Henry mulled over his thoughts, his dreams, and decided to ignore them as best he could. He sat staring out the window. When the waiter finally did come to take his order he got something other then his usual. He wanted something light, he felt he'd be sick otherwise. Just some eggs and toast. He sighed loudly as he looked out the window again. This time he saw people about the garden, nothing special, just more people and Affini. The world had changed when they arrived, yet also nothing really did. His life simply kept ticking on. He thought how that wasn't too bad after all, things could be worse. They could be evil or try to destroy humanity. These aliens simply just wanted to talk to us. How strange.
Just as his food arrived he looked down to start eating before he was hit by a familiar voice. "What's that other thing called?"
He looked up and saw the same Affini as before, she was still as ethereal as their last encounter but this time her dress was accompanied with a hat which had been now placed on the table. Henry stumbled over his words. "T-t-toast....its-its called toast."
The Affini smiled and seemed to almost reach out with something, but then stopped. He wondered what she had originally meant to do. She spoke again, "Toast? How interesting, I'll have to try that too." She called out to the waiter and mirrored his order again. Henry tried to muster a smile but couldn't. Words failed him so he simply nodded slowly. His heart felt heavy and slow, but he ate food for now. The woman spoke again after some time. "Are you feeling alright?"
Henry spoke without interest but at least he could say something, "Just another hang over"
The woman nodded. "That's from drinking isn't it?" Henry looked surprised at the obvious question. "Yeah, what else would it be?"
The woman's normal smile turned sour. "I see, well mister?" Henry caught himself, he was about to do it again. "Its Henry." "I'm Sachra Esline Third Bloom, it's so wonderful to meet you Henry"
Sachra what a unique name. "It's nice to meet you Miss Esline"
"Oh please call me Sachra." She smiled with a devilish grin.
"Well then, it's nice to meet you Miss Sachra"
"Now then, Henry, I've read that hangovers are sometimes caused by a lack of water when drinking alcohol." Her voice said his name in a sultry tone which reminded him of Rosaline.
Henry cocked his head sideways. "Huh, Johnny just keeps telling me to drink a raw egg. I tried it once and it made me nearly puke."
"I see..." Sachra looked like she was furling her brow despite her lack of them. "Regardless Henry, perhaps a little water might help you."
"Its worth a shot I suppose" Henry was interested in losing his hangovers, but he always doubted the next cureall.
Henry had long since finished his breakfast but waited patiently as Sachra ate hers.
"Toast is certainly interesting, it's like the bacon no?" Henry looked confused.
"It is...crunchy. My apologies I do not have the same taste receptors as you humans" Henry nodded, he didn't understand all the words but he at least understood that food tasted different to an alien. Henry laughed.
"I see, well no, its quite different to bacon!" He leaned over and sliced a portion of butter and spread it onto the half eaten toast. "Try it with this, hopefully it will taste different then"
Sachra took another bite "ah that certainly is different my dear Henry!" Henry chuckled. The phrasing of her words seemed to gloss over him. At least for now his brain was still unfocused and slightly disoriented.
"You know there's other stuff you can put on toast as well, jam and stuff like that."
"It's like berries and fruit or something, but it's all mashed up into a paste." Henry pondered for a moment, was it offensive to suggest Sachra should eat plants?
"Ah perhaps I should try that tomorrow?" Henry nodded. "Yeah of course Miss Sachra." The two exchanged smiles, but it was unfortunately cut short by a group of reporters.
The reporters began to barrage Sachra with questions, Henry frankly couldn't keep up with the pace. He caught a few words here and there but his mind was only really ready for the slow conversation Sachra provided. He heard something about the Viet Cong as well as something called the China Disaster. But he couldn't piece together anything. It must have been at least 10 minutes worth of questions before Henry got up to make his escape. No one seemed to notice him leaving, at least that's what he thought. He heard something that sounded like his name before he retreated from the dining hall. It wasn't surprising that reporters would want to question Sachra, she was an alien after all. He wondered what she did for a living. Maybe she was some big whig! He chuckled, how funny would it be if he was talking to some big time Alien hero. He was just some nobody. Well maybe he'd see her again, at least he had her name now.
As the day wore on Henry found himself sitting back in his room watching the city from his balcony. It must have been around 5 when Johnny came stumbling in, he seemed drunk but far looser, Henry couldn't understand a word of what he said and just like that Johnny had grabbed a bag of something and disappeared into the hall again. Henry saw what must have been Affini standing outside but he didn't move at all from his chair.
That night he occupied the same bed as Rosaline, she seemed to be in a good mood. "Oh Henry, you should have seen the club again! It was like when I was 20 again." Henry smiled and simply let her ramble on. It was perhaps another 30 minutes before Rosaline's words turned to a soft spoken whisper as she sat on the edge of the bed nursing a bottle of Champagne. "Oh...I miss those days...."
"Back when the French were here again, ahh it was so wonderful, party after party and so many gentlemen trying to win my heart! I was young!" Rosaline laughed loudly before taking a swig of the bottle. "Those fools....."