Blind Attraction

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  1. Blind Attraction
    A one x one between Lillian Gray and Rainjay

    "Painting is a blind man's profession. He paints not what he sees, but what he feels, what he tells himself about what he has seen."

    -Pablo Picasso
  2. Show Spoiler

    Vincent Dupont


    Age: 23
    Height: 5'11"
    Eye Color: Hazel
    Hair Color: Sandy brown

    Personality: Vincent knows there's a time for humor and a time for being serious. Typically though, he likes to override his conscious and go with the flow. He's an easy going guy with an overwhelming need to have the approval of others. It doesn't always flow too well, and when he's awkward he likes to shrink back, but when he's on top of his game at the front of the crowd, he'll play the confident man he wants to be.
    Bio/History: As a child, Vincent always found comfort in art. It wasn't just drawing and sketching he enjoyed, but a bit of printing and sculpting on the side. His parents weren't always supportive of his dreams to be an artist, rather wanting to see him become more like his older siblings who'd all made it through prestigious schools. However, he overcame their disapproval and is now doing what he loves best.

    Family: Father Blake, Mother Clarissa, Older Sister Hannah, Older Brother Trevor.​

    Most liked their coffee in the morning, to freshen up the day and provide a synthetic alertness. In that aspect, Vincent could say he was the same. A dark brew sat before him on the table, although the night was only starting. It simply tasted better in the evening when he could sit back a little and enjoy what he'd purchased, unlike the early morning rush which ceaselessly begged him to chug down the dark liquid gold.

    He was there almost every day, and when he was lucky, someone recognized him for the art he sold. That was always nice. A small shop just one over from the coffeehouse was glad to sell his small works, it was unique, something people were attracted to by default in the quirky little shop. They sold different pieces for homes, as well as antiques, and it suited Vincent just well enough to know that somewhere, someone had purchased something he'd painted with his own two hands.

    There was one other thing he played out to luck. Sometimes he saw a particular girl walk in. It was obvious from the way she acted that she couldn't see. They'd chatted a few times, she knew he was an artist, and he always felt a sort of shame that he couldn't accurately describe what she couldn't make out with her own eyes.

    Vincent sipped at his coffee, smacking his lips awkwardly as the sun went down outside. He still had some time, some luck left in his day, that he might be able to talk to her for a little longer. If not, there was always the next day, and every one after.

    "Vincent, why don't you just work here how often you're in?" One of the kids in the back yelled. His name was Luke, and he worked several night shifts from what Vincent could tell. He was smart at least, knew what he was doing, but he lacked the little voice in his head which told him to tone down his voice from time to time. Or just be quiet.

    "I'm an artist, Luke, and arti-"

    "-artists do whatever they want, young, starving, hungry, yeah, yeah." Luke finished for him. Vincent smiled and snapped his fingers his way in approval.

    He returned his attention to the coffee, letting Luke's voice fade into the background.​
    #2 Lillian Gray, Aug 28, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2014
  3. Show Spoiler

    Heather Azalea Strebel


    Age: 22
    Height: 5'7"
    Eye color: Tawny/brown
    Hair color: Warm brown

    Personality: Heather is a quiet person. If she doesn't get in anybody else's way, then surely nobody else will get into hers. Her general view of life is to just be invisible and get on by, a largely different point of view than the younger, and more playful, Heather held. She's not particularly depressing or introverted, though, and gets along with people just fine

    Brief History: Heather was only five years of age when the accident happened. Her family was packed into the car, her mother, father, and brother, and they were on their way to pick her grandmother up from the airport, two days before Christmas. They were on the highway to the nearest city. Traffic was slow, and Heather was sitting in the back, left hand side, a children's book in hand. The actual accident occurred suddenly- a semi truck came careening through the short road division, smashing through one other car before slamming into their own. The car flipped, just once. Her mother died in that accident, although she died four hours afterwards, in the ER. Heather herself only suffered a few broken bones, until what they had assumed was a concussion was determined to be worse. Only her vision suffered for it, going completely dark- her memory and motor functions were fully recuperated. She's lived with her family since, although she's been fighting to get her own apartment and to be independent.

