“It’s quite a horrifying story, ey? A warning to what your life could become, but its terrible, I mean what the children must have endured, what they’re still suffering through… Danny? Are you even listening to me?” The woman said as if physically wounded that her friend wasn’t paying attention to her.
“I’m sorry, I haven’t been feeling like myself lately. I don’t know what to do about it either. I just cant seem to get myself out of the slump I fell into. I need some inspiration and soon.”
Feeling perplexed and anxious as of late, Danny took a sip of the white mocha, and looked to the right of the shop, day dreaming of how she was going to make it big in the city of dreams and how successful she’ll become just as soon as she finishes her first novel. And then she saw him, just as she spilled the whole white mocha (grande if I may add) on everything she owned even her Celine bag, which she bought yesterday, as a final attempt at motivation. And that was the moment his eyes burned holes in her heart, because the coffee was too damn hot.
“Joshua, is that you? Do you remember me?” Danny asked, wanting to be anywhere but there.
“Of course, what has it been eight years? How are you?” Joshua asked.
“Yeah, its funny how time flies… Its good to see you. What are you doing here? I thought you moved to Hong Kong?” Danny asked, suddenly self-aware that her brothers jobs have rubbed off on her, they were detectives.
Joshua’s right brow arched up, and the beginning of a smile started appearing on the corners of his mouth. “Someone’s been doing some stalking I see”.
“I needed inspiration, you don’t know the half of it” Danny said, embarrassed for being so honest.
“ As I recall I was the one you came to when you needed out of the ditch you fell into, many moons ago”.
“ It feels like I’m talking to an 18th century gentleman, It seems you still haven’t picked up on social cues” she laughed sincerely. “It is quite a coincidence, isn’t it?”
“I don’t believe in coincidences, things just happen when you need them the most” he said solemnly.
“So I take it you’re still a writer? Some things never change” He almost laughed to himself.
“Yeah, but lately I’ve been so gloomy about writing, the last time I’d been inspired was when Cindy’s piece came out, you know procrastinating Cindy, and that was three years ago… which is very sad, also really pathetic. I met Rachel last week, and I was all like ‘my life is so busy, with the writing and the interviews. I’m so lucky the writing is flooding in faster than I can type’ I was pretty convincing too, I would have believed myself if I kept talking a second longer. When in reality, my life is going downhill, I wake up in the morning and then go to sleep again because I have no purpose in life anymore, no goals. The only time I do get up, and get out of the house is to go to Starbucks, and you’re going to find what I’m about to say strange, but I choose the table closest to the people having the most interesting conversations”
Curiosity piqued, Joshua asks “So you’re scouting them?”
“Yeah, I told you it would sound weird, but we’re going off topic, see how desperate I have become” Danny says. A tick away from a meltdown, that would be great Danny thought, then everyone would think she’d lost her marbles, even those who were complete strangers.
“You know what I’m going to say, what I’ve always said to you… ‘if you’re going through hell, keep going’ and I would hardly say what you’re going through is hell. Remember that time I made you climb Mount Everest with me? You were very persuadable back then. Remember after the trip you locked yourself in your apartment for a week? I was afraid you’d gone mad, but you were the happiest I’ve ever seen you, you’d just finished your first piece, before Cindy, if I may add, do you remember how happy you were? You radiated happiness to anyone that was of a 10 mile radius of you. You know what you need?” Joshua asked.
“A new life?” she said, the life sucked out of her, in the exact same state as her white mocha in the present state, empty.
“An adventure. You are the most talented writer I know, so stop pouting and start doing something about it.
(SIX MONTHS LATER)
“I don’t know what to do, the car will be here in 10 minutes and I still have no idea what I’m going to wear.” Danny whined.
“Just pick something we have to leave now, or we’ll be late for sure” Meredith said, frustration getting the better of her.
(30 MINUTES LATER)
“Congratulations, he’s so beautiful, and peaceful, and chubby, you know I have a thing for chubby babies.” Danny said, almost squeezing the life out of the newborn baby’s cheeks.
“Thank you, I don’t know, I cant remember what life was before having him, he’s my miracle, but I should be congratulating you. You finally did it, Tom and I are so happy for you. How did you get out of your slump? What inspired you?”.
But Danny knew it wasn’t a what it was a who, and Joshua had been inspiration enough for her to finish and publish her book. Her best friend was right after all, things happen when you need them the most.
But she wasn’t going to tell her that, it was Rachel she was talking to after all, the Rachel that had thought Danny’s life was fabulous and perfect all the time, and now it truly was, with the additional humans that occupied her heart. And inspired her to be a better writer and a better human being.
Shereen Nour El Din- SNW Fiction