"Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see."- Mark Twain
Santana loved her spontaneous trips to the library. Unbeknownst to her friends, she had a thriving love for books; she loved nothing more than diving into fictitious worlds, reading about witchcraft and mystical creatures and foreign lands, immersing herself in stories of brave heroes and corrupt villains and quests for power and righteousness.
Her latest conquest was the Hunger Games trilogy. She had breezed through the first two within the space of a week, and so was eager to read the third one before the release of the movie in a few weeks' time.
She found the book relatively easily, much to her delight, and then walked over to her favourite spot in the centre of the library; this consisted of a bunch of soft, padded chairs, arranged loosely in circle formation, around a small, round table, which was adorned with depictions of fairy tale creatures and lands far, far away, drawn by the children from the local primary school, who frequented the library regularly. One of the main reasons she refused to tell her friends about her weekly excursions was because she knew they would poke fun at her, especially Quinn, who was known and somewhat feared for her sharp tongue and quick wit. But here, she could forget all about the outside world, and simply lose herself in the majesty of these wonderful stories. She settled into her seat, crossing one leg over the other, and opened the book to chapter one, smiling in excitement as her eyes begin to eagerly drink in the words laid out before her.
'I stare down at my shoes, watching as a fine layer of ash settles on the worn leather...'
A while later, Santana glanced up, stretching her back and sighing contentedly. She then noticed a striking blonde sitting a few tables across from her, hunched over a book. The woman immediately drew Santana in; so much so, that Santana didn't notice the woman's hands flitting over the fine Braille bumps that lined the page of her book - she was too captivated by her immense beauty; pale, smooth skin surrounded by a halo of golden blonde hair, Santana found herself enthralled by this woman within seconds of laying her eyes on her. Santana also noticed the blonde's large blue eyes, and found herself intrigued by the vagueness of them; they somehow seemed to be looking at everything and nothing all at once, which Santana found strangely fascinating.
Santana then decided to attempt to get the woman to notice her presence, in the hope of then engaging her in conversation. She coughed and shuffled the pages of her book subtly to get the mysterious woman's attention, but was affronted when the blonde didn't even look up, seemingly not registering the disruption at all. She then decided to make more noise, dropping her book loudly on the table in front of her; this action did incite a reaction from the blonde, who looked up from her book in confusion. But, instead of meeting Santana's curious gaze, the blonde stared straight past her, cocking her head to the side, her expression slightly perturbed, seeming totally indifferent to the brunette staring directly at her. Santana simply stared at the blonde in bewilderment, mouth agape, unable to comprehend what had just happened. The way the woman practically looked THROUGH her, it was almost as if she was completely invisible. Santana took a few deep breaths, attempting to quell the anger she felt slowly building within her. If there was one thing Santana Lopez hated, it was being ignored, especially by pretty girls.
Santana then heard a buzz emanating from the blonde's pocket, and she watched as the woman brought out a phone and flipped it open. She spoke softly for a few moments to whomever had called her, and then closed her book and stood a few seconds later, giving Santana a full view of her slim body and long legs. Santana saw this as an opportunity to confront the blonde about her apparent lack of manners when it came to acknowledging people. She began to make her way over to the table across the room where the blonde had been sitting seconds earlier, and was about to give the apparently ill-mannered stranger a piece of her mind, when the blonde reached into her bag, which was resting in the crook of her arm, and pulled out a silver pole, which was folded into several pieces. She then proceeded to attach each end together, until the pole was stretched out ahead of her, and held it firmly in one hand, looping a band around her wrist that Santana saw was attached to the handle of the pole. She also retrieved the sunglasses that were draped over the front of her top, held securely by a piece of string around her neck, and slid them on gently. She breathed out slowly once that was done, and Santana could swear that she was emitting a sigh of relief, almost as if the pole and sunglasses made her feel safe. By this point, Santana had put two and two together, coming to the realisation that the girl she had been staring at for the past fifteen minutes was in fact visually impaired; in other words, she was completely blind and unable to see a thing. Santana immediately felt guilty for her childish behaviour, chastising herself for being so haughty and abrasive in her judgments of the innocent woman, when in reality she knew nothing about her.
