Authors: Wanitta Praks
Tags: #sliceoflife, #contemporaryromance, #teenromance, #teenfiction, #contemporaryfiction, #dramaromance, #romeojulietstoryline, #schoolromance, #starcrossedlovers, #teenfictioncontemporary, #tragedyromance
I have to give credit to this kid. She’s
gone through so much, yet she’s still smiling like it’s completely
Wait! Did she just say blood test?
My body freezes. I’m not good with blood.
When the nurse draws my blood for tests, I always get this feeling
like I’m going to pass out.
“You… you… said blood test, right?” I ask to
I think I’m having ear problems.
“Mmmm. I test to make sure my sugar in my
blood is normal. Then before I eat, I take my shot. Do you want a
“Umm, yeah, sure,” I fluff, reluctantly
agreeing on the spot.
What have I gotten myself into? No matter
how cute this little girl is who’s begging me with big puppy dog
eyes, I should never ever say yes, especially when I’m shit scared
“It’s like this, see.” She takes my ink pen
and positions it on the pad of my index finger. With quick action,
she stabs the tip of the pen into my skin, causing me to yelp like
a dog in pain.
She giggles. “You’re funny, Zacky. I like
Well, if putting me through this much pain
makes her like me, then I don’t mind being stabbed again.
I look at her flashing grin. It’s like a ray
of sunshine. I know now that nothing can rob this kid of her
happiness, even the pain of injecting insulin into her body three
times a day or having regular glucose tests with a needle.
I feel ashamed of myself complaining about
pain just being stabbed with a little pen. Maybe I should learn
from her, adopt a bit of her attitude, be a bit more grateful about
A moment of thoughtful silence passes
between us, when the sound of someone shouting wakes me from my
thoughts. Looking up, I see an old grandma rushing towards us, her
face pale with fright, as if she’s searching for someone.
I awkwardly stand up, ready to help her in
any possible way, even in my limited state, when she collapses
right into my arms, her body going limp.
“Grandma! Grandma! Are you okay?” I call to
her. “Someone, please help.”
Jesus, what do I do? I’m in hospital, but
there isn’t a single nurse around.
Just as I finish with my alarmed calling,
the lady lifts her head.
“Moon, Moon. Where are you?” she shouts in
Moon runs to her and hugs her. “Gigi, I’m
Oh, so that’s Gigi. Now who’s Vivi?
“Moon.” Her voice calms down a bit. “Don’t
run away from Gigi again, okay?”
“I’m sorry.” Moon apologizes to the old
Old grandma turns to me then. I smile. And
before she can say a word, I explain the whole situation.
“Thank you very much, young man, for looking
after my Moon,” Gigi says while patting Moon’s head. She looks
tired and her voice sounds strained. “She’s here for her monthly
checkup. I was busy talking to the doctor. She was standing beside
me a minute ago, and in the next minute, she was gone. I was so
worried. That’s why I ran out and shouted like that. If it weren’t
for you, I’m not sure what I would do.”
I feel slightly embarrassed for receiving
such praise. I’m not used to it. I didn’t really do anything. I
just stayed and talked to Moon.
Looking at Gigi’s pale face, I go to grab
some water for her. Even with my limited mobility, I still praise
myself for looking after the elderly. Gigi looks like she might
pass out any minute. Water will help.
Filling a cup at the fountain, I give one to
her, when Moon says, “Where’s mine?”
“I’m sorry,” I say, smiling, then go to
collect another cup for Moon.
“Do you black out often, ma’am?” I ask when
I come back. I look at her holding the cup of water in her hands.
They are all crooked and slightly twisted like they’ve gone through
some hard times.
She takes a small sip of the water, looks at
me, and smiles tiredly. “I’ve always been like this. There’re some
things in the past that still affect me now.” She glances down and
sees my leg in the cast. “How about you? What’s a young man like
you doing with those crutches?”
“Well, it was an accident.” I smile. I don’t
want to tell her the cause of my broken leg is that girl and the
kiss. Instead, I say, “I drove into a tree.”
I look at the time. It’s near four already.
