December 17, 2007

over chocolate cake, with tingles

sugar brought the chocolate marshmallow cake to the table with two forks, although she knew tingles wouldn't want a piece. still, common courtesy right? tingles eyed the cake with a mix of amazement and jealousy; it was a huge piece which looked absolutely delicious. sugar sat the cake down on the table and took a seat herself.

"i can't believe you can eat that without getting sick.. or fat!", tingles said.

sugar smiled at her best friend and took a big bite of the cake. tingles just shook her head.

"you want some?", sugar asked.

"no..! you're only asking me that because you know i'd say no!", tingles laughed. sugar smiled through a mouthful of cake. they were at a Secret Recipe cafe somewhere in KL. their class finished about an hour ago, and with plenty of time to spare and no work to do, the both of them decided to go window shopping.. and maybe gossip.

the girls talked about everything: shoes, celebrities, tv shows, food.. and of course boys. tingles had a crush on one of their classmates, a tall guy called redfoot because he wore red shoes everywhere he went although it clashed with everything else he had on. but, the girls supposed, guys don't really care about how their apparels match. tingles gabbed and yabbed about how cute redfoot is, and how cool it is that he simply didn't give a darn about what people say about his shoes. sugar listened with all the attentiveness and interest of a best friend who cared about her best friends. she didn't ignore her cake though.

"so are you gonna ask him out..?", sugar said as she finished her cake and wiped her mouth with a serviette.

tingles grimaced. "do you think i should?"

sugar shrugged her shoulders and rolled her eyes. "why not?"

tingles bit her lower lip, as if deep in thought. then she leaned on the table and said, "what if that's like, being way to obvious that i like him?"

sugar looked at her friend, who had dark brown eyes and wavy locks of black hair.

"then", sugar said. "takpe lah. memang you like him, duh."

"i knowww.. but you know what i mean even if you're pretending that you don't know that you know what i mean..", tingles said.

"wha--?", sugar hung her mouth agape. then both of them broke into laughter. tingles looked behind sugar and tipped her chin in that direction.

"sugar, the counter-guy is eyeballing you.."

sugar squinted, her glasses falling down on her nose a bit. eeew, she motioned. the counter guy was an obvious mat rempit who looked... well, not to be mean, but he looked like he got the bad end of a beating with the ugly stick... probably after falling off the ugly tree. the rempit-ness of him made it worse. tingles smiled as sugar made a sick face.

"he can eye-ball me all he wants. i'm not interested..~", sugar said.

tingles was quiet for awhile and stared at sugar. the quiet suddenly seemed a bit too long.

"what?", sugar asked, smiling. "is the counter guy doing something?"

"i just realized", tingles said, "that we're here talking and maybe shopping later on.."

"so?"

"where's arrows?"

the question hit sugar hard. she knew why tingles asked though. normally she'd be with arrows after classes ended. they'd go for coffee or a movie or something. but things were... how should she say it? a bit different lately.

this time sugar went silent. her lips tightened. she picked up her fork and began making weird patterns out of chocolate cream on her now empty plate.

"hello..?", tingles urged, but gently. sugar sighed, and put down her fork. she rested her back on the chair.

"i don't know..", sugar said. tingles looked puzzled.

"you don't know where arrows is, or 'you don't know'"?

"i mean, 'i don't know'.."

tingles raised her eyebrows. she shifted her seat closer to the table.

"babe, what's wrong?", she asked sugar.

"again, i don't know.. or maybe i do, but i just don't wanna admit it..", sugar answered. they were both quiet for awhile.

"you know.. come to think of it, i haven't seen you guys hanging around together that much, these past few weeks or months or so..", tingles finally said.

sugar rolled her eyes and made a shooting gesture with her hands. got that right, she thought. she hasn't been spending much time with arrows recently. they talk on the phone, and they IM each other on a somewhat regular basis. but something was missing. or maybe everything was? she thought.

"babe, you've guys been together for almost half a year now right? what's going on?", tingles said. "are you guys still steady or what..?"

"we're..." sugar said, but paused. we're what? she thought. she gathered her thoughts. finally she came up with this to say:

"you know.. when i first got together with arrows, everyone was saying 'whoaa there goes the couple of the year' blah blah, so it was kinda exciting. i mean, he really was the hottest guy in college, and i did kinda like have a small crush on him.. i mean, look at him: handsome, popular, smart, athletic.. the archetypical hottie, you know?"

tingles nodded.