Santana then moved to leave, deciding to check out her book, then head home and enjoy the rest of her evening snuggled on the sofa watching Friends re-runs. She turned towards the door which was situated behind her, but halted when she heard a loud crash behind her. She spun around, eyes darting across the room, trying to locate the source of the commotion. She soon found it in the form of the blonde, who was stood amidst an array of books which were scattered around her, breathing rapidly and blushing furiously. Santana assessed the situation, and quickly came to the conclusion that the woman must have misjudged the amount of room between herself and the book case to her left, resulting in a collision and the subsequent clatter of books tumbling to the floor. The brunette figured all of this out in mere seconds, and then found her feet carrying her over to the obviously distressed woman before she had even made a conscious decision to help her.
"Hey! Um, are you okay?"
Santana stood awkwardly in front of the woman, not really knowing what to do until the woman gave her an answer.
"Uhh, yeah, I'm fine. I just didn't realise how close I was to the bookcase. Sorry about the disturbance and the mess." She spoke apologetically, fiddling nervously with the frame of her sunglasses.
Santana frowned in confusion at the woman's sincere apology, before realising what she meant.
"I don't work here." She chuckled, smiling when she saw the corners of the blonde's mouth turn upwards slightly.
"Oh," she replied, her voice noticeably brighter at hearing the friendly tone in Santana's voice," Well, that makes me feel a whole lot better already."
Santana opened her mouth to reply, hesitating slightly before speaking.
"So, uh, you want me to help you, or...?" Santana tailed off quietly, not quite sure of how the woman would react when offered help.
But the blonde simply smiled gratefully, nodding and answering with a soft, "Yes please."
Santana smiled back softly, but her smile was tinged with sadness as she realise that the woman couldn't see how glad Santana was to be speaking to her.
The brunette then bent down swiftly, gathering up the books that were strewn across the floor, placing them back in their respective sections on the shelf. She then stood up straight, clearing her throat awkwardly and wondering how to proceed. The blonde saved her from too much deliberation by holding out her hand to Santana:
"I'm Brittany by the way."
Brittany. The name suited her.
Santana then reached out and took Brittany's hand in her own, giggling shyly before answering, "Nice to meet you, Brittany. I'm Santana."
Their hands lingered for a split second, before Brittany pulled hers away and smiled nervously.
"Well, I'd better be going. My roommate's waiting outside for me in her car. Thanks for your help... Santana."
Brittany rolled the name around on her tongue beautifully; Santana loved the way it sounded when Brittany said it.
"Oh, okay. Well, um, see you around?" Santana mumbled, suddenly feeling rather self-conscious about the intensity of their connection.
"Yeah. See ya." Brittany replied, giving Santana one last smile before she began making her way slowly towards the exit with the aid of her guide stick. She called out once more to the librarian behind the front desk, signalling that she was borrowing the book she had been reading. The small, red-haired woman replied with a friendly, "Enjoy!" before the blonde pushed open the door with a small smile, obviously welcoming the cool breeze that greeted her.
Santana watched her leave until she had completely left the building, only then letting out the breath she hadn't even realised she was holding in. She then shook her head, attempting to clear the haze in her mind that Brittany seemed to have unknowingly created, and walked over to the desk, smiling distractedly at the clerk who recognised Santana, quickly stamping her book and handing it back to her. Santana took it and muttered a quiet "Thank you", before walking briskly out of the front doors, unable to get the thought of Brittany out of her head.
Brittany cherished her occasional visits to the local library. After the accident that had occurred a few months ago and had left her unable to see, she was barely allowed to even walk to the bathroom without someone accompanying her; this was one of the only times she was allowed to indulge in some time alone, without anyone following her around or mollycoddling her as if she was a small child. She loved knowing that for a few blissful hours, Rachel would drop her off and leave her to indulge in the wild fantasises only found in books; this library had an extensive collection of Braille books, which pleased Brittany immensely, and so she had quickly familiarised herself with the layout of the floor so she knew exactly where to head when she wanted a good book.
She padded in softly, using her guide stick to avoid the assorted book carts that she knew were scattered around the front desk. She called out a hello to Emma Pillsbury, the librarian who worked at the front desk, before making her way leisurely over to the now-familiar right side of the library, which was where the Braille books were located. She moved to where she knew the fiction books were kept, running her hand along the spine of each until she found what she was looking for. She had been itching to read The Perks Of Being A Wallflower for an immeasurable amount of time now, so when she had called the library and found out they had it in stock, she had begged Rachel to drive her here so she could begin reading it as soon as possible.
