Chapter 5: Movie
Cast's mind was into a deep space that he didn't even notice that Lina had already arrived. He'd only been aware of her presence when he heard the squeak of the chair as she dragged in on the other side of the table. "Hi," she greeted warmly on him using those charming smiles of her.
Cast breath almost abandoned his body when he took his first glance on her. He doesn't know whether she had or not had done something to herself but she looked more stunning than before. And his void expression instantly lightens up on just a simple glimpse on her. "Hi," he greeted back wholeheartedly.
"You're already here? Am I late?"
"No, you're just in time. I'm early."
"Good thing to know. So what's for today?"
"Heaps and they're already settled." Cast has sets everything for the day. But before they go through that, he needed to do something first before it slipped off his mind again. His brain isn't that straightened whenever he's around her. "But before that, I need to do something first before I forget it again."
"What?" Lina asked, wondering what it might be that he needed.
Cast pull out his cell phone from his jacket. "You're number."
"Huh?" It was kind of obvious but it still lost her.
"You're cellphone number. I don't have it yet."
"Oh!" Lina snapped. "My cellphone number?" she verified. Cast nodded. Without any further undo, Lina gave him her cell phone number. "Okay, this is my number."
In return, he also gives his.
"Thanks," he said, saving her number in his phonebook. "Now I can call you anytime."
"Of course." Now the connection won't just cut whenever they are set apart after their afternoon meetings. "Now that that part is over," he put his phone back to his pocket. "I think it's a good idea that we leave now so that we can make the outmost use of our times."
"Leave? Where are we going? And I thought that you still have a lot of things to ask?"
Yes, he does. But he's not planning to spend the next few hours with her just talking. "I do, but that can wait. I wanted to make use of our time to do more interesting stuffs. It's no fun if we'll just spend the rest of the afternoon chatting again."
Cast straightened up and went to Lina at the opposite side of the table. "Shall we leave?" He offered his hand. Lina hesitate first but later accepted it. He gently touched her soft hands, pulled her up and led her to his car.
"May I know where you're going to take me first?" she asked, baffled on where he's planning to take her. "And how about my bicycle?" she added.
"We'll take it with us. I'll load it in the trunk."
"Okay. But you still haven't answered my question. Where are we going?"
"I'll tell you later." Cast opened the door of the passenger's side of his car. "Get inside first."
Again, Lina hesitated at first but still oblige. He shuts the door close as soon as Lina had entered. He went back to their table, took her bicycle, and loads it in the trunk. Once done, he joined Lina inside the car. "Now, can you tell me?" Lina asked again.
"You told me yesterday that you love to watch movies, right?"
Lina give him an approving nod. "Yeah."
"Then let's watch a movie. I know a fine theater nearby."
Her lips slightly parted, her expression puzzled. "Theater? Watch movies? With you?"
"Yeah, something wrong with that?"
"No," she shook her head. "But why movies?"
"Any better idea?"
She deliberated. "No," she said slowly. "I think a movie will be nice."
He smiled at her, "Great."
Cast felt awkward on their drive to their destination. One part was because she is uncertain about what's going happening and the other was because Lina, the source of his unease is just at the passenger's seat.Shaking?
Getting troubled by her unease, he asked. "Any problem?"
"Huh?" Lina catch a breath from his sudden question. "No. Nothing."
Cast didn't accept that. Lina's too nervous that her lies are too apparent. He can't blame her. Since even he also is worried about their current situation. This is technically the first time that he's going out with somebody, going out with a woman to be exact. Last night, he repetitively asked his brother about these types of cases but didn't tell him his reasons fearing that those Luch might interfere with him again. Sadly, Luch was of no help. He failed to give him even a single decent suggestion. But there was a single advice from him that didn't just help but actually make sense. It was when he said that in these kinds of situations, it is a constant rule that the man will always consider first what the woman wants.
