&window modeling (which is essentially what this chapter is about as it sits within the larger context of a manuscript that’s being periodically uploaded to the interwebs, of which this is a chapter, and that you may enjoy in order by starting from the beginning or beginning here and traveling wherever the figurative wind blows you…in the meantime…this is the next chapter *peace*)
[begin next chapter]
“You are to be a replacement. Do you understand?”
“Tell of what you know.”
“What do you know about the nature of existence?”
“Well, why … nothing.”
“Excellent. The things that you need to know will be made known to you, and then the transcription and dissemination of that knowledge will be procured and delivered by you.”
“Excellent. Do you have any questions?”
“What ought to be transcribed?”
“But there is much that is not known.”
“It will all be made known, eventually. You will also be privy to certain insights.”
“Is all understood?”
“As best as one could understand a thing at this time.”
“Excellent. Come this way and look here. Tell of what you see. Please, begin.”
The older woman, in her youth, sits picturesque at a small table for two, just beyond the glass of the cafe’s front windows. Remarkably beautiful, every single passerby stops and ogles her in disbelief. No one dares to look at her for too long, since feelings of inferiority mixed with jealousy and envy eventually enrage them. Every other person, nevertheless, enters the cafe. The mass appeal of her overall look and demeanor seems to create a reaction within the passersby that this is the place to be. Thus, as she sits, everyone takes note of the name and location of this “place good enough for a girl like her.”
A young man approaches. He stops and seems to take in her beauty like the warmth of sunshine after a long winter. The young older woman glances up at him and smiles. Confident, he enters the cafe and sits himself down in the open seat across from her. She begins to look around the place, as if seeking some sort of approval. The man does not notice her discomfort. Silent, the two simply look at each other, happy, wonderful. Soon enough, the man strikes up a conversation, “How are you?” A little bewildered yet relieved at the lack of introductions, she smiles and laughs a contagious laugh. “I’m fine. And you?” she responds while enjoying how giddy he makes her feel. “Oh, I’m doing just great. Thank you,” he answers, never taking his eyes off her. The two sit together for another silent moment. “I’m not bothering you, am I?” the man finally asks. She looks around again, the feelings of discomfort and unease swarm her again, “Uh, no.” “Are you doing some work or something?” the man prods. “Well, not exactly,” she responds. “Oh,” the man states in a seriously chipper tone; “Well then, would you like to accompany me on a day out on the town?” She tries to be subtle as she looks over her shoulder toward the counter/ordering area of the cafe. A person who looks like a manager or supervisor of some sort eyes her coolly. “Uh, well, I can’t exactly leave here right now,” she answers. The man catches a glimpse of the manager-type person looking in their direction, “Oh, I see.” Sad and disappointed, the man continues as he fidgets in a motion of excusing one’s self, “Well, it was really nice to meet … Oh, I guess we never really met.” “No, it’s not that,” she urgently states as she reaches out across the table and touches the arm of the man. The man seems to almost melt at her touch, “Oh.” He situates himself back into a comfortable seated position.
She takes a deep breath, sighs, “It’s just that I’m working right now.” “You are?” the man wonders aloud. “Yes,” she explains; “It’s my job to sit here, right here, in the window of this cafe.” “What?” the man laughs; “That’s a thing … that you get paid for?” She rolls her eyes a bit, “Yea.” “Wait, wait, explain this to me,” the man urges as he crosses his arms and leans back in the chair. The young older woman scoffs sarcastically, “Come on, don’t be so judgemental.” The man leans forward again, arms resting atop the table, “Oh, I’m not judging, please, by all means, please, explain to me how it’s your job to sit here in this window.” “I’m a window model,” she begins softly, almost whispering. She looks around again to make sure no one is paying too much attention. “A window model?” the man whispers. “Yes,” she confirms in whisper. “Okay, so what exactly does that mean?” the man pries, thoroughly entertained. She sighs again, feeling shamed, “I sit in the window seat of different cafes and restaurants so that people will think that this is the place to be.” “Are you serious?” the man almost shouts, excited; “That is the greatest thing I have ever heard. You’re being serious?” “Yes,” she whispers while miming him to please keep it down. The man gets the hint and gazes around the cafe to make sure no one is listening, and then he leans in again over the table, “And you get paid?” “Yes,” she verifies. The man sits back and crosses his arms again, smiling. They stare at each other in silence.
