Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Traffic Lights {9}

I was calling out for them. I screamed my lungs out, I yelled until my voice disappeared.
Jawaher wake up…
I felt strong nudges, and heard soft whispers calling my name. I opened my eyes, slowly adjusting to what’s happening.
Wake up, princesse. She said, emphasizing on the French.
I opened my eyes, this time I was wide-awake.
I need water… Aibileen walked by the table and poured me a glass of water. What time is it?
2:31 PM. Shit!
What?! I sat up straight and looked around me.. How did I get in bed? I looked at myself. Then I looked around. Shit. Where’s Yousef? I hope he’s fine…
Why are you blushing? Ma petite fille?
Am I? It must be because of the thick layers on top of me. I lied. I got up and walked straight to the bathroom. I had a shower then wrapped a towel around my body and walked into my closet. I picked out something appropriate for the cold weather since it was still raining lightly. I wore my clothes then wore a trench coat on top.. I French-braid my hair and applied a bit of nude lipstick.
Aibileen, I’ll be back in a few hours, I wont take so long. I’ll be back for dinner.
I got an apple- avoiding Aibileen's "lecture"- and kissed her cheek and left. I tossed the apple in my bag and got out my umbrella once I walked out of the building.
I called Mia for directions. Once I arrived I realised that his building was only a few blocks away.
I went up to his floor, and then walked down the marble floored hallway with beautiful Japanese paintings on the wall. A large black door, with golden embroidery had the initials VY on it. I pressed on the shiny golden button that had a small bell carved through the button, waiting impatiently for him to open the door.  
The door opened, a beautiful blonde woman stood in between blocking the entrance in her long lace trimmed silk satin robe that barely covered her satin bra and briefs holding a nearly empty glass in one hand and a large dark green bottle in the other. Her blue eyes were beautiful, but she looked extremely tired with puffed red eyes and smudged eyeliner.
Yes? Her smell of strong cigarettes was spreading around.
Is this Vladimir’s apartment?
What do you want? Are you one of his girlfriends? He’s not here. She could barely speak and her eyelids were slowly shutting, she was out of balance. I wasn’t sure if she was being rude or whether she was drunk? She was about to close the door when he showed up, my heart raced. What was I thinking, I just made the wrong move and came all the way here, I should’ve just called. He’s most probably busy…
I’m sorry I did not mean to show up at this time of the day by your doorstep. I… Umm… I ran out of words, it was hard for me to speak. I wasn’t sure why I was on the verge of crying. But he said a few Russian words and took the beautiful blonde woman and interrupted me.
Come in. Please. He felt sympathetic, his eyes filled with guilt. I felt the dryness in my throat slowly climb up to my eyes.
He carried her all the way to one of the rooms and left it slightly opened. He placed the cup on the sink and washed it, and threw the bottle in the bin.
I did not expect you to come here.
I’m sorry, but I was so worried about you… About last night. How are you?
I’m fine thank you. And I’m sorry about last night; I didn’t mean to scare you or anything…
No! Not at all. My place is your place; you’re welcome any time. I smiled.
The silence was slowly taking over. I wanted to get out, the scene a few minutes ago kept on playing and I was so curious I wanted to know who she was! Was all what he said last night a lie? Telling me he loved me and now I catch him with some woman who was somehow naked! 
Well, I should be going it’s late and I promised Aibileen I was going to have dinner with her. Can you join us?
I’m sorry I can’t. I was waiting for an explanation but he did not continue his sentence. I was waiting for him to tell me who that lady was, but he did not speak. I got up and walked towards the door. He walked in front then looked at me.
He cupped my face with his cold hands.
Your cheeks are so warm. His eyes dazed out. My heartbeats rising, my breathing became unsteady. He kissed my forehead sucking away all my confidence. His kiss stung my heart, poisoning it with the venom of love. What have I done? I love you. I blushed. He held my hand and squeezed it gently then smiled. 

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Traffic Lights {8}

Dedicated to Noonzii, sorry for the delay, but we tried our best! Enjoy x

I opened the door immediately after hesitating for seconds thinking whether I should let him in or not.