It is either the man will ask or will anticipate. Asking is fine, the guy involve can always ask the girl directly what she wants and there's no problem with it. But it will be more special if the man anticipate rather than ask. If the man does so, it means that he knows the woman too well. It can make the woman feel that she is special to him.
"Then why are you anxious?"
"No I'm not!" she defended fiercely. But her actions are contradicted to it. It only convinced Cast even more.
Her face fell, "Yes," she finally admitted in a whimper. "Yes, I'm very nervous. But can you blame me?" She glanced at him with almost soaked eyes. "I'm not used to this!"
Cast gazed on her with a considerate set of eyes. Lina looks too nervous so he needed to fake a confident face on her. He doesn't want to fuel her unease by showing her that he is also unsure about their current situation. "Worrying will do no good, Lina. Trust me, everything will be fine. Okay?"
He doesn't know if what he said was enough but Lina nodded. "Okay."
"What do you want to watch?" Cast asked Lina as they stand in front of the posters and tarpaulins advertising the movies that the theater is currently offering.
"I don't know yet," Lina crossed her arms on her chest and mused. She can't decide which movie she would pick. Most of the movies are romance and dramas which are not her type. For the rest however, she already watched most of them. "I can't make up my mind," she turned on Cast. "How about you? What do you want to watch?"
Cast slowly and graciously turned his head back and forth looking at all the posters. Lina lost her breath on the sight. Is there nothing that this man will do that is not too elegant? Cast pointed the third poster from the right. "How about that one?"
Cast pointed the movie entitled "RAVE."
Lina hasn't watched it yet but she already saw the trailer in the internet. It's an action movie about a 23 year old government assassin named Rose Hugo who seeks to kill the man labeled to be as the greatest assassin in the world. The man called by the name of Rave who disappeared from the face of the underworld two years ago. She's hunting him to avenge the death of her brother who is also her senior agent who was killed by the hands of Rave 2 years prior to his disappearance.
In the trailer, the storyline of the movie starts during a night when Rose was heavily wounded after a serious encounter upon doing one of her missions. She was helped and tended by Xander, a 19 year old high school kid living in an almost rundown apartment. Upon knowing that making a contact with an assassin like her will put the life of the kid in constant danger, in returning the favor of saving her she decided to protect him by recruiting him to the agency to be her apprentice and their thrilling and romantic adventures together began.
Lina didn't notice the poster earlier but she had been dying to watch that movie since it premiered 2 weeks ago but failed to do so due to her studies. "Sure! That movie is cool."
"Okay, I'll go buy the tickets. Just wait here."
Lina did as Cast lined up at the ticket counter. While waiting, her nose sniffed the scent of butter and corn. The scent diverted her attention to the snack bar where popcorns are currently being popped. Lina bought a large bucket of popcorns. As soon as she paid and receive her bucket, Cast returned with their tickets.
His gaze instantly dropped on the bucket filled with small puffy stuffs on her hands, "Popcorns?"
Lina nodded and offered the bucket to him, "Want some?"
Cast responded by taking a piece into his mouth. "It's crunchier than it looks."
Her brain registered bewilderment, "Why do you look so surprised? Haven't you eaten popcorns before?"
"Yeah, I never bothered."
Lina handed the bucket to him, "Then here, have some more."
Cast smiled on her. Lina feels like a three year old little girl offering a candy to her new friend. "Thanks," he took another bite. "The movie is about to start. Let's go."
The preview trailers are just starting when they entered. Since the movie is already on its third week, the room wasn't that crowded with people. They found a couple of empty seats at the back to the right as they looked at the screen.
They ate their popcorns as they waited for all the trailers to end. Lina placed bucket on her lap and there was an instance that instead of picking a piece of popcorn Cast picked up her finger by mistake. Cast instantly withdraw his hand back while she flustered along with crazy thoughts that registered on her head again.
Lina calms herself down. She's entertaining and analyzing things in an odd way again and it tends her to overreact on the situation. It's not a date. They're not having a date. They are just two friends associating a day together watching a movie. End of discussion. They're not dating. Damn, they're not even lovers.
