"Come on, just ask him out already!" Vicky practically shouted threw the phone.
"Why on earth would I do that, V?" I asked, and rolled my eyes. "A real girl doesn't ask the guy out. If he wants a date with me, he can ask me himself," I said, and brushed threw my tangled mess of a hair.
"Are you serious? We live in the twenty first century, Al."
"So? I just don't think it's right that the girl asks the guy out."
"Yeah, well, you're just old fashioned."
"Thank you very much," I replied proud of my own stubbornness.
"I gotta go, cause unlike someone," she put pressure on the last word, "I've got a date tonight. I'm meeting Daniel at the movies." I heard her pulling on her boots, struggling to get the zipper up, while keeping the phone from dropping on the floor.
"Fine, talk soon," I smiled.
"Yeah, bye." We both hung up.
That was my last conversation with Vicky. She was my cousin, and my best friend since I was four. That night something happened. Something terrible. She had never met up with Daniel, she had disappeared somewhere between her house and the movie theater. It's six months since I got the call from the police, saying that Vicky had vanished. There was no sign of a struggle anywhere, no eye witnesses. Every time I think back, it's like I know something, something I'm not able to fish up from my mind. A clue maybe.
«Brie, do you think you could take my tables tonight? I need to get off work a couple of hours early, dad and I are going out to eat - you know, since it's my birthday and all.». It's been a long time since dad and I have done anything together, and when he asked if I wanted to eat dinner tonight, you could say I was pretty thrilled. Working a busy night at Murphy's restaurant isn't exactly one's first choice on their birthday. Brie looks up from the old cash register, and shakes her head, her purple afro bouncing with the movement.
"Sorry, we are completely full tonight, and it's only Drake and I waiting tables," she blows up her cheeks, and focuses her attention back on the cash register. Brie is my best friend, and I don't enjoy thinking bad things about her, but she can be so unhelpful sometimes, and I never say no when she asks me for a favor. «Have you asked Murphy if you can leave early?» she asks, now typing away on her Blackberry. Murphy is the owner of Murphy's, well, duh.
"Yeah," I say sensing that she's considering it, "he was fine with it. He told me I deserved it." I bite by bottom lip in expectation.
"Fine," she sighs, massaging her temples with her thumb and index finger.
"Oh my god, thank you so much Brie," I squeal, and give her a short hug.
"You owe me," she mutters, but gives me a small smile. «I can owe up to it right now, actually, I'll take your tables from six to eight,» I say. "Thanks," she replies, "and we're going shopping tomorrow, since I didn't buy you a gift for your birthday," adds Brie, as she walks into the backroom. I smile, and do a little victory dance. I look around at the empty restaurant, the dimmed lights, and the cozy little booths. I remember walking in here with Vicky a year ago, asking if they needed more staff. They did, and both of us got hired. That's how i met Brie. After Vicky disappeared, we bonded, and she is now my closest friend - well, my only friend to be honest. I can't handle talking to people at school, everything about school reminds me of Vicky, we had basically been connected by the hip since first grade. Brie and I go to the same school, but she usually just hangs out with the rest of her senior friends. Not that she's excluding me from their little group or anything, she's told me countless times that I am more than welcome to join them. Honestly, I just try to get threw the day as quickly as possible, focus on the work I have to do, and go home. I go threw my last conversation with Vicky at least once a day, as if something is going to pop up, something that wasn't there before.
A young woman walks into Murphy's. Everything about her says perfection. From her jet black loose curls, to her navy blue suit. People like her usually would never think of entering this place. I grab a menu, and walk up to her, pasting on a fake smile.
"Hi, my name is Alice, and I will be your server tonight, here's your menu. Today's special is pasta with sausage, spinach and mustard." I smile, and hand it over. Now that I can see her on close hand, it's as if her milky skin has a slightly blue hue to it. I must be mistaken though, it's probably just the light.
"Thank you," she says in a floating voice, completely contradictory to her appearance. Holding the menu in her long fingers, she's studying it with sapphire eyes, as if it's some kind of interesting article. She isn't exactly a classic beauty, now that I see her on close hand. Her face is angled, and her eyes are slanted. She must be around twenty five, I think, still standing there gazing. She looks up from her menu, and blinks at me, obviously wondering why I'm still there, looking like a complete idiot. I feel embarrassed, but just smile, and walk into the back room. Wow, what was that? Seriously, it was as if I was spell bound, or something, I think, shaking my head.
"What is it?" Brie asks, looking up from some magazine.
"Nothing," I lie, and give a fake smile. Brie just raises one drawn on eyebrow, and focuses her attention back on the magazine.
"You know what?" she asks, not looking up.
"What?" I say, biting on my chipped nail polish.
"We should totally ask Murphy for a couch, or something. I freaking hate these stupid chairs. I mean, hello, when I have a break, I want to be comfortable." Brie keeps going on and on about chairs and couches, but I'm not listening. "Hello, earth to Alice. Are you there?" Brie says, who has now gotten up from her chair, and is waving the magazine in front of my face. "What is up with you today, Al?" she asks, obviously annoyed. "What? Nothing. I guess I just didn't get enough sleep"