The blueberry cheesecake tastes like heaven! I moan appreciatively as I eat my favorite cake with exquisite slowness, my parents laughing silently from the plain pleasure on my face. Seeing them laugh like that makes me want to cry once more so I try hard to concentrate on my treat, absorbing each perfect sweetness with a bit of diminished sourness from some of the additional jam.
“Mom, can we take out a box of this? Gosh, this is heaven!” I tell them as I spoon another bite in my mouth and they laugh once more at me.
Walking out of the store, I was busy peeping at the boxed cheesecake when I suddenly bumped on someone.
“Ow,” I said, tripping over my foot from the collision.
“Darling, are you okay?” Dad asks me, looking anxiously at me as he hold out his hand for me to hold on to and I only half shook my head for an answer. I look at the person who bumped into me and I was suddenly captivated by two piercing blue eyes.
“I’m sorry, sir. I’m sorry, miss,” he says, his eyes locking with mine for a brief moment before he departs to his way.
I looked at him absently, locked into that strange feeling that I have met him when dad nudged me softly, him looking concernedly at me. “I-I’m fine, dad,” I answer, shaking my head and then we start walking towards the car once more.
What’s that? I ask myself as I sit down at the back of the car, wondering what took hold of me when I looked at that young man’s eyes. Huh. Strange… Silly Sidney. It will pass. I talk to myself throughout the ride and when we finally get home, I am quite sure I am past the captivity as I start towards the living room, decided to spend the rest of the day lounging in front of the television. Somehow, as I stare blankly at the idiot box, I am beginning to see once more the blue that have captivated me moments ago and I shake my head to clear it of his face. What’s wrong with me? Don’t tell me getting close to death makes one feel as if… Ugh! These hormones need to behave! What’s with seeing a handsome guy in a random day? But somehow, inside me, I feel as if I have known that guy before that’s why he’s embedded in my memory. Huh. I must be making stuff in my head now too.
Hearing the knock at the door, I wake up from my nap, my head aching terribly as the drowsiness pass me. I must have fallen asleep while watching when I hear a guy’s voice talk at our front door. His voice sounds like the whispering of a gentleman from the 16th Century, the cadence somewhat reminding me of the Irish’s way of talking. I strain my ears hard enough to listen to that perfect voice when mom suddenly walks in at me, her eyes quirking up upon seeing me.
“Honey, are you welcoming any visitors?” she asks, her eyes glinting playfully.
“Uh… Yes?” I answered, curious about the stranger and about the glint in my mother’s eyes.
A tall guy with bronze blonde hair walks in, his eyes crinkling at the corners from multiple laugh lines as he smile at me. He was followed by the guy I bumped to earlier, and he was smiling in a way that will make any girl melt for him.
When they walk in and stand in front of me, it requires my whole strength not to expire on the spot immediately. What’s wrong with me? Get a grip with yourself Sidney!
I look at my mom questioningly and she introduces the bronze blonde guy.
“Honey, don’t you remember Henry?” she says by way of introduction and I can only stare questioningly at her. How rude of my mom to just introduce the one person, I said inside my head, although I know it’s because I’m curious about the brown haired guy next to Henry.
“Uh… No?” I answer after a moment and they both laughed. What? What did I do?
“Um… It’s okay Mrs. Sparks. I can introduce myself now…” he said, his voice sounding kind. I looked at the other guy standing next to him as he stands shyly in front of me. With my mom leaving, “mysterious guy” takes the initiative to sit on the couch facing me, smiling peevishly at me as I looked blankly at him, completely ignoring Henry who was talking about something I could not understand.
Clearing my head, I forced myself to look at Henry who has suddenly gathered the initiative to sit at the other couch beside me. Smiling contritely at him, I let him continue what he was talking about, forcing myself to look and listen at him as I try to fight the urge to look at the eyes that are boring into the side of my face.
“I’m sorry Sidney. I must have come at a wrong time. I’ll just visit you again next time. Rest well, honey,” he said, walking over at me and then stooping down to place a soft kiss on my cheeks. I blushed from the endearment and the act, saying sorry too as he walks out, leaving the mysterious guy and me alone.
Facing him, he laughs a little when I try to sit straighter in my chair, making me blush, and then he looked at me. Oh, those eyes… What it does to me… I can feel my heart quickening, and remembering Dr. Curtis’ words, I force myself to escape from his hypnotic gaze, pulling my eyes away from his’. When my heart have calmed down, I ask him who he is and then he smiled.
“I guess you don’t remember me anymore, huh, Sid?” he started, and I have to control myself from getting too absorbed in his melodious voice.
“I’m Adrian. Adrian Springfield.” I look at him immediately, his last name obviously hitting a memory in my head.
“My God, Adrian! Is it you?” I ask, for once not captivated by his awesome physical look as he smiles brightly at me.
“The only one,” he says by way of answer and I laugh freely.
