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"Just a hot chocolate please" Jane requested, smiling at the thought of warming up with a hot drink on the girls' day out shopping. Her friends Laura and Lisa were waiting with their drinks at the other end of the counter. They'd planned a guiltless day of shopping stopping only for food and drink. 

Picking up her finished beverage at the drink station, whipped cream and sprinkles included, they scanned the shop for an empty table. "Ah the window seats!" exclaimed Lisa, an unapologetic people watcher. They made their way through the crowded store and fell into the chairs arranged by the window. 

After a few moments of sipping and relaxing, the girls began to compare their purchases from the past couple of hours. Jane pulled out a sparkling gold dress that she'd found in the sale, not her usual attire but at the price it was selling for she had to take it. "That's something I'll be borrowing" winked Laura, who had her new stiletto shoes in her lap for them to admire. 

As more garments were being pulled from bags and shown off at the table, Jane gazed out the window. People were rushing by, oblivious to each other, bumping around with noone really noticing anyone else. Typical of a city centre, everyone in their own world making a beeline for their next purchase. Just as she started to turn back to the mini fashion show, a man caught her eye. He was unnaturally tall and very thin. Just standing there, holding a blue coloured balloon on the other side of the walkway. At first she assumed he was just waiting for someone but he himself seemed to be watching everyone.

"Earth to Jaaaaane" Lisa mocked, poking her in the side.

She pulled herself away from the window and turned back to her friends. "Where's that sweater you found?" Lisa asked, pointing to Jane's bags. 

Jane smirked, knowing that Lisa would try to borrow it all the time but it was so soft that she'd be hiding it in her closet. She pulled it out and handed it over for her friends to admire. After they'd recapped on all their purchases, they drank up and gathered their things ready to head back out and continue with their trip. 

They had browsed through a few shops and were about to enter a beauty store when Jane stopped at the entrance. The others carried on ahead until they realised they'd lost a member of the group. They turned to see Jane staring away from the store. "Jane, what are you doing?" they chorused, to no reply. 

She was watching him again, the tall man from earlier. She'd forgotten about him before but she was sure he had been following her around. Now he was only a few shops away, watching her. His face was obscured by the hat he was wearing, pulled down and covering his eyes in shadow. She only glanced away as her friends tried to drag her inside. "No don't, that guy has been following us around all day" she pointed. Her friends peered around the doors to the store, "What guy?" they asked in unison again. 

"Him, with the balloon" she pointed him out again but the others couldn't seem to see who she was referring to. They both waltzed back into the store, leaving her at the door, just watching the man with the balloon. Whilst his face was obscured, she was sure he had started to smirk now, sending a chill down her spine as a result. 

She frowned and darted into the store, trying to put the man out of her mind for the rest of the trip. After a few more hours of wandering around the shopping centre and buying bits and bobs, she made her way home without her friends as they decided to dash to the supermarket to grab food for dinner.

As Jane rounded the corner towards their house, she realised that after the beauty store the man had disappeared. It relieved her to think that it was just a creepy guy who got bored once she decided to ignore him. She stopped at her front door and tried to grasp her keys from her handbag without putting all her shopping down. Once this attempt had failed she admitted defeat and let all her bags drop to the floor, accidentally dropping her handbag with them. Sighing, she bent down to rummage for her keys amongst the sea of receipts and old sweet packets. After a moment or two she found them and stood back up to let herself into the house, ready to fall onto the couch and maybe have a little nap. 

As she pushed the key into the door, a strange squeaking noise coming from behind startled her. The hairs on her arms stood on end and she closed her eyes wishing it was just her imagination. As she reopened them, she tilted her head to the side so she could see who was behind her in the reflection of the glass in her door. Heart beating fast, she swirled to meet the stranger behind her and was met only by a single blue balloon, tied to her gate.

See the next installment- The Letter 'D'


1 comment:

  1. This would freak my right the heck out if it happened to me. Nice job!