door open, and made my way inside. I tossed my keys on the table like usual, and took my bag off setting it down, and hung up my coat. I grabbed my laptop from the bag, and went back to my desk. I sat down, and opened it up. The screen lit up, after it had come out of it’s hibernation mode. 

 

 

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