Maggie landed in JFK and cleared customs with no issues. She picked up her bags and hailed a cab back to her apartment. It was easier walking through the apartment door this time, easier taking a shower, easier falling asleep in the bed she and Ben had once shared. Easier but not easy. Maggie felt the melancholy she had felt the last time she was in New York, but it wasn’t quite as suffocating. She fell into a long and deep sleep, feeling safe for the first time in weeks.
It was past ten when she awoke. She looked around, momentarily confused, before she remembered where she was. She threw off the covers, sat up, and threw her legs over the side of the bed and stretched. She rather groggily stumbled into the bathroom and looked in the mirror. She was startled at the reflection staring back: she hadn’t seen herself with short, ragged-cut black hair, and it took her quite aback.
First stop – hairdresser.
She climbed into the shower. However, after taking a hair blower and brush to her hair and putting on makeup, she thought she didn’t look half bad.
Gray eyes and black hair. She analyzed herself in the mirror again.
She rummaged through her closet, a sense of comforting familiarity settling over her. She grabbed one of her favorite weekend outfits – loafers, khakis, a white T, and a jean jacket – and headed out to her favorite coffee shop. She grabbed a table near the window and, sipping her grande latte, picked up a copy of the New York Times someone had left. Coffee finished and paper read, she glanced at her watch: it was nearly noon. She headed back to her apartment, locked the door behind her, kicked her shoes under the entry table as she always did, and headed to the phone. She called Callum but got his answering machine instead.
“Callum? This is Maggie. I made it back to New York – but something tells me you already knew that. I’m in the apartment – you probably already know that, too. Anyway, call me when you get a minute. I need to touch base so you can catch me up on events. I’d like to come back to Scotland and go to the Isle of Bute, but I would like to know the coast is clear. Love you, Callum.”
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