Even though she'd already spent some times with him in the past days and throughout all those situations, they build their trusts on each other and strengthen their bonding, making her feel more comfortable with him and him to her. But the present situation is different. She is currently watching a movie with him beside her. And no matter how much she tells her self to the fact that they not dating. There is the obvious fact that she is inside a movie house with him. So no matter how untrue it is. In the eyes of other people that can see them, they will think that they are two teenage lovers going out on a date.
The last trailer finally ends and the movie started. The rating certificate displays on the screen and the lights are then lowered, leaving the entire room into darkness.
For the first 20 minutes, the movie had her attention. However, Lina started to feel woozy caused probably by the cool temperature made by the air conditioner and the dark ambiance of the room.
Similar to eating, Lina is also pretty weak against the urge to sleep. And no matter how small that urge is, she easily succumbs to it. Her eyes slowly close and her world drifted into darkness.
Hearing her soft snores, Cast looked at Lina beside him. He gasped heavily on the sight, like it's too much for him to handle. Lina is so gorgeous in the middle of the darkness. She's already too cute awake but she's a lot cuter while sleeping. He can watch her like this forever and will never grow tired of it.
Her face portrays more of a child who just entered her early teenage years rather than a girl pushing to her adulthood. The light from the screen illuminates her long black shiny hair making his hands itch to touch them. Getting rid of the self-restrain that made him of who he is, he gives in.
Placing his hand around her head, he touched her hair. Her hair feels a thousand times softer than what he expected it to be. They are healthy, as tough as nylon strings but softer than silk. In other words, they are perfect, strong in the most beautiful way.
Sifting his fingers through them, her head tilted upon his touch. And since her head was barely holding at the back of her seat, a little force can tend it to fall out of balance. But the worst part was it has fallen towards him.
Cast entire body froze like a statue when Lina's head landed on his chest. It also stuck his other arm around her making it impossible to move it without waking her up.
Yeah, wake her up. Like there's way in hell that he'll do that.
He gazed down on her. With her this close to him, it was very difficult not to lock his eyes to her mouth. Her damp and luscious mouth.
The thought of kissing her haunts him again. Only this time, the claim is more powerful.
He wrapped his trapped arm around her. Kiss her! His psyche shouted on him. Throwing away all the self-control that he had in him, he dipped his head down for a stolen kiss. But when there lips were just about a single inch away to met, Lina moved to snuggle herself to his chest.
For a split second, Cast thought that she was waking up forcing him to pull away in an instance. Beading with cold sweats, he averted his eyes from her collecting his shattered thoughts.
Certain that his tangled brain is in top shape again. He gazed down on her again to found her still serenely sleeping.
The serenity enveloping on her face sends a thousand knives of guilt that pierced through his heart. Sighing in frustration and great regret, he dragged Lina closer to him in a very protective way. He shouldn't have thought of doing something obnoxious like that especially not without her awareness and consent. She'd trusted him and he will not ruin that.
But he already did, almost.
Lina shuddered from the coldness of the room. He wrapped her with both of his arms and gripped her tighter giving her warmth, protecting her from cold. His heart pounded as he recognized a new desire arising from him. A desire stronger than his will to kiss her and even stronger than anything that he'd ever felt in his lifetime. And it wasn't a desire to attain anything. Rather, it was a desire to protect, to protect Lina. He wants to protect her, to keep her away from harm and end the life of anyone who will come near her and intend to hurt her or even looked at her wrongly.
She is so precious, worthy to be protected at all cost.
And he wants to be his protector.
This is what he wanted to do with his life since the moment that he first saw her but failed to admit it, to be with her. To be at her side always. And even though he is still uncertain of what he truly feels for her. If it is just friendship or something more, he doesn't care for the while. And until that that day comes when his heart will finally be enlightened for what he truly feels. He will stay with her and be her friend and protector.
