Werewolf in the Shadows(3)

By: Olivia Hill

Bella dressed quickly and ran down the stairs. She was not going to put up with being watched any longer. She had to confront the man if she was ever going to feel safe in her own apartment. When Bella finally made it outside, the man was long gone. It was as if he knew she was coming, but how could he have seen her look out of the window? She didn’t fully understand what was going on and turned to walk back into her apartment building.

Bella entered her apartment slightly shaken. She began wondering if kicking Scott out was a good idea. She felt so vulnerable and so alone in that moment, but she knew she could not call Scott for help. She could not allow him back into her life.

Bella decided to lay down and try to relax her mind. She grabbed a book, and before she knew it she was drifting off to sleep. The next morning, she had all but forgotten about the night before. She had decided that it was just a coincidence that the man had been standing on the sidewalk outside of her apartment, and that he had not really been watching her.

Bella dressed and headed off to work. She was glad that she would have two days off after she finished her shift because she really needed some time to herself and away from her job. Bella waited tables at a local café. She knew she could not do this work forever, but it was the job that Scott had lined up for her when she came to marry him. It was not the best paying job, but it did pay the bills. Bella knew that this was not what she wanted to do with the rest of her life, and as she drove to work, she wondered if Scott would force her back to her own country or allow her to say. She wanted to take advantage of every thing this country had to offer, but she did not want to do it with Scott by her side.

Bella was glad to see that there were only a few customers when she got to work. There was nothing quite as annoying as walking into work and immediately being slammed. This would give her a few minutes to grab a cup of coffee before she began work. As she poured her coffee, she looked around the restaurant, and in the corner booth, she saw him.

Sitting right in her place of work was the man that had grabbed her, the same man she had seen outside of her apartment the previous two days. That was it for Bella—she’d had enough.

Bella walked straight up to the booth and sat down across from the man. He had his head down, both hands wrapped around a cup of coffee, as if that was the only thing in the world keeping him warm. He didn’t even look up at her when she sat down.

“I’m Seff,” he said to Bella.

“Well, Seff,” she replied, “What exactly is your problem? You mug me, you show up at my apartment, and then you come to my job. I should call the police on you right now!”

“Why don’t you?” he asked, finally raising his head and looking at Bella. There were those eyes staring straight into hers, and it seemed as if time had stopped.

Bella searched for words but could not find them. She looked down at the table, not sure how to answer him. Why didn’t she call the police? There was the man who had mugged her, sitting right in the restaurant she worked in. She could call the police and have him arrested right there. She looked up at him not knowing what to say.

“I have your things if you want them,” Seff said, reaching into his coat. “I’m not a bad man. We just do what we have to so that we can get by.”

Bella felt sorry for him as he handed her the purse that he and the other man had taken. She somehow felt proud of herself. She had been right about him. He was not bad; he was just trying to get by.

Bella looked at Seff for a few seconds as she took her purse. “Why?” she asked him. Seff just looked back down at his coffee. “I told you, we do what we have to.”

“What does that even mean?” she asked him, confused at his answer.

“It does not matter. I am sorry we scared you. You will find all of your belongings in your purse. I will not bother you again, and you can know that you are safe.”

Bella wanted to scream. Know that she was safe? He had mugged her, he had stalked her, and she was supposed to know that she was safe? What was wrong with this man?

“You know,” Bella began to stand up, “If you needed money, all you had to do was ask. You didn’t need to scare me and take what was not yours. You sure as hell did not need to stand outside of my apartment and try to frighten me.”

Seff opened his mouth to reply but Bella was having none of it. She had gotten what belonged to her and she was not going to listen to what he had to say. She walked away, leaving him to his coffee.

Bella put her purse with the rest of her belongings, and when she returned to the front of the restaurant, she found that Seff was gone. She walked over to the table to found a note that simply said ‘I’m sorry.’