Meanwhile back in the city…
Milo Villanova was a mid-40s businessman, accountant to be more specific, living a middle-class life in New York City. He was successful, to a certain extent, although he was not pleased with his achievements. He liked working with numbers, but there was something that he truly loved and that was writing. He loved writing fiction novels; in fact, he had been working on a particular idea for about two years now, but couldn’t figure out how to put it all together. There was something holding him back: he was lacking a muse, that something or someone who would inspire him enough to finish his novel. This, to Milo, was like if someone had given him a coffer full of gold but had taken the key away. You may call it writer’s block, if you wish.
One particular morning, Milo was wearing a grey suit; he had stopped by Dunkin Donuts to get his medium-size coffee, took the subway, as usual, and placed his portfolio by his feet. He then, began to write a chapter of his story.
“An enjoyable procedure? Sounds about right…” he continued writing “because everything is nothing but an illusion, nothing but a mere lie, a sadist trick of one’s mind” he stopped writing “nah, I think I’m missing my point” he sighed. He crossed off his words “she was… pretty? The most wonderful creation on Earth”, he crossed everything off, closed the notebook and placed it back on his jacket pocket. “I need inspiration for my main character”, Milo thought.
He lifted his eyes to see the people on the train. There was a girl with a guitar case covered by stamps from various cities, some teenage girls gossiping about boys, and an old lady reading a book, the rest of the passengers were men. The train stopped and announced the station and that only the doors at the end of each wagon would open. Milo rapidly stood up and ran towards the exit. Doors were about to close but he managed to get out. Then, he remembered his portfolio turned around but the doors had already closed. There was nothing he could do; the train wasn’t magically going to stop and so he headed to the office empty-handed.
It was a large room. A round table stood in the middle and there were chairs surrounding it. To the right, some old paintings decorated a white wall and to the left, wide tall windows gave a wonderful view of the city. Men and women in business attire occupied the chairs. Milo was sitting in one of the chairs near the windows. All the way down a man was standing, holding a folder on his hands.
“… for the past three months our profits have come down the hill. I thought we would recover, but after losing the Innovative Mind Design Competition, our future in this industry seems compromised.” Said Richard Weiss, principal of the firm. He was a tall robust man with grey hair and mustache at the end of the room. “If we don’t get a big project soon I’ll be forced to let some of you go”, the old man continued.
“The construction business is getting worse with all the new firms rising”, said a young man sitting in one of the chairs.
Richard Weiss rolled his eyes at the young man’s comment “Thank you for that useless comment. I’ll remember it when I’m doing the list” he said and turned to Milo. “Villanova, can we hear this week’s report? Any good news?”
“Ummm I…” mumbled Milo, wishing he had checked twice before leaving the train.
“Yes?” asked R. Weiss intimidatingly.
“I left it on the train on my way here, I can have a copy for you tomorrow morning”, he finally found the courage to say.
“Are you telling me that important documents of this company are now in some stranger’s hands!?” He yelled. Milo didn’t respond. “Villanova, this is the third time in a row, where’s your head these days? All you have to do is print the report and bring it! Is that too much to ask? You don’t even have to think, a cat could do your job! You’re…” Milo furiously stood up, hitting the table with his fist.
“Save it Mr. Weiss, I quit, I hate this job anyways. I’m sick of having to come here, you know why we didn’t win that competition? Because it’s called INNOVATIVE, you’re old Mr. Weiss, they want fresh minds… Have a nice day sir.” He turned around and walked out happy and satisfied of having quit.
“Nobody talks to me like this…!” Milo could hear R. Weiss say in the back, but yet continued walking.
After walking out of that office that had served as a jail for him for so many years, he couldn’t feel anything but relief. The day seemed brighter, the streets cleaner and even the polluted air felt as fresh as in the countryside. He decided to walk back home instead of taking the subway, it was only 10 blocks away so why not? He passed by a luxurious rooftop restaurant that he’d always wanted to try, but it was too expensive for him. Without hesitation and before reason came back to him, he rapidly crossed the street and went in. The place was full of upper-class business people sitting on fancy tables, the restaurant was packed and there were only a few tables with umbrellas outside facing the street, he was seated in one of those. He ordered salmon and white wine, took his phone and made a call. About 30min later an early-50s man approached the table guided by a waitress dressed with black pants, white shirt and a bowtie. Milo saw him, stopped eating and after cleaning his mouth with a napkin cloth lying on his lap, greets the man.
“Bartow! Good to see you!”
“You look oddly happy today, what is this all about?” asked Bartow. Took a seat, the waitress handed him the menu and poured a glass of water for him.
“Well, I quit my job, Weiss was going to fire me and so I quit before he could finish his sentence”, he laughed.
“You did what!? You quit your job and the first thing you do is come to an expensive restaurant? How are you going to pay for this?” he asked startled.
“And that’s why I invited you”, he raised his glass, winked at Bartow and took a sip.
“Guess that’s what friends are for, huh?…” he said “I still don’t understand your enthusiasm”, the waitress approached them.
“Would you like to order, sir?”
“I’ll get the salmon as well, and a glass of wine, red for me, please”, gave the waitress the menu.
“I’m 45-years-old Bartow, I’ve been working on the same office for the past 20 years and I hate it! I’m living in a ground-level apartment, and I have no wife, I’m not happy”, he explained.
“You’ve dated some nice ladies, you’re not married because you don’t want to be”, he replied.
“See, that’s where you’re wrong, I want to be married! Those women, they weren’t what I’m looking for. I want to fall in love, I want to find the most beautiful woman my eyes have ever seen and write a novel about her. I want to find my muse and spend the rest of my life next to her, and if she doesn’t let me, at least I want to have the pleasure of meeting her”, his eyes wandering sparklingly as he spoke.
“If you put it in those terms, it sounds fascinating, but how are you going to find this perfect woman? How does the most beautiful woman looks like?” Bartow asked confused.
“I don’t know how she looks like, I guess I’ll know it when I see her”
“You’re not making sense!” Milo simply looked at him and smiled.
“Perhaps I’m just a hopeless romantic.” He paused “I’m going to go to the country, take what I own and leave, I’ll look for my muse, and find my inspiration to write a book. I’ve always wanted to, you know that”, he said with a broad smile on his face.
“What!? You’re leaving!?”, said astonished.
“Yes, I don’t really like the city, never did. I’m leaving tomorrow morning.” He finished eating and placed the napkin on the table. “Well, gotta go pack, say hello to Karen and the kids”, continued. Stood up and left. The waitress approached with the salmon on her hand.
“Your salmon sir” Bartow didn’t say a thing, just watched Milo leave and sneered.
[I hope you liked this first chapter of L U N A, please write your thought below: how do you think this relates to the preface? Do you think he’ll find his ‘perfect woman’? Give this a LIKE by clicking the button below and FOLLOW ME to keep up with the story 🙂 and go ahead and enjoy the rest of your day :D! Thanks for reading ❤ ]