Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Angel on the Wall.

It had been three long, supremely antagonizing days since his first official date with Sophie. Zarul was torn. He was stretched from every angle there was in his life. If this suddenly hectic lifestyle was not going to cease very soon, he was sure he would need to start using anti-ageing products.

A group of topless men walked into the scene as Zarul was wandering about what anti-ageing product would be good for him, staring hopelessly at the blank wall until the topless men started to get a giant frame of art on it.

“Wait up! This wasn’t what I asked for,” he called out, calling a halt to his silent comparison between Lab Series and Kiehl’s.

All of the topless men started to groan and sigh. Clear resentment for their boss was shown all over their face and-their bodies. This was the millionth time that Zarul had claimed that there were mix-ups in the decoration that he had ordered for the restaurant.

The Palace was Tan Sri Zainudin’s latest investment for Zarul’s future. It was supposed to be a sophisticated restaurant serving gourmet food, prepared specifically according to the customers’ request. The food at The Palace was supposed to be like couture, without all the fabrics involved. 

Before he was dumped by Tasya, Zarul had never had any interest in the projects or businesses his father had given him to handle. He would do as what he was told and nothing else. No extra effort, no interest and most definitely, no passion to push him to he limit but being with Amy had compelled him to look at things from a different standpoint. It was the standpoint of a man who is planning for the time ahead. Being Mr. Amy had bent him into a very single-minded and determined, even somehow fanatical at times when it comes to work.

Now that his heart was constantly aching on and on about Sophie, he was starting to fall off track. He cannot even decide on the wall arts, let alone sign on the final decision for the menu. He could smell Sophie’s scent every single time he took in a deep breath. It was bugging him but in a good kind of way. It did distract him at work but it sure as hell had helped release his happy hormones.

He took in a deep breath, taking in Sophie’s scent in his mind. It was something like musk, vanilla and chocolate mixed up together. The scent of an angel.

Zarul’s face suddenly lit up. His eyes were all suddenly rounded. “Put the painting up,” he said, smiling at the painting of a woman with feathery wings. An angel like Sophie.

The group of topless men rejoiced. They quickly started to get the painting up the wall before Zarul change his mind again.

Zarul’s Iphone vibrated in his hands. He glided his fingers on it.

From: Sophie 013
I think I miss you.

He quickly called Sophie’s number, hoping hard that she would pick up in an instant. She didn’t let him down. She never did.

“I think I miss you too,” he said as Sophie answered.

Monday, November 28, 2011

The Devil Wears Pajamas.

Sophie sat down on her office chair; a wide, happy smile was plastered across her face. Last week she thought she was about to lose her sanity. Poor was never in her dictionary. As far as she was concerned, she didn’t even know what being broke meant. Just because her parents had lost all their money, it didn’t mean that she was going to compromise on her fashion sense and passion for gourmet delectable.

Yes, her trust fund was all dried out. Her car fund could not even get her a bicycle and it turned out a few weeks ago that her college fund had vanished years before she enrolled into college. She was all pumped up and excited to check on her exam results online when she found out that she could not login to her college website since that her parents had never paid for her tuition fees.

Now she was a college drop-out, eager to start on her new job at the gas station near to her house. She was lucky that nobody in her housing area knew who she was since that she was too snobby before to make friends with anyone around. Nobody was going to know that she was that poor-college-drop-out whose parents had gone entirely bankrupt.

Her job was supposed to be simple. All she had to do was make sure that mart was constantly well stocked, key in some numbers into the computer and do some simple accounts. Well, at least that was what she had thought.

“Hi, you’re  Sony, right?” asked a guy in a black fitted t-shirt and checkered boxers who came out of no where. His hair was long, jet black and everywhere. On his head, his forehead, in his eyes. The guy was a mess and he was calling her Sony.

Sophie simply bored her eyes into his, wondering who he was. She was in such shock, she couldn’t even shake her head no.

“Nice to meet you too. I’m Zarul and I own this place,” mr-just-rolled-out-of-bed introduced himself.

“I’m Sophie and I work here,” Sophie answered curtly.

Zarul almost laughed but his jaw was too tight and sore from all the shouting he had to do last night with his ex-girlfriend. They had broken up for two weeks and yet they were still arguing all the time. With or without her, his life was still a big hell of a fiasco.

“Sony, Sophie, whatever,” he murmured to himself, as he played with phone, trying to look for his to-do list. “I’m going to need you to…increase the variety of our soft drinks. Order something new. Make a reservation for two at The Westin for tonight at eight and I’m going to need a grande skinny latte with cinnamon. I’ll be back by eleven and I expect the coffee to be here and hot.”

“Where am I supposed to get the coffee?”

Zarul cocked up an eyebrow in disbelieve. What kind of question was that? Why on earth did his sister hire this alien from Mars to be his assistant? “Is that supposed to be a joke? Have you ever heard of San Francissco? Starbucks?”

Now Sophie’s blood was starting to boil up. Yes, she was broke but no, she was not stupid. She wasn’t raised on a different planet and that look on Zarul’s face, telling her that he thought that she was some kind of out-of-place freakshow was starting to mess with her temper.

