On a cold rainy Wednesday night, Mandi called me up at 1:30 am saying that she was waiting downstairs by the door, and asked me to go get her. When I open the door, I see her in her PJ's and a duffle bag in her hands, standing outside in the pouring rain.
"Hey, what on earth are you doing here?" I ask her
"We need to talk." She says in a sad tone
"Yeah sure, come in. Go head upstairs while I go fetch a few things, but be quiet, you don't want to wake up my mum." I grab her bag as she heads upstairs and go run to the laundry room to fetch a towel, and then whipped up some hot chocolate in the kitchen. While it brewed, I headed up to drop her bags in and check on her, but I couldn't find her in my room, so I guessed that she was in the bathroom. I head back to the kitchen just in time, and pour the drinks in Mandi's special mug and head back up.
I walk in seeing Mandi slumped on the edge of my bed with her hands covering her face. I walk over to her and hand over the hot chocolate, put the towel over her and dried her off, and asked what was wrong and why she was here at this time. She said that she and her mum got into a big argument, and her dad wasn't home so she ran away and headed straight here. Then she started crying, I put my arms around her and she was still shivering, so I grabbed my duvet cover and put it over us and let her weep into my shoulder as I pull her closer to me.
When her crying settled down a bit, I asked her if she wanted to sleep. So I fixed up my bed a bit and I laid down and Mandi laid next to me and I put my right arm around her, then she turned to face and curl into me. We just stayed that way until we both fell asleep.
That same morning, I struggle to wake, but I knew that I was awake, so I checked my clock and I see that it was 6 am, way too early for me to be up, so I head back to sleep, but Mandi starts shaking me awake saying she had to go and that her dad was waiting outside in the car, she gave me a kiss on the cheek, and before I knew it, she was gone.
That whole day at school, I couldn't focus on any schoolwork, not like I do anyway, but today was different, all I could think of was Mandi, and what happened the night before, and being worried if she was alright. I kept texting her again and again, but she would never reply, so I would call her during the breaks, but still no answer and I would leave countless voice messages. I did all that up until I got home.
The next day, I told myself to give it a rest, so I did, but as I was driving to school, I got a text from her.
*Hey, I'm not mad at you, avoiding you, or anything, it's just that I don't know how to tell you this in best way I could, it took me all day yesterday, and countless times for me to get this right, so here it goes.*
*My mum and I never really fought two nights ago, nor was my dad away. The only reason I came over the other night was so that I could spend one more night, if ever it would be my last night with you. Yes, I'm leaving, for LA to be exact. My dad was assigned to report over there as soon as possible, and he insisted that all three of us in the family would go. I tried to tell him that I wanted to stay, but his mind was already made up. That's why I went over to you the other night to tell you all this in person, but I couldn't find the courage. I'm really sorry L I Love You. Bye*
When I read that, I dropped my phone, nearly causing an accident. I pull over to the side of the road and text her back.
*dont go anywhere, i'll be right there*
After sending it, I made a U-turn and headed straight to Mandi's, in such a rush, I think I broke like 10 traffic violations.
I screech to a halt in front of the house, which isn't easy with my rust bucket of a car I have, which Mandi always seemed to love, she even named it 'Oliver' for no apparent reason. As I step out of the car, I look over to the driveway, and see that all their cars are still parked, which made me feel good that I could see her just one last time, here at least. I ring on the doorbell and, as usual, the maid opens the door. Before she could speak, I blast right past her and run up the stairs and head straight to Mandi's room, shouting her name as I run along the long hallway. I open the door, only to see an empty room, with absolutely nothing, not even a single trinket or pillows or anything really, except that on her bed there's a small pink box on top of it with my name written in red on it. I open the box and see a vile of her perfume and a note that reads
I'm sorry that I'm not there right now to say goodbye to you, but saying goodbye
to you once was hard enough, and I knew as soon as you read my text, you would
head straight here and skip school just to see me, that is why I sent it to you just
as I was about to board the plane so there would be no stopping me, and by the
time you'd read this, I would probably flying over you. I want you to know that
I never wanted any of this to happen, and that I tried my best to find a way just
to be with you. I love you
As I was reading that letter, my heart sank, and I slowly slid down to the floor. I just sat there almost breaking into tears. As I smelled the contents of the vile, her maid saw me tearing up and asked if I was fine or needed anything, and said that I could stay there for as long as I wanted to, but I knew reminiscing wasn't going to help, so I just stood up and left. Driving off, I didn't look back. That could probably the last time I could ever step foot inside that house.
