When I got home, I called both phone companies and had my landline phone number changed and my cellphone number changed. Unfortunately, my new landline number wouldn’t take effect until tomorrow afternoon. I couldn’t bear the thought of another night like last night, so I unplugged the phone again, and kept my cellphone off.
The next day was a typical Monday, rainy, boring, and grey, and it drug on forever. The rain made my job as bookkeeper even less exciting. I wanted the day to end. Don’t we all on days like that? I couldn’t concentrate on the numbers I was computing, and I was so tired that it looked like all the digits were jumping off the page and running into each other. I guess being frightened and worried about what will happen next can really weigh on the brain. Then, I had a break in my boring day; the inner office mail came. I rose and took it from Cindy, our inner mail clerk. Great, maybe that will take my mind off this caller. As I opened the first envelope, I noticed a sickening, sweet, smell of roses; the note read:
You’re mine. You belong to no one. Just me. No one will touch that golden blond hair or have the pleasure of looking into those emerald green eyes. Your heart shaped face beats to the rhythm of my soul, and always will.
Numbness took over and I sank in my chair. My stomach turned sour. Was it someone at work? At that moment, Dan walked past my door, stopped short, and said, “You look like you just saw a ghost. I something wrong?”
“N-no, I’m fine, really.”
“You don’t sound fine. Are you sure you’re alright?”
He came in, sat in the chair to the right of my desk, and gave me a creased eyebrowed look. “I’m not leaving until you tell me what’s wrong.”
I didn’t want to tell him anything. I didn’t know who to trust. Part of me had my reservations about him, but he had this look about him. His full lips and light gray eyes was captivating. His look of genuine concern touched me. Then I caved and unfolded the whole story from beginning to end. When I finished, I watched him carefully, hoping to see some sign of guilt on his face. But I didn’t see anything. Maybe he’s just very good at hiding his emotions. Oh, really. Now I’m grasping for straws. I sunk my face into my hands. Seconds later, I heard my office door close. Feeling a hand on my shoulder, I looked up to see Dan kneeling beside my chair.
“Don’t worry. I’ll help you find him.”
“But for all I know, you could be him.”
“I’m not, and you have to trust that. Okay? I understand how you feel. It’s hard to trust anyone. But sometimes you just have to.”
“I know,” I said. “You’re right.” But was he?
As he got to his feet, he gave me a kiss on the cheek, squeezed my hand and said, “We’ll beat this. Don’t worry.”
I looked after him as he turned and walked out of the room.
I got out of my chair and stood in the doorway looking in the direction Dan was walking. From behind me, I heard Carl, the janitor, say hello. I turned to see a short, chubby faced little man smiling at me as he fumbled with his keys. I smiled back and said, “Hi, Carl. What are you doing?”
“I’m looking for the key to get into the cleaning closet. Gee, that’s funny.”
“I’m missing the key to Mr. Dodge’s office. Who would want that?”
I walked over to him and held out my hand saying, “Maybe you just missed it. Here, let me look.”
As he gave me the keys, I noticed a tattoo of a rose on the top of his right hand. I froze. In a shaky voice I said, “D-do you l-like r-roses?”
“Oh yes. They’re my favorite flower. Do you?”
“I-I-I…” Dropping the keys, I fled down the hall. When I got to the front desk, I told Sabrina, the receptionist, that I wasn’t feeling well, and that I would go home early.