Solace Ep. 9

NYAH: “Where are you taking me anyway?”

I heard Dave’s stifled laugh as he ushered me into a still pitch black room—at least for me since I am wearing a blindfold. He has been acting real secretive when he picked me up from school this morning, and even conspired with Justin to not be there to pick me up when he’s supposed to (Dave said he won’t be able to pick me up because he’s got an org meeting—which I now realize is crap). When I saw him pull up outside my college’s building, he gave me a smile, flashed the blindfold, and told me to put it on.

I have been blindfolded for the past two hours, since wherever we are now is that long a drive from UP Campus.

It’s Dave and my third month of exclusively dating, and for whatever reason, he chooses today to give me this surprise. Maybe he’s one of them guys who remembers dates and had actually noted that today is ninety days from the moment that he had bought me donuts and coffee and had watched the Ateneo-DLSU game with me.

He made me stop after reaching the third step, and I felt a cold breeze tickle my hair.

“Where are we, Dave?” I asked, and I felt him move from behind me to remove the blindfold. I let my eyes adjust to the sparse lights from where we are, and when they did, I caught my breath. We were at the top of a hill, I think, or somewhere high, for I can see the city and the lights but the sounds of the city were muted.

It was beautiful.

“Whoa,” I whispered. Dave smiled, and then wrapped his arms around me. I leaned against him, the tiny hairs on his chin tickling my bare shoulder. We enjoyed the quiet moment—the breeze, the city lights, the stars in the sky—before I broke the silence.

“What’s up?” I asked, my voice low, as if I’m scared to ruin the moment.

“Well, I’m about to ask you something,” he said, facing me, our lips centimeters from each other. But then he pointed to the sky, and before me, fireworks started to color the sky in red, blue, green, and yellow, in various patterns and sizes, in varying degrees of loudness and boom-ness.

I gaped at the fireworks display. Dave knew that for me, anything that involves a fireworks display is romantic.

And it was something that I wanted to watch with someone special to me, who’ll drape his arms around me, and whisper he loves me in my ear.

“I love you,” Dave whispered, as if he can read my thoughts. “And I hope you feel the same. Do you?”
I tore my eyes from the fireworks display and looked at Dave. I placed his face in my hands and nodded. “I love you,” I said, and he gave me his best Robert Pattinson smile. He leaned in and kissed me, and under the fireworks—which seemed to be weirdly long—we kissed. Under the starry, night sky, he held me.

Under the night sky colored by fireworks, he and I are now together—officially.

He released me, a wide smile on his face. “Yes,” he whispered, and I laughed. “Ny,” Dave said, calling me his special nickname for me, and I frowned. “Your hands are freezing cold.”

I quickly removed my hands from his face, blushing, as Dave held them in his own. The fireworks display had ended, and he hugged me once again.

“Thank you,” I whispered after a long while.

“For what?”

“For making this romantic moment a reality for me?” I said, still unsure. I still don’t know what to thank Dave for. In the past three months he had been there in every sense of the word. He has picked me up, painstakingly helped me in some of my research projects, watched chick flicks with me, stayed up with me when I have an all-nighter, and held me whole when I’m so stressed and tired and broken. He has met my family even, and my parents and siblings loved the guy. He’s a stable and respectable person, and frankly, since I am in love with the person, I can’t see anything wrong with him (to my eye and to my heart—eek!).

On my part, I tried to be the very best girlfriend (or almost girlfriend) anyone can have. I have cooked for him—he’s a guy knowledgeable of his recipes, and sometimes we’d bond over trying to cook one of those dishes—and baked chocolate chip cookies for him (my specialty, which we have renamed Dave and Nyah’s babies as of the time being). I have endured calculus and trigonometry and accounting talks because he’s taking them, and have tolerated his more often than not super konyo classmates. I held his hand when he was waiting for the results of this exam that is make-or-break (tres or singko in UP standards), and tried to perk him up when one of his profs didn’t like his proposal.

In three months, we’ve watched and bonded over countless of UAAP games—Ateneo’s champion this season, woohoo, and we’re there to witness it, thanks to Dave’s connections for we got patron seat tickets!—and PBA games, and I shared with him my passion for baseball. He has critiqued my work—both academic and outside, for I have tried to write but painstakingly failed, for I’m not quite as good as Mom (but Dave will disagree with you, I bet)—and I have served as the proofreader of his papers, because admit it or not, sometimes engineering majors have a tough time keeping their grammar in check. I’ve watched him stumble and fail, picked him up and healed him, and he did the same for me.

“You know, I’d probably do anything for you,” he said, interrupting my thoughts, and I frowned. “Probably?” I said, and he shrugged. “Within reason?” he countered, and I laughed. I kissed him on the nose.

“Ooh, mister. This early and you’re bailing out on me? That hurts.”

“Well, I know you wouldn’t ask me to jump the cliff for you, because you’d be so miserable without me,” he said, tracing the lines of my jaw.

I rolled my eyes. “Flattering yourself too much.”

He kissed me, full and deep, on the lips, silencing me. When I emerged breathless from the kiss, he winked at me. “Fine,” I said, and he held my hand. We stayed quiet again, leaving some things unsaid, as we watched the stars twinkle above us in the night.

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