‘Anna, are you done with those calculations yet?’
Her boss’s gray hair wobbled back and forth behind the desk divider, urgency in his voice.
‘Working on it.’
The watch-pointers crawled towards twelve, while dark clouds buried the sky. The lights went on, pushing back the twilight in the room. Anna wished the neon could brighten her mood as well. Yesterday’s fight with her boyfriend still kept her soul in turmoil. Yuki loved joking about how he was seven hours ahead of her, but the time difference also caused difficulties, as did the language barrier. He had said he wouldn’t call, and she was determined not to give in either. She focused on the screen again, and the calculations were almost finished, when Susan showed up.
‘Joinin’ the gang in the cafeteria?’
‘Sorry, I’ll pass. Gotta finish up those tables,’ she replied with an excusing smile. Today she wouldn’t make a good companion, anyway.
‘Kay, See you later then.’
Susan left, and the office slowly emptied, until Anna was alone. Unfortunately, the calculations were soon done, and answering the mail didn’t keep her mind as busy. Her thoughts circled around the fight again, and she started to doubt herself. Her grandmother’s words echoed in her head.
‘You’re as stubborn as a goat. Now while that’s not ultimately bad, it certainly isn’t good.’
Anna tried to shake off her uncertainty and opened the AustrianNews for distraction. The headlines read Wildfire, Terror, Chain-reaction Collision - nothing to put her heart at ease. She rested her forehead on the desk, her mind spinning.
‘What if something happened to her sweetheart? What if she‘d never be able to talk to him again?’
Those worries made her a heart ache, pulling her body down like a lead plumb. When she couldn’t bear the silence anymore, she stormed outside. Anna filled her lungs with fresh air as a sudden breeze tousled her hair. In the distance, thunder was rolling down the mountains. She pulled out her smartphone. Her heart fluttered like a hummingbird as her finger hovered above the call button. She hesitated, an eternity passing, when a call from Yuki came in. Anna gasped, accepted the conversation and pressed the phone to her ear.
‘Future Calling. We’ve entered the planetary shadow. Sorry about yesterday, Honey. How’s the weather on your side?’
The sky opened its gates and rain streamed down her cheeks, soaking her. Butterflies danced in her stomach and her eyes beamed with happiness. Hearing her beloved boyfriend’s voice, she forgot all about the fight, her worries and even the storm raging above her head.
‘Wonderful,’ she answered.