Chapter 22 | Pointless Thoughts
For the first time in a long time, Elizabeth was truly busy. Unlike the work ethic she had before she had gotten this job, she would only be busy when springs of passion would come up and she would write her novel the entire day. Also, she had realized making a project from an actual field job would be so much harder.
Without rest, she tried to transcribe each of the interviews, made multiple drafts, and drank more cups of coffee she never knew she could finish in a day. Even though this was the case, she tried to not pressure herself in finishing early and remembered she still had three weeks. Yet, the work was still tiring and frustrating.
Elizabeth continued to work that week and at the end; she completed transcribing all the recordings they had. She checked her schedule that weekend and found that there wasn’t anything to do. So, she brought her files, downloaded her drafts and brought it home.
That weekend, she did her work at Brick. She hadn’t been there in so long and now seemed like the time for a good cup of coffee. She brought her papers with her in a tote bag and wore a casual attire. With no hesitation, she headed out. It was still fairly early in the morning, about ten in the morning, so the sun didn’t strike too much. The light and breeze of the outdoors was just right. This atmosphere helped her relax, and she liked the feeling, so she walked to the cafe.
The walk was uneventful but calming. She thought she need not be so stressed with her project and just take it easy. She believed it would all be over before she knew it and besides, with a cheery atmosphere, her work usually comes out better than expected.
She arrived at the cafe and headed straight to the counter. She looked around the cafe to look for Hayden, but it seemed like he was nowhere to be seen. So she turned her attention back tot he cashier on the counter and ordered a cup of coffee and a slice of that Blackberry cake she loved.
She the settled herself on one of the empty tables. She set up her laptop and papers and eased herself into the moment comfortably. With the help of the smell of wonderful coffee and the moody aura the shop had quickly, it immersed Elizabeth in her work.
Hayden stands in the kitchen as he mixes the cream for the next batch of sweets he was going to make. He does it mindlessly, just like how he does every day. He was focused until suddenly one of his employees suddenly barges in the kitchen door with a loud bang.
“Hey! Don’t shove it open.” He directly scolded.
“Sorry, boss.” The employee, one baker who was subbing in as a server, then approached Hayden and whispered, ” Sir, you lady friend is out there. Let me take care of that.” This employee basically grabbed the whisk from his boss’ hands and shoved him over to the side.
Hayden, shocked by his actions, thought for a while as if he actually was the boss of this place. He dismissed it and said, ” Okay, I’ll leave you to it.“, before heading out to the primary space of the cafe.
As he went, he wiped his hands away in his half-apron and took it off, placing it in the drawer behind the counter. He saw Elizabeth on one table looking awfully serious. He wondered what she was working on, so without hesitation, he approached her.
“Hey El, What’s up?” He said as he took the seat across her. Though she might have known that he was going towards her, she never looked at him once.
Until now, “Oh Hayden, what’s up. The place is quite booming today.”
“I know, we’ve almost run out of cream puffs.”
Elizabeth continued to type as she conversed with her friend. “Haha, I get that. Your cream puffs are just heavenly.”
“What are you working on?” He asked as he placed his elbows on the tabletop.
Elizabeth, who wanted to focus on the conversation, saved her work on hand and moved the laptop a bit to her side. Finally, she faced Hayden and answered,
“I actually got a new job!” She excitedly mentioned.
“Really? I didn’t know. Congratulations. What is it?”
“I work for a magazine in the sports section.” Elizabeth smiled as she mentioned this, but followed up. ” Sorry, I didn’t get to tell you. I’ve just been so new to work, and I wanted to focus on it.”
“Yeah, you haven’t been coming to the cafe for a while now.”
“I know! And, I’ve missed your cake!” she said and, as if coincidentally, one server served the slice she ordered as well as the cup of coffee to her table.
She immediately took a bite as they set it down. Hayden smiled at the look on her face as she tried it again. Elizabeth started pointing at the cake and remarked, “This... I miss this.”
“Haha, how about me?”
“Eh, not as much as this.”
Hayden laughed at that and then changed the topic by asking, “What’s the name of the magazine?”
“A Daily Dose of Life, have you heard of it?”
“Oh! That magazine. That’s great then, I buy its copies monthly for the shop along with other titles and newspapers.”
“Really! That’s great, make sure you read my articles for this month. All of them is at the sports section.”
“Sure, I’ll do that. So what are you working on right now?”
“Oh, it’s actually an article about quarter-final preparations for, you know, Mark’s team.”
Hearing this, Hayden couldn’t control the somewhat awkward shiver that coursed through him. Something about Mark and Elizabeth knowing each other and being together just does something, and he doesn’t know why.
“Speaking about Mark, How did you actually get to know him? It really surprised me when he knew you.”
“Yeah, I was surprised too.When you mentioned him while the game was going on, I was just too shocked to think.”
“You ate all the fries in just one round, El. I deserve an explanation.” Hayden comically remarked. Elizabeth laughed at this for a bit, but it died down while she answered, “We just haven’t met in so long.”
Hayden thought about this and weighed his options. Whether to continue this somewhat awkward topic of open a new one, but on the back of his mind, he really wanted to know what went on between the two. They looked really close that night of the game.
He felt uncomfortable back them. Like there was something wrong. So, he asked,
“Were you in a relationship back then? Because it felt like you two did.”
Almost instantly, Elizabeth denied,” No...no, we weren’t like that. I’ve told you, we were just childhood friends. ”
" You could’ve told me, El. It’s really cool to have a childhood friend who’s now a super famous athlete, so that I would’ve been able to get to know him earlier.”
“It was such a long time ago, I doubted if we were still actually friends. We cut off ties Hayden, we’ve only met just now,” Elizabeth took a sip of her coffee as she continued, ” And besides, aren’t you buddies with him now?”
Hayden, satisfied with his questions, said, ” Yeah, we are.” He internally debated what he should do next before he stood up and said, ” Imma’ go back and make the cream puffs now,” He smiled. “Continue on your work. You were pretty busy a while ago and I don’t want to continue and break your momentum.”
“Thanks Hayden. Can I get the cake on the house?” She cheekily asked.
“Nope,” He said while popping the ‘p’, ” Pay for it, celebration for you successful hire.” Hayden smirked at his answer as he saw Elizabeth pout at this before giggling.
She grabbed her laptop to settle it in front of her to continue working. Hayden then headed back inside the kitchen.
He put back on his apron and approached the server who took his place, who was already piping in the cream inside the freshly baked pastries. Just like how he’d done it before, he practically grabbed the piping bag and shoved him over to the side while saying,
“I’ve got it. Go back out and continue service.”
“How was it boss?” His employee asked.
With a hostile face, he turned to his employee and asked in return, “How was what?” With that, his employee smiled an awkward smile and headed back out.
He hated people who were curious about his personal life when they weren’t really friends. It was kind of invasive, and he hated that feeling.
Hayden continued to pipe in the filling into the cream puffs and sighed as he willed himself to focus and not stress himself out about pointless over thinking.