The message was pretty vague.
She’d asked me to bring Nathan to a nearby café without actually telling him that she’s the one who asked me to bring him.
And she’d also requested me to cancel out every important meetings or appointments I had for the following week.
This wasn’t the first time she was being so mysterious and enjoying the suspense she’d created.
Back in school, the person who got her for Secret Santa was bombarded with clues.
Poor Anuvrida had clues stuck even on her shoe laces and she had no idea how it got there.
But Vinnie’s flare for mystery often backfired cause people got accustomed to her methods of leaving too many clues.
Anybody got more than five to six clues in a day, would scream “For heaven’s sake, stop it Vinnie! Just give the gift on Christmas, don’t rain paper on me!”
Obviously, that wouldn’t stop her. Instead they’d get lame puns and roasts additionally with their clues for having committed the mistake of calling her out.
Nathan had been busy from the past few months. He had been working hard and stressing himself out in order to get in more projects. Sometimes he’d regret having opened his own architectural firm and to cope up he would drink his problems away. Oftentimes I would step in to ease him of this worry and try to raise his self esteem, but it hardly made any difference.
He had always dreamt of building this firm, reaching more people and getting to interact with them on a much higher level than he got to during his time in the private company.
While everyone around him had discouraged him from leaving a stable job, he had accepted that he had gained all the experience he would need from the company and it was time to start his own creation. His own brain child.
Though he had started off enthusiastically about it, over time I could sense him having trouble keeping the same energy going. I knew he was wise enough to understand that it all came with its package of failures and stress but I wasn’t sure if his coping mechanisms were rewarding in the longer run.
It was my idea for him to go on that date for a change of mind. Instead, he came back home more drunk.
I wasn’t sure he would willingly cancel all his plans for an entire week. And I do believe myself, that would not be productive either.
So, whatever might be Vinnie’s intentions, they are not usually useful mainstream, so I thought I’ll text back saying that I’d think about it and get back to her. But it turned out, the crazy woman had made an Instagram account just to text me and then deactivated it and gone off the grid again. It had always intrigued me how someone as extroverted as herself had managed to stay off most social medias and cut off ties with all of us from class.
I sighed in exasperation.
Maybe we were going to find out what she has to say after all.
Convincing Nathan for an evening off to just have a cup of coffee was nerve- racking.
“From when did we start going to cafeterias? Did our good old bar shut down?” He asked as he chugged his glass of beer while clicking away rapidly on the laptop.
“Well, let’s step out of our mundane lives and go do something different.” I said searching for the house keys.
“And going to a dull, rusty cafeteria is a way to do that?”
“It’s just for a couple of hours, will you stop waging a war on that keyboard and just go wear a decent shirt so we can leave?”
“Fine, fine.” he said as he closed his laptop. “Why do I even listen to you? First that date, now this. Hopefully atleast today will be peaceful.”
I gave a nod and picked up the keys fallen on the dusty carpet. In my mind I could already sense that it was going to be anything but peaceful.