Yousef what are you doing?! Come in…

His hands were shaking cold, I ran into my room and got him a think furry blanket and a huge woolly cardigan and some thick socks. I helped him remove his hoodie and shirt. It was the first time I had ever seen him wear something out of his comfort zone, which to me was suits. I lit the fire in the mantel and sat beside him, covering him up. Something was distracting him and I was unsure of what was happening in his mind, but I was deeply concerned. I walked in the kitchen and made him some hot chocolate topped with marshmallows, M&Ms and whipped cream. I got the cookie jar with me and placed it on the table and handed him his hot chocolate. We sat there for what seemed like hours, but it was only a few quiet minutes. He was drinking his hot chocolate and I was listening to the fire cracking, the rain pouring and thunder roaring, the sounds of nature against human breathing. 

I’m sorry for scaring you. He was staring at his mug.
I hugged him from the side uncontrollably, I wasn’t sure of what I was doing.Yousef, I’m always here for you. I held his hand. I know that was very unexpected, but are you fine? He turned around facing me. His light blue eyes, with the reflection of the fire on the side, were the most beautiful thing I had ever seen, the combination of fire and ice with such beauty. I could hear his heartbeat through his shirt, his heavy breathing, the small sweat drops forming on his forehead, the way his eyebrows moved; how unsure he was of what he was about to say.
I don’t know what was clouding my thoughts, but whenever I think of something you’re there. Ab’3a agoolik shay, but I’m too scared of what’s about to happen. I’ve been overthinking, my mind is about to explode because of all the sleepless nights and struggles. He placed our hands on my bare knees, his touch sent shivers down my spine. Jawaher, please understand what I’m about to say is very difficult for me, but please listen till the end. When I first saw you, I wasn’t sure what was going on, whether I was unsure of you? Or whether I was madly in love. I had mixed emotions but I was spurning them every time you showed up. The day you set foot in the atelier was the day my life dramatically changed, and once you knew about me I thought there is a meaning to life after all, that there are people out there that are bothered and have spent some time trying to find out more about you, so you mean something to them. And more importantly she respects me even though I’m trying to hide away from my past. Because you saw me for being Yousef and not Vladimir and you accepted me… Please always know that I love you more than anything else in the world. And I’m here because I feel safe when I’m with you; whenever you’re around I am calm... I love you too... I thought in my mind. But its too soon.. It was getting awkward, I was running out of words.. I didn’t know what to say. And every time he looked at me I would blush even more, my face burning 10x more. He stared sneezing, once twice until it got a bit out of control, and then it got serious. I checked his temperature with a thermometer, disappointed that he has a fever.Stay here for the night until you feel better. Seems like it’s going to rain until the morning. As much as I hated the rain, I was very happy that he was staying. And I thanked god that if rain would bring us together, then let it rain.  I went back into the kitchen and prepared him a traditional medicine Aibileen taught me that helps fight the flu/fever: a cup of warm water, honey and lemon (chamomile is optional).
Thank you. He said as a warm smile spread across his face. I went back in my room and got myself a blanket and some socks. I sat beside him, staring at the fire as it slowly invaded the wooden logs; I tucked my knees in and hugged them to stop the heat from escaping and the cold from entering. I don't remember what happened next... But my heart ached for more.. 

