Natalie tidied up her school uniform when suddenly the door to her room was roughly open. She turned and found Natasha standing on the doorstep. Her sister had dressed uniformly and looked at her with a sharp look. As she finished the comb, Natalie greeted Natasha.
“Wait the minute, Sha. I’ve finished.”
“Do not approach Marshal, Nat!” Regardless of Natalie’s phrase, Natasha replied curtly.
Natalie’s hand gestures stopped and looked at Natasha in surprise. “Eh?”
Unconsciously Natasha’s face was hot to see Natalie’s puzzled look. “He’s going to be a new student at our school. I know from mama and he is the same age as you. I like him, Nat. So do not go near him!” Natasha turned and ran from Natalie.
For a moment Natalie stopped listening to Natasha’s sentence. She looked at the mirror and placed her comb quietly in the dresser drawer. She sighed and grabbed her bag and walked out of her room. She almost forgot that Marshal would be a student at her school that morning when her mother had told her about it. In her mind was only the figure of the owner of the balcony opposite her room. So she was surprised at Natasha’s phrase saying the phrase.
Natalie entered the dining room and sat down opposite Natasha, who was seen busy eating her fried rice. Natalie tries to reprimand her sister, but she discards her intentions because Natasha is evasive to look at her. Finally Natalie took her fried rice after receiving a glass of milk from Tanti, her mother.
Seeing her two girls already looking ready for school shortly, Tanti sat on the desk chair and smiled sweetly. “This morning you do not go with Mr. Mamat.”
Natasha looked up from her drink. “Why?” She looked at her mother curiously.
Tanti widened her smile and looked at her two children. “This morning you will be leaving together with Aunt Wulan’s sons. It’s Marshall’s first day at his new school so Aunt Wulan wants her son with you to go to school. ”
Natasha put her glass in joy. She lifted her body and looked at her mother with enthusiasm. “Really?!”
Tanti nodded, but she heard Natalie’s murmuring voice. “Why do not you go with Mr. Mamat if Marshal is with us?”
Tents smile widened again. She stood up from her seat and responded lightly. “Because you will be together in Ali’s car. He had to leave early in the morning to do his reporter work. Hurry like I heard the sound of our fence being opened by someone.” Tanti walked out of the dining room, leaving her two children.
Hearing the name of Ali is called making Natalie unconsciously smile and finish her milk. Grabbing her bag, Natasha said quietly. “You promised not going to Marshal deck?”
Natalie looked up and quickly nodded a bright smile on Natasha’s face. The girl jumped up and grabbed her sister’s arm. “Right? Thanks, Nata! “And without waiting for Natalie, she was already running toward the porch where she heard Marshal’s conversation with her father and mother.
Natalie’s heart pounded as she appeared on the porch and saw Natasha talking to Marshal. She did not see the figure of Ali with the boy, but she just realized that he was removing his black Range Rover from his own house. The dashing black car seemed to retreat toward the gate of their house and through the glass that was deliberately lowered, Natalie could see the profile of Ali who was driving the steering wheel.
Ali lowered his sunglasses as he parked and waved at Tanti and Agus. “I’m sorry, Auntie. I cannot go down.”
Tanti shook her hand and answered aloud. “Nothing, Ali.” Then she turned and pushed Marshall’s back. “Come on. Your brother is waiting anyway not to be late. My children so follow-up late hahaha.” Tanti laughed and waved at the three teenagers who ran to the Range Rover where Ali was waiting.
Ali waved Tanti and replaced his sunglasses. Through his eyes, he saw Natalie enter the car and sit in the backseat with Natasha. He caught a glimpse of her staring at him in the rearview mirror and Ali stared back at her even though he knew that Natalie did not realize he was staring back at her. Ali did not show any movement as if he cared and Natalie breathed a sigh of relief that as she looked at him through the inner rearview mirror, Ali did not realize it.
The car began to walk slowly out of the compact and split the density of the streets of Jakarta as early as usual. Along the way to school, all the sounds of Marshal and Natasha’s conversation were heard. Ali remained silent as he drove to listen to all their chats while Natalie looked out the window.
In silence at his brother’s chatter, Ali glances at the passenger behind him in the rearview mirror and finds the teen girl as if she does not care about the circumstances around her. What’s on her mind?
