‘Don’t just assume, ask.’
As he pulls himself from underneath the warmth of his blanket & bed to the chilling freezing temperatures of January, Sam mumbles to himself in a very low tone, so that his other roommates don’t hear him ‘Why January all such harsh coldness have some mercy on me! Isn’t it enough with all that’s wrong with my life?’
He usually wears something like three jackets, two pants, three pairs of socks, and shawl around his head, down to his neck to protect him from freezing during the night. He shares the apartment with three other young men, each with a different tale of hardship & misfortunes! When they finish their daily battles during the day & return to their tiny sanctuary, they figure out that it’s indeed a little piece of heaven! Each does a certain chore, one cooks, another tidies the room, two might do the laundry, the best part is that two of them know how to sing while the third plays multiple instruments, that’s how they entertain themselves beside reading & other things during the evenings, they have become during their short time together more than a family, & a very rare bond formed between the four of them, in a way they have become the (3 Musketeers+1), & the four of them only have one another.
Sam was battling with paying the rent all by himself with the wage he was receiving, the tiny apartment was rather empty & the three guys who had good taste & some cash did furniture it, & it can finally be referred to as ‘Home!’
How they found each other is another tale! One night after finishing work Sam took a short cut to his way back, in an alley (Todd, Evan & Mathew) were caught in a big fight with some other guys, it was clear they were the victims as the other group took Todd’s bag with all his valuable belongings, & they were begging them to give them back the bag with everything else in return for some money! When all that failed a fight broke & here he’s; fighting for complete strangers!
After the fight & a brotherly introduction between the four of them he found out that they were new to the city & are actually looking for a place to stay!
He brought himself back from his flashback to reality & realized that it’s another long day of hard labour, he asked himself to be grateful to be healthy, that the lord has given him another day, another morning, to cheer up, make the best out of it & go give him(the lord) your best.
He went to the kitchen, from the door he can smell fresh coffee filling the air, something has been fried/toasted, someone had prepared the breakfast, thankfully he took an egg sandwich, then took some toasted bread, spread some butter & jam, poured a cup of coffee, its warmth ran from the cup to his entire existence, he then had a quick breakfast & went out to the much colder city air unlike their warm tiny apartment, to the hard long day awaiting him.
Samantha got up & sat in her king size bed; she loves keeping herself warm, she spent her night under a quilt cover & a duvet, she’s anti cold, & had been planning to donate her salary this month to buy blankets for the homeless. Today she’s feeling happy & excited, she went to the balcony for some fresh air, Randolph was up & taking care of the garden, he caught sight of her, smiled & waved to her, she waved back to him, then heard knocks on the door, the kind assuring voice of Magdalena penetrated through the door/walls, carried away via the room till it reached her in the balcony ‘Sam, are you still in bed?!’
‘No, come in.’
She came in & gave her a hug, she was raised by her & her grandmother after her mother ran away with her new boyfriend, her dad couldn’t stand the betrayal & died in his study from heart attack.
Magdalena is married to Randolph, she’s her nanny & also like the house workers supervisor.
‘Mama, did she get up?’ Samantha asked her, that’s what she calls her granny
‘She never sleeps, giving orders everywhere like an army general!’ Magdalena said
‘Give me five minutes & will come have breakfast with her.’
She took a shower, did a quick makeup, wore her cloth & went to join her grandmother, she sat at the head of the table like a queen & her entire face lit up once she saw her granddaughter.
‘My little baby!’ She said warmly
Sam kissed her on the check & gave her a tight hug saying ‘Going somewhere? Why did you wake up so early?’
Her grandmother looked at her, didn’t answer her & instead said ‘Something is glowing in your eyes, is there something you want to share with me?’
Sam laughed & did exactly like her grand mom ‘When will Emma stop cooking all those unhealthy meals?!’Pointing to the breakfast table filled with all sorts of food (Carbohydrates, fat & sugar)
She made a sandwich, took few bites & had a glass of orange juice, then stood up waving to her & went off to her work.
She drove to work & got off of the car slamming the door, stood there & looked at the cafe she works in, who’d have thought she’d be here! She’s working in a big firm, earning large sums of money, dressed like models, then she had the worst breakup with the manager who’s also her boyfriend because she found out that he’s cheating her with her best friend, of all the women on earth he had chosen her best friend! They must have had their biggest laugh at her when they went to bed together that she’s the moron of the century!
She left the company, she wanted to heal her wounded bleeding heart & soul, & came to work in this cafe which belonged to one of her best friends, after few months she became a partner, not just an employee! She got visions & other plans for the cafe & she plans to make it more famous than (Starbucks)!
More than a year & there’s still pain, shock, hurt, & disbelieve, the pain isn’t as fierce as when she had found out, months after the incident she watched ‘In Her Shoes’ thought to herself thank God I don’t have a sister & he wasn’t cheating me with her!
Sam went to the cafe, greeted other staff & her friend, then like other staff she went & wore the uniform to begin her hard sweet lovely working day with no cheating males bosses/boyfriends & female best friends!
Sam was the hottest male on the construction site & to make things harder for him; the boss on the site was a female in her fifties by the name Helen Macdonald. This is no place for a woman he said to himself every day. She used to be a pain in the neck, but with time they became friends & they would chat about everything, about how one of her relatives gave her this job after her husband becoming disabled in an accident.
‘It’s the least I can do.’ She said ‘This had been very hard for him, he’s a very proud man & still is, it’s hard for him in every way, being cared for by his woman & also being fed by her.’
