CHAPTER 21

‘Surprise!’ Taylor echoed through the black iron rods of the grilled gate that separated his devoted from himself as he cash registered his arm out from behind the red bricked wall with the stilless present and the prettiest blue bow belted under the collar of its pillow soft adolescent fur.

“Tay! You remembered…’ Selina expressed adoringly as the endearing sight of helpless little kittens always made her. Topped off with the sentiments of the gift almost brought a tear to her eye. She was touched to the core with his endless string of outward affection. He was a dream come true, not only for her but for every girl. Every princess’s prince. Every modern gals Mr. right She snatched the kittens up from his hands and carried it up into the air barely restraining herself from throwing and catching it in euphoria before snuggling it neatly between her neck, followed very closely by a similar embracement for her unselfish dearest.

‘Untie the bow. Go ahead,’ he motioned with a jar of a finger. She cascaded her fingers along the locks of the carefully preserved v-cut ribbon strips and gingerly pulled with butter light grace, afraid that it might fall into pieces, innocently mistaking it for the fragility of the cat itself.

The laces slid off like butterfly wings and revealed beneath a gold heart-shaped locket. She noticed a precision crack dividing the smoothness flawless of the sides and clicked the edges apart and flipped the top open.

“Sealed in this heart and mine is our love forever” and underneath an engraving of both their names. She twirled the chain what little room around her finger and clenched it to her very own heart. ‘Thank you Taylor,’ she gazed with dim mellowness into his eyes with a heartfelt far-off smile and both of them knew instantly without need for verbalization. Before there was doubt, mostly on the part of Selina whether she allowed herself to betray the trust and acceptance and introducer of her true love for him itself. But all that was besides her now. The sky was bright, the birds were chirping and the sun was shining behind the eyes of this foolish love struck newbie gullible to her awakening….

“Reg, what’s with that annoying squeaking? The dryer isn’t broke again, is it? Damn the lousy repairmen of this god forsaken city’ The meaning taking on two sides to a hooker with an assortment like Ashley. She uncrossed her legs and bent over to have a more magnifying spy for signs of commotion between the walls of the corridor, her head bobbing around like a pigeons.

“I don’t think so. Madame got it fixed just last week,” Regina interrupted her mistresses motioning curiosity with her indifference, and went back to her cross-stitching. If you want anything done right, you’ve got to do it yourself. Ashley rolled her eyes at Regina’s non-chalence and she picked her dozing off feet from resting off the table, the sensation of pins and needles traveling almost halfway up her legs and duck-walked her lazy bum to the source of her inquisition. She let her ears be her guiding light as it took her further and further from a broken dryer to a…cats mew.

“What’s this?” she knew full well as she looked to the bottom of her uncovered slipper less feet. She nudged it a little with them as if kicking undescribables and trash while wading through sewerage. She would have continued with this mistreatment and disdainfulness if the yellow shininess of a certain object dangling around its neck hadn’t been caught in the brightness of equally shallow lights of the hallway, making it even more obvious. She stooped down, still maintaining that disgusted distance, shifting sides whenever the kitten turned its head in all difficulty to catch a glimpse of what it was without actually having to touch the furry fur ball of a furness. The shape of the locket finally caved her in, something that special could have only held importance of a human kind. She used the very tips of her fingers to pry the locket from the cat’s neck with it still attached mewing in a cat cry-way and fighting to back away from its snare. As had been done once before, she clicked the blank ‘tell nothing’ face of the locket and into the tell everything of the interior.
“Sealed in this heart and mine is our love forever”
“Taylor and Selina”
“Love eh? Wonder what Madame will say about all this” She tossed the locket up in the air like a baseball, only to have it fall solidly back in her palm, a grin of finale shading her face like the green smoke of intoxication engulfing and overtaking the world to its death and darkness.

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