“Of course I know about those places. The problem is that there is none of them around here. None of them in a walking distance, Mr. Zarul.”

“Drive then.”

“I can’t drive.”

“How did you get here then?”

“I walked.”

“Well then, you can go on foot, get a bus, call a cab. I don’t care. I just want my coffee by eleven,” Zarul said, placing RM20 on Sophie’s working desk before he walked out of the miniscule cupboard. The place was too small, he wouldn’t even call it an office.

Sophie gathered her will and strength. She forced herself to stay on the blue spinning chair instead of racing towards her boss from hell and throttle him to death. Taking in a deep breath, she tried her best to find a loophole in his orders.

The nearest coffee shop was a Starbucks at the mall. She didn’t know how to take the bus, didn’t have a car to drive and she sure as hell was not going to spend her last savings on a cab fare. She thought hard and long until she remembered of her brother and quickly picked up the phone receiver.

“Dean, wake up!” she yelled to her brother.

“What do you want from me?”

“I need a grande sized caramel latte, with cinnamon.”

 “Miss Sophie, I’m sorry but I don’t think we can afford anymore Starbucks.”

“It’s not for me. It’s for the devil-wears-pajamas. He wants it by eleven, by hook or by crook.”

“Devil wears what? Who?” Dean asked, alarmed and suddenly fully awake.

“It’s my boss. He’s like a male version of the Devil Wears Prada, only his case, he wears pajamas to work,” Sophie had to explain in detail.

Dean let out a small sigh. “I though you’re working at a gas station? I didn’t know you’re at a fashion magazine.”

“I am working at a gas station. Now, would you help me or not? He left me RM20 for the coffee and I know that barista you flirt with always gives you staff price. You’re going to go home with RM10 for this, Dean.”

There was a big yawn at the end of the line before Dean agreed with Sophie. 

She ended the call happily, glad to get her first task over with. Also glad that she didn’t tell Dean to order the latte with low fat milk as requested by Zarul. She was sure that he wouldn’t notice the difference and she was more than excited to see her boss gain a few extra pounds.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Sweet Talk and Cream Puffs.

He hit the snooze button on his fancy, talking, Japanese alarm clock again. Turning around in his bed, struggling not to pick up his IPhone 4S and punched the delicate numbers on his vast expanse of screen. His mind was flooded with images of the girl he went out with last night and he is desperate to hear her voice.

But calling her so early in the morning would be a falling-in-love act, wouldn't it?

He knew exactly how she would sound if she was to answer his call that morning. Her voice had always sound so velvety in the morning. Velvety and creamy like cream puffs. Her tone would be so mesmerizing he would quickly fall back into a deep sleep just to dream about her.

There was suddenly a loud set of knocks on his door. "Hey, you are supposed to go to Seremban today! Wake the hell up!"

Zarul did not bother to answer his brother.

"I know dreaming about Sophie is much more fun than to drive all the way to Seremban but Abah would kill you for that!" Zaquan continued in the most annoying sing-song tone he could.

Go out with her and come back home the next morning without a smile as if she means nothing to you. Prove to me it is just about the physical connection.

Zaquan's words yesterday popped up in his mind.

One of the things he hate about being a man is most definitely the giant-sized ego he had to carry. Being one of the three pampered heirs of Tan Sri Zainuddin surely had never helped him to tone down his ego.

He had unwillingly called Sophie and asked her to the movies just to prove to his personal-space-intruder of a brother that he was not falling for the girl whom he had bullied for almost a year and a half. He was supposed to date and get the girl into bed and launch off to work the next morning. He needed to treat her like a one night stand in order to prove to Zaquan that he was not falling for Sophie.

Oh boy, didn't he miserably fail the challenge? And now he couldn't bring himself out of bed, let alone to face the smirk on Zaquan's face.

"I'm already up, Zaquan. Now you can go be a mom somewhere else!" He shouted back at his brother just to get rid of him.

"Open up the door!"

"Get lost! I'll see you downstairs!"

"Open your eyes, get off the bed and open up the door!"

Zarul jumped off his bed angrily, swearing under his breath. If he wasn't so distracted with the constant ringing of Sophie's voice in his ears he might have enough will to strangle Zaquan. He yanked his door open as he continued to swear.

"Wow! You're really awake!" Zaquan said in a high-pitched voice, all impressed with his brother. He invited himself into the room and launched himself on the bed. "It is 8.30 am," he continued as he threw a glance at the Japanese digital, voice-recognizing clock. "You would never get off bed before nine. Couldn't sleep last night, is it? Did my little brother wet himself in bed? "

"I haven't slept yet. I just came home," Zarul lied with a plain face. Zaquan better believed him or he would be his Zaquan's laughing stock for eternity.

"Did you sleep with Sophie?"

Zarul nodded his head casually, trying with every ounce of will not to smile at the thought of spending the whole entire night with pretty Sophie. If only he was strong enough last night, he knew he could have sweet-talked Sophie into bed but he could not do it. He just could not find the right words when he was Sophie. All his years of sweet-talking could not help him when it comes to Sophie. It was like when it was with Tasya all over again.

