It was unusually cold the day we met. Some might say the weather aligned with the inescapable serendipity of our encounter.
That day the sun had finally hidden behind the dark dense nimbostratus clouds that released a myriad amount of tears. I like to think that they were the tears of joy I felt having to no longer spend another day with my skin battered by the sweltering California sun.
Rainy days were my favorite. Though only truly enjoyed in the comfort of my home, snuggled up under my hand-knitted quilt with a good book in hand. The soft patter of rain against the window provided the ideal amount of comfortable silence that was perfect for getting completely lost in the world of fiction.
Sadly, on the one day the skies were grey and the wind was particularly wintry, I wasn't sipping coffee from my favorite Olaf mug reading yet another heart swelling romance. Instead I was stuck at Cassie's, having my much needed everyday coffee stolen by the most impassive man I've ever met.
Cassie's was a cute little café not too far from campus that sold everything my tiny little coffee-manic heart desired. I practically run there whenever I can for my daily dose of expresso that I absolutely can not function without. The store isn't very sizable with quite little seating, but when possible I sit inside to study or proofread compositions.
Those were the exact plans I had in mind while standing in line at the infamous café readying to start my Friday morning before heading to classes. The rain hadn't hindered as much people as I'd hoped from stopping by, leaving both registers occupied.
"Good day. What can I do for you?" asked the barista.
"I'll take a large vanilla latte, oat milk light foam please."
It's what I drink every single morning without fail; whether I make it at home or buy it from here. Whether it was iced or hot was determined by the weather. Sure that amount of caffeine can't be healthy, but staying up to read my endless stream of essays would be impossible if I didn't.
"It's a little busy today so we're doing initials only. Is that okay?"
"Absolutely, A.T," I smiled.
"Alright at," joked the cashier writing my initials on my cup. "Your total is $4.36."
After paying for my drink I went and looked for an empty booth in the seating area. The chances of there being any were slim but it didn't hurt to check. Of course if there weren't any seats available, I'd just go to the library instead. Just as I made my way back to the front, my order was called.
"Large vanilla latte oat milk light foam for A.T?" yelled the barista whom quickly placed the drink on the pick up counter before moving on to the next order.
I sauntered my way up to the counter to grab my drink but mere seconds before I got my hands on the warm beverage, a tall figure in a black trench coat scooped the drink in his hands and headed straight for the door.
"Excuse me," I interrupted. "I'm sorry but that oat milk vanilla latte's mine." The stranger continued to the door as if I hadn't said a word.
"Excuse me!" I shouted a little louder walking behind the figure. Raising my voice was a rare occurrence, but I hadn't had my coffee yet and it was in the grip of some confused stranger.
The figure finally turned around and I met his tired deep brown eyes through lenses. He looked completely sleep deprived, his eyes low but it was oddly attractive. He had dark brown hair that covered his forehead, long perfect eyelashes and lips that must've been carved by Michelangelo himself.
There was an irritated but completely uninterested look on his face as he eyed me eyeing at my drink in his long bandaged fingers.
"That latte," I point. "I think you've mistakenly picked up mine."
The man blinked slowly, almost robotically at me with most stultified expression. "Vanilla latte with oat milk and light foam?" his deep monotonous voice asked reading from the cup. "Initials A.T?"
"Yes. That's me," I smiled.
"Great. So am I," deadpanned the unamused stranger before he turned on his heel and left.
Small misunderstandings as such often ended in apologies and soft smiles maybe even a bit of laughter. However it was not one of those days simply because I'm an actual monster when caffeine deprived. That and the fact that he could've been a bit nicer about it.
So, I took off behind the man in the pouring rain in clothes that weren't suitable for it that I was sure to regret later. The streets of Los Angles that were usually bustling was thankfully nearly vacant and I easily caught sight of the thief whom walked awfully slow in such uncanny weather.
"Hey!" I called out to him. "You latte lurcher!"
The man continued down the sidewalk seemingly to his parked car that was further down without acknowledging any of his surroundings. I quickly jogged up to him tapping his shoulder because grabbing his attention vocally was out of the question.
"Hi, sorry to bother you again but you were a bit snide about the drink muddle. I didn't even get a chance to apologize for the confusion."
"Oh. It's fine," shrugged the man continuing his stroll.
"An apology would be lovely," I shouted over the downpour for the third time. It was a new record.
I'd barely finished my sentence but the man had already slipped into his sleek black car and was driving away. As if he couldn't have left an even more lasting impression, he managed to splash a bit of water from the puddle I stood beside onto me.
"It wasn't even supposed to rain," I sighed looking up at the cloudy skies and then down at my soaked navy blue pants. These were my favorite too.
As if mother nature seemed to have disagreed with my statement the rain started to pelt much more violently. I was forced to run to the nearest shelter which happened to be just where I needed to be, the library.