“My gosh! You’ve changed a lot! How are you? Why are you here?” I bombard him with questions and he raised his hands, seeming to stop the stream of questions I was flinging right then.
“First, I am fine, thank you,” he winked. “I am here with the whole family and we’re living here again,” he smiled and I was momentarily caught in his spell once more.
There was a small period of silence when he asks me the inevitable question back.
“So how are you?” he asks and I flinched at the thought that I will have to lie to him. Forcing a huge smile in my face, I answered I am fine with all the energy I could muster and that seem to have tip something to him. He looks at me with a deep, penetrating gaze and I begin to grow awkward in his stare. After a moment, he smiled and then he pushed the conversation into safer topics.
I have totally no idea what time it is when he says he has to go; time seem to have escaped when we were catching up with each other that I am taken aback when I see that the sky is already so dark outside.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t know it’s already so dark,” I say by way of explanation and he only shakes his head.
“It’s okay. I missed you, and I’m glad we are able to play catch up,” he smiles, and I smile back at him. “Can I come back tomorrow?” he asks and I said yes giddily. Yes, he’ll be back, I thought absently, already excited for when he’ll come by again tomorrow.
At dinner, I blabber endlessly about him and Henry and the things we talk about that my parents start looking at each other mysteriously. After noticing how many times they exchanged look, I ask them the obvious and they smile mysteriously.
“What?” I ask once more and my mom smiled indulgently.
“Do you like him?” she asks by way of answer, and I grow red to the roots of my hair, his “him” immediately translated to Adrian.
“Yes… as a friend. Why?”
“Nothing, honey. If you like him, we’re happy for you. He’s a good kid, as far as we can tell,” she says, shrugging, her smile never disappearing.
“Oh, mom…” I half-whined in exasperation, half-whined in happiness. “He’s only a childhood friend,” I added.
“We’re just saying,” she says, shrugging.
Between the time I went to bed and the time I spent trying to sleep, Adrian is all I can think of and by the time that sleep has finally settled on me, he is all that I dreamed about.
I wake up with a pounding headache; my head almost feel like it’s going to rip open any moment when my mom rushes inside the room. She’s talking, probably asking what it is that hurts me, but all I can hear is a loud screaming. Dad came rushing next and I am partially aware of his cool hands cradling my head as he position me, my head making use of his legs as pillows. Inserting my medicine on my mouth, he tips my head to let me swallow it with water and I moan in his arms. After a moment, the medicine takes effect, dulling the pain in my head until I can at last ignore it and then I drifted off to sleep.
“Hey! How are you?” he asks as he strolls towards me, his brown curls slightly moving from his jumpy steps. He sits so close to me to look at what I am doing that I am tempted to tease him, hiding my drawing away from him.
“Oh, come on Sid! Show me if you have actually improved your talent already!” he teases me back and I playfully slap my drawing notebook at him. Showing my sketch of the boulevard I am facing, he looks at it with a smile on his face and I look at him freely, observing his features. I am lost to his beauty when he suddenly looks at me and I am forced to remove my eyes from his, feigning as if my eyes were just passing his face the moment he looked at me. When I look back at him, he’s carefully studying my face and I feel the blush creep at my face. Controlling my beating heart, I fumble mindlessly with my skirt’s loose thread and he places his hand on top of mine. Looking at him, I saw his perfect lopsided grin and then he pulls me to my feet.
“Mrs. Sparks! We’re going to the park!” he shouted inside our house to mom and I hear mom’s voice say something I couldn't quite catch as we run off towards the park at the next block.
I seem to have grown much weaker since the last two weeks that a short run already makes me gasp for air. Sitting down at the swing, I breathed deeply for a moment before I look at whatever he’s doing.
“Do you know that every day for five months, after the time we’re separated, I kept filling our jar with daisies?” he started, picking a daisy and absently rolling its stem. I look at his face, the sun shining brightly at his impossible beauty. “It’s lucky of me to have found a park with lots of daisies there, you know. And I was determined to fill our jar with flowers then,” he added, looking at me with something shining at his eyes. “When I filled the jar, I was so happy, you know? Like something inside me has been filled,” he added, moving close to me. I looked at him freely, concentrating on his every move, every word, as he stands in front of me.
“I liked you then, you know,” he said, looking into my eyes, and the past tense made something clench inside me. I can’t imagine that a simple past tense can make my heart ache. I acted as if I am suddenly interested with the butterflies fluttering around the flowers, trying to divert the pain inside my chest. No strong emotions, Sid. You have to be careful.
And then he holds my face, placing his palm gently to cradle my cheeks. My heart started going haywire and I have to shut my eyes, blocking away everything as I try to control my breathing. Catching a stray hair away from my face, he tucks it away behind my ear. Then holding my chin and tilting it lightly to make my eyes meet with his’, he whispered, “And I still find myself liking you very much ‘till now.”