Thursday, November 15, 2007

Moments to Cherish

by Boots Sermeno

I. The things I do for you

He wakes up to the smell of egg cooking. It is ten o'clock in the morning on their day off. He stumbles out of bed, yawning, and saunters towards where the food is located. He finds her standing in the kitchen, wearing a light pink apron. He blinks, wondering where this strange new apron came from, and recalls, with a slightly giddy feeling, that he went shopping with her the night before.

He laughs; the world still a little fuzzy with sleep, and he steps behind her and bend down nuzzling the expanse of soft, smooth skin at her neck. She doesn't move away, simply continuing to make the egg rolls wordlessly.

"Good morning..." he whispers. His low voice tickles her ear. "You look nice in that apron. Want me to tie your hair up for you?"

She just smiles and rolls up the second piece of omelet. He notices the black band around his lover's right wrist. He stops her for a second and tugs the hair tie off gently. She closes her eyes and feels a calming sense of security when the other's fingers run through her hair, slowly gathering it into a small ponytail.

Afterwards, she watches his lover prepare the bread toasts as she finishes the last egg roll, and she decides she can't possibly be more content with her life right now.

II. This is our song

They spend what's left of the morning after breakfast messing around on the piano. The apartment is already a tiny one, and the large instrument makes it seem even smaller. But she likes to think of it as 'coziness', something that turns the place into more of a home.

He can't really play the piano. His lover is fairly good at it. She attempts to teach him one or two simple pieces, but he is no prodigy, tinkering on the keys crudely, almost as if he were playing a video a game and pressing buttons on the a game console.

She gives up after a while. She sits and plays a few classical pieces until his lover produces some exaggeratingly loud snoring noises. "Boring~" he intones. "Can't you play something more exciting? Something I know?"

She pauses in the middle of a sonata to consider the request.

"How about this?" she began playing a tune that is quite familiar to everyone. She looks at him as she continues to play the sweet melody.

"Yes!"Junno says cheerfully. "I'd love that."

She keeps playing. And the next moment, he got lost in the wonderful melody playing in his ears. Then he starts to sing, "Some people want it all, but I don't want nothing at all. If it ain't you baby... If I ain't got you baby..." Something about his enthusiasm encourages her to join in. "If I Ain't Got You!"

And then they decide that this song is their song for each other.

III. Like a piece of sugar in the mouth

At half-past three in the afternoon they venture out of the air-conditioned apartment into the streets, where the air is so thick with summer heat that they can hardly breathe. He begins to whine, pawing at his lover's shoulder. "This isn't such a good idea after all, and where are we going again?"

"Change of plans," she announces. "We're heading to the café now. "

His face immediately lights up. "Really?" His complaints about the heat cease wholly for the rest of the trip. His hand, though, stays on her shoulder as they walk, and she notes that it is still in the same position when they arrive at the café two streets away.

They order an espresso with whipped cream on top. He scoops away the cream and is about to devour it all in one go when his lover says indignantly, "Hey, I want some too."

"But you never do!" he protests, surprised. "I always have the cream and you the espresso. It's fair, isn't it?"

"Who says life is fair?" she raises an eyebrow. "And you can have some of the espresso in return, if you want."

"You know I hate espresso. It's too bitter," he mumbles. The bell on the door tinkles as another customer walks in. He sighs and extends his hand with a spoonful of cream. She smiles appreciatively, dips her finger into the cream and puts it into her mouth.

"Thanks," she says. "Wow, this stuff is really sweet." She is amused when her lover rolls his eyes, in a way that says: "What, have you never eaten that before?"

She sips her espresso silently with a straw. The drink is too bitter — like what her lover said and like what she, herself thinks but never says. But she prefers this to any other type of coffee when she's around him, because people say that everything tastes sweet when you're with someone you love.

Today, she is delighted to find that the espresso is even sweeter than the cream, and when he questions why she is smiling around the straw, her smile just widens as she refuses to answer.

IV. Until I fall asleep

The only sounds left are the ones coming from the TV. His eyes are fixated on the screen, and have been for nearly two hours. She is right beside him on the couch, a magazine open on her lap and earphones fitted snugly in her ears. Occasionally she looks up from the page and observes the progress of the game, and once when her lover produced a 'fantastic' combo attack (or so the
game said --- since she didn't manage to see it with her own eyes) she congratulated him with a quick smack on the cheek. Then they both blush.

Suddenly he feels her head land heavily on his shoulder. He pauses the game and glances at the clock. It is nearly midnight. He looks down at her closed eyes and parted lips, and he feels his heart swell in an almost painful way. He reaches out and brushes her lower lip with one finger.

She jerks awake just like that. "Hmmm...," she murmurs. One hand snakes up his lover's back, pressing his head down, and their lips meet. The kiss is soft and chaste, and she soon pulls away.

"We have work tomorrow."She reminds him when he tries to bring her back another kiss.

He pouts. She laughs and hits the side of her lover's head lightly. "Come on," she urges. "I'm tired. I need sleep." Her hand wraps around the other's wrist and drags him towards the bedroom.

They fall asleep with their fingers laced.

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