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Traffic Lights {7}

Excuse me sir; I need to talk to you for a second. Said the teacher’s secretary. He excused himself and walked out, it took him only a few seconds and he walked back in, he looked somehow concerned.
Jawaher al Flani, raise your hand please. I was surprised, so I slowly raised my hand up.
Yes sir. I stood up.
Someone outside needs you, some kind of urgent business. He looked at me, disappointed.
Class is dismissed, and Jawaher before you leave I need to have a word with you. My stomach was slowly turning into knots. I was worried. What happened? Why is he acting this way?
Can you please explain what’s going on?
What do you mean, sir?
Your grades are slowly falling, you’re mind is always in some other world, you’re not participating much in all of your classes. All your teachers are worried. What is it that is bothering you? What’s happening?
I felt dryness in my throat, I was still staring, I did not want to break the eye contact between us. But I had to. And so I did, I looked at the ground feeling a bit ashamed because of the lie I was about to blurt out.
Well my family was just concerned because I didn’t fly back to Dubai during the winter break and you know how it is, the time difference and all, we tend to Skype all night and I can't catch up with my normal routine and I’ve been working lately, everything is just messed up, you know? I just need to figure things out. I promise I’ll fix things and let everything go back to normal just the way it was.
Be careful young lady. I know I’m just an old teacher, but you are like my daughter. And I don’t want my daughter to hang out with people like the one that is waiting for you outside. Pointing at the car outside. My heartbeats accelerated.
Oh, V? He’s just an old family friend. He’s a good gentleman; don’t be fooled by his appearance. And thank you for your concern sir. I walked outside the building. And there he was, well dressed in his tailored suit leaning on his car while most of the students that passed by looked at him. He inhaled his cigarette closing his eyes and enjoying the moment. He took one last drag, and then gently flicked the cigarette with his finger as it flew in the air and hit the ground; his polished Italian shoes killed it.
Good morning beautiful! He slid his hand in mine and pulled it up to his lips and kissed it.
Good morning to you too. How are you?
El7emdellah good, you? That was the first time I ever heard him speak in Arabic. And let me tell you, that was the most seducing thing ever! I couldn’t stop blushing.
El7emdellah, I’m fine thank you. I bit my lower lip, trying to stop myself from blushing and laughing at how ridiculously stupid I looked.
We got in and we drove on our way to my 23rd photo shoot. The past months were a hectic and such a headache, I couldn’t cope with all the pressure, with finals and work and going to the atelier and trying to balance it by spending time with Aibileen. All in all it was just too much.
I looked at him, as we stopped by the traffic lights.
Yousef… Are you mad at me because I found out about you?
No. Why would I ever be angry? I found out all about you and I think we’re equal now. He held my hand.
This photo shoot was quite different to the others. It was more intense in a sense. The whole story was about a girl who was lost in her fairy tales but was found by a charming young prince dressed in tuxedos and instead of being on horsebacks he was driving luxurious cars; he made her the happiest girl.
I couldn’t believe we were finally done with that photo shoot; it was so long and so tiring. I barely slept last night. Or the nights before, surely I had dark circles under my eyes. I need a break, I want to fly away, just me and forget the world…

Once I dipped in the warm bubble bath I switched on the TV. That’s how bored I was, done working out, done with all the work. I barely switch on the TV. “If you’re good at something, never do it for free”- The Joker from Batman the Dark Knight was the first thing that was said and the first thing that caught my attention. I continued watching the movie; I was so engrossed. All my attention was to the screen. The movie ended, that was fast. I washed up then dried myself and put on my silk-satin kimono robe with my nightwear underneath. I went back to my room and put on some classic mixture of Beethoven, Mozart and Vivaldi and lied down on my bed. I wonder why I’m doing this. Why I bothered signing up to a modelling agency. What am I going to get from it? Is it beneficial? But with every question being asked, the answers were painful indeed, answers of flashbacks of Yousef and me. I want to go back, back to where I belong... Somewhere I myself don’t know where it is....

I closed my eyes. Darkness. Black. So peaceful.
I woke up from the loud noise coming from my opened window. It was raining heavily, thunder and lightning. I shivered; I got up and closed the window. 3:02AM, I unlocked my door and walked outside towards the living room. I turned on the kettle and made myself some chamomile tea and had Aibileen’s homemade cookies as a light snack. I sat down. I had a weird feeling growing within me, I was scared from the weather outside but what really scared me was the light knocking on the door. I wrapped my robe even tighter around my body; I wore my sandals and walked up to the door. I looked through the hole, and saw a man wearing his hoodie over his head drenched in water standing outside shivering. He knocked again, this time he looked at the hole. My heart stopped. It can’t be….