As he let the door close behind him, AJ shook his head at his friend. He didn't understand what his friend was doing, what his friend was going through. The timer was nothing but an aid to help you know when a girl was or was not the one. “Enjoy the ladies safe in the knowledge that you are screwing your future relationship.” He told Nick when they were sitting in the waiting room waiting to get their implants. It was a decent reason, enough to convince him then to go through with getting the implant.
1029 days 14 hrs 06 min showed on his timer, sixteen weeks ago his timer was activated. His mind momentarily flitted over the thought about what his “one” was doing at that moment as he was driving home. He shook his head of the thought as his phone rang showing Sara's name on the screen.
“Hey girl.” He answered, hoping a cop wasn't around, his hands free device was tucked away in his glove compartment.
“Do you want to finish our date?” Her voice sounded sultry. She continued to talk about how she wanted to finish the date with him and legal or not, he did a u-turn and found his way back to the girl's apartment.
“That was fun,” her voice floated up from the pillow next to him. She moved to throw her arm over his chest in an attempt to cuddle but he was out of the bed before her arm could even touch down. “You aren't staying,” Sara pouted as she watched AJ pull his pants on.
“I have an early morning.” His often used excuse flowed out of his mouth with ease.
“I have an alarm.” She pointed at the clock his hat had been covering only a moment before.
“Sorry babe, I need to get going.” He leaned down and kissed her and then quickly made his escape. From the look that girl was giving him, he knew that she wished their timers were counting down to each other. Most of the girls he had his flings with could not grasp the one-night-stand concept very well and it was starting to frustrate him.
The next morning he woke for his 'early morning' and made his way to the salon to get his mani/pedi appointment.
“Hey AJ, how are you doing this morning?” Karin, smiled widely at him from her make-up station as he took his seat.
“Fabulous as always my fair lady.” He caught the crimson creep on to her cheeks as he complimented her. “When am I going to be able to convince you to go out with me one night after your shift?” He asked his usual question.
Her cheeks blushed brighter and she busied herself straightening her area preparing for her appointments to begin arriving. AJ laughed at himself, he knew she would never agree to go with him, so he kept asking. Besides, he made a point not to go out with anyone from his favorite salon. No need to break one of their hearts and have to find a new place, if he did hang out with them it was usually a group 'date' that lead no where.
“AJ.” Karin called to him as he stood to leave. “That new liner I wanted to show you came in this morning.” She motioned him to her counter and pulled open her drawer.
“The one that can last through torrential downpours so it shouldn't run on my face during shows?” He smirked at the girl, he loved how a simple smile could crimson her cheeks.
He was looking at the one she gave him, applying it under his eye to test it out. “Did I tell you, I am going to be the head make-up artist for a new magazine?” She asked him coyly.
“I remember you talking about that client of yours that was starting a magazine. So she is taking you away from all of this,” He motioned around the place, “I suppose.”
“Next Friday is my last day.” Her grin was from ear to ear. AJ wondered why she was so happy until the next words that fell from her mouth. “I guess we can finally have that night out you are always asking me about now.”
The words escaped him, he never thought she actually wanted to go. “How come you never went out with us as a group before, if you wanted to hang out?” His question was legitimate. She never went with them as a group, and he made sure to ask every time.
Now, it was her turn to smirk at him. “I didn't want anyone else around.” She whispered so only he could hear, no trace of blush in her cheeks. “So how about it, since I won't be working here anymore?”
“What?” he questioned. He never told anyone about his unspoken rule of not dating anyone from there.
Karin only smirked as she moved to greet her next appointment, leaving AJ a bit flabbergasted. He put the eyeliner down on the counter, catching a glimpse of a piece of paper Karin had placed in front of him with her number on it, the time she got off of work that evening and where she wanted to meet up with him later. He took the paper in his hand and smirked to himself. He would meet her later, who knew what other surprises were in for him then.
AJ showed up at the appointed time and sat at the bar waiting for Karin to show. He watched all the couples at the tables and wondered how many of them were doing what he did, flitting around from one person to the next until their timers counted down to their true love. Then he started to wonder how many of them were with their true loves, how many of them had zeroed out clocks and would never have to wonder again if the person across from them was a perfect fit with them.
He originally got the timer to ensure that he wasn't meeting 'the one' when he was meeting girls and hooking up, now he was wondering what he would do when he met the one girl he was to be with the rest of his life, the one person who would satisfy him in every aspect of life.
“Deep in thought?” Karin's voice brought him back from his thoughts.
“Thinking of lyrics for a new song.” He lied.
“Maybe later you can sing a bit of that song for me.” Karin winked at him and took a seat next to him. “I put our name in for a table, it will only be a couple of minutes he said, unless you want to pull your famous card and get us seated now.” She laughed, amused at her own statement. AJ found her laughter amusing and grinned broadly. Maybe this date would end well after all.
“So, should I make small talk and ask you what you do for a living?” She winked as she accepted her drink from the server after being seated minutes before.
“I don't think you know this about me, but I make music.” He played along.
“Oh? Anything I might have heard?” She sipped her drink, determined to have a good time.
AJ shook his head caught in the moment unable to reply. Karin kept going, “Oh, is it the kind of music that is mostly underground? Lots of riots, lots of police breaking up fights?” The twinkle in Karin's eyes amused AJ, the conversation flowed so naturally with her and the blushing girl from the salon seemed almost non-existent outside of work.
“Riots, yes. Police, sometimes.” He laughed.
“Ooooh, scandalous.” Karin played with the stir stick in her drink, taking a small sip through it before continuing. She dropped the straw and reached her hand over, touching AJ's arm playfully. She moved closer to him, as if prepared to spill a secret. “Tell me, would my mother disapprove of your music?” She teased. “Because, if so, get me ten copies.”
AJ threw his head back laughing heartily along with Karin's melodic laughter. Playing along with the “first date” conversation, AJ decided to take his turn. “What do you do for a living?”
“You wouldn't know this about me, but I work for the riot police.” She winked and took another sip of her drink, pouting when she realized her glass was now empty.
“Any perks to that job?” AJ asked signaling the waiter to come to their table, he interrupted the conversation briefly to re-order Karin another Shirley Temple and a Coke for himself.
“Perhaps I will show you later.” Karin picked up the conversation when it left off.
“Really?” He raised his eyebrows. The food they ordered when they sat at their table arrived and their drinks shortly after.
Karin talked the remainder of the dinner about her new opportunity at the magazine and all the ideas she had that she hoped to implement. She even spoke of a possible move to London.
“That would be a shame.” AJ told her when she talked of moving.
“I just met you.” Now it was his turn to reach across the table and place his hand on her arm, the slight pressure from the timer on his wrist even more apparent tonight.