"so it was flattering, and sweet, when he came to me and asked for my hand to be his girlfriend. me, Evie Nadia, who ate too much and always had something to say about something. he could have had any girl he wanted, but he chose me. so i was crazy excited and said yesss!

'it was almost fairy-tale like in the beginning. he treated me like a princess, and i guess i could say i was happy. yeaa, i was. i took pictures of him, i took pictures with him and put it on myspace and friendster and all that. i was almost bragging about how the college IT boy chose me.... but now.. now..."

sugar's voice faltered. it was tingles who finished for her.

"now you realize that you didn't be with him out of love, even if you were happy.. and realizing that made you realize that..", tingles let the sentence hang.

sugar nodded gently and pushed her glasses up her nose. she blew a strand of hair that fell on her face.

"i realized that i didn't love him..." sugar said. "and i don't love him.."

------------------------------------

the girls ended up not going anywhere else that day. they just sat there and talked. sugar told tingles everything about her and arrows, and how they were kinda falling apart. maybe they really didn't suit each other after all, sugar said. tingles agreed. but tingles also suspected another truth. and she wanted to know before the day was over. sugar hasn't mentioned anything to her since that sudden question when she had come to pick her up to go jalan-jalan, but tingles knew it was on sugar's mind. so she thought she ought to ask about it.

"are you thinking about wiseguy?", tingles asked out of a sudden.

sugar went quiet. her cheeks flushed red. tingles eyes widened and she smiled excitedly.

"oh you are??"

sugar smiled meekly, picked up her fork and made stabbing gestures at tingles. but she suddenly felt relieved.

"tingles.. remember that day in the cafe? that 'prank'?", sugar said. "i think he meant it"

"maybe. i remember him asking me to buzz off for awhile, ehehe. but if it was a prank, only he could pull off something like that. you gave him the name 'wiseguy' for a reason..", tingles said.

sugar nodded. "there was something i saw in his eyes when all of us left that day that made me suspect.."

"are you sure?"

sugar sighed. "have you noticed.. ever since that day he's been rather quiet with me? we still joke around or verbally spar, but there's something.. missing.."

tingles nodded. "he hasn't been around much has he?"

"yeah..", sugar said. "and i miss him.."

tingles smiled at her best friend. so that was it. sugar misses wiseguy. tingles wondered, if wiseguy was indeed actually in love with sugar, if he was missing sugar as well. suddenly tingles' heart reached out to wiseguy. what sugar was saying was totally feasible. tingles thought of wiseguy; laid-back, funny.. he's cool. and now, thinking of it, tingles also realized how quieter than usual he's been around them.. and especially around sugar. before, they used to argue and take playful shots at each other constantly. but not recently.

"if it makes you feel any better..", tingles said, "i think.. yeah, i think he is in love with you.."

"thanks", sugar smiled. then she told tingles about how she had looked at wiseguy's flickR page and saw those potraits of her. that night, she had paced her room to and fro. she kept going back to his flickR page, and had kept attempting to call him only to end the calls before they got through. she had finally fallen asleep at her desk, her browser still on wiseguy's flickR page. by that time she had quit her pacing... but he had lingered in her mind.

"do you really miss him, babe?", tingles asked gently.

"i do." sugar answered, softly but with confidence. tingles felt proud all of a sudden. an odd feeling, but also oddly a right feeling. tingles knew what to ask next.

"are you falling in love with him..?"

sugar looked at tingles. but her mind was elsewhere; her mind was on wiseguy. scruffy wiseguy whose hair always looked as if he had just gotten up from a nap; wiseguy who carries some sort of photo-taking device with him wherever he went. she thought of how, despite their playful banter and sparring, he was always nice to her and sweet to her. how he has never said a bad thing about her, or to her. and recently, how he steals glances at her when he thinks she doesn't know.. and how, somehow, in the back of her own mind, she imagines that a pained sigh always accompanies those stolen glances. she thought of wiseguy. the way he smiled. talked. the way he had taken those portraits of her and made her look beautiful. why was that? but the answer came straight away: because she is beautiful to him.

"oi makcik... i asked you a question", tingles said, snapping her back to the present. "are you falling in love with wiseguy..?"

sugar took a deep breath. tingles raised her eyebrows, waiting for an answer.

"i won't say...", sugar said. tingles looked somewhat disappointed. but then sugar smiled and blushed and said:

"..it out loud to anyone other than you, yet. i think i am. i just can't stop thinking about wiseguy.."

--

3 comments:

azalia said...

yeay! :)

wani ezryl * said...

wiseguy's dream is nearly come true! :D

jas said...

awwwwww ;)