Kai should be here anytime. I think I should wait for him in the
car park so he needn’t come into the hospital.
Kai hates hospital. If the circumstance is
avoidable, then he will avoid it at all cost.
“Well, I think I should get going now,” I
say, standing up.
“Thank you again for looking after Moon,
“No problem, ma’am.”
“You can call me Nancy.”
“Okay. Bye, Moon. Bye, Nancy.” I wave at
them before heading off.
“Bye-bye, Zacky.” Moon waves back at me.
Nancy gives me a smile.
I’m in deep thought. I’ve forgotten to give
Nancy my name. I feel a bit guilty now. Maybe I should turn back
and tell her. Yeah, I think I’ll do that. It’s not polite to not
give your name to an elder.
From the distance, I hear someone calling
out. I’m not really sure who is it, and personally, I don’t really
care. But the sound of that voice has a nice ring to it, a bit like
the soft melodic music I like to listen to. And that’s when I get
Maybe I should—
Bam! I go crashing to the floor when a body
collides into me.
Oh shit! I think I broke my other leg
“Jesus Christ! Watch where you’re going,” I
swear when I get my bearings.
So what? I’m pissed. I’m allowed to be,
aren’t I? After all, I’m hungry and tired. On top of that, I smell
like a skunk who’s been sleeping in the dumpster for the past two
I’m a real clean freak. It’s just that the
hospital doesn’t have proper bathtubs. And I like baths more than
showers. So I didn’t bathe at all for the past two days. I think
I’m going to stay in the bathtub for two whole months after I get
out of this place, just to get rid of the smell.
While I’m busy collecting arms and limbs
into appropriate places, there is still silence from whomever it is
that collided against me.
Don’t they know it’s impolite to run into
people with limited mobility? I should give this someone a piece of
I’m speechless. All the remaining air
whooshes from my lungs. All I can see are those lips, those lips
that bit me that night.
This girl, the one that just collided into
me, she’s… she’s…
A Fated Encounter
“Her blood sugar is in the normal range.
She’s doing great. But just make sure she takes her doses thirty
minutes before her meals,” Dr. Marshall advises.
“Thank you. Should we make another
appointment next month?” I ask.
“Michelle will sort that out for you,” Dr.
Marshall says, leading me out of his consultation room.
I make an appointment with Michelle for
Moon’s next checkup appointment, then go into the waiting room. I
see Moon and Gigi waving good-bye to some guy in a blue shirt. From
this distance, it’s very hard to make out who he is.
Our family has only been in Dunedin for two
months, so to see Gigi and Moon waving to people they don’t know, I
“Vivi,” Moon comes and takes my hand when I
get close to them. “You should have seen Zacky.”
“Zacky?” I ask, looking at Moon in
Gigi replies instead. “That’s her new
friend. I saw Moon playing with him.”
“Yes, Vivi.” Moon looks up at me. “He wears
a white thing on his leg. He said his leg was broken. That’s why he
wears it. I even got to write my name on it.”
I laugh and crouch down to her level. “So
you made another friend, then?
“Mmmm.” She nods. “He’s my new
I laugh again. This time I know what she
“Lord help me!” Gigi exclaims suddenly, her
hands running along the length of her jacket as if she’s trying to
search for something.
“What’s wrong, Grandma?” I ask, a little
“I think I lost our money, Ivy.” She turns
to me with frightened eyes.
I go pale. The doctor’s fee hasn’t even been
paid yet, and we still have to take the bus home. But with no
money, how are we supposed to do these things? I know I have the
strength to walk all the way home, but Gigi and Moon would be too
We don’t own a car, so we go everywhere by
bus. I told Gigi before that we should consider getting a car since
I already have my driver’s license, but she was adamant, saying
walking and using the bus would do good for the community instead
of polluting the environment by using a car. So now with no car and
no money to pay for Moon’s treatment, I panic.
I curse myself silently for forgetting to
bring my cell phone and wallet too. Otherwise, I could ring Mandy
for her to pick us up or pay for the taxi home.
