Sunday, September 13, 2009

Put Your Head On My Shoulder

"Kau dah sangkut dengan dia ke?"

He lifted his cup and drank up the coffee halfway before placing the cup back into its plate. The cup made a clinking sound as its bottom hit the plate. He then pushed the set to the middle of the table before leaning back to his chair. The yellow shades in the Old Town outlet disguised his true tones. Under the lights, Noraz looked relax and calm after the rush we had en route to Ipoh for breakfast just now. Dzul sat at the other side of the round table, forming a triangle of these three men who came to the outlet to enjoy some decent cups of coffee and some toasts.

“I thought she did,” I said as I bit some of the butter toast. There were always ways to evade from succumbing to questions. It’s the matter of pride and ego. “I told you about it, right?”

“Yeah,” Noraz replied. He paused for a while before he continued, “but why she disappeared?”

I took the last bite of the toast and patted my hands together to get rid of the crumbs. I took a sip of my coffee and laid back onto the rattan-made chair and eased myself before my mind got to the question.

When I told them about rosy cheeks’ disappearance, they seemed to be surprised and confused. Well I myself too. It had been six days since we met, and since then she disappeared just like that. I gave up on the calls and texts two days shy from today over the reasons that I finally gave up on it. I could not stand the torture, especially when she was earlier behaving like a doctor who mended my wounds before she left with all the only working medicines, without a trace. Not even one night went by without me lying on the bed and staring at the ceiling, wondering of what actually went wrong – only to reach to the same conclusion – nothing. Nothing at all went wrong, well at least for me. But I did not know what got to rosy cheeks that made her made her flee.

“But isn’t it a bit too early for you? Nak start over?” Noraz said casually in the softest but most effective way to pin me into his traps of provoking questions. Noraz knew about my recent relationship breakup, and he was referring to it.

“It is,” I said as I calmly drank my coffee up. The bitter aftertaste, they just got bitter, especially with this heavy conversation going on. “Of course it is too early.”

“Aku takut dia jadi rebound item je.”

That, I was not very sure of. What happened since the past weeks, they were just too natural to describe. The feelings I had for her were valid. There were no pretending and playing roles – everything was just too natural. Except about her disappearance.

Noraz placed a hand on his cup and started to rotate it on the plate. The pieces made shrieking sounds as they moved. His eyes were on the cup as if he was thinking deep. None a word was said from him, so I landed my eyes on Dzul who was then munching on the toast. I turned to Noraz again, only to notice that he was staring at me – his eyes were set and locked. And then he smiled.

“You’re not over her yet, are you?”

I tried to swallow the saliva from my dry mouth but the bitter coffee taste disturbed my throat.

Why did you have to ask that, Noraz?

* * *

It would be a lie to say that I have already forgotten about the last battle I had with someone who once used to call me a lover. A year worth of memories, they just didn’t fade away so easily. It would only be a hypocrite of me to claim that I already had gotten over the memories, for memories they stick to my head like tar does to tarmac roads. All the joyful moments and the bitter arguments, they were still fresh in my mind as if they just happened yesterday. No, I didn’t simply forget things that I put an ode to, not that simple.

Because if I did, that showed that I never really wanted the relationship in the first place. A year had gone past since the first day both of me and her – the previous love – rode in the ship we that built from scratch, steering in the oceans of dreams and turndowns in the hopes that we will finally end up at the best of islands, where we will be to end with residing together forever.

But it didn’t happen.

Instead I was left sinking in my own ship, refusing to let go of the rudder wheel while trying hard to fix all punctures on the wall, only to see that the work went all too hopeless to even begin with. It was just useless, and I sank with my pride and prejudice, heavily wounded, stranded at this beach of no-man’s-land.

And she appeared – with a wound in her hand.

* * *

“What do I do now?”

Noraz took the last sip of his coffee slowly. I made a triangle with my fingers and pushed it against my lips. He then placed the cup and took a look at me.

“Tunggu. Wait and see.”

“Kau macam mana Dzul?” I turned to Dzul and asked the question. I just needed a second opinion. Noraz put his view to Dzul, all eyes on him.

Dzul just smiled and tapped the table with his finger. “She’s playing games with you, brother,” he said before continuing, “so you’ve just gotta be patience with it.” And the tapping stopped.

Games. She’d better not be playing with me. People said a wounded tiger is the fiercest. Another beating will only set him off in the worst of behavior in the name of pain.

We stayed in silence as all of us were swept away in our own minds. It took a while when we finally decided to leave. I stood up from my seat and made my way into the shop to clear the bill. There was already a few at the counter so I had to queue up, and in the meantime I looked around the environment inside. There were a lot of couples, both young and old. Everyone looked so happy together.

Somehow it got to me. The passing memories came hitting again, this time the images of the two ladies appeared in my head. Now now, I told myself. Let’s not go there now, buddy.

When it was my turn to pay, I took my wallet and passed the counter lady a note of fifty. She took it from my hands with smiles before asking if I have any coin to match the amount showed on the bill. I happened to have some but I needed to take out my cigarette box and my mobile phone from the side pocket of my pants before doing the digging work.

I handed her the coins she needed before checking my phone which I put in silent mode for messages as she counted for the change. There were three – one from my student who was asking for helps in his research, one was an advertisement from Celcom, and the last one made me wanted to crush the phone in my grip.

“Hi. Missed me?”

Damn right I did.


MeiLin said...

There sure is something about RC...
She's not the typical kinda girl... :)

LuTaNiA said...

I loikee the ending. LOL

farishta said...

I like Noraz. I share his opinion. ;)

In fact, this post inspires me for the topic of my next post! :D

Mohamad Nazmi Zaidi said...

thanks people, i really appreciate your time =)

melinda: she isnt, is she?

lutania: haha thanks :D

faristha: oh please do. im waiting