Natalie was waiting for me at the door to the club the next day right on time, just as I expected. She had the key to get in, so she had to be there first, and she seemed a polite girl, and punctual as she claimed.
In the daylight she looked pretty but more ordinary. I don’t mean unattractive, but something about the shadows and lights of the club had heightened my sense of her and her mystery. On greeting her I was struck by how absurd it all seemed. She was just a normal girl.
But this normal girl disappeared regularly on film I reminded myself. The evidence spoke louder than any of my impressions could do.
She remembered me. I wasn’t sure if this was a good thing or not. To tell the truth I felt a bit embarrassed by that.
“Oh, it’s you,” she said as she keyed the lock to the club door and opened it for me to enter ahead of her. There was no particular humor or edge in her voice as she said it. It would be impossible to know if she found it bizarre or pathetic that it was I, or if she suspected – as I feared – that this had suddenly become an elaborate pick up routine for someone who failed so badly at it a few nights before.
I wanted to say yes, it was me, and I wasn’t out to pick her up or anything but felt I would seem even stupider then. Instead I opted for:
“Yes, my name is Peter Reynolds. I’m a film maker and cameraman. I’ve been filming the club for a while for a project I’m doing, and I decided to come on down, so to speak, and join the revelry the other night.”
She followed me and I turned to her. She stopped as I stopped. We were in the foyer area just before the doors to the dance-floor and bar. In the darkened light she looked like an echo remaining resolute in the now emptied room, and in a way that struck me as very right.
“We can go through,” she said, motioning her head towards the door behind us. I took the cue and opened the door to walk through, “It will be more comfortable there.”
We settled on sitting at one of the tables in the usually ‘darkened’ area of the club. She sat rather primly, but did not telegraph any sense of unease or fear. Importantly she wasn’t creating one in me either. She seemed utterly normal and very nice.
“Are we interesting then?” she asked.
“To film, to watch? Do you get anything interesting?”
“Well, it’s funny you should ask that. But before I answer, can I ask you some questions? There is a reason for this, I promise, and it has to do with filming you. But they might seem odd at first?”
(c) Helen M Valentina 2015, All Rights Reserved