Look at Me
Every day was the same as the one before. That day, I took the bus and began to play a simple game.
I make my way down surveying the passengers, and the first girl to notice me and I find interesting… I would seat myself beside her. If she turns or glances at me more than once, it's my win. At first, I only did it to kill time during the ride, but it was more interesting than I had expected. Waking up someone from a doze…being able to distract someone from their book. Even though it was just a simple 'game' played on the bus.
Today wasn't going to be any different besides the continuous wet weather.
Oliver took a quick glance at all the passengers on board before continuing to stand near the exit.
All of them, I've already played with.
Then the bus arrives at the next stop.
Hmm… is there any new potential player? … A high school girl. That's rare at this timing. Also, she didn't even glance at me as she walked pass. Not bad, although you aren't my type, I'll make an exception for you.
The girl had short brown hair with hazelnut eyes. She was at least 15 cm shorter than him and she had her muffler on. She took a seat at the very back row corner seat on the right side of the bus and following her, Naru took the seat beside her.
I wonder how long it will take. Heh.
Naru sat still, expressionless, as usual while the girl continued staring out of the window, expressionless as well. After five minutes, Oliver took a peek from the corner of his eyes and saw that the girl was staring blanking at the window. Maintaining his composure, Oliver didn't do anything besides glancing once in a while.
…Even till the end, she ignored me!
Arriving at his work place, Oliver stared angrily at his computer and began thinking of the incident with the high school girl –who ignored him.
How is it possible? It's only natural that when a handsome man like myself sits beside a girl, the girl would at least glance. … She's not getting away.
The next day, the high school girl took a seat at the same spot and so did Oliver. This time, Oliver had the confidence he will win.
One bus stop into the game and Oliver was losing.
I get it, she must be too shy to look at me! Maybe I should pretend to not notice her…
Naru took out a book from his suitcase and began to 'read'. This continued on till Naru's stop. As though God was watching him, it began to rain once again.
The weather describes my feelings.
So Oliver tried to catch the girl's attention for the next few days but, as expected, he loses every single time.
…How dare she ignore me! Not once, not twice but almost more than I can count! … Heh, time to take it to the next level. She will NOT step on my pride!
As per usual, Oliver took the bus and waited till she appeared before going to sit beside her. Once seated, Oliver took out a pen from his pocket and 'accidentally' dropped it and it rolled to the girl's feet.
It's going to be MY win!
With a tone he uses only when doing business, Oliver (forced) smiled and said to the girl, "Do you mind passing me back my pen which is by your feet?"
The girl sat motionless. At first, Oliver thought she didn't hear what he had said and was about to repeat himself when she began to move. Her leg that is. The girl simply pushed the pen to him with her foot without even batting an eyelid.
She kicked my pride!
Getting off the bus with a dark aura enveloping him, Oliver thought to himself.
..fine. She's just a kid anyways. She doesn't understand my charms. No use brooding over it.
The day after, the weather changed for the better. It no longer drizzled like it had been for the past week. Naru stood in line, waiting for the bus with a mask and hat on. The mask is because he had a light fever but insist on going to work which no one can stop him. The hat was because he had uncharacteristically woke up late so his bedhead had yet to settle down.
Getting on the bus, Oliver took a seat opposite of where the high school always sat. Despite telling himself all over and over that he got over losing at his own 'game', Oliver was anticipating for the girl to appear. However, that day, she didn't appear.
Was it because it seemed as though I was harassing her? … I guess I was. Sitting next to the same person, a stranger at that, for many days in a row…
Oliver absentmindedly began looking out the window. Then he saw a familiar figure. It was her. She was riding a bicycle.
She must have been taking the bus since it kept raining. Today's weather is great, so she can ride the bicycle or even walk to school. … I lost, at my own 'game'.
Entering the company, a tall build man with black hair greeted him. He seemed to be older than Oliver. Oliver gave a simple nod in acknowledgement before he enters his office. Two hours later, Oliver began to sigh. Whether in boredom or disappointment, he didn't know. Just then, the same tall man stepped into his office.
"Are you alright, Sir?"
Oliver sigh again, "Of course I am."
The man kept silent for a while, as though hesitating, "You seem pretty out of it, Sir. … for the past few days you've been smiling to yourself just like before. Did anything happen?"
It took a while before Oliver replied, "nothing."
That's right. Nothing. Nothing happened. I merely forgot about how monotonous my life was.
The tall older man did not say anything further and gave Oliver the papers he had wanted before walking out of the office, leaving Oliver to sigh in frustration.
The next morning, Oliver walked to the bus stop and got on the bus just as he had always did. He took the same seat he had taken previously.
Just one last time…
Without thinking, Oliver began looking at the window and just as he had realised something, he saw the high school girl standing outside. Their eyes made contact with each other. Oliver visibly stiffened. The girl went and entered the bus and then nonchalantly took a seat beside him.
Oliver continued staring at the window intently.
Could it be, that she was always looking at my reflection?
The thing Oliver had realised was that when he stares at the window from a certain angle, he could see his own reflection. With the girl sitting beside him, he could see both of them in the reflection. The girl then smirked at him through the reflection. Oliver grits his teeth in embarrassment.
"Since when…" Oliver asked while trying keep himself composed.
The girl smiled widely like a little girl, "From when… you were picking out who to target."
Naru sighed a little, "Then the bicycle? Weren't you riding to school yesterday?"
"Oh, you saw which means that you were on the bus..," the girl comment disappointedly.
Her expression took a change and she began smiling sheepishly, "Truth is, I have always been riding my bicycle to school and back. I only take the bus…when you are on it."
Oliver could feel his cheeks heating up and it didn't help that she kept leaning closer to him.
"Ne, look at me."
"Did Mai already know about Naru before the bus incident? It seems kind of weird if she doesn't."
Mai: Hm… he once sat beside my best friend and she kept going on and on about how handsome he was. So I decided to see if it was true. Since he so happens to take the bus which goes towards my school, it was a bonus.
"Then why did you continue taking the bus even after that. Naru thought it was because of the continuous rainy days."
Mai:*laughs* Because.. it is funny and interesting! A grown man like him was desperately looking for attention. *laughs more*
Naru: I was trying to brighten up my monotonous days.
Mai: *eyes Naru suspiciously* yea right. It is your own expression that looks monotonous and makes everything boring. Smile more! *tries to make Naru smile*
Naru: *brushes Mai away* …so who was the first to fall?
"Err… if we are talking about liking… most probably Mai—"
Mai: WHAT! Stop fuelling his narcissistic nature!
Naru: *smirks* Admit it, Mai. I AM handsome.
Mai: Exactly what IS Naru's job?
"He is the boss of a company."
Mai: …what! Then why has he been taking the bus?
Naru: as I've said before, it was to brighten my mono—
Lin: His car actually broke down once so he had to take the bus since he only had change on him. However, he got addicted to playing that 'game' on the bus. Also, adding on to the fact that you were—
Mai: ouh… ?