Picture Credit/ Val Mercado
Britannia and I spoke till morning. Something we haven’t done in a long time. We talked about her plans here in the city, and also modeling. My up and coming travels, seeing my family, and her, hers.
Around seven in the morning I decided to go back to Brad’s apartment, take a shower, change clothes. While in in the kitchen eating some eggs, toasts and a fruit bowl, Brad pats me on the back, walks around me and heads for the fridge, “Where were you last night?”
“Well,” I take a sip of my coffee, and put the mug back down, “if you’d like to know mother …” I pause and chuckle, as he glares at me over his left shoulder, “I was at the lounge and then decided to just chill with a friend.”
Brad sits down next to me, water bottle in hand, “A friend?” He raises a brow.
“Yeah,” I turn my head in his direction sporting the famous smirk he hates so much, “a friend.”
He shakes his head, twists the cap of the water and takes long sip. When he’s done he puts the bottle on the marble counter, and runs his hand through his hair, “So,” he inhales deeply, and puts his right hand on his thigh while facing me, “you remember the models at Ian’s casting call?”
I nod, “Cassie right?” Still remembering I favored her because of her southern roots.
Sporting his boyish smile, he nods his head, “Yeah …” He clears his throat, “since Cassie’s only been in the city for a couple of days, weeks … Whatever. I thought we could show them both a night out on the town.”
A night out on the town would do me some good. It’s been awhile since I’ve gone out to a good nightclub or bar in New York City and lord knows that I need a good stiff drink and some dancing to cure my broken soul.
“Okay, I’m all in bro.” I tell him.
Looking at me shocked, Brad smiles big, “You’re serious?”
“Yeah man,” I chuckle and run my fingers through my hair, “I’m in.”
Brad hops off his stool and shacks both of my shoulders as he does his little dance, “Yeah man!
I pull away from him as I’m laughing, “Okay, so …” I stand up and he takes a couple of steps backwards, “I have a couple of errands to run, but I’ll meet you here around 6 … 7.”
“Alright, I’m going to hit up Bree and let her know you’re definitely coming.”
I shake my head, with a smile while I turn towards the sink to put my dishes in the sink. Trust me there are no expectations tonight other than me getting partially drunk and just socializing. Cassie might be there, but I wasn’t going to hook up with anyone. I didn’t need the added stress. All I want to do is drink, dance and chill … With no drama.
I grab my backpack, keys and wallet, “Alright man, I’ll see you in a bit.”
I walk out of the apartment making sure to lock the door behind me. On my way to the elevator I send Stella an email to see if she has any good news from her realtor. Then I check my social media accounts and notice I have 100 DM’s in my Instagram account. I decide to answer them later on in the day.
By the time I make out into the streets of New York City, I put my hoodie on to deal with the chilly weather and begin walking up the street. I continue up the block and make a left on Broadway.
As I do I’m patting the pockets of my hoodie jacket in search of my phone. I continue walking without a destination in mind; I briefly glance down to reach into my inner left pants pocket to take out my phone. As I do, I walk right in to someone, dropping my phone on the concrete as soon as we collide.
“Shit!” I say out loud as I quickly crouch down to retrieve it. I see another iPhone, reach for it, and a delicate hand reach for it at the same time I did. I look up and the first thing I notice is her beautiful brown eyes. “I’m so sorry. I was looking at my messages.” She says apologetically.
My whole demeanor changes almost immediately, “It’s okay.” I hand her, her phone. I stand up straight and smile.
“Thank you.”, She says with a smile, and then inspects her phone. “Ah …” She exhales in relief, “I seriously need to get a case for this.” She takes a deep breath and looks at me.
“There’s a store not too far from here.” I point behind me.
“Thank you…” She chuckles, “once it cracks, it’s gone for good.” She puts it in her purse, “this would be my third replacement. I’m extra clumsy.”
I chuckle, “It’s okay, clumsy is cute.” I boldly exclaim.
She presses her lips together in a smile, and her caramel skin turns a light shade of pink. The young woman clears her throat, “I’m so rude,” she holds out her hand, “Levi.”
“Alec.” I take her hand and shake it…strong hand shake.
