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|She suddenly awoke with a startle. She stood up in bed and looked around the room. It took her a minute but she quickly recognized her dorm room and calmed down. “What an awful dream”, she thought to herself. She glanced over at the armoire and looked at her clock. 2:30 am and she was wide awake. She had the dream to blame for that.
Pulling the warm comforter up past her shoulders and up to her neck she laid back down. Trying to fall asleep was impossible. She kept thinking of her recent breakup with Brad. She kept tossing and turning. Taking turns staring at the ceiling and then the ever ticking clock. 2:55 am. She finally decided that it was a pointless endeavor and got up. Maybe she would go get something to drink downstairs. Maybe it would settle her nerves. Fishing through her laundry money in the tennis ball can behind her bed she found 5 quarters.
She promised herself that she would skip her weekly old time movie night with Rachel at Roxbury’s dollar theater downtown. Money was kind of tight when your in college. The Roxbury was a small dark old fashioned theater. The outside showcased a giant light bulb sign that spelled out Roxbury. The letters were a dark crimson red outlined with gold. It was surrounded by a lit up white background lined with yellow bulbs that completed a circle around the giant Roxbury. Scattered throughout the sign were a couple of burnt out lights and a few flickering ones. It gave an old fashioned feel that although beat up and worn reminded you of classic glamour Hollywood. She would imagine that stars like Betty Grable, Frank Sinatra, and James Dean arrived in their stretch limos. Striding across the red carpet as the medias bulbs popped and flashed.
When entering the theater you would first notice the giant red curtain that covered the screen. The balcony would loom over them as they sat down. The walls were built of old dark mahogany. Large half pillars decorated with cherubs and vines lined the wall every several feet. Then a small mechanical click and the giant red curtain would glide open and the screen began to flicker. Black and white movies. These were her favorites. Her grandfather used to have her sit down with him on the couch when she was little and they would watch the classics. Rebel Without a Cause, Gone With the Wind, and Casablanca. Those were her favorites. Slipping on pink fluffy slippers and her light blue robe she made her way downstairs.
Upon arriving on the bottom floor she heard a soft warm sound coming from the lounge next to the lobby. She could also hear someone singing quietly . It peaked her interest mostly due to the fact that it was almost 3 in the morning and she figured she was the only one up.
As she crossed the doorway into the room with its many couches and lazy looking chairs the sweet, soft music flowed around her. It was a comforting melody and simple in its rhythmic quality. Something familiar that made you feel good like on a lazy Sunday morning in the spring. Hypnotic in its quality, she found herself walking towards the source of the beautiful harmony.
The player was facing away from her. Sitting on a couch with guitar in hand singing quietly to himself. She walked around and sat on the arm of the couch. Hands held together sitting in her lap. She just sat quietly listening.
“When I was a young boy
My mama said to me
Theres only one girl in the world for you
And she probably lives in Tahiti
I’d go the whole wide world
I’d go the whole wide world
Just to find her
Or maybe shes in the Bahamas
Where the Caribbean sea is blue
Weeping in a tropical moonlit night
Because nobodys told her…
Just then the quarters slipped out of her hands and onto the coffee table in front of the couch. They made a terrible clang as they bounced around which was quickly followed by a musical mess of notes made by the obviously startled musician.
“Oh, I am so sorry. I didn’t mean to scare you like that,” she said as she scrambled to pick up the quarters that had been strewn about.
“Oh geez. No its okay”, he said as he tried to regain his breath from the fright.
“That song you were playing. It was very nice”
“You heard my playing?” He quickly turned red in the face as he realized he had been caught in a very private moment.
“Yes. I came down here to get something to drink and I heard you playing. I thought I was the only one up.”
“Yeah so did I.”
“It sounded very nice. Are you in a band or something,” she asked as she slid off the arm of the coach and onto the seat cushion next to him
“Oh no I pretty much come down here late at night when nobody is up and play. It helps me relax sometimes. Gets my mind off of things. I’ve never played in front of people I didn’t know.”
He felt slightly awkward and nervous about the sudden invasion by this rather attractive girl. He had recognized her from his floor. Occasionally saying hello to her as they passed each other. Exchanging a friendly good morning while he held the door. Nothing more than friendly gestures from two strangers.
“So was that the end of your song or is there more?” she asked. Curious to hear the ending and maybe she was enjoying his company a little.
“I haven’t written the rest yet. Its kind of a work in progress.” Still puzzled by her sudden interest in him. He knew she didn’t recognize him from their numerous encounters around campus.
“Maybe when I’m done with it I can play it for you”. What was he doing. He had never offered to play anything for anyone before. But there was something about this girl.
“I think I would like that”, she said with a smile.
“I’m gonna head back up and get some sleep. My name is Allie by the way”
“Adam” They exchanged smiles and then she left.
He sat there alone in the room with a smile on his face. He thought to himself. Yeah maybe I will.