Friday, March 23, 2012

Episode 7: Oh My God

"Have you ordered the drinks?"

I pulled out the chair next to the large boy and sat down slowly. My shin was still aching at that time, although the pain had toned down to a much bearable level. Apparently the mint and ginger extract ointment worked very well when it comes to this type of external injury. The swollen part of the shin had been wrapped around by an elastic bandage after the ointment was applied on the affected area. It was a good thing that the twin tower shopping center offered a few choices of pharmacy, enabling me to find the aforementioned medical items in a faster and easier way. Before I applied the bandage in the toilet previously, I told Bob to go to this coffee outlet to make our drinks order so that our waiting time could be sufficiently minimized. To my surprise, our drinks were not even there yet when I arrived.

"I did, yes," Bob replied before he released a whole cloud of cigarette smoke into the evening air. "The girl will deliver them later."

Ah, I said to myself. The girl.

I took a quick look around the place. From where I was sitting, the open, man-made pond was clearly visible. The sky-rocketing water fountains were charmingly entertaining a whole bunch of inspired visitors who at the time surrounded the pond and stared at the waterworks with much admiration and awe within them. The tall tower that belonged to a communication giant in the country stood sturdily in the background. A number of joggers were seen running on the jogging track that snaked deep into the center garden next to the fountain pond. The wind blew gently that evening, making the trees swayed beautifully, and the reflection of the setting sun that shone on the clouds above depicted the atmosphere in the most heartwarming manner. 

In the cafe itself there were not many customers, albeit the fact that it was already late evening and technically the place should be swarmed with hungry people who usually hunted for food at this hour. Only a few tables were occupied with some laid-back city-goers, including a table next to us, where there was a Caucasian man who was calmly enjoying his coffee beverage along with a pack of cigarette. Speaking of coffee beverage, I started to feel rather thirsty. I wondered what took the girl so long. In a moment I heard footsteps coming from behind me, and from Bob's smile I knew that the person who produced those footsteps were coming right at us. 

"Here are your drinks," she said while putting both grande-size coffee cups onto the table with her fair hand. "This is java chips," she handed the drink to Bob, "and this is caramel..." 

She didn't finish her sentence. I looked at her, and she looked at me. Our eyes met again. Her eyebrows moved slightly towards each other, showing a little confusion. I sat calmly and smiled at her. She didn't smile back. After a few moment, she pulled a tight face. She took the drink and placed it in front of me. Bob looked at what was going on with an increased interest.

"This is caramel frap. Enjoy."

And with that she started to walk away fast towards the counter that was located right at my 6 o'clock. She smell of that adorable citrus perfume filled my air. I turned around before she went away even further.

"Hey," I said. 

She stopped walking. She hugged the circular, brown plastic tray close to herself and turned around to face me. Her face was so sour, that she easily scored against the sourest plum in the world by a hundred point to none. 

"I'm working," she said. "Later."

She walked away and I turned around again to face Bob, who was then already sipping down to the bottom of the upper half of the grande cup. 

"Jeez," he said. "What's her problem."

"Oh you know," I replied to his monologue. "Women."

Bob placed his coffee cup on the table and took a cigarette out of the red-and-white paper box before handing the box to me. I took one cigarette out of it too and lit it up. I took a deep breath and exhaled the smoke out gently.  

"So," Bob said after blowing another cloud of smoke into the air. "Why are we here again?"

I didn't reply. Instead I held the grande cup of caramel frap in my hand and took a few sips to test its taste, just in case. It tasted nice and pleasant. Perfectly perfect. I took a few big gulps to quench my dry throat down and felt refreshed instantly. Bob saw this and as usual he made his annoying inquiry.

"Hello," he said. "What, am I talking to the ashtray here?"

I took a long stare at him. I tapped the cigarette ash and took the final draw of the cigarette before butting it out in the ashtray. I let the smoke out straight above my head. 

"You started to sound like Tiara, Bob."

"Please," Bob killed the cigarette in the ashtray. "Don't mention her name."

"Why, you guys are fighting again?"

Bob didn't reply nor did he show any interest at all to the question. I gave him the unbelievable look. 

"Again? Not two days ago you guys had a fight and I had to sort things out for you."

"I know, I know," Bob replied with a long sigh. "She complained about her feet. They keep getting sore from her shoes. I told her not to wear that shoes anymore but you know," he shrugged his shoulder, "women." 

"Uh huh." I just looked at him. That was my line, Bob.

"Let's not talk about me," he said, a little embarrassed. "I still don't know why are we here."

I shook the cup in my hand and took another big gulp of the caramel frap before placing it on the table. 

"I need to meet someone."

"I see," Bob said while taking another cigarette and lit it up. "So who is this someone?"

"Well, she's a girl."

The Caucasian man next to us stood up and excused himself when he moved right next to us, mainly because he couldn't make through due to Bob blocking his way out. Bob stood up to allow the man to walk pass before sitting down again on his chair. A creaking sound came out from the chair as he was making himself sitting comfortably again.

"A girl, aye. Is this the girl from last night?" 

"Apparently she is," I said.

Before Bob was able to say anything more, a girl appeared at the table next to us where the Caucasian man was sitting previously. She took the empty ceramic cup and placed it on a circular, brown plastic tray and placed them both on another empty table to our left. She wiped the table clean with a piece of damp cloth, arranged all the chairs back into place and replaced the ashtray with a new one. Her ponytail danced in the most beautiful way as she got all those works done. Bob and I was looking at her as she was busy with her cleaning chore. The citrus perfume struck my nose again. The girl finished cleaning and setting the table up in less than a few minutes - so efficiently - and walked away after that with the tray and the empty ceramic coffee mug. Before she left she did gave us a quick glance. I turned back again to Bob who was at the time still following the girl with his eyes. I felt like slapping him for giving her so much attention. Then he turned to me.

"Alright then," he said. "So when can I meet this girl who broke your heart so much last night?"

I gave him a smirk. "You already did."

"Yeah?" Bob killed the cigarette in the ashtray and leaned back. The chair creaked again. He finished his drink up and slammed the plastic coffee cup onto the table. "When?"

I leaned back fully and crossed my arms. I raised both my eyebrows and signaled Bob with my eyes, pointing to the table next to us. And then I gave him another smirk. He seemed not to notice at first (he was somewhat a bit slow in catching hints -- a trait that Tiara found to be very annoying) but after a few moment he managed to catch a glimpse of the overall idea. His face showed that he was entirely surprised by this wholly unforeseen, well, surprise.

"Oh my god," he said.

I looked at his face. Still surprised he was, but what more surprising was that his eyes were not looking at me but slightly above my head. What? I asked myself. What's so surprising? And so suddenly my nose caught that very familiar smell again. Citrus perfume. Wait a minute, who's behind me? I turned around slowly, only to see a female's body. I lifted my head up to see who she was, and to my horror it was Min, standing with an empty ashtray in her hand. Her face did not show any emotion. Mine however showed at least a thousand. I suddenly felt as if all the blood in my head was flushed away down to my feet. I felt I was getting pale. My face felt numb. Worse, I felt my soul was leaving my body. The shock I had could only be expressed in the similar way Bob did:

Oh my God.

...To Be Continued

1 comment:

oDiN said...

aaaaa .. cepat habiskan .. x sanggup nak tunggu lagi