Ziggy checked the locks carefully before leaving the Q Corner stop and walked towards the bus stop. The air was cold, and she clutched herself tightly as she neared the small plastic booth, encasing a bench. She smiled when she saw that it was empty. The city could get dangerous at this time of night, and if she had any other choice, she would have tried for a better means of transportation. However, cars didn’t come cheap, and neither did car insurance, and the cabs in the area charged quite a bit for the distance that she needed to travel in order to make it home. Ziggy glanced around as she waited, careful to avoid eye contact with the few stray people that passed her as she waited. A pair of bright yellow lights finally appeared in the distance, and Ziggy hopped up, digging her bus pass free from her pocket so that she was prepared to board.
The day had been tiresome, and after seven hours in class and five hours at work, she was more than ready to relax. The grueling routine of her day had been complicated by her inability to speak, making it difficult to communicate at work and at school, but furthermore, causing her to fight with the new woman who had entered her classroom today. Lana. The gorgeous beauty that had come out of nowhere with her blue-gray eyes and wavy blonde hair.
When Ziggy had first seen her, she had to take another look to see if the woman was real. She had never seen perfection like that up close, only in magazines, and when the woman had chosen to speak to her, every thought in Ziggy’s head had disappeared. The other woman could have been a model for Cosmo, and there Ziggy was in her four-day-old jeans and bulky brown coat, the center of Lana’s attention. Even if Ziggy could have spoken at that moment, she wasn’t sure that any words would have come out, but her feelings for the other woman had changed quickly after they had exited the classroom.
Mr. Hindberg had caught Lana talking to Ziggy during their lesson and scolded the other woman, and apparently Lana didn’t take well to criticism. Ziggy had even tried to apologize to Lana after class. She knew how much of a jerk Mr. Hindberg could be. She had only been in his class for a couple of weeks, and he had found something to criticize her about every one of those days, so it was no surprise to her that when Lana was caught talking to her that he did the same thing to the other woman. She understood Lana’s anger with the situation. However, the way that the woman had approached her when she had tried to apologize to her was uncalled for. The other woman had basically insinuated that Ziggy had purposely made a fool out of her in front of the class, and the way that she had mocked Ziggy had been upsetting. Ziggy had tried to be nice to Lana, but Lana had gone out of her way to make Ziggy look like a monster. Ziggy wasn’t used to people acting so irrationally, and she knew that if Lana had let her explain everything, the other woman would have realized that Ziggy had laryngitis and that everything was just a simple misunderstanding. However, Lana didn’t seem to have enough patience to step back and see anything from anyone’s perspective but her own, and Ziggy couldn’t deal with that kind of negativity in her life.
Ziggy felt the bus stop and hopped off. She walked up the sidewalk to her apartment building and walked up the steps to the front door. As she turned her key in the doorknob, she heard muffled speech on the other side of the door.
Ziggy entered the living room and locked the door behind her. She pulled her phone out and brought up her text to voice app. She had gotten quite used to using the application to communicate with her cousin in the passing days, and it had saved her from missing out on conversations at home when she didn’t have a voice. “Is someone here?” she typed into the app, waiting for a response.
“It’s just me,” a familiar male voice boomed from the kitchen. “You still haven’t gotten your voice back, Zigs?”
“No,” Ziggy’s voice app replied as she walked into the kitchen, finding Alicia and her boyfriend, Carter, cooking side by side. “What are you making?” Ziggy’s voice app inquired. “It smells good.”
“Turkey roulade,” Alicia replied, checking the potatoes that she had boiling on the stove.
“Fancy,” Ziggy’s app commented as she took in an exaggerated whiff. “What’s the occasion?”
“Why don’t you sit down on the couch and get comfortable?” Alicia told her, ignoring the question.
“We’re going to have a nice dinner, and then, Carter and I have some news to tell you.”