He opened his heart again. After a long time that he locked it up and hardened it like a stone and vowed to never share it to anyone anymore. He is opening it again.
Meek as it seems but that is what's going on. The heartless beast still has a heart and Lina was right all along. No wonder he believed her without a fragment of doubt on the first place. She still saw that part of him that has goodness. The part that he thought that no longer exist in him. Or maybe that it would be more precise that it was her that brought it to him.
Even during the time that he hasn't closed his heart, he is not this caring and passionate towards anyone even to his own brothers. Of course he cared for them but not this immense as what he felt for Lina, like he'd rather face death a million times than to fail her.
Friendship or something more, his feelings bear no importance to him. Whatever the future holds for him or wherever the foolishness of his heart will take him. He doesn't care any less. He has peace whenever he's with her and she'd given him a purpose to live. That will be enough of a reason to leave everything on fate and take the risk that life arranged for him.
The movie was completely ignored. And even though that it beaten the purpose on why they are here, the moment that they are having right now is much more precious than that.
Resting his face on her hair, she inhaled the mint scent of shampoo and woman giving him deeper peace. "Sleep tight, Sunshine," he murmured, calling her in a nickname whispered by his heart.
The name suits her. She's like the Sun. She can bring the light in his life that is in the depth of darkness, the warmth to his cold soul, and the rays of hope that still makes him believe in the existence of kindness.
Closing his eyes, he let his peace consumed him.
Lina came awake with the feel of something warm that engulfs her. As she slowly slid her lids open, she found herself leaning on Cast with her head rested on his chest.
"You're finally awake," Cast murmured.
Lina looked up at him meeting his gaze. Their faces were just a few inch away from each other. The moment took her unprepared mingled with the fact that her newly awakened thoughts are still shambled. It almost took her breath away but she urge herself not to crumble, "What happened?"
"You fell asleep."
His warm breathing tickled her nose, "I fell asleep?"
He nodded, "More than an hour ago."
The way her eyes widened mirrored on his gaze, "An hour?" She missed the movie then. She tried to shift her position only to find herself being held by Cast two strong arms.
Her eyeballs almost bogged out. Her cheeks got redder like it never had before. She mentally counted from one to ten. At five, her hysteria took her. What in the world is going on!? As if Cast perceived her stir, he unwrap his arms from her. She instantly makes a semi-swift movement and straightened up back to her seat.
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to." Cast started explaining what happened. He told her that she fell asleep while watching the movie. Her head fell on him and it stuck his arm. He also fell asleep and just woken up.
"So we miss the entire movie then," she told him, gazing with disappointment at the rolling credits on the screen.
"We can stay and watch it again," he suggested. "After all, the movie is a free-seating."
That will be a good idea and she is used to it. Whenever she's watching a movie in a cinema and she happens to love it, she repetitively watches it until she grew tired of it. "You won't mind?"
He also steadied his gaze on the screen. "We're here to watch that movie. It's a shame if we leave empty-handed."
Her smile returns then. Holding her hands together, she extended both her arms upward and made some stretching. "A good movie after a long nap," she yawned.
"Sounds great to me," Cast also did some stretching. "You still have some popcorn?"
She handed the bucket she was holding, "Yeah."
Cast took it and eats some. The trailers ended once again and the film restarts.
"I can't believe that the assassin Rave was actually Xander." Lina said to Cast, taking a huge bite on her fifth cheeseburger.
Right after they watched the movie, they both complained of being hungry and headed directly to the nearest food establishment to have a meal. And since the time that they'd left the theater until they settled on their table, they kept on discussing about the movie they'd just recently watched.
After taking a sip of his drink, Cast replied. "It was really a huge twist. From the start I'd really expect that Rave is going to have his appearance as the final antagonist on the movie. It really took me by surprise that Xander was Rave, he got amnesia for the last two years and forgot that he's world's greatest assassin."
