It has been about five years ago, since the first time I saw Lewis Nonn. I was in New York City, on a long weekend, to visit my sister. She was getting married on Sunday, and requested that I come in on Friday afternoon so that I would be there for the wedding shower. After all I was the maid of honor.
That afternoon, I was walking with my sister through Central Park, on our way to a small florist's shop to pick up some flowers. At the last minute, Sarah had decided that she didn't want roses and tulips in her centerpieces, she wanted roses and lilies. We were about to turn onto 110th street when my sister stopped short.
Sarah shook her head sadly, " The city should really do something about all of the homeless people… Its really getting out of hand… They are becoming a real hassle to those of us that are actually leading productive lives!"
My eyebrows shot up, " Just because our family has a little bit of money, does not give you the right to look down at people like that!!!"
She gave me a slight look of pity, and then pointed behind me, " Well, I guess that they can't be too homeless, the taller one just paid for that hotdog with a fifty…"
I turned around to see whom she was pointing at. Two men were standing next to a hotdog vender's cart. One of them was eaten the acquired food, the other was looking on wearily. Sarah and I walked on, as we passed we caught a piece of their conversation.
" Casey, do you have any idea what so ever as to what goes into that filth?!" the man without a hotdog exclaimed.
" Yeah, Lew, I do…" answered the other, taking a huge bite.
The other man sighed and turned away slightly, " I cannot believe that my best friend would be partial to the barbaric butchery of an innocent animal…"
My sister turned to me, " Its far worse then I first thought Katie! They aren't homeless, they're Green Peace, PETA member wannabe's!!"
The tall man with the hotdog called after my sister, " He's not a wannabe, he is a PETA member!!!"
Sarah stopped dead in her tracks. She stalked over to the two guys and a poked a slender finger in their faces, " Do either of you have any idea who I am?!"
They both shook their heads.
Hotdog man spoke first, " Don't really care either."
My sister let out a shriek of disgust, at their apparent lack of recognition. Not everyone in NYC knew the McCleary children at sight.
I walked over to them, staring directly at the ground in embarrassment, " I'm sorry about the way that my sister reacted. She's just like every other overly privileged daddy's girl in the country… If you don't wear Prada or belong to a country club, then you must, well, you know how it is..."
I finally managed to look up, just as a show, that I didn't feel the same as my sister. A pair of the most gorgeous emerald green eyes that I had ever seen met my gaze. Eyelashes that must have been a mile long only moved to accentuate his beautiful eyes. Wavy dark brown hair fell all the way to his shoulders. I stood captivated. I had been focusing on my sister before, and failed to notice how handsome either one of them were.
I was torn from my hypnotic trance when he spoke, " Its alright… I would be lying if I said that people don't talk to me like that all the time…"
The man with the hotdog stuffed the last bit of it into his mouth, " Really, people aren't to fond of tree hugging hippies."
A soft smile escaped me… I caught myself ignoring the other guy and staring intently into the green eyes of the other…He noticed too.
He held out his hand, as a wry grin spread across his face, " I'm Lewis Nonn… That untimely fellow is my best friend Casey Maltese."
The smile was contagious, as one soon spread across my lips. I took his hand into mine, " Katherine McCleary, it is very nice to meet you Lewis Nonn…"
I looked over my shoulder to find my sister, but she had already disappeared into the crowd. I let go of his hand, reluctantly. It felt really nice, even for being a stranger's hand.
" Well, I better get going… I have to help my sister pick out flowers for her wedding." I said.
I turned and began to walk away, but a gentle hand caught my shoulder. I turned, and there was Lewis Nonn.
" Umm… Well…"
" Yes?" I probed.
" I just wanted to tell you, to tell your sister good luck, with her wedding and all." He said.
" That's bullshit!" Casey called out, " He wants to know if you'll lay him."
The statement seemed to drain every ounce of color from Lewis's body.
" That is not what I was going to ask you." Lewis blurted.
" Oh, really?"
He scratched the back of his head nervously, " I was wondering if you lived here in the city?"
I shook my head, " I'm sorry, but I live in Baltimore… I'm just in town for my sisters wedding."
His shoulders slumped slightly; he was fighting massive disappointment, " Ohh."
I smiled softly at him, " I'll be staying at the Hilton until Monday, though."
His expression brightened… I turned and began walking away. I had no idea how much my life was about to drastically change.