Tossing and turning all night. Waking up to a sore arm after having fallen asleep on it. Bumping your toe and subsequently falling on your ass after losing balance. Spilling the water for your cats all over the floor. Enduring the most dreadful workday—ever. So far, a shitty day where nothing goes the way you want it. Ugh.
Friday afternoon, counting down the minutes on the clock, only eight more minutes and you can go home. So close to sprawling on your couch and doing absolutely shit-all. Same thing you do every workday. Never-ending cycle. Not that you’re lazy, it’s pure and utter boredom. You’ve been working here for 11 years now. Straight out of college; accepting the first job that would take you. Accountant. Balance sheets and numbers all day—every day. Three more minutes and you can get out of here, to start all over again on Monday. Oh, the drudgery. Staring at the clock should make time move faster, if only.
Finally. The only good thing about this job is that it’s close to home. About ten minutes later you are home, greeted by your cats. First things first, they need their dinner. Filling both their bowls with the smelly meal they’re eager to devour.
You’re ready to take your jeans off and slip in some sweatpants. Netflix time. Then a thought presents itself. Why not shake things up a bit and go to the movies instead? You can grab dinner on the way back. It’s been so long since you treated yourself to a night out. Eos and Nox have food and each other’s company. If you hurry you can make the 6 o’clock one. What’s stopping you?
Fuck it, you think while grabbing your coat and keys; locking the door behind you.
There aren’t too many people about, must be the chilly weather. Only four more blocks, you continue at a leisurely pace for a while. Shit, you should’ve brought an umbrella. Go back home or continue; you’ll be soaked either way. Might as well continue. As you start speeding up the pace you suddenly feel this massive force bump into you from the side. Before you have time to realize what’s happening, you’ve fallen on the ground. Shoulder-first, smacking on the wet concrete with someone heavy on top of you. After that sharp sting of pain it takes you a few seconds to find your bearings.
The brute who caused this is now sitting on his knees next to you, looking at you as if you’ve caused this. “Can’t you look where you’re fucking walking, eh?” he shouts, pure rage burning in his eyes. Angry, hazel eyes.
“I could say the same to you, asshole. My shoulder hurts like hell.” you shout back while taking a good look at him. His face coated in fresh cuts with bruises on his cheeks and neck. Surely the fall couldn’t have caused that.
Sternly saying “Aye, ye could.” while standing up to his full height. His face changes into a small grin. “Well, my knees fucking hurt as well. So... let’s call it even shall we?”
“Fine.” you agree while trying to get up; foolishly using the arm you’ve injured. He catches your other arm before you can hit the concrete again. Helping you on your feet as if you weigh nothing—which you definitely do not. Did the rain start pouring even harder? Great. Only after you utter your thanks, he let’s go of your arm.
“So where are ye of to in such a hurry, lass? Trying to get out of the rain?” he inquires while guiding you under the eaves of the nearest building, providing shelter.
“Going to the movies.” Your aching shoulder is starting to throb to the point where it’s hard to even think. “Actually, scratch that, I’ll just go back home. My shoulder is positively killing me and I won’t make it in time now.” You notice a crack in his face, showing genuine concern. “Speaking of injuries, you do know your face is covered in blood, right?”
“Aye, I know. No worries, the other fella’s a lot worse off than me.”
Stifling a laugh, you proclaim “And he’ll be saying the exact same thing. By the looks of your face, I’d say the other guy is more than likely speaking the truth.“.
“Hah! The cheek on ya!” He’s looking you firmly in the eye, with an amused smirk he moves a step closer towards you. “This fierce rain will last all night by the looks of it. How about you wait it out at my place, eh? It’s right around the corner.”
“Now why would I trust a complete stranger? Who’s covered in cuts and bruises, might I add?”
“Fair point.” For a second, there’s a slight smile in the corner of his mouth. “I’ll tell you what, lass, you could try your luck. Wait in a dry place or stand there for what might be hours and possibly get pneumonia.” Without waiting for an answer, the tall man spins around and saunters into the icy-cold rain. Leaving you to stare at his retreating silhouette.
You know he is a complete stranger. You know this could be extremely dangerous. But you do know how to defend yourself should something happen.
Don’t do it.
Your shoes are drenched. Won’t be long until your clothing will be soaked through and through. A dry place does sound nice.
Don’t do it.
You should know better. Yet there was something... something in those eyes that made you feel secure.
Trying your luck it is.