ARIELLE JACOBS (24)
"A thing of beauty is a joy forever: it's loveliness increases; it will never pass into nothingness." - John Keats
Likes: coffee and tea, her grey kitty named Zelda, reading sci-fi fiction books, black and white movies, authentic Mexican food, watercolor paints, floral printed anything
Dislikes: people with no manners, being late, the color brown, traffic, people who are over friendly
Job: Editorial Assistant Junior at Galaxy Magazine
Apartment Number: 11E
- Arielle, who goes by Ari, moved to the City of Angels after graduating from the University of Texas. Ari grew up in Austin and had lived there her whole life before landing an editorial job at a fashion magazine. Her college experience wasn't like most girls her age. Ari was diagnosed with an anxiety disorder when she was a senior in high school and it results in her having panic attacks from time to time. Needless to say, she didn't spend much time out of her dorm room during her four years at UT. Now that Ari has moved thousands of miles away from everything she has ever known she has a lot of self-learning to do.
* * *
I have never had someone blatantly be a jerk to me before. Sure, we have our fare shares of jerks in Austin but not like the guy who took my taxi from me. "I don't know where you're from but here, it's eat or be eaten," he said staring at me. I don't know if he was waiting for me to yell back at him but I just stood there frozen, panic rising in my chest. I could fill my face turn red, heat radiating from my pours, and I couldn't move. I purse my lips together, tighter and tighter until they no longer exist. The man took off in the taxi with out another word and my panic went up another notch. I could feel my hands start to shake and my eyes twitching from holding back the tears. Why, why, why am I like this? Why do I have to be such an idiot? I can't do this! I can't, I can't, I can't,... I felt a hand land on my shoulder and I jumped, almost falling over in the process.
"I'm so sorry! I didn't mean to startle you," the young man smiled at me but he had sympathy in his eyes. "I saw what that guy did back there. He's a jerk." His hand falling down my arm, "we aren't all like him, I swear. I can give you a ride if you need one."
It wasn't until he asked me a question that I realized my mouth was frozen open. "I... I..." I shake my head to get rid of the panic. It doesn't work. "I don't think that would be a good idea."
"Oh." He looks disappointed and straightens his posture.
"I mean, you're a stranger. What if you're like some serial killer or something?" I pull my luggage closer to me like it's going to protect me against him if happens to answer yes.
"Yeah, I guess I didn't think about that." He smiles at me, this time it's genuine. "I'm from Dallas so I'm just used to being courteous towards others. I sometimes forget other people didn't grow up like I did."
"Dallas?" I asked, my voice still shaking but my hands settled. "I'm from Austin."
He nods his head. "Cool. It's always nice to meet a fellow Texan," he said holding his hand out for a shake. "Name's Jensen."
"Ari," I replied and shook his hand.
"Well," Jensen replied while pulling out his keys from his pocket, "I'm not a stranger now so did you still want that ride?"
"Um, sure." I was still nervous about it but I didn't know what to do. So I prayed to God that Jensen from Dallas wouldn't kill me and that I wouldn't have a panic attack and faint in his car.
Jensen helped me with my luggage and we walked in complete silence to his car. It was some really nice sports car that I didn't recognize. He put my luggage in the tiny excuse for a trunk and then opened the passenger side door for me. I smiled and climbed in. I took a deep breath and help it pretty much the whole way to my apartment. Jensen pulled up and parked in the front of the complex. "So that was awkward," he said honestly.
I nodded and then unbuckled my seatbelt. "Thanks for the ride."
"No problem." We both got out of the car and Jensen grabbed my luggage from the trunk for me. "Do you need any help to your door?"
"No," I replied a little too quickly, practically yelling it at him. "I mean, they have an elevator. I'm sure I can handle it."
"Alright. Well, welcome to California."
"Thanks." I grabbed my luggage and turned for the door but before I could get inside Jensen stopped me again, placing his hand on my shoulder.
"I know this is completely out of the blue, but I know his really great Italian food place up the street." He grabbed my empty hand and placed a piece of paper in it. "Just if you're interested." He smiled and turned to walk away but then turned back around. "And I'm not a creep, I swear."
He drove away down the street and I felt myself starting to panic again. 'Just get inside,' I said to myself, 'before he comes back.' I took the elevator up to the eleventh floor and managed to find my apartment pretty easily. I dropped all my bags down in he middle of my living room and stared at the blank and stark white walls.
I felt empty. I felt scared. I felt... a lone.