She pulled the book gently out of its segment and grinned, ecstatic that she finally had a chance to sit down and plunge into Stephen Chbosky's literary masterpiece. As she made her way over to one of the large mahogany desks and sat down, folding up her guide stick and placing it in her bag, she froze for a second and strained her ears, trying to determine whether anyone else was in the library with her. She couldn't hear anything apart from the sound of her own steady breathing, so she assumed she was alone. So safe to say she was more than a little surprised when she first heard a delicate cough, and then the loud slam of what she presumed was a book against a hard surface. She looked up from her book, eyebrows furrowed curiously as she tilted her head to the side, wondering if Emma had simply dropped a book on her way to her office at the back of the library. Her thoughts were soon interrupted by the tell-tale buzz of her phone vibrating. She pulled it out and flipped it open, knowing who it was before the caller even spoke.
"Hey Rachel. Okay, I'm on my way."
She stood up, extracting her guide stick from her bag, and then slipping on her sunglasses. She sighed softly, welcoming that feeling of comfort she always experience after donning her 'protecto-specs', as Rachel called them. They were like her own personal shields; they made her feel safe.
She was so focused on making sure she had everything, that she failed to remember Emma mentioning that the library was currently in the process of being renovated. This then resulted in her crashing into a book cart to her left, much to her humiliation. She stood stock-still as she listened to the emphatic clatter of books raining down, landing at her feet. She felt her face flush, as she cursed herself inwardly for not being more careful. She wondered where Emma had got to, and decided that the woman must have taken a trip down to the storage room, hence why she hadn't come running at the commotion Brittany had just caused.
The blonde sighed heavily, debating whether to shout for Emma or just sit back down and wait for the librarian to return. What she didn't expect was to hear a slightly timid female voice ask her if she was okay. She wasn't familiar with the voice, so immediately assumed that it belonged to one of the young staff members that worked part-time at the library. She began stammering nervously, apologising for making a mess. She was still adjusting to this new life without one of her key senses, and so sometimes she slipped up, constantly berating herself when she made a mistake. Needless to say, she was more than a little relieved when the stranger spoke in a voice that was a mixture of amused and comforting.
"I don't work here."
Brittany found herself smiling at the friendly tone of the woman's voice, and a small part of her wished she could see her face; she had a feeling that she was standing across from a very beautiful person. She then found herself babbling about how that was a good thing, and was almost relieved when the woman asked if she needed help.
Brittany answered with a shy "Yes please", slightly taken aback by the stranger's willingness to help - she was almost like her own knight in shining armour, swooping down in her time of need.
She heard the woman shuffling around by her feet, and took this to mean that she was picking up the fallen books. Her heart faltered for a second at the thought of this woman being so kind and helpful to a complete stranger like herself. She listened to her movements, and soon ascertained that the woman was standing in front of her once again. So, she did the first thing that sprung to mind, which in this case was to hold out her hand and introduce herself. She was pleased to hear a small giggle coming from the mystery woman, and then felt a tingle run up her arm as a hand grasped hers warmly.
"Nice to meet you, Brittany. I'm Santana."
She felt a spark of electricity run across her skin as their fingers lingered for a few seconds longer than necessary, before the intensity because almost unbearable, causing Brittany to pull her hand away gently.
She quickly shook herself out of her reverie, as thoughts of Rachel's phone call once again entered her mind. She mumbled something about her roommate waiting for her, and couldn't help the jolt of excitement that ran through her when she heard Santana's next words:
"Oh, okay. Well, um, see you around?"
She answered in the affirmative, before smiling tentatively one more time, then making her way towards the exit slowly. She called out a goodbye to Emma, who had returned to the front desk by now, then walked to the door and pushed it open slowly, savouring the refreshing breeze that caressed her face as she left the building. She found herself beaming happily, even as she was led over to the car and helped in by Rachel, the smile never left her face, much to the confusion of the small brunette, who kept glancing at her throughout the ride back to the bungalow that they shared.
So, this idea came to mind yesterday while I was relaxing at home, and I immediately knew that this had to be my next multi-chaptered fic. What do you guys think of it so far? Do you like the idea/theme of it? Let me know! :)
Next update should be along soon, and until then, stay awesome everyone!