Gigi searches in all her pockets without
Having no result with our current problem,
my mood turns foul and I start thinking someone must have stolen
it. Then the thought of that guy Moon mentioned before arouses my
I know there’s a small chance he might not
have taken it, but I can’t come to any other logical conclusion. He
must have lured Moon and then waited for her guardian to pick her
up. Then when he saw Gigi, he thought he’d strike.
“Grandma, that guy I saw you wave to before,
did he come close to you?”
“Well, yes, Ivy. I almost blacked out, so he
helped me. He led me to this chair and gave me water.”
“That explains it, then,” I say in flustered
anger. I crouch down to Moon’s level and start questioning her.
“Was he in a wheelchair?”
“No, Vivi. He has crutches.”
“Good, now you stay with Gigi. Vivi will be
back with our bus money, okay?” I instruct them and then whiz away
to try to catch the thief that stole our money.
“Okay, but Zacky is not…”
I don’t hear the rest of Moon’s sentence
because I’m already running along the corridor toward the exit,
trying my best to catch up to the culprit. Luckily, that culprit is
on crutches so his mobility is slow.
Turning a corner, I catch sight of a guy
wearing a blue shirt with a white cast on one of his legs. He’s
hobbling along with his crutches at a snail’s peace.
I smile. Knowing I’m only a short distance
away from him, I summon my strength to run even faster.
“Hey, you. Stop right there!” I shout,
hoping he’ll hear me and will stop.
He doesn’t stop. Nor does he take notice of
So he wants to get away. Not this time. I
must catch him. I need to catch him. He isn’t going to get away
with stealing our money like this.
Money is in short supply in our family. With
hospital bills for Gigi and Moon mounting, we can’t afford for some
random stranger to snatch our money. After the incident with my
parents and brother, I vow to find justice and stand my ground,
even in these smaller cases.
I’m in such a rush to catch up to that him
that I end up running too fast and now I can’t stop myself. The
force of momentum is too great, and when his body appears, I
literally crash into him.
“Jesus Christ, watch where you’re going,” he
says, his face kissing the linoleum floor.
That voice. I remember it from
And then he lifts his head. And time
practically stops for me.
I look at him, those emerald irises, feeling
an odd familiarity, as if we’ve met somewhere before. My heart
skips a beat. In turn, my eyes drop to his lips. One looks a bit
swollen, like he’s been stung by a bee. And from those lips comes
the word, “Juliet?”
That word makes time move again. I shake my
head to get myself out of this imaginary fog and stare accusingly
“Give me back my grandma’s money.”
He shakes his head then, as if he’s in the
same fog as I. His face is a mask of confusion after that. He asks,
“What are you talking about? What money?”
Looking for his crutches, which now lie on
the side some distance from him, he stares at me and says, “Aren’t
you going to be a good citizen and help me pick up my
I’m stunned. For a moment, I don’t know how
to react. By instinct, I lean down and pick up one of his crutches
and offer it to him.
He lays it beside him and then flicks his
eyes to the other, which is still sitting near his foot, as if
Aren’t you going to get the other one?
I pick that one up too and give it to him,
then stand back, not sure of what else to do, my first mission of
getting justice and standing my ground all forgotten.
Those emerald eyes… where have I seen them
before? They are so green in the sunlight, like green flames filled
with life and energy.
“Aren’t you going to help me up?” he asks
when I just stand there looking at him.
“I gave you back your crutches,” I tell
“I need help standing up. I can’t use those
crutches to stand up. I don’t have the strength in my leg. Help me
up. Quick,” he demands.
When it comes to quick demands like this,
I’m not sure what to do. So I hold my hand out for him to take so I
can support him.
He literally heaves over me, and I almost
topple over under his heavy weight. Pushing him back upright so
he’s standing against the wall with his crutches now supporting
him, I stand back and ask, “Are you all right now?”
“Yeah,” he says, smiling. Looking at me, his
emerald irises dilate and spark.
“Good,” I say. “Now give me back my
“Again, what money?”
“Don’t play coy,” I say, standing my ground.
“I know you took it from her. Her money went missing straight after
you held on to her. Now give it back.”