Harwood couldn’t get Pattina out of his head. She was married. She had approached him. She wanted him to kiss her. She came home with him. She just left. She was the most conflicting person he knew… And that said a lot concidering how long Harwood had lived on this world and how many people he came in contact with in the art world.
It was painful and confusing trying to make sense of it all… If that is love I should just give it all up and prepare to die alone Harwood thought finding it very hard to even climb out of bed that early afternoon of the next day.
He tried to keep his mind on literally anything else but it wasn’t easy and as he was loading his washing machine he couldn’t resist it any longer and he called her number.
“Good day Pattina. It is Harwood Clay.” He said the moment she answered, trying to keep his voice void of any betraying emotions.
“Oh Harwood. Hello.” Pattina said a bit flustered and he heard her walking as if she was going away from something, or someone. Her husband he thought feeling the paws of jealousy rip trough his stomach as he tried to imagine them together.
“I wanted to talk about last night.” He said focusing his mind on the way her eyes shone as she neared her face to his right before their lips met…
“Yes. I am sorry for last night.” She said and he noticed she really did sound sorry. “I didn’t know… I thought you were only visiting… I don’t want an affair. I am married.” She said lamely.
“I see.” Harwood said as coldly as he could feeling if he had just eaten on of his famous ice sculptures.
“I did have a good time.” Pattina said softly, presumably trying the lessen the blow she delivered with her harsh words.
“I am sure you did. Goodbye Pattina. ” Harwood finished the call feeling broken and betrayed, by Pattina or himself he did not know.
There was one good thing however that came out of this Pattina situation, or so Harwood felt. He no longer cared as much about keeping his true identity a secret. Maybe people of Twinbrook just wouldn’t care about who he was before he came here. And in any case he would have to tell the truth to anyone he wanted to get really close too…. And that was what he wanted? Wasn’t it? It might have not worked with Pattina but there are other women….
Guided with this notion Harwood went back to the Red Rendezvous that night, and the next, and the next… He liked that place, the last time he was there and when he went there again he didn’t feel like everyone there was looking at him, judging him… The place was nothing like the bars back in the city. Like Emerald said it was more of a local hangout, the only of that kind here in Twinbrook. Which meant a lot of people came there. There were other kids, like Emerald said, and people of all ages in general.
Harwood befriended one of the teachers at the local school, the same school he had once gone too. He was a single father of two so he rarely came here but he and Harwood hit it off over drinks that Harwood had payed for them. The drinks were good, and Harwood like the variety, the place also served food that he deemed passable enough, batter than cereal and canned sup he made for himself at home in any case so he would often dine here as well. On some nights he would bring his guitar and play a tune or two.
He was always careful not to get too drunk though, he didn’t want to attract attention, that way especially, plus his body was no longer as young as his spirit was and if he fell sick he had no one to tend to him. It worked well enough until one damned night, it was a weekend, Saturday, or maybe even a Sunday, Harwood had trouble discerning the days, they all started to kind of blend together since he started visiting here on a regular basis… He didn’t even remember which drink he was drinking that night, but it must have been more than a few, all he remembered was he heard someone speak of a party at the Castor’s. Harwood of course was not invited, he knew no one with that name but he decided to kind of tag along. At the time it sounded like a great idea.
The Castor’s lived right next to the Greenwood’s in a house of a similar build and Harwood walked in with all the confidence of a star artist who had every right to be there. The first person he was inside was Pattina. All else disappeared.
She had her hair down, like she had the first time he met her, that night at the park. Her back was to him but he could hear her voice, like a song to his ears, he didn’t hesitate a second as he went to her. He wanted to tell her how important their date was to him, he wanted to tell her badly he wanted more, how he wanted something important, something lasting, he wanted to tell her about Macy, about his loss and his fear to love ever since… He had barely reached her and said hello when someone, presumably the host noticed him and escorted him, not very gently, outside. Pattina didn’t follow but he felt her eyes on his back before the door closed behind him and he was left outside on the cold wind coming from the bay.
Harwood was still sure he wasn’t drunk when he took the cab home. He planned to shower before heading to bed but his underwear drawer proved rather stubborn and he pulled and pulled until he stumbled and found himself on his backside, the room spinning around him. It was then Harwood finally gave up and just crashed on his bed.