“Nice to meet you Alec.” She tucks her hair behind her right ear.
“Likewise.” She says with a wide smile.
Every time she does I couldn’t help, but look at her heart shaped lips. They were lustrous, and beautiful. “So…” I say to keep my attention on her eyes and not her lips, “you should visit that store. We don’t want a fourth replacement”
“I know,” She says with wide eyes and then she asks, “is your phone okay?”
I look down at it, paying close attention to the screen and the corners. Nothing was cracked or chipped, “It looks like it survived.” I put it back in my pants pocket.
“Maybe you should go buy a case for it as well. You know,” She shrugs, “So, you won’t have a first replacement.”
I laugh lightheartedly, “You are absolutely right. It’s my first one, just got it a couple of days ago.”
“Well,” she raises both eyebrows, “since I’m already heading that way and you obviously need a case. We can just go together, because honestly I’m bad with directions and it seems you know exactly where to go.”
Levi has a point. I know the area very well. And, taking her wouldn’t be that much of a headache. On top of that, I’m off and have a couple of hours to kill before I go out tonight. So, I honestly don’t mind.
Still, I begin to discreetly rock back and forth. Something about encounters with regular people, or should I say none public figures was risky business and worries me. It risks her knowing who I was, and then she might turn into a groupie, possibly a headache. That is, if she’s into fashion or photography.
On the flip side she did have a point about me needing a case for my cellphone. That’s persuasive enough for me to make up my mind.
Scratching the top of my head I tell her, “Okay, I have nothing to do.”
“Yay!” Levi claps her hands like a happy child. Levi gestures with her hand for me to lead the way and falls into pace on my left side. We walks silently for a couple of seconds until she broke the silence. “So, you live around here?”
I shake my head, “No, I was actually just walking around killing some time.”
“Oh, that’s cool. So you’re are winging it right now? She says with an innocent look.
I look down at her and I can’t help, but be drawn by her beauty. To the point where I need to look past her to answer her question. “Something like that.” I clear my throat and run my fingers through my hair, and ask her, “what about you?”
“I’m here visiting with family.”
“So where do you live, if you don’t mind me asking?”
“Oh.” I’m somewhat surprised. I honestly thought she lived in the city. She has the accent, so it catches me off guard when she mentions D.C. “Are you originally from D.C?” I ask just to curb my curiosity.
“Oh no, I actually moved out there because of school. But I was born and raised in New York City.”
So, I was right, she’s a city girl.
To be honest, she doesn’t resemble a city girl. Only when she talks, can I tell because of her accent. It’s not to say that city women aren’t diverse, but she is different.
her mannerism are different.
On top of that, she’s really attractive, cute, and almost adorable. Levi’s rather short; about five feet, so that made her even more endearing, but she’s the very opposite of the type of women I’m attracted to.
And still her glow is so inviting and so contagious. I’ve never met; until this day, someone with such a genuine jovial nature. Even when she talks, she just seems so happy. It’s actually a very likable quality.
“How long will you be visiting for?” I finally ask her.
“Two weeks, maybe three, but I’m still deciding.”
Levi giggles, and I wonder why. She looks up at me, when she does, I quickly hold out my arm to stop her from walking in to oncoming traffic.
A car drives by and it’s then that she realizes she was about to cross the street without even looking. “Holy shit,” She begins to breathe heavily, “That was so close.” She takes a deep breath.
“Yeah,” I reply eyes wide, “too close.” I put my arm down, “are you not mindful of your surroundings.” I say breathing heavily myself. It’s not that I was pissed, because I wasn’t. The fact, that at that moment I was full of adrenaline; is what causes me to reprimand her. It’s not intentional, it’s more my reactionary nature.
Still, with that child like light in her eyes, she tells me, “Just a little tiny bit.” Showing me with her thumb and index finger what little tiny bit means to her and to be honest it’s not much.
“Okay, for my sanity, let’s just pay closer attention to our surroundings.” I tell her trying to relax. Levi smiles genuinely and I return the favor.
“Will do,” Levi adorably looks up at me with her big eyes, “and thank goodness you were here to protect me from oncoming traffic.”