    Family: Her father, George, her elder brother, Max, and her grandmother, Azalea

    The breeze was cool against Heather's face as she walked down the street, a street she knew well, having walked down it many times before. The end of a leash was wrapped around her hand and wrist, and tugged slightly every few moments when her companion took a few steps ahead of her. She didn't really need the tugs to tell her where she was going, she was so familiar with this particular concrete pathway, but she let herself rely on them anyway, letting her mind wander a little bit as she went.

    It felt like it was going to rain- despite the coolness in the air, it also held the sweet scent that followed rain, fresh and clean. It made her want to smile. The rain was peaceful, or at least for her. Others rushed around with their umbrellas and heavy duty coats, griping about how the water washed away all the hairspray and chemicals on their hair and face, but Heather would be damned if she did the same. The rain was to be enjoyed, not hidden from or despised. She supposed she'd stay out a bit later tonight, to try and catch the start of the oncoming storm.

    Dakota barked- just once- and paused in her tracks, to let Heather know that they had arrived at her destination. Guide dogs weren't particularly great at discerning where their owner intended to go, except that the woman frequented this particular shop once or twice a week, and rarely wandered down this street otherwise. She didn't always bring the dog with her, but the staff knew she was blind and that Dakota would be no trouble if let inside, so Heather leaned forward and pushed the door open, holding it for Dakota as the little jingling chime sounded from above.

    The smell of rain from outside was nice, but the aroma of coffee and other sweets inside the shop was nicer. This time, she did smile, letting Dakota lead her off towards a random seat. She had to feel around for a second to find the table and chair, but then she sank down gratefully, and leaned down to briefly stroke Dakota on the head.

    His voice caught her attention almost immediately. She didn't snap up, the way a dog would upon hearing their owner's voice, but her eyes, although useless apart from looking pretty on her face, shifted towards the sound as if they thought they could actually see him. Heather had talked to him a few times before, and now, she found herself looking forward to their conversations, even though they tended to talk about trivial things and gossip. It was probably the better part of her day.

    "You'll be good now, right, Dakota? Let's not make the nice coffee shop people angry," She said quietly to the German Shepard, unraveling the leash from her hand and setting it atop her table.

    #3 Rainjay, Aug 30, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2014
  4. She came after all, he thought, watching her sit down just across from him. He wanted to praise the dog for being such a good boy, but he refrained, wanting to seem at least polite to the blind girl there. Instead, he held out his hand and waited to see if the German Shepard, Dakota, would mind his presence before scratching an ear.

    Vincent tapped his fingers against the table lightly before speaking up. Every time they sat together he'd do that, not knowing if it was helpful or not because of the fact she couldn't see. He didn't want to offend her, and he certainly didn't want to seem overly friendly by touching her arm every time, no, so he settled on a simple tap of the table to announce his presence.

    "Hi, Heather, how are you doing?" He asked, smiling like an idiot, knowing she couldn't see.

    Things like that were hard for him to comprehend. She was blind, but she still knew color, recognized his voice more so than anything else like his face or his clothes. Vincent was an artist, if he couldn't see, it'd make his life far more difficult, not that hers wasn't like that already. But, his hands were made to see the colors and translate that onto canvas, it was simply what he did. Trying to imagine a world that was black, not even just that, was beyond him. It was on par to imagining a new color.​
  5. Dakota didn't bark or make any other sound in response to Vincent's proffered hand, but gave it a sniff and then a lick, the dog's version of a polite welcome. The slight wagging of her tail might had signified that she was excited to see Vincent, but as a service dog, she also understood that playtime would come later, and that for now, she had to maintain her dog version of a professional face. Still, hear ears perked a little bit when he tapped his finger against the table and began to speak- a familiar sound that also had Heather lifting her head.

