You can read part one here.
It’s been a while, and I already have enough money to buy my mom’s favorite book, Tess of d’Urbervilles. I also added some extra funds for my book preference, Jane Austen. I do hope my money would be enough to buy one of his vintage umbrellas too. Hehe!
I was so excited! I can only imagine my mom getting so giddy as she knows I’ll return home with her one and only request. Oh my! If only she’s still here.
“Good afternoon! Anybody here?” I shouted as I open the not-so-old door. It squeaked as I opened it slowly. I bet the owner could hear the door as of the moment.
“You’re back my dear. I’ve been waiting for you. Going to buy the book?” he asked me, as he assists me to the chair where I used to sit that first day I was here.
“Yes. I just hope my budget suits two books.” I smiled, as my eyes wander around the store. Some of the items I saw before were gone, while there were new items.
“We’ll see that. What books are you going to get? Well, aside from Tess of d’Urbervilles.” He lead me to the books section, and I immediately searched for Jane Austen.
“Uhm. I already found Jane Austen, but where’s Tess?” I asked, as I continue to scan the shelves for the book I’ll be buying.
“Let me check my record. Could you wait for a sec?”
I nodded and he went back to the counter. He scanned a large notebook, which I believe is the record of his sales and inventory. It took him a few minutes before he found the information that we both needed.
“I’m sorry milady. Tess of d’Urbervilles was borrowed since last week. It was supposed to be returned yesterday.” I can see the frustration in his black, round eyes. Damn it! Who borrowed it?
“Oh my. That’s not good.” I sigh in frustration.
He looked at me and asked, “Maybe you could do me a favor. You could get the book at the borrower.”
My eyes widened after he said those words. “I’m a customer, sir. Not your employee who’ll be searching for your lost book.” I snapped. I don’t want to be rude, but I don’t like other people telling me what to do.
“So you’ll have to wait until that man return the book before you could buy your copy. If and only if he’ll still return it.” He makes himself busy with index cards and continues to scribble on his notebook.
I sighed. I wanted to get the book as soon as possible, before other people could get it for themselves. Should I get the deal? Or will I just waste my time and effort in chasing for that book?
“Who’s the borrower?” I asked him. “Give me his address and I’ll take the book back.”
“He signed as Marius Bienvenida. He placed his work address rather than his house ’cause he told me he just moved in and he haven’t memorized his address.” He gave one of the index cards that he’s been reading for me to see the details.
Oh my goodness. Is this for real?
“Are you ok? You look pale.” I’ve been thinking of lots of memories, happy and sad, when the store owner caught my attention.
“Y-yes. I’m good.” I stammered, but I contained a more confident voice at my second statement. Why on Earth is he here?
“So are you going to get the book, Mam? Please do this as a favor to me. I can’t leave the store. You see, I don’t have an assistant. And he might come here to return the book while I was away.” I looked at him and he looked worried. I just don’t know if he’s worried for me or for the book. Well, he’s missing his income if the book is lost.
“I’ll leave you my phone number so that you could contact me when he return the book. And please, if he does, please tell him to wait for me here. Could you do that?”
“That’s the deal.” and he escorted me out of the store. I was thrilled. And excited maybe.
It’s been years now. I’ve last seen Marius when we’re still in college. When we’re still good together. After things got messed up, we haven’t talked to one another until I flew here in London. Now I wonder, what is he doing here?
The store owner said he works now in a new establishment on the other street. What happened to his “I won’t go abroad for work but for travel purposes only”? And why on London? He always wanted to visit Dubai, USA, and Canada, but not London.
I continued searching for the store with the name Te Quiero. The store owner said it’s a coffee and desert shop, owned by Marius’ family. Wow! Things have changed indeed! Who would have thought that his family already owns a restaurant abroad? They must’ve been working so hard!
My heart was on the racetrack again. I could compare it to a car who’s running at the speed of 280 MPH, beating the World’s Fastest Car Clocks Record Speed of 270.49 MPH. I was nervous. I was excited. I was afraid to face him after so long. I’m on a roller coaster of emotions that only goes up, and makes me feel nauseated.
After 15 minutes of walking and strolling at the streets, I saw a purple-colored signboard that bears the name of their store. It was indeed a small shop, and I guess it has five to ten tables only. There was a cute counter, all in shades of purple, and a glass containing their sweet delicacies. They’re serving a variety of cheesecakes, carrot cakes, muffins, and brownies. There were few customers when I entered their shop, and it looks like everyone was satisfied with the menu.
I immediately approached the counter and was shocked to see his mom as the cashier. She was shocked to see me, but her smile makes me think that she was glad I was here.
“Is that you, Shammy?” she asks, as she come closer to me.
“Yes Tita. You’re one and only Samantha Charlotte. How are you?” I hugged her tight, like the way I used to do.
“You’re gorgeous, iha. I’m good. How about you?” she ushered me to a sit nearest the window, and asked their waiter to give me a carrot cake and choco-banana smoothie.
“I feel great Tita. How long have you been here?”
We chatted and chatted for the next hour. Or hours I guess. She told me that Marius have started the business a year ago, and she just flew last month. She wanted to help him with the business, and to help him develop his skills in baking and cooking. He moved here almost two years ago, and was studying culinary and baking. The waiter was Marius’ cousin, Jeremy, who’s also studying at the same school as Marius.
“By the way, I need to ask a favor from you, Tita. Marius borrowed a book from the antique shop at the next street, and he has to return that yesterday. They’re quite strict with schedules here, you know.” I actually forgot about the book since I was enjoying my free meal and joyful reminiscing with Tita Veron.
“I’m sorry. I was the one reading that book. He borrowed it ’cause he thought I was bored. I’m not into books, honestly, but I loved the story. I just finished it last night, and he’s supposed to return it tonight.” She was at the other side of the table, sipping her favorite cappuccino. She never changed on that aspect.
“Okay. I’ll just tell the store owner about the book. My, I still wanted to talk with you tita, but I still have work in an hour. I should be going.” My heart sank of the thought of going too soon, but I have to.
“No worries my dear. You know where to find me, in case you’d have the time.” She hugged me again, and I never wanted to go away now. They’re like a family to me, and that never changed even if years have passed.
“Sure tita. I won’t miss the chance to get a free slice of carrot cake.” I winked at her.
“You’re still a naughty child you know. So you have work, right?”
I waved goodbye to her and she did the same. I was about to walk through the door when I heard a familiar voice calling my name.
And that’s where all the crazy shizz begins.
Part three next? Hahah!
I’ll be thinking about that first.
Thanks for reading! :D