Her tone of voice is so lovable. That I couldn’t possible continue scolding her. Yes, I had gotten really worried to be put through a scare like that. I’m protective by nature, but it was sort of odd to have that much responsibility put on me by a complete stranger. That as well was what caused me angst.
“Red light.” She calls out bringing me out of my thoughts.
Instinctively I go to grab her hand; then catch myself and pretend my intent is to put it in my pockets. We cross the street. As we continue to walk, in my head I wonder why I’d hold out my hand to hers.
She’s someone I met five minutes ago. Don’t get me wrong. Instant attraction can happen to almost anyone. Shit, it happens a lot to keep,but something about Levi is different, fun, jovial and I like that. She gives off a feeling of … Comfort.
I momentarily glance in her direction. I watch her closely; eyes taking in everything around her. Even as she walked beside me she had a hint of a smile on her face. Maybe it’s because she knew I was glancing at here every now and then.
To be honest, I didn’t care. I was intrigued by her, and my observing nature was starting to peel away surface layers of her as I read her body language. It said she was truly the care free type of person. Nothing seems to bother her.
In this very moment, it’s that easy going nature of hers that made feel at ease. It’s like ‘like’ at first sight. Something that has taken me by surprise. By nature I am a laid back person, friendly and social when I need to be. However it takes me a while to warm up to people in a way that allows them to get in my personal space.
Jessica and I hit it off so well when we first started talking, because we had something in common, and it was mutual career interest. It was natural to warm up to her because we worked together and bones the same people. Same with Cassie, the model I met at the go see.
Levi … She’s a stranger, not of my word, and this is why I find it funny that I’m warming up to her so quickly. Here I am wanting to get to know her. Wondering what she was doing for the rest of day? Why the hell was she so easy-going with me? Then, it dawns on me, she had no idea that I am a model!
That was it, it had to be it. Assuming that she doesn’t know me, made me feel good. This means for once I am going to spend the day with someone and not have them talk to me; about me. Something that’s extremely frustration. Having a fan just yap and yap about you is well, no offense … crazy. Think about it for a moment …. There is truly a thin line between appreciation which I don’t mind. Then there is borderline obsession.
You’re probably thinking how dare I, those are his most loyal fans … and you are right they are. But, I dare, because I’m human. I dare because some take it overboard and overstep certain boundaries. So talking to someone that hasn’t read my bio because they googled me on the Internet, is a breath of fresh air.
To add more to that, not having someone that doesn’t know me say ‘I love you’ is also a breath of fresh air. You can love my work, that’s to me is normal. In fact, it’s humbles me and I find it honorable. Now loving me without knowing me, but doing so because you draw up a fantasy of me … I don’t know, what do you think that is?
“So…” Levi begins to say making me focus my attention on her instead of my thoughts, “You said earlier you were just on an about, but not many are out and about in the financial district. Is there a specific reason why you would pick this side of town?”
“Should there be?” I raise a brow.
She shrugs her shoulders, “I don’t know. I guess …” She tucks her hair behind her right ear, “I guess in trying to ask you what you do?” She briefly looks up at me squinting her eyes, and then looks away.
I clear my throat, “Do you mean my job?” Think of something believable, remember she’s from the city.
“Ye-ah.” She snorts.
She nods and I’m relieved she buys it, “Cool.”
“What about you?”
“Really?” I say somewhat shocked. She doesn’t look like the type to be into computers. Or the book smart type at all. Call me stereotypical, but Levi was curvaceous, had well sized breast, and she had an athletic body at the same time. Usually someone as beautiful as her aspires to be in the entertainment business.
In my opinion, it’s hard to picture her with a book in hand, and studying for a test. Judging by the way, she dresses, she looks more like the girly tomboyish type, not the nerdy type. I know it’s not nice to be stereotypical about others, but I’m only being honest.
We continue walking until I finally see the store, “You say it like it’s a surprise.” Levi finally exclaims.
“Honestly,” I pull the door open for her and she waits for me to finish before she walks in, “You don’t look like the type.”