Oh, man!

He was just so nervous last night he had to sprint off his Audi A8 to Sophie's house right after the movie. There was no time for pitstops or he would have to force himself on her without going through the sweet-talking process first hand.

"What did you say to her?" Zaquan asked.

"You know, just the usual. You're so hot, you turn me on, random stuffs. Why do you care?"

"I just didn't think she would be so easy. You've been bullying her since her first day at the store. How could she possibly fall for your words that easily."

"The girl likes a man with power. Can you blame her for being normal?"

"You didn't do it, did you? You drove her home then crashed at Amy's didn't you?"

Zarul felt a frown line on his forehead but he was not going to break a sweat. He was not going to let his brother win this. "I'm just a guy and she's just a girl. I love a good game and she loves good company. That is the end of story. Get the hell out of my room!"

He felt as if his head was going to fall out of its place. All those talk about Sophie was driving him almost psychotic. As soon as Zaquan left his room, he quickly dialed for Sophie.

It was not long before there was an answer at the end of the line. The creamy voice murmured so softly to his ears before letting out a big yawn. "What time is it, Zarul?"

"Don't you have any classes?"

"I told you, my class starts at two, today. That is why we went out last night," Sophie answered so softly, almost singing. She couldn't help but to be all mushy.

"Okay then. You can go back to sleep. Sweet dreams," Zarul answered and got off the line.

He was about to kill himself for calling her. For asking her such a stupid question but first of all he had to take a shower and at least try to rinse off all the things Sophie-related in his mind. He needed to go to Seremban and check on his father's latest project. He needed to concentrate. He needed to not think about Sophie.

His phone rang and he hoped so badly that it was Sophie but he let out a slow sigh as he read the Caller ID. It was Amy, the exact good solid reason why she needed to stop thinking about Sophie. "Good morning, angel. How did you sleep last night?"

"You sound awake. That's a good surprise," Amy replied softly. She was always so soft but never as creamy as Sophie.

Under a Pile of Rocks.

It was harder for her to breathe. Having asthma didn't help with her severe case of nervousness. She was breathing like she was lying under a big pile of rock.

He turned his head slowly to check on her. He was so eager to lay his eyes upon her face yet so scared to see her out of breath. Was the girl beside her dying? He spread out a slow smile as her face glowed in his eyes, glad to see the girl happily watching the movie even though she was obviously striving hard to get oxygen into her lungs.

"Are you okay?" he asked her calmly, wanting so bad to cuddle her, help her to breathe evenly.

"Why wouldn't I?" she shot back dismissively. 

"Just checking." He returned his eyes back to screen unwillingly. This was the first time he had ever seen her skin under such dim lighting. It was glowing like porcelain, so smooth like silk. He struggled not to stroke her cheeks.

Of course there was nothing more that he would rather want than to lay his hands on those peach-like cheeks but wasn't the act of cheek stroking special for lovebirds only? They were not in love so that would not be the right thing to do.

They were not in love. They were in lust and that was it, he tried to reassure himself.

Maybe I'm simply too much of a gentleman to not have the tendency to be kind and loving towards her. There is no way I could be falling in love. 

Sophie placed the bucket of popcorn under her seat and dug out her Topshop tote for a packet of Kleenex. She slowly wiped of the caramel off her fingers, trying to figure out what to do next. She had already managed to force herself through a large bucket of popcorn in order to blow out the awkwardness that was floating between them.

What was she supposed to do next? What else can she do now that her stomach is all blown up with popcorn? Should she lay her head on his chest? Or was that too slutty for a first date? Should she wait for him to make the first move instead?

But he is too damn slow!

She had to calculate her acts carefully in order to not appear as if she was falling in love like a high school girl and she sure as hell did not want to appear slutty either. It was starting to get on her nerves, the fact that she had to plan out her movements and gestures around him. She did not have to think of anything when she is around her boyfriend. Everything just flowed naturally and that is her favourite part about being beside her boyfriend. That is why he is her true soul mate.

Being around Zarul was so restrictive. She was literally suffocating just from sitting beside him and ironically, that was her favourite part about being with him. The breathlessness, the tense she had not felt since God knows when.

Sophie missed the feeling of falling in love.

Angry at her own thoughts, she threw the crumpled tissue in her hand into the empty bucket under her seat. How could she possibly fall in love with Zarul if she had already imprinted on her boyfriend. They imprinted on each other like werewolves. They had been through so much hell and nothing had torn them apart. They were inseparable. Their bond was invincible.

Her breathing was totally out of tune, Zarul was starting to lose his breath himself. He reached out for her hand, hoping that would help her calm down. Help her breathe like a normal homosapien.

That was the first time they had properly touched each other, exchanged body heat. She was overwhelmed with sudden rush of lust. Her thoughts of falling in love was rapidly swept away with her passion to climb over him.

Oh yeah,baby. This is most definitely not falling in love.