The "Something" Series, Twelve Letters of Lizmas: 2021

Day 10: Something Brings Us Here: A Scene.

New York City - Snowy Night in the East Village | May your C… | Flickr

One Year Ago…

Grace paces back and forth in her apartment. Her phone sits on the kitchen counter; she checks it every now and then, waiting for it to light up. She wipes her tired eyes and shakes her arms. She immediately looks at her phone, which is now lit up and vibrating. She walks to the counter and picks up the phone; the screen reads “Jamie”.

Grace: Hello?

Jamie: *sarcastically* Is this actually my jagiya talking to me on the phone?

Grace doesn’t react; she stands there with tears forming at her eyes. Jamie notices the tension.

Jamie: … Is everything okay, Grace?

Grace squeezes her eyes shut, she still hasn’t said anything.

Jamie: *worried* Grace? Grace??

Grace: *spits out* What?

Jamie: Are you okay? Is now not a good time? I just–

Grace: *annoyed* When is it ever a good time? You live all the way across the fucking world, so when is ever going to be the right fucking time for us?

Jamie: *confused* What?

Grace: I’m tired, Jamie. It’s about to be midnight here and I need to get up early to get to the studio. So, what is it?

Jamie is taken back, he is heard trying to form a sentence to respond back with.

Jamie: This is the first time I’m able to reach you in weeks. I have the time, I make time for you. I can’t say the same for you though, Grace.

Grace: Are you fucking serious right now? I have a life, Jamie.

Jamie: And what is mine? Worthless? Grace, I’ve been trying to talk to you for weeks! How is our only form of communication is just text messages? You’re my girlfriend, I would love to hear your voice! See you on video call every once and awhile! I’m starting to feel like you’re hiding something from me.

Grace clenches her stomach and silently tears up. She opens her eyes, in rage.

Grace: If you really think I’d hide something from you, then why are you still trying to be with me? Clearly I’m not; I can’t imagine how a relationship could even work out like this! You can’t be here to comfort me, to hold me, or even be there for me when I need you to be! So, what’s really keeping us together? Nothing.

Nothing is said on the line, just complete silence.

Jamie: … If this isn’t what you want anymore, then who am I to force you to do anything.

Grace: *furious* That’s it? You’re just gonna let me go like that? You’re just like every other fucking person I met in my life! Just so fucking easy to let me go and act like nothing has ever happened! You said you were gonna stay here with me, and lied about that – and now you’re just gonna let me break up with you?!

Jamie: What the fuck am I suppose to say, Grace?! This doesn’t even feel like a relationship anymore! I’m sorry that I couldn’t keep my promise and stay with you; this is something I have no control over, but answering your calls and making time for us is something we have control over, and you’ve been choosing to keep me in the dark!

Grace doesn’t anything, she just cries to herself.

Jamie: Maybe we should break up.

Grace: Maybe? We should. Goodbye.

Grace hangs up the phone and begins to cry. She tosses her phone on the counter and grabs the medical papers; they are from Planned Parenthood. She rips them up and tosses them in her kitchen.

Grace wakes up in a cold sweat. She looks around her apartment; she fell asleep on her couch. Her head is pounding. She gets up and walks to her kitchen. She looks for the coffee tin, which to her surprise is empty. Grace sighs and tosses the empty tin out. She grabs her wallet and keys and puts her heels back on and walks out the front door.

It’s about 2am in the city. There are still people out, but the streets aren’t as busy during the winter nights. She walks until she reaches her destination; the cafe.

She swings open the door and walks towards the counter. Bernie, the overnight barista, greets Grace.

Bernie: It’s been a hot minute since we saw you in here at this hour, sweetie.

Grace: Out of coffee at my house. Had to come out for the next best thing.

Bernie: You mean the best thing, I don’t know what kind of shit coffee you drink in your home.

Grace nods in agreement. Bernie prepares Grace’s drink.

Bernie: Am I making this for the sober or hungover Grace?

Grace: Hungover.

Bernie: Sweetie… we have to stop meeting uder these circumstances.

Grace: Work at normal hours.

Bernie laughs and makes Grace her coffee for the night. He hands the drink to Grace while she takes out her card from her wallet.

Bernie: *shakes head* This one is on the house.

Grace: You sure?

Grace takes a sip front her coffee and instantly coughs.

Bernie: Positve!

Grace gives Bernie a stern look and walks away from the counter to sit in her usual spot. She takes out her folders of work: notes for choreo, costume designs, and miscellaneous documents. She sips on her overly strong coffee and gets to work.

Grace hears Bernie talking to another customer; an early bird on her way to work. She remembers when she would make the trip here to get her morning coffee on her way to the law firm. She sometimes misses it, but remembers the hurt being at the firm brought her. Another customer walks in, and Grace curiously looks at who may be the cause of another late-night visitor. Her eyes widen when she sees the tall man at the counter, ordering the coffee order she knows by heart.

She tries to quickly gather her papers and sneak her way out of the cafe. She doesn’t want anyone seeing her here, at this hour, this unprepared. She takes a deep breath, maybe she’s just imagining things. Still, she tries to sneak out of the cafe; better safe than sorry.

She makes it close to the door until she feels her ankle buckle from the heels she is wearing. She stumbles on the ground, making a huge scene in the cafe. Bernie looks at Grace, and the man standing in front of the counter turns around now. Grace looks up at the man.

Jamie looks down at Grace. Nothing is said between them.

Bernie: The amount of times you’ve tripped and fell in this damn cafe, Grace! My goodness, are you alright?

Grace doesn’t say anything, she just begins to pick up her paperwork. Jamie, who now has brown hair in comparison to the blonde hair he once had, kneels down on the floor and begins to help her.

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