Natalie did not care about the two-way conversation made by Natasha and Marshal. She knew her sister monopolized Marshal for all the conversation. She just enjoys that that morning she was escorted to school by Ali. The middle she noticed the streets of the capital a shadow was reflected through the window pane. She sees a camera and backpack right between the seats and Natasha. But neither of those things attracted Natalie’s attention, but to an open book of longing. She turned and grabbed the book and found a black-and-white painting that showed the city of Jakarta at night. She looked at the bottom of the painting and read the painters’ names under the title of the painting. Jakarta undercover, Ali.
Natalie lifted her face and stared directly into the dark eyes that were now staring at her unopened by sunglasses again. A heat ran through her face as she noticed Ali’s thin smile before the man turned back to the highway that was getting closer to their school.
“Kak Ali can paint?” Out of nowhere the courage came, Natalie sparked her question right as the car started to approach the school.
Hearing Natalie’s question was Marshal who answered before Ali spoke. He turned to look at Natalie. “Kak Ali is good at drawing! That’s a bit of his paintings, even he can paint people’s face like the original.” Marshal twirled proudly to make Natasha interested to see the painting in Natalie’s painting book.
“I’m not good at drawing let alone paint like Marshal said.“Ali replied casually and began to pull over to his car near the school gate. He turned and looked at the two teenage girls behind him. “He is the one who is good at drawing.” Ali pointed to Marshal and was greeted with his brother’s little fists.
“He was teasing me. Painting is not my all. He pretended.” Marshal reached for his bag. “I’m down now.”
Seeing Marshal open the car door and get off, Natasha got out of the car. Natalie replaced the painting book and before she got out of the car, she looked back at Ali, who was still looking at her, now with raised eyebrows.
“Kak Ali can painting?” Natalie asked again.
Ali looked at Natalie curiously. What is insisting on?Although his heart was surprised, but answered too. “Not bad.”
Then Ali was astonished when he saw the bright smile on her face. “Sometime painting my face.” And after saying that Natalie got out of the car and did not forget to say thank you. She ran a little into her school gate.
Ali long stared at the tiny back away from sight and he sighed. He tapped the steering wheel and smiled a little and started the engine.
From the beginning of the emergence of Marshal, all the students in the school were already excited. News of the arrival of a new child is spread quickly before the new child enters his class. The handsome and smiling appearance of Marshal made the eyes of the girls go straight to him let alone the young boy walking side by side with one of the popular girls at school, Natasha. Somehow Natalie could walk behind the two without knowing that she knew Marshal. She laughed inwardly to see how flamboyant it was to Marshal when the boy did not know his new environment at all. Marshal is totally opposite to Ali.
So when her teacher brought Marshal into her class, Natalie rounded her eyes to see Marshal who was now standing in front of the class with his witty twinkling eyes looking around the class and stopping at her face.
“Today our class new students coming from Bandung. Marshal. I hope you can be good friends with them.”
Instantly the noisy voices of the schoolgirl in the class spelled out while Natalie just stood there in her seat. She hoped Marshal did not immediately notice her presence in the class but it was too late because the boy had dropped his eyes on Natalie’s face.
Marshal’s smile widened and his heart raced with excitement as he found the figure of beauty in the class. Natalie sat on the middle row bench on the second row from the front. The beautiful face immediately hit the eyes of Marshal. And of course Natalie’s sticky gaze attracted the attention of the students and even the teacher.
“There seems to be someone you know, Marshal?”
Marshal turned and laughed as he touched the tip of his nose. “Yes ma’am. My neighbor, Natalie.”
“What? Nata!! ”
“Wow, really nice, bro!”
And for a moment the class atmosphere became noisy. The girls looked at Natalie with curiosity as the boy looked at Marshal with displeasure. However, Natalie is also the girl that get many intentions of the boys in the school. Natalie is beautiful and very clever. She was the overall champion during her high school and her friendly and humble manner made her a bone of contention.
The teacher smiled at the start of the class and saw the rage of the classroom make her cough. She looked at Natalie, who was red in the face like a boiled crab.“Now the Class Chair, where is this new boy sitting?”
Natalie stood up and stared at her homeroom and Marshal in turn. She stared at her empty bench, Rosa did not come in because of illness and she did not want Rosa replaced by Marshal. She racked her brain, and she glanced at Jemmy’s adjoining bench near the empty wall. She replied firmly to her teacher.
“Marshal can sit next to Jemmy, Mam.”
Hearing at Natalie’s answer finally Marshal sat next to Jemmy and was greeted by the tall, curly-haired man with a friendly. And the lesson went normal again. Natalie quietly sighed with relief. She glanced at Marshal and soon he looked away at the young man’s sweet smile.