    It occurred to her suddenly that she was sitting across from him, Vincent- damned dog, she thought to herself. Clever dog.

    Still, she didn't stop the smile that tugged at her lips. "Hi, Vincent." She said, tucking a strand of hair behind her ear as she spoke. "I'm good- just visiting after some errands. And how are you?"

    Heather had never much minded his habit of tapping on the table before he spoke to her, even before launching a hello. He didn't rattle the table or make a raucous doing it, so it never startled her, and it made up for what her eyes couldn't do for her. After the first year or so of being sightless, she had gotten over being jumpy after hearing a voice pop up from seemingly nowhere, and now hardly showed signs that she had heard at all, if at all turning slightly towards the speaker, a movement she had learned to be a human habit- people simply liked to know that you were paying attention. Still, even if it didn't startle her to hear hello's from the abyss around her, she preferred knowing that somebody was there before they spoke. It was a nicety that, although not required, was pleasant, making Heather like Vincent all the better. He was the only person she knew to do anything of the sort.

    She knew he was an artist, an artist at least commonly known around the town- or at least to people that frequented the store adjacent to the coffee shop, as the store often sold his works to locals- but she, of course, had never seen his art before, and probably never would. It never bothered her. They had spoken of his art before, but Vincent seemed to know to what extent the topic could be discussed before it become a sore spot. She couldn't partake much in the discussion of color and visual delight, but she liked listening to him talk about it. He was passionate about his art. It made her jealous. She had nothing she could feel as passionate about as the artist seemed to be for his art.

    Perhaps she only ever felt the same towards their meetings in this shop.

    Heather absently folded her hands together, waiting for Vincent's reply.​
  6. Dakota seemed to acknowledge Vincent's presence. She was a service dog, sporting all the right vests and the proper authority. Even sitting beside her owner she was dutiful, her ears perked at their conversation but nothing more. Vincent trailed his eyes away from her and back towards Heather.

    "I'm alright, I sold another painting today." He said smugly, resting his face in his hands. It was funny how excited he could be around her, but he felt guilty that she could never see the gleam in his eye when he looked at her. Guilty for the fact she couldn't see, and guilty for the fact that he was such a dork around her. He could make faces and tease all he wanted, but there was no way she'd ever know. Of course, that wasn't something he was likely to do. It was only an irritating passing thought.

    "Did you want anything to drink, to eat?" He asked her.

    Sometimes he wondered if his offerings were seen as rude in some way. He only wanted to make her day that much easier, not have it seem like he pitied her. Which he did, in his own way, not openly. When she came in though, he only wanted to help her get one more thing done, and if all he could do was order her a drink he would. If she declined, that wouldn't have bothered him, at least not too much. His thoughts were always all over when he saw her. A mixture between awkward tendencies and helpful gestures, he was never sure what to do, although society claimed he should stand by at let her be. After all, she'd lived for years being blind without his help, there was no reason to feel so anxious.​
  7. "That's great," Heather said in response, smiling again. He seemed proud about it- why shouldn't he be? She supposed, in comparison to all the starving artists out there, managing to get a painting sold was definitely a worthy achievement. Although, she didn't mean to think of Vincent as a starving artist. It just seemed difficult for artists to make money off of their talent, a talent that so many people had and so rarely got along with. She had envisioned herself, just for kicks, as an artist once or twice, and even if she wasn't blind, she couldn't see herself living in much more than a studio apartment with noodle packets for dinner. How are artists supposed to sell their work? Get materials? Become known? It all seemed like too arduous a task.

