The Nowhere Girl


Chapter one

       This first time that he saw her he thought that she looked like she had walked straight out of a painting. The sunlight was spiralling down through the domed glass ceiling throwing coloured streaks into her palest of blonde hair, creating a patina of shimmering auburn and gold highlights that no hairdresser could have produced. The angle of her cheekbone caught the edge of the light which threw shadow on her pale skin. Yes, she looked like a Rembrandt, that specific quality of light catching the translucent tone of her skin, or the heroine from a silent movie, all big eyes and expressive mouth, he couldn’t take his eyes from her mouth, the luscious curve of it.  It made him seriously think what it would be like to kiss her. For a moment he wondered if she was really there, or if he had just dreamt her up in one of his daydreams.

She looked like the Angel on top of the Christmas tree that he could remember seeing on one of his rare visits to church as a child. She looked other worldly, and she had walked through the automatic glass doors of the Arts Centre surrounded by what he could only describe as ‘Grace’ in the Old Testament sense of the word. His hands twitched beneath the reception desk for his camera, but he stilled them laying them firmly on the table in front of him, and placed what he hoped was an enigmatic grin on his face. He realised that she had spoken to him a minute ago or it could be a whole lifetime ago, he’s not sure:: time is standing still, and he needs to do something to move it on again to restore some semblance of normality before his inner turmoil gets completely out of hand.

‘’Hi can I help you’’

She turns lazily to fix him with an out of focus look, licking her lips and deferring to the girl with the flaming red hair behind her. Then in a soft voice with the faintest tingle of an accent that he couldn’t quite place she almost whispers her reply so that he has to lean towards her to capture her words; as if he was trying to catch the dust that flew across a sunlit room, as if he was reaching out towards a destiny that had always been waiting for him.

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