The lesson went smoothly until when the break was heard, Natalie could see how Marshal’s bench was surrounded by schoolgirls. Everyone wanted to find a topic to ask anything on Marshal so that Natalie could not help smiling, looking at Marshal confused looking for a way out of the crowd. Even seen some youth in the class also came to his bench to invite him into their club.
Natalie decides to move with Mira to the cafeteria after she realizes that Marshal does not need her to know about her new school. The boy seemed to easily adapt to his surroundings. Though she had no idea that Marshal could see Natalie beginning to move from the classroom.
Marshal tried to find a gap to escape when he saw that Natalie was approached by a handsomeboy with short hair with a brown skin in front of the classroom door. When Marshal was able to rise from his seat, his arm was held by someone. Marshal turned and found that beside him was Natasha! Marshal’s eyebrows frowned in wonder, as Natasha remembered being a younger sister and how she’d gotten into the classroom with her casual and miraculous when Natasha showed up, the gang of classmates swarming back and forth regularly. All that remains is Jemmy and Agus who just introduced themselves.
“Tasha? How do you appear here? “Marshal’s tongue itched to not comment because he had loudly dragged her out of the bench toward the classroom exit. Marshal still saw that the boy with the tanned skin was still standing in the middle of the door and Natalie was seen stepping over them as they went out. Oh, Shit! Who is that big guy??
As if not aware that Marshal was frantic to see Natalie, Natasha followed by Jemmy and Argus immediately speaking. “I often play to his class Nata. So today I want to be your guide to go around school all of you want enter my club.”
Natalie saw that Marshal was in safe hands with Natasha, at least he could know the ins and outs of the school because Natasha would be willing to accompany her around the school.
Don, the white-blooded man grabbed Natalie’s shoulder to take her to the cafeteria, though politely Natalie let go of Don’s embrace. Don laughed and said lightly. “Okay, Nat... I will not touch haphazardly.” And they walked together to the canteen.
Actually Marshal was intrigued also to know what clubs want to be seduced Natasha to him, but his curiosity beat his curiosity on the type of club. Marshal nudged Natasha’s arm after she was freed from the nimble girl’s grip.
“Tash, who are the guys?” Marshal asked as he walked slowly.
Natasha looked up in surprise. Inwardly she became increasingly interested in the tall of Marshal, but she was also a tall girl, but when with Marshal she looked small and she was happy to find a candidate boyfriend that could be as tall as Marshal.
“Who? Which guy?”
Marshal turned his lips forward and followed with Natasha’s eyes. She saw the intent of Marshal’s view falling on her sister’s tiny back and Don walking along to the canteen.
Instantly Natasha’s face was pouting, and she was reluctant to answer Marshal’s questions.“I do not know!” She replied curtly.
But Jemmy had heard Marshal’s question and immediately answered the young man’s curiosity without knowing that Natasha was unhappy. “Oh, that’s Don Varilles. He is a Caucasian from America and is a student of an intergovernmental exchange program.”
Marshal looked with enthusiasm. “Student exchange program? Is he clever?” Marshal asks, astonished and greeted nod by Jemmy and Agus while Natasha is now silent a thousand languages.“So... What does he do Natalie?”
Marshal’s question not only made Jemmy and Agus smile full of temptation, but made Natasha look surprised. Her face felt hot and her heart pounding as she heard Marshal’s curious tone.
Argus whistles. “Woe... be careful, boy... although Natalie never answered his love revelation, but the whole school knows that Don is a big crush on Nata. Anyways, you ask him? No boys in this school dares to approach Nata if there is a Don is near her. ”
Marshal snorted curtly. “What’s so great about that tanned boy?”
Jimmy laughed and embraced Marshal’s tall, shoulder with him. “He’s the basketball team captain who always brings this school to champion!”
“Hey, I used to be the basketball team captain in my old school!” Marshal puffed his chest and suddenly he remembered the whereabouts of Natasha who was now silent beside him. He lowered his head and patted her cheek warmly. “Hey, Tash... did you want to tempt me?”
With a sour face Natasha replied sarcastically. “Just forget it!”
Marshal gawked and touched Natasha’s shoulder. He tried to laugh crisply. “Come on Tasha... what the hell? Angry?”
The seductive Marshal was followed by the laughter of Jemmy and Agus.
