They walked out of the room, into the hall, and then into the gym. The pair set about walking around the track at a leisurely pace. “So, what do you think of the place?” Vanessa asked.
“Really nice, much nicer than anywhere i’ve ever lived.” Paul replied, “How long have you lived here?”
“This house has been in my family for a while, I’ve lived here my whole life.”
“I pretty much stayed in the same place until I graduated and my parents went off to Africa.”
“What do your parents do in Africa?”
“They’re missionaries in a small village. I pretty much haven’t heard from them.”
“Oh, wow that must be hard.”
“Well, not so much. I’ve had Jude, and he’s basically family. We stick together and look out for each other.”
“That sounds nice. My highschool friends all went off to college in far away places.”
“Why didn’t you go?”
“My dad wanted me to stay here for a while. I just wish he’d just let me do me, you know?” Vanessa sighed. “Sorry, I didn’t mean to unload on you. I love him, I mean he’s my dad, but sometimes…”
“It’s alright. I don’t mind.”
He doesn’t want to hear about all of your personal issues. Just change the subject. “Do you have any pets?” Pets? Really is that the best you can come up with?
“Actually, I think this is a good time for some practice.” Paul said, stopping in his tracks. “Alright, take my hands, and try to see my dog.”
“Alright, I haven’t tried for images before, but I’ll give it a go.” She paused, “Do you want to sit?”
“Yeah, actually, that’d probably be better.” Paul dropped down onto the ground and Vanessa followed suit and oriented herself appropriately.
She took his hands and closed her eyes. Okay… Dog, just a dog… Focus. All of a sudden, she found herself standing in a well lit bedroom, Paul was sitting in an office chair, and stroking a dog in his lap. It was a small dog, white with black splotches. It’s like I’m here. She slowly stepped closer to Paul, and suddenly she was back in the real world.
“White dog with black splotches?” She asked.
Paul looked up. “Yup, that sounds about right.” He replied.
“Cute dog.” She said, letting go of his hands.
“Yeah, he was the best.” Paul said, looking down for a moment, “Anyways, let’s move on from the sad stuff. So, if I can send you images, that makes me wonder, can you send thoughts like you can receive them?”
“I suppose it’s worth a shot.” She replied, shrugging her shoulders. She gripped his hands again and concentrated. Okay, Vanessa… Mental image… As she reached out into her mind, she decided on the only thing that came to mind. She focused on Paul for a moment.
“Good to know I still know how to color coordinate.” Paul said with a laugh.
“Yeah sorry that’s all I could think of…” She laughed, then paused, “Not like that- I mean…”
Paul laughed, “It’s alright, I haven’t seen myself in a while.” His laughter subsided with this last statement.
“Well… I think you look nice.” Why did I just say that? It doesn’t even make sense!
Paul smiled, “Thanks.”
Vanessa looked into his eyes for a moment, and then down at her phone to see the time. “Oh, crap!” She exclaimed, “We’re like 10 minutes late for dinner!”
“Oops,” Paul chuckled, “Here, help me up.” He said, reaching out his hand. Vanessa jumped up and pulled Paul to his feet.
“Alright, this way.” Vanessa said before taking off.
“Hey wait up!” Paul laughed.
Vanessa slowed down sufficiently and the pair rushed to the second floor dining room.