After another moment or two, the man leans forward and reiterates, “Okay, so let me get this straight. You’re so beautiful that people, shop owners, hire you to sit in the window where randos walking by can see you sitting inside their shop or whatnot, and these people who hire you think that this helps their business. And so what, you get a cut of their daily profits or something?” She lightly scratches the space between her eyebrows, “Well, I don’t know if it’s that I’m so beautiful. Maybe I just have the right vibe for whatever the owners think will attract people.” “Right, you’re not sure if you’re so beautiful,” the man sarcastically mocks. She hugs herself tightly and then takes a sip of her tea. “I’m sorry,” the man apologizes; “I didn’t mean for that to sound rude. But come on, you’ve got to have some semblance of recognition that you’re being hired because you’re beautiful.” She shrugs as her face turns somber, uncomfortable.
“I need to get rid of you in about two minutes,” she explains. “What?” he questions. “I’m not really allowed to let people sit here with me for more than a few minutes,” she outlines. “Oh, because a taken woman is all the more less appealing?” he asks. She nods and shrugs simultaneously. “Oh, come on,” the man states, annoyed; “So, I have to leave while you just sit here?” Again she nods and shrugs. “Well, I’m not gonna leave that easy,” the man challenges. “Then you’ll eventually meet the manager,” she retorts. The man grins a big grin, “Oh, so you don’t want me to leave either.” She fingers her teacup. “Alright,” the man nods; “Then what are we gonna do?” “We could just sit here until the manager kicks you out,” she suggests. “How can he, she?” the man begins. “She,” she delineates. “Yea, so how can she just kick me out?” the man disputes. “Uh, she usually just comes over here and asks, ‘Is this guy bothering you?,’ to which I have to respond, ‘Yea,’ and then she says something like, ‘Look kid, why don’t you just leave this nice lady alone,’ or something,” she explains; “Then the guys just leave, sort of pissed, sort of desperate for me to reach out to them. They usually want to know how they can see me again.” The man looks a bit concerned, “Wait, do any of them give you problems. You know, like if they see you again?” She laughs, “No, I have a pretty steady rotation. I won’t be back in this cafe for at least another month.” “Oh,” the man responds, shocked; “May I ask you something?” “Uh, sure,” she allows. “So, like how many guys hit on you on a daily basis?” he boldly throws out. She blushes, “Uh, I don’t know.” “Oh, like so many guys that you can’t keep count?” the man further requests. She cocks her head, indignant, “No, not like that. I just don’t keep track because I don’t care. I guess if you’re making me come up with a number, it’s only like one a day, on average. Most guys don’t talk to me or even approach me.” “It’s cause they’re scared,” he nods with lifted eyebrows. “What? No,” she condemns; “Oh. I get it. But you’re supposed to be some man’s man who can handle me?” Proud, the man nods, “Definitely.” The two laugh together at what she considers to be the absurdity that he considers the truth.
“Oh shit,” the man stops laughing; “I think she’s coming over here.” “It’s fine,” she starts; “I’ll be done in an hour.” “What am I supposed to do without you for an hour?” he helplessly states. She laughs. “Fine. I’ll be back in one hour,” he concedes. “Ma’am,” the manager states calmly. “Yea yea,” the man cuts in; “I’m outta here. She’s not into me anyway.” She hides her pleasure from the manager. The manager walks away. Outside now, the man waves and gestures something the young older woman does not fully understand but comprehends as him slitting his throat. He then blows her a kiss. She catches it.