    And then, he offered to get her a drink. For the briefest of moments, she felt a little awkward, or maybe irritated, but then her smile widened, just a tad, and she nodded. "If you could, that would be great. I'm exhausted, honestly. Just one of those french vanilla latte's they have would be good." She replied, leaning down towards Dakota to grab her wallet. She kept it in a little pouch the dog wore, right by the vest. Heather'd found out the hard way that her dog was much better suited to carry valuables than she. Not only could her dog see- and smell- anybody nearby trying to nab her wallet, but the dog also had a mean bite. She dug around inside of it to find the change for the coffee, which she placed on the table, unable to see where Vincent's hands where.

    "Have you had anything to drink? You can't have been here for too long- it's not too late out, is it?" She pondered. She didn't usually arrive at the coffee shop too late in the evening, although she had also spent the past hour running errands, and had no idea what time it was. She'd feel like an idiot if Vincent didn't already have a drink- she was asking him to order one for her, and she'd feel rude not to offer to pay for his drink as well. Although, her brother would have laughed at her. "Isn't the guy supposed to offer to pay?" He'd say. The whole concept confused Heather plenty. ​
  8. Vincent tapped his cup against the table lightly. Most of the dark coffee was gone, some of it remained albeit a little cold. "I have a little left, don't worry about it, it's the least I could do." He meant it in a casual way, not that she was blind kind of way. Whenever he talked though he felt like an idiot for his word choices, wondering if she was silently judging him at all for what he said. Maybe if he could learn to just speak, and not think too much about whether or not there was a negative sound to his words, maybe then it'd be easier for him to relax a little and enjoy the presence of the girl for once.

    From behind the counter, Luke yelled over to the pair, "French Vanilla Latte? You got it." He'd been listening the whole time, making faces at Vincent.

    It was common banter between the two to talk a little about Heather, naturally. She was a curious person who came in frequently enough, Luke especially felt compelled to get the stupid questions out of the way whereas Vincent would've rather kept them locked away in his head. He didn't have the sense which told him to stop when a situation became a little too awkward for one party. Heather couldn't ever see the grin on his face either when he said something particularly terrible. For instance, one of the first times Heather had come in, it was Luke who made sure to comment on the fact that she stumbled into a table. Between the guide dog and her obvious lack of facial cues, it wasn't obvious to him she couldn't see.

    "Here." Vincent stood up and walked over to the counter to hand Luke a few bills in order to pay for the drink, waiting until it was done before he returned to the table and set it just between her hands, to make it a little easier at least.

    "So, any big plans for the week?" He asked casually.​
  9. Heather could hear Luke call out from the counter, and the squeak of Vincent's chair as he stood up to retrieve the drink. She was almost surprised that Luke hadn't memorized her drinks of preference. She usually purchased the same drinks every time she visited the shop- the latte, the shops signature iced tea, and the only cappuccino she'd ever liked in her life, 'the one with cinnamon'. And, he seemed to remember Heather fairly well. Nobody had ever confirmed it for her, but she had walked in on enough of his conversations with Vincent to know that they both recognized her as a regular. Not that she minded. She liked being remembered.

    She felt the warm glass being placed between her hands, and she smiled her thanks, taking a small sip as to not burn her mouth. "Thank you," she said, resting it against the table.

    "Plans? Not really. You know me. I'm going apartment hunting, if it counts." She replied, running a finger over the rim of her glass, as if in thought. She had had her brother help her search for apartments for-rent online and in the papers. They had a small list taped up to the fridge in their kitchen, although every time her father walked into the room she heard him grunt in distaste before storming away. It was shocking that he hadn't torn it down. Her grandmother just mused quietly to herself. If she hated the idea that Heather wanted to move out and live on her own, she had yet to voice it.

    Her grandmother never treated her like a helpless child. She understood. But she also worried about Heather- that much was obvious. When she had started talking about traveling alone on buses and the subway, her grandmother fought back, although not aggressively. It was a whole year before she finally stopped tagging along under false pretenses, claiming she had 'errands' to do and things to buy. To be perfectly honest, Heather got horribly lost the first time she went out. But she eventually found her way.