Lina settled down the half consumed burger on her plate. "Yeah, but what really caught me was the way that Rose still loved Xander despite the truth that he's her brother's killer." The thought whirled on her head over and over again. Keep on asking her self if it is possible that a woman would really love a man that much that she will value him more than anything, more than her self and her own family.
Lina remembers her family, the one she'd lost and the one she currently had. She can't imagine herself finding a man to be more valuable than her family. She stared at Cast. An unknown and sudden stab plunged through her chest. She shuddered at the thought. Ridiculous!
Cast is special but her feelings wouldn't go that far. She thinks.
"Lina, sometimes there is a chance in our lives that we find a certain someone to be more valuable than anything else, even more than our own lives and even more than the lives of our families. He or she will be that special person that we can't live without, someone that we will love so much that we will be willing to die and or even kill for them."
Cast phrased his words casually but for Lina his words had projected heavier meaning to her than what he truly intended. "Maybe, but I believe that it's a very rare thing to happen that a certain person will love someone and cherish them more than the family that unconditionally loved her. I mean, I don't say that it's bad or anything. But family is still family. And blood is still blood. We can't change that fact."
"So you're saying that you won't become a person like Rose who abandoned her revenge for the man she loved."
"Yes. For me, my family is more important."
Cast looked away, "Don't get me wrong but I think it's still early for us to say that. We are not definite, so we can never be certain of anything not until the day that life finally decided to settle that down on us."
Again, his words were heavier than what she thinks he'd intended them to be. "You sound quite serious about this. Does it mean that you'd already found your special someone?"
He went silent first before complying. "Nope. I'm afraid not yet." He gazed expressively at her. Like he's passing her a message she can't decode. "But just like what I said, we can never be certain."
Lina picked up her food again and took another huge bite. "I believe you," she said in a mouthful. "But I'm not that kind of person and I believe that I'll never be. I love my family so much that I cannot even imagine myself abandoning them for the sake of someone else."
"Is that so? I envy them. They have you." He paused and stared at her with vivid eyes. "And I also envy you, for being that kind of person to your family. How I wish I could be the same."
"Do you have issues with your family?"
He's grinning but his expression was serious, "A lot. Consider yourself lucky that you're not in my shoes. Whenever I'm around my brother, I feel like heaven and hell are clashing. I love my brother, I really do. But things between us are just too complicated."
He's unhappy because he's not in good terms with his brother. She ached for him. Oh wait! He'd just say that he had a brother. He'd shared to her something about his family. She went silent.
"What's wrong?" Cast asked.
"You just said that you have a brother."
"I did. Why?"
"You shared to me something about your family. That's new."
"Oh yeah, I haven't told you anything about that. But on the other hand, so are you."
She didn't respond right away. She looked at him and wondered what will he thinks of her once she tells him the truth. She then looked away carrying a forlorn expression. "I'm an orphan. I lost my parents when I'm still a baby."
"I'm sorry to hear that."
Lina turned to him again and smiled. "It's okay. It's not as bad as it sounds. I got adopted and my foster parents loved me more than a real daughter."
Cast responded a smile, "Good for you. Whether by blood or not, it's still a nice thing to have parents."
"How about you, where are your parents?"
His face expressed gloom. "I'd also lost them before I got the chance remembering them."
Stunned, Lina went silent again thinking of what she'd just done. If she's bringing out a sad memory and it pained her, it's just fine because it's just her who experienced it. But if it also pain others, it's unbearable to her especially if that person is someone important to her. And Cast is a person that is important to her. "Oh Cast I'm sorry, I shouldn't have brought this out."
"It's alright. After all, you can never miss what you never had."
She ached for him even more. For years, Lina had suffered a life without knowing her real parents. The love of her foster parents was enough but it never filled the holes in her heart that wonders what would it feels like if she's being kissed and embraced by her real Mom and Dad.
Within those times, she wished for someone whom she can share her feelings, a friend who can understand her pain. But now that she found one, she wants to wish it back. When she's being hurt, it feels bad. But when someone she loved is getting hurt, it feels worst.END OF CHAPTER 5