Chapter 5: New Roommate
After class, Harris fixed his stuff and readied himself to move out of his dorm. He bid goodbye to the landlady for formality. He was limping because of too much stuff he was holding and to his surprise, a tan man was leaning over to a black car, more like waiting for him. Because when he saw him, he straightened up his body and waved at him. He arched his eyebrows as if asking what he was doing there. The tan man walked towards him. Flashing his famous wink.
“I am here to pick you up. I brought my car in case you have a lot of stuff to carry,” he said.
The tan man peeked at his stuff and took the bags in his hands. “Are these all your things?”
He nodded. Couldn’t figure out what to say because the tan man left him dumbfounded and casually put his things on the backseat. He followed the tan man and almost got startled when he opened the passenger seat’s door, gesturing for him to get inside.
He didn’t look like the man he met in the mall. He was the man who kindly bought him food and offered him his dorm. He kept that thought in his mind. Because certainly, the tan man was kind of a gentleman if he didn’t use his sharp tongue.
“Hey, as you can see it’s almost dark. We need to hurry so you can fix your things early and be besides having an assignment to work on too.” The man waved his fingers in his face.
He flushed when he saw a wide smile on him. Rolling his eyes, he stomped his feet when he got inside. A strong smell of perfume lingered on his nose when he got in. But hey, he liked the smell. He didn’t let the man notice what he was thinking when he moved to the driver’s seat.
Feeling awkward, he leaned on the window and stared at the street lights instead, fascinating the beauty outside. It would be his first time living with a stranger. He just hoped that everything would be fine while they lived together.
“At least we should know each other’s name, right?” The tan man broke the silence.
He slightly moved from his seat then nodded. Not wanting to introduce himself first though. He heard a chuckle coming from the man. He looked at him and saw the tan man scratching his head like a shy boy. ‘I should be the one who feels shy, right?’
“Fine, I’m Tristan Dickinson.”
He was taken aback again when the tan man stretched out his other hand to him.
Trying to figure out what to do, he waited for a minute before speaking. “I’m Harris.” He ignored Tristan’s hand.
“Wow, you really know how to speak longer.” He sensed sarcasm in his voice. “Harris what?”
“Just Harris.” He said with a bored tone.
“A’right Just Harris, I really need to teach you to speak human language,” Tristan said. He wiggled his eyebrows that made him look a bit childish.
Without thinking twice, he smacked Tristan’s head. “Shia! It hurts. You always hit me!” Tristan touched his head then pouted.
“You deserved it,” he snorted back. He never imagined that this man was kind of childish.
Silence fell over again until they reached a building. He was about to pick his things at the back but Tristan picked them faster than he. He smacked his hand and glared. They stopped in front of a door with a large number 142 hanging above.
“I have hands too as you can see. I am not your girlfriend either for you to carry my things . . .”
“. . . and opened the door for me.” He said when Tristan opened the room’s door for him. He dodged his chest that made him yelp, perhaps in pain.
“Phi! Look at my own drawing! P’Gia taught me to do one.”
He actually jumped in shock when he entered the room, a soft voice echoed in the room and a little girl with a pink dress showed up instantly in front of him. She bumped on his legs that nearly caused him to stumble.
“Sorry, sorry, Phi! Ouch, I think my nose broke.”
He knelt immediately on her and checked her nose. Good thing, it didn’t bleed. A smile instantly formed on his lips when he saw the girl pouted while crunching her nose. He patted her head and stood up after.
“Little bun, say hello to your P’Harris.” Tristan from behind put down his things.
“P’Harris? Oh, the stranger!” The little girl said with shock.
“He’s not a stranger anymore since from now on, he will live here with us,” Tristan explained a bit that made Mia look confused.
“Little girl, I am your new housemate,” he said. Amusement was on his face because of the cuteness of the girl.
The little girl widened her eyes—greeted him with a waii after. “Hi there, Phi.”
After introducing each other, Tristan guided him to his room. There were three rooms after all and he wondered why. But it was not his concern since he had a bed to sleep in from now on.
The room was not so big like in his dorm but enough for him though. It was painted light blue and white. Spacious because there was nothing much besides the bed, side table, two chairs, cabinet with mirror and study table.
He lazily crashed down his body on the bed, hands on either side of his head. ‘Please be good to me, my new room!’
He practically forgot Tristan on the door if he didn’t make a chuckle. Looking over the door, Tristan was leaning on the door frame with his hands on his chest. His chest pounded a little when Tristan smirked. It confused him. And that was what he needed to know and never let the man find out.
“Just knock on my door if you need something. There’s still leftover in the kitchen—I mean, you directly came here after school so I bet you’re hungry. Just feel at home, okay? I’ll just do my homework,” Tristan said then left him, still lying on the bed.
He just shrugged. He bet, meeting that tan man was not bad after all. After thinking some stuff, he let himself drifted to sleep.
Morning came fast. He rose from his bed and got nervous when he noticed the unfamiliar room he was in. But then, he remembered that it was his new room. He did his morning routine before heading outside.
He scrunched his nose when he smelled burnt food coming from somewhere. He searched for it and saw how disastrous the kitchen was. Pans and plates all over the sink. Burned bread and some hotdogs on the table. Spilled dough on the floor. And a sweaty man with his blue apron in front of the stove. He looked like he was struggling to make food. He chuckled at what he saw and laughed, even more, when Tristan turned around with some of his face covered in flour. Tristan was pouting at him maybe because he was making fun of his looks.
“Stop laughing, yeah? I know I’m not really into cooking but I am trying harder.” Tristan said and pouted again.
He tried his best not to laugh but he couldn’t stop himself when Tristan yelped as he unconsciously put his hand on the hot pan.
“Pale man, you’re so dead now!”
He stumbled back lightly when he felt something reached on his face. He touched it and saw some spilled flour on his hand. His eyes returned to Tristan and glared as if a cue that he was in for a flour fight. Both of them looked at the flour on the table and ran as fast as they could to have it. He almost touched it but Tristan dodged him to the side. To his surprise, the other man looked like he tripped on something and docked his face directly on the floor. He burst out his laughter with the scene.
“P’Tristan, what happened to your face?” A soft tone asked behind them. Mia was curiously looking at them.
Tristan coughed first. “Someone with lollipop size just did this to me.” He wiped his face with his own shirt.
He whimpered slightly when he saw the abs of the tan man and gasped for amusement. He then glared at Tristan. “Back off, I will cook before you burn the whole place.” He smacked Tristan’s head first before walking in front of the stove.
“Hey! I’ve been cooking for years! And I didn’t burn anything.” He snorted, defending himself.
“Oh really? Then what was that?” He remarked pointing to the bread. Tristan rolled his eyes. Stomping his feet, he sat on the chair and watched him instead.
“So I guess, you should be the cook for us every day.”
Not minding the tan man’s remark, he asked Mia. “Little girl, what breakfast do you want?”
She clapped her hands with excitement. Deja vu. “I want an omelet and fried rice,” she said. As if it was her first time to eat something like them.
“What about these?” Tristan suddenly asked. He looked at the burned foods.
He sighed and picked them. “I’ll try to fix these. Maybe I can do magic for them…” He said, full of sarcasm. “Oh, poor bread. Who murdered you, huh?”
“Dick!” The tan man snickered.