With angry Natasha became more and she stepped quickly out of Marshal. But with the wide step Marshal pulled her arm. Natasha brushed off her arm and glared. “What is it?”
Marshal grinned. “Come on... let’s go... what club you want to invite me.” Marshal persuades Natasha to relax her tense muscles.
Natasha folded her hands and said curtly. “But back home together with me.” She looked at Marshal sharp. “Just you and me!”
Marshal actually wanted to argue because he wanted to go home with Natalie. But he avoided the volcano crater exploded then he nodded.
With a big smile, Natasha said that made Marshal also smile just as wide. “The basketball club. I want to seduce you into the basketball club, too.”
Without thinking twice Marshal answered quickly. “With pleasure!”
“I am home ...” Natalie pushed open her door and immediately took off her shoes. She stepped inside and found her house deserted. She headed for the cushioned long sofa in the spacious guest room and leaned her back there. She looked up at the ceiling of her house and sighed and realized that Natasha had refused to go home with her.
“Do you go home, Miss?” A gentle voice greeted Natalie making her sit upright and found that a middle-aged woman was standing right in front of her with a napkin hanging over her shoulder.
“Aunt Sumi,” Natalie smiled and immediately nodded. Aunt Sumi is a woman who has worked with her mother since Natalie was not born yet. She was so close to her that even Natasha was close.
Aunt Sumi sees that the her miss is seen alone without Miss Tasha. “Are you alone? Where is Miss Tasha?”
Natalie stood up as she grabbed her backpack and responded lightly. “Tasha’s home may be late. Were invited to join the Basketball Club, Bi. Moreover, she is inviting Marshal to join.” Natalie walks into the dining room because her stomach is getting filled as soon as possible. She glances at Aunt Sumi who always looks happy if she comes home safely. “Where is Mama?”
Just as Natalie asked a voice of joy greeted her from the direction of the kitchen through the dining room. “Nata! Is that you? ” A head popped out from the side of the wall and Natalie was forced to smile at the Tanti that appeared with flakes of her flour.
“Mama makes a cake?” Natalie nimbly walks toward the kitchen where Tanti is in her super-complete kitchen. She saw that the normally quiet kitchen seemed to be a mess and on the kitchen table he could see a cake that had just come out of the oven. Her mother was decorating the cake with a chocolate cream that provoked saliva.
Natalie’s hand reached out to taste the warm cake, but Tanti quickly brushed it off and glared. “Do not touch. That’s for our neighbor next door.“Natalie gawked and complained softly.“Ma... there’s no for us?”
Tanti smiled broadly and patted her cheeks with her two floury hands. “Do not worry, Mama has made for us too. Well, now you eat first after that take to the our neighbor. Use a translucent door.” With a blink of his eyes, Tanti pushed her back and again busied herself with decorating the cake.
Natalie shrugged and walked out of the kitchen area for lunch, but her mother’s voice held back for a moment. She heard a Tanti’s soft voice behind her. “Tasha doesn’t come home with you?“Natalie turned and smiled. “Not yet Mama. Tasha is in club activity.”
Tanti sounded sighing Natalie frowning. For a moment Tanti stopped and looked at Natalie. “Your sister always thinks that Mama never noticed. I am just the same. I always thinks about her just like I thinks of you. ”
Natalie looked at Tanti gently. She replied softly. “Tasha knows it... do not worry.” After seeing her mother’s smile, Natalie immediately headed for the dining room and ate what had been prepared by Aunt Sumi.
About half an hour later, after Natalie had finished eating and changing her house clothes, she heard Tanti’s voice call. Pulling her hair, she came out of her room and ran down the stairs. In front of her mother’s living room was waiting for her with a large cake box in her hand.
“Please sent to aunt Wanda.”
Natalie nodded and walked through the living room opening the sliding glass door that led into the garden. With a light step she walked between the smooth grass of her garden to a door that accidentally made by aunt Wanda before they moved. The door separates the walls of the Tanti family and Wanda’s aunt and there Natalie heads.She pushed the metal door and poked her body.
A spacious garden with a gazebo greeted her. If the garden of her house is almost filled with flowers, the garden of an Aunt Wanda’s house is decorated by a traditional pond and gravel roads between the grasses of the garden.
There is a medium-sized gazebo between the pools. Almost the contents of the garden are filled with green ornamental plants, and it is understandable Natalie because Auntie Wanda has two boys.
