Out of Time ...Part 3

in #writing3 years ago

The historical sense involves a perception, not only
of the pastness of the past, but of its presence

― T.S. Eliot


I rescued a girl I found dazed and wandering in the rain and took her back to my Flatiron condo.

She had a head wound and seemed disoriented—not because of the cut on her head but more because she seemed out of place—or more accurately, out of her time..

She's beautiful and may not be enamoured with me, but at least it’s quasi-romantic eating in the candlelit dining room, with the chandelier dimmed and the city lights gauzy in the curtains.

She’s absently staring round the condo while nibbling on a piece of whole-wheat toast.

“I know this building—always wanted to see inside it, but never did.”

“Really? You know the Flatiron?”

“Yeah, I do. I remember some swell lived here. Used to drop by the club all the time when I was singing and invited me up here—you know, the kinda lame Mae West line like, why don’t you come up and see me sometime?” She laughed softly. “Of course, I never did.”

I overlook the dated slang to focus in on one detail. “You’re a singer?”

“Yeah, I sing. Is that a crime?”

I look at her slightly tousled, disheveled blond hair and huge eyes and everything melts inside me. She has Hollywood looks I somehow didn’t notice before.

“Say, why don’t we go out to the club?” she asks suddenly. “I’ll get us a front row seat and Lenny will make sure all the drinks are free.”

“Who’s Lenny—your boyfriend?”

She burst into a shy smile that catches me by surprise. “No, I don’t have a steady guy. Lenny is the doorman.”

I want to kiss her cute elfin face. “Sure, why not?” I laugh, “but what about that cut on your head?”

She bends forward allowing her hair to spill over her shoulders, revealing the crown of her head. There’s no cut—no blood—no scar.

“I don’t get it,” I blurt out, “that cut on your head looked really deep.”

She throws back her head, tossing her hair and smiles. “I heal fast.”

She spots the grandfather clock. “Hey—it’s a quarter past eight. If we hurry we can catch the first show.”

She jumps up, grabs my hand and pulls me to my feet. My momentum carries me a bit further and I end up in her arms.

Again those huge eyes—and next thing I know, we’re kissing.

“That’s all,” she says sternly, pushing me away. But her eyes are dancing.

“Where are we going?” I ask, grabbing my car keys.

“Don’t worry, I’ll show you.”

We end up in a place I don’t know called Clinton’s Tavern.

I’m out of my element, but Kath looks bewildered too. “It looks different somehow, Jes—I don’t understand.”

I stare at her helplessly.

“Why don’t we just grab a table and figure it out?”

We sit down opposite the bar and I’m staring round the room. It’s the usual pub kitsch—wood paneling and tack chairs, and there’s a big dark hall at the back.

“I sing back there, Jes,” Kath says in this flat voice, “but everything looks different.”

A waitress comes by and I order two draft beers. When she comes back, she notices Kath’s dazed expression. “Are you feeling all right, Hon?”

“Yeah—I just don’t recognize the place—it’s all changed.”

The waitress arches a brow. “We haven’t done any renovations lately."

I'm looking at Kath as she's staring at the place trying to figure out what's familiar and what's been changed.

There's not a doubt in my mind that she's been here before, but the only question is how long ago that actually was.

Judging by how she talks and the way she was dressed when I found her that was a long, long time ago.

© 2019, John J Geddes. All rights reserved



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