She heard his shuffling steps in front of her door as he let himself in and started to make some coffee. He went straight for the bathroom, dragging his tool bag behind, not even acknowledging her presence. She could hear him banging and cursing to himself, while she sipepd her hot coffee. Damn, was he breaking something? Todd would have known immediately if he was. She decided to walk over and check out what he was doing.
She first saw his rising and falling back and straight legs. Well, she thought, he is not all that bad then. he was laboring with the plunger and some other long thin metal thingie over the bathtub, and cursing to himself in that strange language of his. What was it, Armenian? Albanian, Romanian? One of those countries, anyway. That Russia was so hard to keep track of. States were falling out of it faster than fake boobs out of Agnes. She chuckled as she remembered the poor girl always trying to push up her tube top, and refix the fake boobs without anyone noticing. She never had that problem, thank God. Her boobs were not only big, they were also high and bouncy. Todd loved seeing her on top. That skunk. Her face clouded again, as she remembered him and their never-ending fights. Ah, screw him.
The super was done. He got up, a plastic bag in his hand full of dripping gunk and hair.
-Hairs, -he said -You American voman always shaving, use shitty product to vash hairs and look! Like devil!
-Well, I have to look pretty for my boyfriend. – she said petulantly. -What, your girlfriend in Russia does not shave?
-I, not Russian. I, Albanian, OK?
-Whatever, – she murmured, wondering why his face got so red. Like there was a difference anyway.
-And girl must cook, clean, no shave hairs all day.
-No wonder you have no girlfriend, -she said nastily.
-Oh, yeah? Vere your boyfriend is? Huh? This, this man job, he should do. If no cook, man no stay, but no shave legs, sometimes OK.- the little poem seemed to crack him up, and he started chuckling, and shaking his head.
She opened her mouth for a sharp retort, but instead, a big moan came out, and then the tears. She started crying and shaking uncontrollably, with the super right there in the tiny bathroom, holding the little plastic bag full of gunk in his hand. He was staring at her openmouthed, not knowing what to do, not daring to move past her for the safety of the hallway, not even speaking up. Finally, he reached out with the other hand and patted her bare shoulder.
-It OK, It OK. -he murmured, which seemed only to make the situation worse. She doubled her cries, and then leaned on his shoulder while still leaking like a bust-up faucet. She could feel his rigidity and discomfort, but she could not let go now. He was the only support she had, and he was so right so right. She was such a loser.
Something finally jolted the superintendent alive, and he started pushing her gently outside the bathroom, through the tiny hallway and into the living room couch. He sat her down carefully and then sat himself down and waited for her to gather herself. He must have thrown away the plastic bag with the gunk, because it was not in his hands any more. She finally collected herself and disentangled from him.
-I am sorry, -she murmured, still heaving. -We broke up and I…
-It OK, it OK. -he said. -He is big idiot anyway, because you is very pretty. Like flower. You find better, serious man, you see. Even if no virgin, he marry you.
She smiled inspite of herself and felt a little better. He did not look so old or so crazy anymore, and his blue eyes were circled by less wrinkles than she though. He did indeed have a very smooth skin even if deeply lined and sunburnt. She wondered what he used to shave, and then imagined his face when she asked him. That would be a hoot.
-I go now, OK? I come back later, get tub cap to put in. Old one damaged, I put in garbage.
-Yes, – she said and rose with him -Thank you, and again, I am sorry about the tears and everything else.
-Ya, ya, OK. Go sleep. He is bastard. Vant I beat up for you?
She was tempted to say yes, but then shook her head no. The superintendent gathered his things and left, and she plopped right there in the lumpy living room couch and fell asleep. Later at night, when she woke up and went to the bathroom, she discovered that he had already been in and had fixed the drain cap.