Archives 21 Questions

21 Questions: Chapter Two

The melded smell of fresh paint and heated rubber fills my airways as I step inside the unfinished building, the compact space teeming with the energy of a typical South Oakland afternoon—save for the sounds of power drills and hammering mingled with the yells of construction workers. I bypass a few vaguely familiar faces, nodding in acknowledgment as I walk toward the single elevator. I hit the button pad a few times, frowning when it doesn’t light up—until I see the tiny “Out of Order” notice to the left. Of… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Three

Naturally, I was disappointed when I found out he had a girlfriend and, yes, I was a little jealous of her. Okay, a lot jealous. Like, a lot lot. But that was five years ago and, while I still find him undeniably attractive, I had no choice but to move on from my unrequited crush when I realized that absolutely nothing would come of it. Adam is the committed, relationship type; a thing I both admire and lament because I’m not the one he’s committed to. Well…used to lament. Those… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Four

I pop my knuckles, my arms stretching as far as they can go as a tired yawn escapes me. Finally… Almost another hour later, I hit ‘publish’ and watch my post go live, exhausted beyond belief. I can, without a doubt, call it a day now. A sense of relief washes over me for what I’ve accomplished for the day, but I also feel overwhelmed by what I still have left to do. Not to mention, the aftermath of the interview. The anticipation of its result still has me on… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Five

Relief washes over me as I turn the key in the lock, finally standing in front of a door that I’m actually eager to walk through after the day I’ve had. A hyper, endearingly-obnoxious cat greets me as soon as I push it open, purring at my feet. “Hey, sweetheart,” I murmur, stroking his shiny, pitch-black coat when he paws at my leg repeatedly. I step inside my apartment, closing the door behind us. The lights are on. Michaela, my roommate, cousin, and mother of the feline adamantly demanding my… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Six

Two Weeks Later…   The air conditioner hums in the distance, the cool interior a stark contrast to the sharp, blazing sun outside. It’s unusually hot. Uncharacteristically humid. Yet another byproduct of global warming. Even so, I’ll take it over the depressing blizzard weather back in Salina this time of year any day. For the very first time, I sit at a corner of the dainty, independent café I’ve been waiting tables at for almost three years. As a customer. “You’re gonna go blind if you keep reading that, you… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Seven

Yup. I’m twenty-three years old, currently reside in California—aka the “State of Fornication”—attend a run-of-the-mill college, live with a stripper…and still haven’t “done the do” yet. If one were to inquire why that is, they’d most likely get varied answers that range anywhere from, A: I must be some sort of uptight prude or B: I’m archaically saving myself for marriage to C: I’m a closet lesbian and D: I’m just really, really awkward around members of the opposite aforementioned. All depending on who you ask. While there’s absolutely nothing… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Eight

I pace back and forth, my legs propelling me like turbines as they practically swerve across the carpet. I can’t stay still, restless with barely-contained excitement for tomorrow. A billion thoughts race through my mind, all surrounding the newest major development in my life, the most pressing of which I’m currently focused on: What the hell I’m going to wear. I stand in front of my tall mirror, the single item in my bedroom that looks like I spent a hundred times more on it than I actually did. I… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Nine

I inhale, long and deep, my eyelids fluttering in tandem with my heart as I watch the sign in front of me get larger and larger. I walk ahead, still in utter disbelief as I near the acclaimed building. Earth Capital. Holy.   Freaking.   Crap… I’m actually here. For real, for real here. After a relatively smooth, twenty-minute commute, I arrive at the physical pinnacle of my dreams over an hour early thanks to the trial run I did yesterday. I’m wired even though I barely got any sleep…. Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Ten

In another moment, I’m standing in a new hallway; that of Earth Capital’s Biodiversity department. The one I’ve envisioned since I switched majors. I walk through the corridor, slower this time, as if all the pores on my body are trying to absorb every bit of this space. Every bit of this moment. And I take it all in, embracing the present like I never have before… Until I get to office 319. My countenance falls as I regard the door in front of me. It’s…locked. So much for coming… Read More

21 Questions: Chapter Eleven

Suspension. Total, utter suspension. That’s the only way I can describe this feeling. This…phenomenon. Everything suddenly hits pause. My lungs. My limbs. My heart. Even time itself. A severe, almost animalistic glare fills my entire line of vision, peering down at me. Scrutinizing. Examining. Penetrating. For seconds without motion or measure, I stare speechlessly into the most exceptional, breathtaking eyes I’ve ever seen… And the stunning face of the man they belong to. A solitary, singular thought comes to mind: Wolf. A mesmerizing, almost indescribable intensity fills them, infused into… Read More