Posted in Book Project

Chapter 1 :A Guy Who Stared


The city,2005.

It was raining when I stepped out on the sidewalk. Damn, should’ve brought that bloody red umbrella. Should’ve remembered that next time.

The sky got really dark. The wind blew my body so strong that I was afraid I could catch cold. People started running to find shelter from the rain that was about to come.Before I could change my mind, I found myself opened a glass door of one cafe near the place where I got out from the public transport.

It was warm inside. Of course.

The cafe had a cozy kinda feeling interior. The feeling you have by seeing lively colors, such as orange and yellow. At the center of the room,  a minibar with a bartender stood. Well, at least it looked like a bar (not that I’ve been to one),and the guy was probably not a bartender, since I wasn’t even sure they were allowed to sell alcohol. Maybe he was a barista. That’s more like it.

A smiling waitress welcomed me.

“Do you need a table for two, miss?” She looked past me, as if trying to find a man whom would come out of thin air as my boyfriend. I could see the sympathy look she had later, when she couldn’t summon that dreamy-hot-boyfriend.

“No, just me …” I smiled sheepishly.

She nodded. Another sympathy look.

Damn it.

I followed her to the table with two chairs near the window. I could see the street, almost empty from people.

The waitress pointed at the menu. “Whenever you’re ready, Miss.”

I hesitated for a while. Then,

“Mmh … can you just bring me hot tea, please?” I just realized that I must spend some money here. Something that I always avoid, if possible.

She nodded, smiled, and went away gracefully.

I sat on the chair. I opened my light jacket and folded it, then put it on my lap. I looked through my backpack. I usually had one or two novels there, just to kill time when I had to wait or when I took public transport.

I couldn’t find any. I suddenly remembered that I went in rush this morning. No time to put any book. My first class was at 7 and I woke up at 5.30 in the morning. I just had time to hit the shower and ran all the way to the big road where I could wait for the public transport. I haven’t had any meals, either. Oh wait, Mia did give me half of her breakfast this morning. But I haven’t had anything since. And it was nearly sundown.

I sighed.

Okay. Then I’ll have my tea and get out of here once the rain stop.

Then, I just realized that someone was watching for me. I looked at my left, and two tables from mine, sat two guys. One, I could only see his back, wearing dark grey sweater. The Other one,  stared at me,without blinking. I wasn’t really sure he was looking at me though, so I turned around to see. But no, my right side was window, and the table on my left was empty.That guy was definitely looking at me.

I tried to figure out who he was. Feeling that he might known me somewhere. An old schoolmate or someone. I found out recently that most of my childhood friends were completely in different appearance in their adulthood. So, maybe he was one of them.

The light in this place was not bright enough for me to see him clearly. Judging from the fact that most customers here were couples (I counted,at least four), it was obvious that the cafe didn’t have the necessity to put bright lamp.

The guy was now leaning his body toward his company and spoke to him. I couldn’t see his face now but I could tell he was wearing dark maroon t-shirt (or was it brown?) without any writing, at least at the places where I could see. His hair was straight, with common cut style. So common. Not mohawk like one of the guys in my class, or military style with some bald on the left and right side of the head like most guys have now.

My hot tea came.

The waitress didn’t bother to ask anything. She just put the tea cup and smiled. Maybe after a while she finally realized that tea was the only thing I could afford.

I put some sugar on my tea and stirred. I could feel that guy stared at me again. It started to feel quite annoying now. If he knew me from somewhere, maybe he came to my table to say hi. The fact that he didn’t just explained on how inappropriate this was. Why would a stranger stared at another stranger? Maybe he was a pervert. Not that I am the type of girl that a pervert like to stare. I mean, for a 18 years old girl, I am just nobody. If I hadn’t my period at 9th grade, maybe I would thought myself as some kind of deform. I don’t have body like any other girls my age, either. I mean, with full hips and upper body like Baywatch girls.

Baywatch. Ha!

My older cousins loved to watch that show long long time ago. I was still in Elementary School and all I could hear was how sexy the girls were in Baywatch, with their big breasts and nice asses. I didn’t really understand back then, what were “sexy and asses” mean. I know breasts, since I saw one of my aunt breastfed her infant. Kinda gross.

So, again, I am not that type of girl men would look at. I am just so so. Just ordinary. Don’t have the body, not quite the look. Some of my friends (girls) told me of how beautiful I would look if I took care of my face from time to time. You know, put on some moisture, apply some powder and have a light shade of lipstick. They did once, to me, on the event on campus, and all guys in my department looked at me strangely. When I showed up the following day, back to myself without anything on my face, Randy, my best pal in students association patted me on the shoulder and said, “Glad to have you back, Ap.”

See? cosmetic doesn’t really work with me.

I sipped my tea. Nice. Warm. A stream of comfort feeling rushed to my body. Always get that when drinking a nice hot tea. With coffee, no.

With the intention to avoid the weird guy’s stare, I looked at the window. Raining was still pouring down. It’s December.

I was born in December. And I always like the month, though it is always chilly and gloomy. Rain almost comes everyday in December. People may disliked it and cursed, but I love it. I love seeing how wet the road is. How hard the wind blow sometimes. It’s cold, yet, I feel safe and comfort.

And safe and comfort are something I rarely have.

I drained my tea cup and I saw that the street through the window looked lively again. Rain has stopped. Though, you still can see the impact it made. There must be flood everywhere in the street. It’s always like that. Since I was a little.

I grabbed my backpack. I don’t want to waste time here. And I am hungry. If I come home late, I might not getting any food. My other cousins and relatives would probably have eaten all.

I stood up and sigh. To go paying in the cashier counter, I have to walk pass the weird guys’s table. Well, look doesn’t kill. People kill people. I put on my jacket, summoned all the courage I have and walk.

The guy jerked his head aback when he saw me walking. I walked straight, tried to be looked calm and tough. He stared at me, within shorter distance now. God, he is weird. I could see his face clearly now. His skin is not dark like people from the east or fair like Chinese. He is well built, I could now figured out his broad shoulders and chest. I bet his chest were six pack, like my old PE teacher in high school who showed his six pack body whenever we had swimming lesson. The different was, my teacher was in his early fifty, this guy was probably not even thirty.

His lips are thin and tight. The type that doesn’t smile easily. His nose was okay, his jaw was quite impressive, looked tough, with high cheekbone. What? I must be so delusional that I could see the whole face of this weird guy in just a glance.

When I walked passing his table, his eyes (deep and sharp) stabbed me like a blade. I puzzled between stay-tough-face-kinda-thing or smiled. I mean, you would smile when you caught someone staring at you, right? Or not?

I was so relief when I finally stood in front of the cashier and paid my tea. With a little shiver I walked outside that cafe.

I didn’t know whether he was still staring at me or not.

I didn’t dare to turn.

The rain has completely stopped.