‘I’m doing it for love, not because it’s a duty.’ She looked to Sam & her eyes were filled with tears & said ‘ We fight every day, I understand why, so as you see I spend all day at site, or else huge withdrawals will be taken from our bank of love & am afraid that one day we’ll run out of love.’
Sam understood her sometimes & but didn’t understand her most of times as he never knew what was it like to have parents or how would their fight look like!
So what he did most of times was just listen & she’s very grateful for that, it did help her as she often said.
‘Hey, little Sam why don’t grab the two of us some coffee?! It’s on me.’
She handed him some money & then said ‘There’s a nice cafe by the end of the street it’s called (Serendipity).’
Sam went off down the road & found the cafe & went in , it was a very astonishing place, with bookshelves, a kids zone, it carried a friendly & family air around it, family he said to himself, do you even know what this means?! You’re new to family feeling dude take a grab on yourself. He stood there to make his order, a voice said (Hello) sending an electric current through his whole body.
He gazed to see who was it that had suddenly turned his world upside down, & he wished he never had done that. He was gazing into most beautiful green eyes he had ever seen, the most beautiful face, hair & mouth, & he couldn’t say a single word.
Samantha was looking into the most beautiful face, bluest eyes, face, hair & man she had ever seen ‘Hello!’ she said again & hoped she didn’t sound like a teenage girl who had just met her crush!
Sam was trying to clear his fogged brain & wondered if he can talk, much to his surprise he was able talk ‘Hi’ he said
‘How can I help you?!’ she asked, ‘What did she think he’d say; can we go out for a date?! Of course he will order some coffee & something else!’ she said to herself
He gave her his order, once he had his coffee, he took it without ever looking back!
Sam called after him to wait for the change, but he just vanished!
She remained all day at the cafe thinking of those eyes, face & man, until she went to bed.
Sam gave Helen the coffee, she smiled at him & said ‘I hope you didn’t lose your way! You didn’t get lost, did you?!’
He left her to join the other workers & screamed over his shoulder without looking back at her ‘No.’ Then said to himself ‘But I hope that I didn’t lose my heart or maybe I just did!’
Throughout the day he kept thinking of the woman he just met, the voice, eyes, hair, mouth & everything about her, some of her scent is still on his hands from her handing him the coffee!
Samantha spent the next few days in anxiety & anticipation, & her friend & partner sensed something is wrong with her ‘Whenever you feel like talking am all ears!’
‘I don’t think you’re fine, the way you keep staring at that door as if something is about to happen. I can’t tell if it’s something great or catastrophic!’She said
Sam looked at Cassie smiled half a smile & said ‘It’s not such a big thing, & it will go away.’
Cassie took her hands & looked intensely into her eyes ‘Do you want it to go away?’
Sam didn’t reply & instead went back to work.
At the house & the site everyone sensed something was wrong with Sam & this wasn’t the man everyone knew.
Helen told him one morning ‘Just because am the boss doesn’t mean I can’t listen to you if you feel like talking!’
She touched his shoulder in a kind way & said ‘I have one daughter & you’re the son I wish I had, come talk to me if you want to.’
Sam found herself walking down the street in an unknown territory, even this is new to her, & then asked herself what was she doing?! She is wandering in the streets looking for a man she doesn’t even know! What will she tell him?! What will he think of her?! What if he’s married?! What if he got other sexual preferences & he’s not into women?! She said she’d ask him for his number & then send him this little clip from the movie of (PS: I Love You) where Lisa Kurdow is in a bar & asks guys if they are married, work & whether or not they are into women!
She was just about to return from where she came, when she saw him beside an old woman in a construction site, he was working on something, & it was like she’s giving him orders & directions, & there were some other men working too.
She walked till she was on the site, stood next to Helen & looked at her, & said again the word that made him crazy about her in the same tone ‘Hello, am Sam, I work in a nearby cafe.’ She shook her hand with Helen.
Helen smiled in a motherly fashion ‘Am Helen the boss around here, nice to meet you.’
When Helen left them, Samantha looked to Sam & there’s a rainbow of things on his face & in his eyes (Happiness, anger, defeat, victory & interest).
She smiled shyly, searched her bag, & then handed him the rest of his money ‘You forgot to take them the other day or maybe to be more accurate where you didn’t even wait to take them.’
Their hands touched, & his were the roughest, & most manly hands that ever touched her hands or skin, he was terrifyingly handsome, manly & call her a fool , she felt that he’s a good man too!
She was looking at him as if her whole universe was centred on him & as if her fate lies within his hands.
‘Thanks, there’s no need.’ He said in a breathless tone ‘You see that isn’t a place to invite a fine lady like you to, maybe we can have some coffee someday at your place if your boss doesn’t mind, would that be okay with you?!
She looked around her, everything was a disaster, they’re working on something big around here, but they’re at the very beginning, & the men seemed exhausted from hard labour, he was like a total mess, but still handsome.
‘My place is fine, I’d like that.’ she said, she didn’t want to drive him away by telling him that she owns a portion of the cafe.
‘Your place would be fine.’ He repeated after her, they then shook hands this time a little longer, while they kept gazing in each other’s eyes & with that both of them went back to their work happily. They knew something beautiful had just blossomed between the two of them & they were both eager to see where will it lead them to.
Helen stood looking at them from afar, happy that Sam had found something that would make him look forward to life, something to call his own, & make his heart content.
She prayed it doesn’t break his heart.