Natalie was quite confused as to where to enter. To get to the front door meant she had to pass through the park and it seemed rude. Then her eyes saw an open door at the back of the house. Confidently she headed toward the open door and as she was about to knock on the door she was gaping.
A kitchen of white shades greeted her. The kitchen was medium-sized but from where she stood Natalie could see just how sterile the kitchen was even though it was equipped with very well equipped kitchen utensils even she was sure her mother probably did not have the sophisticated oven tool in front of her.
Natalie ventured into the kitchen cautiously after believing she’d taken off her sandals. “Excuse me... .Who is there?“Natalie was already in the kitchen, and she was increasingly amazed by the kitchen situation. Her heart wonders if Aunt Wanda uses this super-complete kitchen? Of course she will stay there for long.
Natalie had been in the kitchen for quite a while, but no one heard her call. Finally, she decides to take out his cell phone telling his mother when the door’s voice from the inside opens.
“What are you doing here?”
Natalie gasped at the heavy noise behind her. She turned and almost dropped the box of cakes she was on. Ali stood right between the doors with his tall, well-knit body wrapped in a plain white shirt with his long, pony-tailed hair in his ponytail. The pair of eagle eyes looked at Natalie sharply though not cold. Natalie’s heart was pounding, and she could only stare at the cool handsome face.
Ali stared at Natalie’s surprised-looking face. He pressed his feelings that trembled a little at the teenage girl’s presence. There was a thin smile that appeared rarely smiled when uttering the phrase, “What are you doing in my kitchen?” Ali stepped closer.
Natalie almost shouted at Ali’s phrase saying “my kitchen.” Her eyes spun around the kitchen area and the heavy voice came again.
“Do you want to deliver a homemade cake from Aunt Tanti?”
“Eh?” Natalie woke up and immediately pushed the cake box in front of Ali who immediately greeted him. She saw him put the cake box on the pantry table.
Ali glanced sideways and pointed at the cake box casually. “Mama said Aunt Tanti’s daughter would deliver the cake. I think it must be you, but I cannot expect you to appear in this kitchen.”
Natalie’s face flushed, and she immediately bowed to apologize. “Sorry... .I think it would be rude to pass the park...”
“What is the difference?”
Natalie paused and now her face turned red. She played her nails unaware that Ali enjoyed the view. The middle of that state suddenly appeared a happy voice of a woman.
“Ah, Nata! It turns out you’re here anyway? “Wanda shows up and exclaims to see that his son is also in that kitchen. She sees Natalie, who is looking down, and she quickly embraces the girl’s shoulder. “Oh. what are you reprimanded by a man today, Nata?“Wanda glared at his raised eyebrow.
“Mature man?” Natalie lifted her face to look at Wanda and Ali alternately and she saw that the man was deliberately turning his face.
Wanda pointed at Ali’s nose with a joking tone. “Oh... of course, this Ali. This is Ali’s kitchen, and we have to ask permission first to come here. It makes that he likes something clean and sterile, “Wanda said loudly as she uncovered the secret of her eldest son.
Natalie had to smile and she could not imagine a macho man like Ali being in that complete kitchen and cooking something with all the tools that were there. Apparently Ali saw the girl’s smile, and he decided to run away from the situation.
But his mother’s voice again blocked his intentions and he gawked at the suggestion of the woman who gave birth to him.
“Take the collection of your book above. According to Aunt Tanti, Nata is very interested in linguistics, especially foreign languages. You have such full of collection.”
Not only Ali was surprised, but Natali was the most shocked person to almost short of breath. Se shook her head and said a fine rejection sentence. “Do not Auntie... .It make troubles for Kak Ali... i Just go home...“But her tiny arm was gripped by Wanda, who smiled sweetly at Natalie as well as to her still-stunned son.
“Ali did not feel bothered at all. Right, Son? You have not set out to pick up the news? ”
Ali sighed accepting his mother’s meaningful gaze. In his heart, he thought. What else is this old lady planning??
Wanda pushed Natalie’s tiny body in front of Ali, who was forced to look down at her now-red face like a boiled crab and inwardly smiled. Her heart was warmed up like that blushing face.
Looks like this situation is not too bad.Natalie did not dare look at Ali’s face. She could not believe what was planned by Aunt Wanda. Just as she heard an Ali’s voice above her head. “Come on, follow me. All the collections are in my room.”
Natalie looked up and her heart fluttered again. Ali’s face glowed gently at her before he turned his back out of the kitchen.
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