Coffee. 8 out of 10 people have to have their daily fix to start the day. Whether it is a nutmeg latte, a double espresso or a simple morning brew, these are the ones whose eyes shine the moment the first sip is ingested.

Long queues. Synonymous with everywhere and (almost) everything. A national pastime, it seems. People either queue alone, with friends, a book, or their iPods. Whatever it is, queueing has become a somewhat necessity that we take times like these to be alone with our thoughts, or books, or music. In a society like ours, it is rare that anyone would start a conversation with the stranger in front of, or behind you just for the sake of it.

But who knew that when you put the two together, the unexpected happens.

And all it took was a morning latte.


Pick a person. Anyone.
Can you remember the first time you met that person?

I remember the first time we met. It was the usual. You were the friend of a friend, the one who shook my hand with a great smile and a twinkle in your eye while you repeated my name. I remember that night walking out of the club not knowing more of you that I was supposed to. Not like I made the effort. He’s danger, that one. Tough nut to crack, they warned.

And I believed them.

Then we met again, at a more intimate gathering of sorts. You engaged me in conversation and I listened, I spoke and I laughed. You had won me over.

But still I kept my distance, remembering the warnings.

But three dates and 2 joyrides later, selective amnesia struck.

Sitting by the waterfront you talked about your life. How you got to where you have gotten, the things you went through. You did much of the speaking, I did much of the listening, sipping on my beer and enjoying the breeze.

When the night ended, you kissed me.

But I had to walk away.

The one that got away

He took a sip of his coffee and sat back into his chair. He was staring at the face of someone who had dropped everything and visited him straightaway even though she had just barely touched down and hadn’t even said hi to her own parents. He was touched that she had rushed over when she heard he had injured himself, but he didn’t want her here.

The fact that she bothered to do something like that roused his emotions, and he wandered why. Ever since they broke up he had taken every opportunity to push her away, even though they remained good friends. Even though they had kept in contact all this time. He was especially pissed at his friends for lying to her about his injury, that he wasn’t even capable of walking when he could even drive himself, but he was pissed at himself.

1 failed marriage and 1 failed serious relationship was all it took. When she appeared after that, he knew he couldn’t handle another relationship. Besides, she was too free-spirited. She left before he could say anything else about him wanting to remain single.

These days, it was just him, his dog, and his business.

She stared out onto the pavement, beyond the people shuffling along with their shopping bags, beyond those attempting to cross the traffic junction, beyond the business of Orchard Rd on a weekend afternoon. She had just returned from a holiday and when she heard the news, she dropped everything at home, barely said hi to her parents, and rushed down to check on him.

But he was fine. His friends had decided it was a good reason to convince her to see him and lied that he couldn’t walk. He was, in fact, well and alive, and by the looks of it, walking wasn’t a problem.

She wondered why she did what she did. She remembered the panic that overcome her, the worry that struck her on the ride over to his place. He was an important person in her life, and even after they parted he had remained a good friend and a pillar of strength for her. Surely that was reason enough.

When she arrived, she was pissed. Not because their friends had lied, but because he greeted her in his usual curt and abrasive manner. It wasn’t until later that he told her in private he appreciated her coming, but he didn’t really need her around.

Perhaps she had wished that he was at a point in his life where he could change his mind about his decisions earlier, that perhaps he was willing to give it another try. We all want to be that person. But she knew that it was wishful thinking. He wouldn’t change his mind when he’s got it made up. Which was why she took the initiative and walked away from it first.

These days, when they both spoke or met with each other, it was in the capacity of good friends. They never spoke of getting back together because they both knew it was never possible. They were just good friends.

She smiled to herself, maybe I was the one that got away.

He smiled, she was the one that got away. 

Follow you into the dark.

Apparently my friends somehow think this is quite romantic.

The fact that you’ve been secretly carrying a torch for someone. Something you’ve dismissed as a crush. But then you realise its not exactly a crush when you grow much older and you realise you still feel something special for that person, or is it?