    "Not really sure what to look for in an apartment, though. It's not like I can see if the hardwood floors are nice," She said, sipping again at her drink. "Although my options get kind of limited when you factor in Dakota."​
  10. That was it, one big opportunity right in his face. Vincent wrapped his fingers on the table in thought. Then, he sipped at his coffee, letting her do the same and waited to be able to form the words. "I could help you look."

    There certainly wasn't a shortage of apartments in the area, although it was true that having a dog would always inherit a new price. An extra few hundred dollars wasn't uncommon to ask for the right to have dogs inside. Although, if she played her cards right, she could apply Dakota as a therapy dog. Then she could live wherever, there were laws which would make that happen. It would be worth mentioning, he told himself, especially if she was having a hard time finding a place to stay.

    "I know Dakota has eyes, but unfortunately, dogs don't speak human." Vincent shrugged before realizing how silly the action was. "If that's not too much I mean, my living doesn't depend on me sitting in a chair eight to four, I'd be more than happy to help."

    Really, I would.

    Maybe the independence would help her some. There wouldn't be others to help her all the time, living alone might do her good. It still worried him though, but why? That he couldn't explain. She was the familiar in the coffee shop, the one Luke and Vincent discussed when it was slow, she was that girl. Blind or not, Vincent felt confident he would have offered his assistance to anyone else who needed it. She was pretty, which tipped the scales ever in her favor. It also made Vincent want to laugh, he wanted to help the cute girl at the coffee shop, of course.

    "A room would be good for starters though, a bathroom a kitchen." Vincent teased lightly. "Maybe a park nearby for Dakota..." He waved his hand in the air, thinking. The obvious questions felt too rude to ask. Did she watch a lot of tv? It's not like she needed huge shelves for decorations, or did she? Gods he was embarrassed even thinking it.​
  11. "Really?" Heather asked him, her shock apparent in her voice. "Are you sure you won't be... too busy, or something?"

    She hadn't really expected Vincent to offer up help as fast as he did. Helping a blind girl around town didn't seem to be the ideal way to spend your time- at least, in Heather's experience. Most people seemed to steer clear of her. It was a good way of avoiding responsibilities and the like. But here Vincent was, directly offering to take the time to help her, happily, even.

    It brought another smile to her face. She wouldn't admit it, but she had been hoping Vincent would offer his help. It would give them a chance to talk outside the confines of the little coffee shop, something she had spent quite a bit of time thinking about, perhaps even too much time. She loved the chats they had at the shop, but she still, almost greedily, wanted something more out of the relationship.

    It wasn't too often that Heather managed to meet somebody, hit off a good conversation, and remain friends outside of their initial meeting. She'd met so many people that appeared nice and friendly upon introduction, but completely ignored her existence afterwards. To be honest, it probably wasn't hard. Even if you were in the same room as her, she couldn't see that you were there. All you had to do was stay quiet and out of her way.

    "Of course, I'd need a room. Maybe a small living room, too. A space for Dakota to have one of those nice doggy beds. I can tell she's been wanting one- she hogs up all the space on my bed in protest." She joked, reaching down to scratch Dakota's ears. The dog leaned into her hand, wagging her tail. "I was thinking of getting a place near the central park, so it wouldn't be too far away. Walking distance, you know?" She continued, resting her chin in her hand as she thought. "I don't know what else, though. I'll probably have to go furniture shopping too, if my folks don't go ahead and do it all for me. It's the kind of thing they'd do."​
  12. Vincent again waved his hand in dismissal. "Please, I'd love to help." He admitted honestly. "I'm sure you'd love to have a place of your own, it'd be easier. Right?"

    He left his cup, finally empty, sitting on the edge of the table and copied Heather's hands. Propping his chin on his hands he smiled over at her. She spoke of the things she'd need, and he felt silly for thinking she'd be any different. So maybe the tv wasn't as important, but she thought about Dakota, having a dog bed for her. Absentmindedly he thought about picking one up for the both of them, as a welcome gift. Yes, he thought, that'd work just fine.

