Lonely Lone Wolf Knitting Blues

I shivered as a cool breeze jacketed me. I was only wearing a T-shirt, my favorite pair of jeans, and a mismatched pair of shoes a hobo had forced onto me. Today was no day to frequent the park, but I had to get away from the craziness back home -- if that place could even still be considered "home". I had come so close to having everything I had wanted, but then fate intervened and I was left on the outside. Well, fine, they could be one big happy family without me. It's not as though I cared. I angrily kicked a stone on the path and continued my walk.

Why couldn't I have her? Why couldn't I be her Adonis? Or the Romeo to her Juliet? Or even the Heathcliff to her Cathy? Why couldn't I have somebody -- anybody? This was so unfair -- while she lived her happy little fairy-tale, I was still the big bad wolf. I was a lone wolf -- a lonely wolf. I let my anger spread through me and I fought to keep myself from phasing.

"It's okay," I told myself, keeping my eyes on the ground. "There's someone out there for me -- someone somewhere..."

"What are ya mutterin' about, young'un?" I looked up to see who was talking to me. "Answer me, boy! What are ya, delusional or somethin'? Get high on terr many hallucinogens like the rest o' yer generation? Huh? Huh?"

And then it happened. Time stopped as my eyes locked with hers. My world crashed as though it was hit by Hurricane Katrina and instantly rebuilt itself faster than a hobo munching a pizza. But my world had a new foundation, a new focus. And I felt like there was a housewarming party in my heart where Hawaiian punch was being served.

Her skin was soft and pale, though a blush burned in her cheeks. Light curls crowned her head and the petals which served as lips were puckered in irritation -- irritation at me. The smile lines around her eyes were still visible despite her frown. My heart glowed with happiness. I had finally found her -- my life, my reason -- on this old, weathered park bench where seagulls had probably peed and pooped all over.

"What are ya gawking at, boy? Huh? Huh?" Her pale blue eyes seemed to flash with intensity and an ancient sadness.

"Oh, um, sorry, ma'am. I was just admiring your beauty." I truly was mesmerized, but I somehow found my legs enough to sit down next to her. She shuffled away from me.

Her temporary shock was quickly replaced by suspicion. "Eh, what's that? Tryin' ter be funneh?" She glared at me and I noticed the knitting needle raised menacingly in her hand.

I slid further down the bench from her. "No, not at all." Maybe I shouldn't have been so abrupt. After all, it was I who had imprinted on her -- this wasn't necessarily a mutual feeling. "Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Jacob. What's your name?"

"What are ya playin' at, whippersnapper?" Her frown deepened, but I noticed a spark of interest in her liquid ice cube blue eyes.

"I just wanted to introduce myself to you. You seem like a nice person. There's nothing wrong with making friends. You know what they say: the more the merrier." I shrugged nonchalantly, but kept my eyes trained on her. She seemed disgruntled, but grudgingly amused.

"Fine then. Meh name's Azalea." She stuck out a small, veiny hand and I shook it. It was so light, so delicate. Good thing she had me now to protect her -- there was no telling when a stray bullet would knock her over or when a vegetarian vampire would feed on her. And now, for sure, she would be safe from any shapeshifting werewolf attacks. Because she was mine now. My preciousssssssss.

"Nice to meet you." I grinned at her and she gave a small 'harrumph'. "So what are you doing here on a cold day like this?" I noted her thin woolen shawl, floral print sundress, pink boa, and tatty old slippers.

"My daughter an' her husband are drivin' me crazeh. They want ter put me in a home, but I don' want ter go. I know that I drive 'em crazeh terr, but I don' want ter be loneleh" -- an alarm went off in my head -- "in an ol' folks' home." She sighed. "I know that thar would be other old biddies like me thar, but I wouldn't know any of 'em. Oh, and I like ter knit outside." She looked so sad. I wanted to reach out and cup her face in my hands. "Ah... why am I even tellin' ya this? Huh?" She clicked her knitting needles together angrily.

"It's okay. I kind of know how you feel. My best friend's having a baby and her husband's just thrilled to pieces now." I couldn't keep the venom from my voice. "They're so absorbed with their little family and I just feel really left out. Every time I hint at what I feel, they start feeling bad, so we're kind of driving each other crazy now." I grimaced and looked away. I was just too filled with chagrin and self-loathing.

She nodded reassuringly and patted my thigh. My heart palpitated painfully in my chest and got caught on the edge of one of my ribs. Ouch. I would have to get that checked out later. "Ah, I remember those days back when ever'one was havin' babies. Once people start ther families, friends become secondareh. So I guess we're jest a pair of crazeh people who aren' wanted righ' now." Oh, the way she said "pair" made me melt into a russet, furry puddle in my old hobo shoes.

Azalea looked morose. But I had a crazy idea. I just didn't know if we were ready for it, because, really, we had only known each other all of five minutes now. "Um, Azalea?" I looked deep into her ice cube blue eyes. "I think I know of a place where we can go." I tried to make my voice sound seductive.

"Whar?" The click of her needles stopped.

"My dad's house."

She frowned and her petal lips puckered again. It was somehow incredibly adorable. "Yer father's house? Huh?" She sounded dubious.

"Yes, my dad's house. He's always out fishing and he's always very supportive of my choices. If it's okay," I blushed graciously like a schoolgirl who had just spotted Robert Pattinson, "I'd like to choose you to come and stay with us."

Pleasant surprise was written across her face. "Realleh?"

"Yes, definitely." I was confident now. Azalea was my soulmate. I could feel it in my bones, my brain, my heart, my organs, and my eyebrows.

"Well, then let's go ter my daughter's house and pick up my belongin's! Oh, and I'll have ter say good-bye ter my granddaughter, o' course." She stood up and I noticed the cane hooked onto the arm of the bench. It had a poodle head for a handle. Handing it to her, I rose and reached instinctively for her hand.

"Okay. Follow me and I'll drive you there."

She nodded and we took the first steps of our life together. Azalea was my partner now, no matter what this meant for us. And I knew that she would love me back, eventually. Maybe it would take all of the rest of her life. But I didn't care. She was my life now. Who cared if she was an eighty-five year old grandmother who had crummy fashion sense and a poodle cane?

The End

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