But having a crush on someone for that long surely cannot be romantic. No, the romanticism is not in the fact that you can harbour a secret crush for someone for so long, but in that it goes both ways.

Apparently, it does happen. That two people can be secretly liking each other but never found the reason to say anything until years later when the people around them convince them of the truth that is somehow blatantly laid before them but still rather invisible. That she thinks she’s too young for him, that he will never be interested in her type. That he thinks he’s a little too old for her, that she’s young and she should explore her options, date guys her own age and party the way early to mid twenty somethings do.

So while the rest of the world stops to stare and gawk at how two people can be so oblivious to each other, they go on with their lives, moving on with other people but never finding them good enough. Somehow, something was lacking.

Apparently all it took though, was a breakup and a harsh reminder from the now ex-girlfriend that perhaps he is waiting for something, or someone that had been standing there, a person he didn’t dare notice because he simply didn’t know what to do with her.

Little did he know, she had even less of an idea what to do with herself, much less with someone like him in the picture.

But the reminder was timely, and like a diver ready to take the plunge into the pool, hoping he’ll make the mark, he took a deep breath and did what he was supposed to do all along.

But all she could do was to stare in shock and smile, and laugh a nervous laugh, with tears forming in the corner of her eyes. Can you imagine, a 20 something year old with her 10 year crush suddenly saying the words that were so laden with meaning and emotion, the stuff she always dreamed of but quickly brushed aside as wishful thinking?

In the same way that people try to speak when awestruck, when met with something they never anticipated, she could only start the sentence with “and I…”, never finding the words to finish it.

So she could only reciprocate with a hug, hoping he’ll find in it the same meaning she had tried to convey with him verbally but failed.

But when she felt his arms tight around her, she realised one thing.

She still didn’t know what to do with herself.


Petty Little Things

In front of her sat a boy and a girl. A couple, she presumed. They sat with their books and his laptop between them, discussing homework of some kind. Then they stopped. Then they started again. Their discussion seemed to get heated and the girl stood up.She observed the girl out of the corner of her eye. Long silky brown hair, not unlike any other. Dressed in a pink top and a denim skirt that was short and had frills at the end. Not very flattering. The frills were unruly, sort of like crumples that wouldn’t go away no matter how you ironed, and they ruined the look. She was fair, and her height combined with the ill-fitting top and skirt made her look like she had more than enough flesh to spare.

For the next minute, she observed the couple on the pretense of reading her book. These days being with herself were sometimes all she yearned for but they could be monotonous, and in between reading she’d take a short nap on the couch or just people watch, trying to be as inconspicuous as usual. On these days she was dressed to fade into the background, a normal jeans and tee, or sometimes even a pair of shorts or polo tee, but never in bright colours. Bright colours made her stand out, and it was unnecessary when it came to people watching.

In the background a male voice droned on, the only evidence of any other forms of activity on campus.

She isn’t a looker but she sure has a nice bag.

It was when they were leaving that she realised the guy was trying to explain to the girl how the photocopier worked.

She rolled her eyes instinctively, who the hell doesn’t know how to work a photocopier?

But perhaps it was more than explaining to her how a photocopier works, or maybe the girl in pink was really too dumb for the guy. When she stood up signs of frustration showed on her face, and it was evident between the two of them. It was a little like sitting next to a kitchen during meal times, the smells of whatever was cooking would simply waft over and heighten the senses. Surely, the same would be said when you could feel tension rising between people.

So as the girl stood up, the guy tried to get her to sit. But like all females who are used to seeking attention to get their way one way or another, she refused. Then for the next minute, frantic hand movements ensued, together with the restraint of having to keep with an argument going while having to keep your voices hushed.

She watched on with amusement and then realised that this wasn’t the first time she had seen lovers quarrel, but everytime it was the same. In a public place, hushed tones, frantic hand movements, both parties trying to keep their cool. Then she realised that on occasion she had been one of the parties involved in such arguments.

Maybe there is some form of unspoken behavioral standards that governed the way lovers acted in public, even when they argued.