“Ha,” she laughs in a lighthearted jokative way, and walks into the store. I lower my gaze enough to avoid making eye contact with the customers. Fashion is really popular in these neck of the woods, which means my face is on major fashion advertisement billboards in this area. I try to kind of, relax, as I pray no one notices me. “I hope I didn’t offend you.” I tell her to calm my nerves and also hoping I didn’t make a wrong move by being too honest.
“Of course not,” she looks over her shoulder. “Because I can easily say you don’t look like you’re in advertisement.” I grow silent, “but…” she continues standing by the accessories, “you can never judge a book by its cover.”
“I’ll keep that in mind.” I tell her holding both of the straps to my back pack.
“Very smart of you.”she tells me and winks in my direction.
I smile appreciating her playfulness and I begin to look through the cases with her, “See anything you like.”
“Um….” She looks past all the pink cases, another surprise.
“No pink.” I comment on her overlooking them just to see what she’d say.
“Oh god no, I’m not the girly type.”
“Really?” I questionably raise an eyebrow.
“Really, I’m more in to black, hence…” She waves her phone, “black phone.”
I chuckle, “Excuse me.”
“Just saying, I like my blacks, my reds, no pink.”
“What about you?” Again her playful smirk is on her lovely face and I grin.
“My blacks,” I take out my phone and wave it like she had, “hence black phone.”
“Well excuse me.”, She mocks me right back. It causes us to laugh at the same time.
something I haven’t done this genuinely since my break up with Jess. And in this moment in glad I’ve met her.
We continue looking through phone cases and a female sales rep walks up to us and asks, “Do you need help with anything?”
Levi clears her throat, “Um … I need the sturdiest case. I mean something that can survive multiple collisions with concrete, as well as stairs.”
“You need the otterbox.”, She walks over to the otter boxes. “A particular color?”
“Black, black and white, red or red and black.”
“Okay, and you sir, do you need a case for your iPhone?”
“Yeah, same thing, same colors.”
Levi looks at me and grins. I shake my head and smile surprisingly lower my gaze because I run the risk of blushing. The sales associate goes ahead and picks out two black cases for our iPhones and walks us over to the cashier registers. She rings up the cases together, and Levi stops her, “Oh, I’m sorry its separate.”
“I got it.” I tell the associate right away as I take out my wallet.
“No really, I can pay for…”
“I got it.” My voice firm letting her know I wasn’t going to budge.
Levi shuts her mouth; looks at the sales associate and briefly smiles. In turn, the young lady takes my credit card, swipes it and Levi makes a face of displeasure. The cases go in the bag, along with the receipt and it’s handed to me. “Thank you very much.”
“You’re welcome sir.”
Levi and I walk out of the Verizon store. I bring my left wrist up, pull the sleeve back to my sweater to glance at my wrist-watch. It’s 5:50 pm. I’m still have plenty of time to socialize. I have a lovely young lady next to me, who seems not to have any where to be, and she says while sounding a bit upset. “You didn’t have to do that.”
“It’s not a big deal.” I reach into the bag, “what are you doing for the rest of the night?” I ask her as I take the phone case out and hand it to her.
“Thank you.” She gives me a half smile when I hand it to her and continues on to say, “honestly I was just walking, and sightseeing. I don’t visit much. So, when I do I like to go sightseeing in the city.”
I smile, “Like a tourist?”
We stand at the corner of the street; away from passersby and I asked, “Do you mind if I tag along?”
The wind was blowing her hair in her face, so she gathers it in a ponytail and picks it up in a messy bun. Levi looks at me with her lovely smile, which in beginning to love so much and tells me, “I have to warn you I do love to walk a lot. So, I hate people who complain about their feet hurting.”
“Well I like to walk as well and I don’t complain so you’re in luck.” I told her and I brandish my boyish smile.
“Okay,” she nods her head, “you can tag along.”
I smile internally. This was one of those moments where I really wanted to get to know someone. I’ll have to admit, I’m so taken by her. Her personality is intoxicating and I am in a jovial mood because of her. “So, where too?” I ask her.
“Honestly, I need to eat.”
“I know the perfect place.”
Thank you all, especially to the new readers. Your support is a humbling experience for me. Don’t be shy, comment, like, and share : )
See you all in Ch 6 Pt.2