“Ahhh, that feels good.” I dropped into my tub, thankful for the overflow of bubbles. I had just come home from working out, and I always treated myself to a bubble bath right after. It was my reward for working hard, and it was all that got me through the last ten minutes of my workouts. I closed my eyes, luxuriating.
“Ahem.” Someone cleared his throat—it was definitely a him—and my eyes flew open in terror. Standing before me was a man of slight build, but incredibly tall. He had white-blond hair which flowed down his back and really light blue eyes which were almost white. He was dressed in a white Armani suit which fit as if it’d been made for him. If it was an Armani, then it probably was made especially for him. He looked vaguely like Jason Isaacs as Lucius Malfoy in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, but dressed in white. I blinked twice, sure that I was hallucinating. When I realized I wasn’t, I screamed.
“Who the fuck are you? How the fuck did you get in my bathroom?” I felt horribly vulnerable being naked in a bathtub with a stranger standing over me. Granted, I was covered in bubbles, but that didn’t bring me much comfort. Why the hell hadn’t I brought my cell phone in here as I normally did? Because I wanted fucking privacy, that’s why. Never again, damn it. As these thoughts ran through my head, the man said nothing. So I tried again. “Answer me, you sick son of a bitch. Who the fuck are you?” I wanted to threaten him, but it was useless. Anything I said would be an obvious bluff, so I waited to see what he’d do. Or say. I wasn’t too picky at this point.
“You’re not going to believe this,” the man said in a low voice. There was something odd about it. It didn’t sound quite human, but I couldn’t pinpoint the reason. “So do me the favor of shutting up while I tell you a little story, OK?”
“As if I have a fucking choice. How the fuck did you get in here, anyway?” I racked my brains to remember if I’d locked the door, but I couldn’t recall. I forgot once in a while, so perhaps it was my fault this lunatic was in my bathroom. There was a buzzer at the front door, but it was easy enough to con someone into opening the door. As this man made no move towards me, and I couldn’t do anything else, I resigned myself to hearing what the fucker had to say.
“I am here on a mission. You are an important part of that mission. You have no choice in the mission, but I would like you to be willing.” The man enunciated the words as if he’d grown up watching BBC, though no trace of a British accent was to be found. Oh, Lord. I had a crazy on my hands. I just prayed he wouldn’t rape me or kill me. Or torture me. Or make me watch Lifetime movies. I’d give him all the cash in my house if he would just—
“I don’t want your money,” the man said impatiently, his eyes flashing. Strange, they turned a dark blue as they flashed before reverting to almost white when they were still.
“Huh?” I must have said it out loud, though I could have sworn I’d only said it in my head.
“Ok, there isn’t any way to ease into this, so I’m just going to be blunt with you.” The man paused, looking as if he wished for all the world that he could smoke a cigarette. I almost offered him one, but something in his face told me he would find the offer objectionable. “I am God. You are the chosen one. I have waited many eons for you, and now, here you are.” He paused, waiting for a response. I stared at him, convinced that he was out of his mind. It took a couple of seconds for what he’d said to sink into my mind, but when it did, I burst out laughing. I wasn’t scared any more—just confused.
“You’re from one of those reality shows, aren’t you? Like Punk’d or something like that. Is Ashton Kutcher hiding outside the door? You almost had me there. Me, the chosen one. Ha, ha, ha. Very funny. Now get the fuck out of my apartment.” I closed my eyes and leaned back. OK, not the best move with a stranger in my bathroom, but I was exhausted after an especially grueling workout with my merciless trainer, Katya. Katya was from the former Soviet Union, and she didn’t know the meaning of the word pain. Or stop, either, for that matter. Or mercy—
“Margaret, I’m serious.” The use of my name caught me, and I opened my eyes again. “Look, I’ll go into your living room so you can get out and put some clothes on. Then we’ll talk.” He disappeared before I could say anything, not that I would have because I didn’t know what the fuck to say. How the hell did this nutjob know who I was? I slowly got out of the tub, wrapping my robe around me. I hurried to my bedroom to put on a pair of sweatpants and a sweatshirt. I wanted to look unattractive as possible in case this guy was going to try to pounce on me. Granted, it would have been easier for him to make a move while I was in the tub, but you never knew. I grabbed my cell phone while I was at it, just in case I had to call 9-1-1. I took a deep breath and walked out into the living room where the guy was lounging on my couch. He turned to look at me as I entered. I tried to determine his age, but he was ageless.
“Sit,” he said, gesturing to the other end of the couch. The nerve! Inviting me to sit on my own couch! Just to be ornery, I sat in the hard-backed chair facing him.