    "There's lots of decent places pretty close to the park, they'll be a little more expensive though." He warned. "But, it shouldn't be too hard to make it work."

    Vincent adjusted his hands so they were crossed on the table. Did she even have a job? That worried him for a moment, how was she supposed to pay for the place? In any case, he tried to put her joy in front of the worry. The opportunity to spend a little more time with the girl.

    "When are you free then?"​
  13. "Of course." Heather hadn't thought too seriously about the cost of living near the park, and Vincent brought up a decent point. From what research her brother had helped her do, prices increased significantly the closer the apartment was to the beautiful central park, and it wasn't a wonder as to why. But at this point, Heather had her mind set on living somewhere nearby. It wasn't so much as the scenic landscape that she couldn't see so much as it was the sheer idea of it- of living near the activity and life that seemed to encompass the park and the neighborhood around it. Maybe she just wanted a link to more human life than just her family.

    "I'll be free.. Uhm," her face flushed a light red as she spoke. Heather didn't actually spend most of her time doing anything of real importance. She ran errands, notably shopping and running to the mailbox, walked Dakota, visited some of the few friends she had, and visited the coffee shop. In comparison to the much busier life she imagined Vincent must have, it was sort of embarrassing. So, instead of admitting that she had practically nothing to do all week, she made it all up on the spot.

    "Thursday. Or, Friday, I guess. Either or." She said, stumbling over her words, grasping for something sensible to say. "I've got this thing, down at the high school, so I'll be busy Wednesday..."

    At least that was the truth, she thought to herself, taking a long sip of her drink as an excuse to shut up. ​
  14. "Thursday sounds good, we can do a little apartment hunting, and I'll be your eyes."

    Dakota was still there, and Vincent smiled down and apologized lamely. Sure, she was a good guide dog, but she couldn't see the whole spectrum of colors humans could. She wouldn't do much good trying to pick out the right paint color or in telling Heather whether or not the walls were all intact. That was a human touch, something she'd need a little help with, and he was more than willing to offer.

    After all, his life wasn't all that interesting. He needed motivation in order to work, and he was seriously lacking in that department as of the present. Vincent had spent so much time delved into his last series of paintings that he'd exhausted his resources. Wealthy as he was in terms of paint and supplies, he was a relatively poor man otherwise. The inspiration wasn't coming, and maybe an afternoon with a new set of eyes would do him good. Especially someone who was blind, the world wasn't so colorful, it'd give him new perspective he liked to think. Selfishly, he wanted to see her world the way she, well, saw it.

    "I'll get some listings then, prices, it shouldn't be too hard." He played uselessly with his coffee cup before inquiring, "What are you doing there, at the high school?"​
  15. "Oh! I forgot to mention it. I'm working there, now. Well, kinda. It's more of a part time thing than anything." Heather said enthusiastically. "I'm doing mentoring for a few of the kids- transfers, mostly. Kids like me." She didn't point out the obvious- that 'like me' meant blind and unable to see. It seemed like a kick in the face to hinder teenagers with the word, even if though it was true. "There's not enough of us for a full class, and of course I don't have a teaching degree or anything yet, but I can still help them. It's really great, and fun, actually. We meet for an hour before their school day ends. I-"

    She cut herself off, her cheeks flushing pink. She felt like an idiot. She was babbling on and on, more so like a sixteen year old about her new car than a grown adult about a part time job. "Sorry," she said, her smile soft, almost contrite. "I just can't help but be excited, y'know? It's not like the likes of me can hold onto a job for very long. It's like I've found my calling."

    That said, her calling was as lame as working at McDonald's. Respectable, sure. But a lifelong career? Probably not.