But it didn’t really matter, the couple had walked away, presumably to make a copy of some documents. It’s funny how a simple thing like learning how to operate a photocopying machine could lead a couple into an argument, but that’s how arguments between couples often arise, doesn’t it?

From petty little things.

Bad Timing.

Wanna take a breather?

A moment ago, they were on the dance floor, his hands on her hips, their bodies so close anyone could’ve mistaken them for lovers.

But they were strangers who were barely acquainted, and within minutes she was grinding herself against him.

And now he was pressed up against the wall in a corner of the club, her hands on either side of his head. She leaned in close to his ears and flicked her tongue in and out of them. Slowly nibbling on them. Her hands found the zipper to his jeans and unzipped them. He let out a sigh, and that was her cue to start massaging the hard-on he’d been having since they started dancing.

He wasted no time himself, his hands deftly moved under her shirt, and were giving her breasts light squeezes, slowly moving under her bra to play with her nipples.

Then their lips found each other, and started a dance of their own, their tongues taking centre stage, teasing each other, playing a game with rules only they understood.

She leaned her head back and he kissed her neck gently, slowly moving down to her breasts.

She felt his hand unzip her jeans, and his fingers were on her clit, doing his own share of teasing and massaging.

She took his hands away from her, and once again their hips touched, grinding each other at their own pace, ignoring the music, or the people around them.

Amidst the strains of Beyonce’s voice streaming out of the speakers, he leaned into her ears and whispered.

Let me take you home. Let me fuck you all night long.

She smiled at him, her response interrupted by a light buzz in the pocket of her jeans felt by both of them.

Where the fuck have you disappeared to with that sucker?

She grinned at him and planted a kiss on his cheek, zipping up his jeans in the process.

Sorry hun, bad timing. I gotta go.

As he stood staring at her retreating figure into the crowds, she smiled to herself.

What a sucker indeed.

The rain made it wetter.

They stumbled into the hotel room, both soaked to the skin by the rain outside. While she tried to undress herself of her wet clothes, she fell onto the bed, giggling.

As she lay back on the bed, she stared at him, her fingers trailed across her chest, stopping only to encircle the area where her nipples would be if not covered by her bra.

He had already removed his clothes, and all that separated him from nakedness was his boxers.

And he walked towards her, bending down in between her legs to unbuckle her jeans and pulled them off her wet body. By then, it wasn’t just the rain that had made both of them wet, and as he lowered himself onto her he slowly removed her bra, their bodies separated only by their undergarments.

Kiss me, she whispered.

Their lips touched just when their hips did. Lightly. And their kisses were gentle with each other, and grew with intensity as their hips found each other and started to grind. The sensation of fabric against skin only made it more intense for the both of them, and his lips soon found her nipples, her hand found its way into his boxers.

Lick me.

Their positions switched, and she straddled his face, bracing herself against the headboard.

You’re wet.

His tongue found her clit through her sheer panties, and he began massaging it gently though the fabric.

Tear it off me and fuck me.

When his tongue met her naked clit, she shivered. As he teased and tantalized with his tongue and his fingers, she found herself pressing herself against his face, wanting more. Her nipples found the coldness of the wall in front of her, and pressing her breasts against it only made her hornier.

Let me suck you.

As she ventured down south, she made a show of letting her nipples trail along his body together with her tongue, she could feel his body tense up through the contact, and when she finally took his hard cock into her mouth, it didn’t take him long to surrender.

I need to fuck you.

Both let out a huge sigh as he climbed on top of her and entered her. As he fucked her, slowly, and gently, her hands wrapped around his neck and pulled him close to her. It drove him crazy to hear her moans and she knew it, placing her lips next to his ears and moaning softly into them.

Oh fuck, you’re so hot.

She drew her legs above his shoulders, and he went faster and harder, they no longer cared who could hear their moans and screams through the thin walls of the hotel room, or that the curtains weren’t drawn.

And as they both lay naked on the bed, skin glistening with a combination of perspiration and rain water, she slowly drew a trail along his body with her torn panties.

You tore my panties, I’m going to have to punish you.