-Red-


There is a small diner on the side of my street. Through my apartment window the eerie red glow of the "open 24 hours" sign illuminates my room. Every single night I stare out this window. Around 2 AM every morning the same girl will enter the diner. It appears that she usually orders scrambled eggs and a small salad. She'll sit there alone, eating. I wonder what thoughts she has going through her mind. I wonder why, at 2 AM someone like this, would want scrambled eggs.

Long ago it occurred to me that she is the most beautiful woman I've ever laid my eyes on. She's got an incredible smile, though I rarely get to catch a glimpse of it from up here, just one look at that smile, and you'd forget all the complications of life.

I'm quite sure that I find her beautiful in a very unique way. She's young, probably in her mid twenties. Her face is smooth with a very defined jaw structure, and her lips are always shiny, maybe from lip-gloss. She has long, straight crimson hair; it runs down her back, creating an intertwined river of red, something you could easily get lost in. Sometimes she'll brush it out of her eyes or tuck it behind her ears, all the while, still eating and reading. I love that.

I wonder if she can somehow feel me staring down at her. Once in a while she'll look over towards me. I'm confident that she can't see me. But I can never be too careful. So I duck down quickly.

She'll sit there quietly, looking beautiful while she reads the day old newspaper and eats.

Once she leaves I sit here for a great deal of time, thinking about her. I wonder what kind of life she goes home to. I wonder if maybe there is more to her than a plate of scrambled eggs and a small salad.

One time, I worked up enough courage and went down to the diner. I knew when she would show up, so I got there early and sat across from where she would undoubtedly sit. I ordered a grilled cheese sandwich and pretended to be interested in reading the same menu over and over again. I sat there for a long time. Waiting to catch a closer look at the woman. For the first time in a long time, she didn't show up. I didn't know what to think or do. I sat there for probably another hour before realizing the words on the menu were beginning to make no sense. I paid my bill and walked out of the diner.

What happened next is something I will never forget. I walked out onto the sidewalk and zipped up my jacket. It was getting to be very cold out. From behind I heard someone. The woman with the crimson hair came around the corner. Her beauty was still there, but somehow, it looked battered and changed. I noticed first, she had tears streaming down her face, which caused her make-up to run. She was walking very fast and stumbling over her own feet. As she got closer, I could hear that she was crying quite loudly. When she approached me, I tried desperately to say something to her. I'm not sure what. My mouth opened, but no sounds came out. She glanced up at me, for what I can only describe as the quickest moment in my life. After that, she ran past me, her eyes fixed to the ground. I watched her go, for as long as I could see. Her red hair flailing, and her feet kicking up little splashes of water from the ground.

I stared into the darkness that she had just entered and realized. There must be more to her than just scrambled eggs and a small salad.

It's been a few weeks since I looked out that window. The need for such a thing is gone, filled instead with a sense of concern that I desperately avoid acknowledging. She'll be fine, with or without me, I tell myself.

I won't lie. I sometimes wonder what came of the woman. I wonder if maybe, she's all right or if she needs help. I know though, that it's easier remembering her, as only liking scrambled eggs and salad. Otherwise, there are too many complications and variables. None of which equal happiness or even begin to make sense.

Written and owned by Dan Chubaty