    Heather sighed, drinking the last bit of her latte before releasing the cup, leaning back in her seat. "At least it's something." she mused. Maybe now my family will quit the babying, went unsaid.​
  16. "No, hey, that's great!" Vincent said enthusiastically. "Try not to hate me for saying it so bluntly, but, I can imagine it'd be difficult to find work. Being blind. Now you're helping out other kids, I think it's really great of you, Heather."

    He did. His wording may not have been the best, awkward really, but he did mean it. Growing up he'd never even met someone who was blind, maybe hard of hearing, but he didn't know much about what it was like. All he'd learned had been through the brief visits with Heather and the few late night searches about causes and treatments. Most times it didn't lead very far, as curing blindness was still miles away from being feasible, and just short of a modern miracle for most. Heather would probably never see again, and it wasn't something he could comprehend at times.

    "And now you're getting your own apartment." He grinned at his hands, twiddling his thumbs.

    If he'd known her for longer, he might have commented on how she's growing up. An apartment, a job, and a life. They were all staples in what society considered 'being an adult'. That was something, according to his parents, Vincent had a lot of to do.

    "So I'll see you then?" He asked happily. "I've got a few errands today, but, I'll see you later. We can meet here, somewhere else...?"​
  17. At least Vincent was honest, Heather thought to herself. At least he didn't try to hide his true thoughts behind fancy words that were used to mask offence, but caused it more than anything. And then his compliment, even the simple "I think it's really great of you, Heather", and his enthusiastic and positive response, brought the pink flush back to her cheeks and another wide smile. His compliment was genuine, as awkwardly as it was announced- and Heather could appreciate that.

    The conversation seemed to be drawing to a close, and so Heather began to wind the leash around her fingers again, Dakota standing to attention. The dog almost looked sad to leave, and leaned forward to give Vincent a little nuzzle of a good bye.

    "Meeting here would be great. Somewhere I can actually find, y'know?" she said with a chuckle. In all actuality, it simply appealed to her to start their day at the same place they met. Some sort of cliche novel crap, she mused. "I'll bring Dakota, too, if that's alright?"​
  18. "Of course you can bring Dakota." He exclaimed. "I don't want you getting lost now. I'll see you then."

    Vincent smiled awkwardly, as he was prone to doing, and reached down to give Dakota a light scratch before standing up. That much he felt was alright, he didn't want to distract her eyes and ears. Some time ago as a child he was taught to never play with service animals, as they were highly trained and worked best when they weren't distracted. Obviously.

    He felt the time couldn't pass quickly enough. Vincent was soon home, throwing his coat on a nearby chair as he walked in the entrance. His apartment wasn't too far from the park Heather had mentioned, actually, a small studio he could afford on his lowly income. The walls were mostly bare, but they were lined with portraits and paintings that had yet to be sold. Putting them up on the wall felt almost pointless, as he'd soon be taking them down. They were never lined up for long, a prospective buyer would come along and snatch up what they wanted, the shop he sold them at was always asking for more. It wasn't a bad life.

    But then he thought of Heather. She'd been so happy just to have her simple teaching job, assisting other blind students. It was far more admirable and rewarding than his own work. Something about that sat wrong with him, like he wasn't putting in the effort he should've. She seemed happier, more deserving of what she wanted. Was it wrong of him to think so? Vincent couldn't say. The small spark of emotion he felt for her was purely based on those short meetings they had, and it wouldn't prove worthwhile to try to think about her whole life off of what little he knew. It would only frustrate him he felt.

    The thoughts hardly made sense the longer he thought. Happiness, art, blindness, what did it really matter?

    "Thursday." He made a note on a small pad of paper. "Coffeeshop, Heather."

    This could be fun.
  19. Returning home, Heather felt like she was in la-la land. She let Dakota lead her along the familiar path back to their home, a quaint, two-story family home a little ways from the coffee shop, while she explored her thoughts, sorting through her mind as if it were filled with little scraps of paper, blowing around in an artificial breeze. Some part of her was having trouble with the realization that she was, indeed, going out to look at apartments with the artist-boy from the coffee shop. It was kind of like a fantasy. They'd never talked outside of the coffee shop itself, so the entire ordeal felt sort of magical.

