It was freezing!
The harsh New York winds blew past my shivering figure. With chattering teeth, I scurried to my door and pulled out my keys. Fiddling with the lock, I quickly shut and locked the door, making sure all three locks were secure.
I rubbed my hands to warm them in the cold room. Even though my apartment was warmer than outside, the heater wasn’t efficient. It only brought the room up a few degrees. Exhausted and cold, I tossed my keys on the cracked counter carelessly. I looked around the room and tried not to cringe at the living arrangements.
The apartment was a disaster.
It was a small apartment, basically only one room for the kitchen and a bed. The bathroom was small, almost too small for my petite frame.
The walls were chipped and the carpet was stained and worn. I examined the stains and tilted my head. I wondered what possibly could have gotten stuck on the carpet, some of it crusty or molding. I scrunched my nose in disgust before walking to the bed.
When I rented this apartment, I didn’t care about the conditions. The only thing that I cared about was finding a roof to cover my head. I refused to sleep out on the streets. I didn’t know much about New York City, but I knew enough living in Los Angeles that you didn’t want to be on the streets alone at night.
Looking at my new home now, I almost regretted my decision. But it was too late now. I already had paid rent for a few weeks and I was too scared to talk to the landowner. He creeped me out when he was showing me the place, his yellow teeth on full display as he eyed my body in a way I didn't want to discuss.
Sitting on the worn down mattress, I rubbed my face in exhaustion and frustration.
I was rejected from an interview- again. This was my fifth interview. I have gone to different local stores and restaurants, but they rejected me. You would think in a big city like this there would be multiple job openings.
I’ve pleaded with multiple staff members, but they said there were no available spots.
I was getting desperate. I had gone through multiple newspapers and phone books, searching and none of them took. Tears of frustration started to build and I quickly wiped them away.
Now was not the time to cry like the baby I am.
I was running low on money. I already paid a lot of money for my plane ticket and apartment. That didn’t include the bills, food, and personal items I needed. I didn’t have a lot of money to my name. My parents had me when they were older and passed away two years ago. I didn’t have many friends because I was too shy and even if I did, I wouldn’t have asked for help. This was my mess to solve.
Maybe you wouldn’t be in this mess if you weren’t out that night.
I shook my head. This was my fault after all. If I didn’t go outside of my safe home to get supplies, I would still be in Los Angeles, reading a book in bed.
But that Rosaline didn’t exist anymore. This Rosaline needed to stay clear of any trouble.
I just needed to find a stupid job first.
Sighing once more, I make my way to the kitchen and grab the only thing in my pantry- Instant Top Ramen. I added some water before putting it in the microwave. While it cooked, I went to the bathroom to freshen up. Washing my face, I looked up into the mirror. I furrowed my brows at the unfamiliar girl in the mirror.
She looked so...drained. Her dark locks looked oily and flat as it went over her shoulders. Unhealthy pale skin glowed underneath the lighting and her face looked drained. There were dark-ringed circles under her eyes, showing her exhaustion and stress. I stared into the haunted brown eyes for a few moments before closing my eyes tightly.
It hurt to know that that girl was me. The once carefree and happy girl was missing, only to be replaced by a withering ghost. I was going to dissolve into nothing if I didn’t take care of myself.
My depressing thoughts ceased as I heard the microwave beep. Wanting to get away from the reflection, I gratefully went back into the kitchen.
After finishing my Top Ramen, I put on my worn out pajamas, adding my heavy jacket and climbed into the bed. I tucked the covers tightly around my curled body to ward off the cold.
I closed my eyes tightly, hoping to dream about the warm California sun instead of the cold dark night.