    Dakota lead her up the steps and she fumbled with the keys until she found the right one, pushing the door open and undoing the harness on the dog's back. Dakota then raced off, seeking out Max, her brother, and her father, with a loud, piercing bark. Heather smiled and made her way into the living room, tracing over steps she had walked so often before. She had memorized the route by now, although the occasional touch on the wall helped her pinpoint her position. The television was on, with some nature documentary playing, and Heather sat down in the recliner near the door, resting her head against the back of the seat with a yawn.

    "Long day?" A voice that she recognized as her brother's spoke from behind her. A hand reached forward and rustled her hair before she felt his weight settle on the arm of the chair. "You seem tired."

    "A little. Oh- can you get together those notes you took? The ones with the apartment searches and stuff. I'm going looking on Thursday," Heather asked, running her hands through her hair to settle it.

    "Alone?" She could hear the frown, the disapproval, in Max's voice. She laughed, shaking her head.

    "No. God, no. Do you think I can tell the difference between a falling apart cabin and a restyled condo? No, I'm bringing a friend with me. Or rather, he's helping me along. He'll be my eyes for the day." She explained. "And I'll have Dakota. So it'll be a-okay, big brother." She added the tease at the end, hoping it'd lighten his mood.

    There was a long pause. She couldn't imagine what her brother was thinking. People always told her a person's face could be read like an open book- that said, a person's face didn't come in Braille. She had no idea how somebody's eyes and mouth moved as they thought and went through emotion. She only had the silence.

    But the teasing apparently worked on her brother, who only mussed her hair again before getting up. "Cool. Now, come on. Don't make me do the laundry all on my lonesome."


    Heather was waiting outside the coffee shop on Thursday, leash wrapped around her fingers on one hand, the other hand clutching the folder of assembled papers her brother had organized and gathered. She shifted her weight from foot to foot, trying to find something she could focus on that didn't make her look half-insane. It was probably obvious she was blind, and waiting for somebody, but she still found herself anxious for something to do. She supposed normal people would search for whomever they were waiting for, but Heather, not exactly 'normal', couldn't really do that. So instead she waited, shifting her weight as she stood next to the shop window.​
  20. Vincent had spent the night tossing and turning. He was so nervous, but the why is what he couldn't pin down. Heather was a sweet girl, and he shouldn't have been so anxious to help her with the apartment search. But there was a part of him which was scared, so terrified, that he'd say the wrong thing and offend her. He wasn't always the most suave, his words sometimes came out crude and insensitive. The last thing he wanted to do was make a joke about her being blind and then never see the girl again, their chats in the coffee shop were often the highlight of his week.

    "Calm down." He'd murmur in the dark.

    Seeing her there, standing in front of the coffee shop waiting for him was a bit of a boost to his esteem. At least she wasn't hiding from him, calling him out for the bad jokes or insensitive comments. What had he even said? Gods he was nervous, racking his brain for a past slip up. He felt like a fool with sweaty palms jammed deep in his pockets.

    "Hi, Heather." Vincent approached her and held one hand out for Dakota to sniff, the other he touched Heather's arm with gently. "We can take my car, it might be a little faster than walking. Is that alright?"

    He smiled down at the dog. Surely Dakota might like a car ride, always working when outside. He could see it now, head out the car drooling in the wind. Maybe it'd just be easier, then Heather didn't have to worry about running into anything on the street or having to rely on her guide dog for anything major.

    "I looked up a few places, but, you look like you've got some things figured out." Vincent motioned to the papers, and then reminding himself she couldn't hear him pointing, he tapped the top page. "Sorry, force of habit, I pointed but, ah. Let's go, I parked around the corner."​
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