It has been two and a half months since Mandi left, and everything has been totally different without her. I've been going to close to none of the parties I was invited to, but when I do go, I just sit there being passive having a Coke, then when my friends are all passed out or just about to, I take them to the car and drive them home. On weekends, I'm just stuck at home, with nothing to do.
Prom was the nail in the coffin for me, when all my friends went to the dance floor with their dates, I just sat there, staring at an empty seat which was hers to be, and thought to myself on what a night this would have been. When one of my friends pulled me to the dance floor, I just took a few steps back and leaned against the wall.
I was told by my cousin that I could bring her just to cheer me up a bit, but giving that she was one of Mandi's best friend, I couldn't handle it, so I just thanked her for the kind gesture and politely said no.
School just ended, and summer has really begun to make its presence known, the heat was unbearable. All the plans me and Mandi could have done during summer planned back in December of all the fun, exciting, adventurous stuff we could do were thrown out the window when she left. Thankfully, the Formula 1 season just started, and at least something would take my mind off her.
I've been looking forward to summer vacations every year, just because it would take me out of the country, but my mum never tells us where we're going, but now, it just seems like there is nothing to look forward to. After about two weeks after school ended, my mum told me to start packing for we were leaving the next week, before I could ask where we were going, she handed me an envelope. When I open it, a ticket falls out. The ticket said that we were flying to Los Angeles.
After seeing that, I started to get all frantic, for I started thinking about Mandi, and how to surprise her, or tell her. The whole week leading up to the day I leave, I asked for Mandi's new number and address from her friends, because I haven't heard or talked to her since the text, so I checked and double checked if I had everything I needed for the trip. Mark tags along to bring me to the airport, and whish me luck on finding Mandi.
On the plane, I still couldn't decide if I should call her, text her, tweet her, but I just decided to just show up in front of her door and surprise her.
The first two days in the US, felt like I truly belonged to wherever Mandi was, back home everything was great, up until she left, and now that I'm in the same place where she is, it feels right. I couldn't believe it took my mum 2 days to get settled in, but once we did, I got dressed in Mandi's favourite shirt, and ask my dad if I could borrow his car, then I started to look for her.
I hop into the driver's seat, but before turning on the ignition, I googled Mandi's address, and found out that she was just two streets away, so I hopped out of the car and tossed the keys back to my dad, and just started walking. On my way there, I saw some flowers, so I just picked a bunch, and I couldn't stop thinking about her, all the adrenaline pumping through my veins. When I get there, I go straight to for the door, I ring the doorbell and her dad opens the door…
So there I was, in my jeans, white polo and red tie, Mandi's favourite one, with flowers in my hands. Then I said
"Good morning sir, is your daughter home?"
He had this shocked look on his face when I said that, and then he said.
"I'm sorry son, but she's not with us anymore…"
I was puzzled, so I asked
"Dead, she's has been for the past two months. Why don't you just leave son." He says
I lost my smile when he said that, I thanked him for his time, and slowly walked back onto the curb, almost dragging the flowers on the driveway. This can't be true, it just can't
As I stepped onto the curb, I hear someone call my name, it was one of the most beautiful, angelic voice I have heard. I look around so that I could see where that voice came from, and suddenly there she was, the most beautiful girl in the world, the girl I loved standing right there. Her hair was a rich shade of tawny brown. It flowed in waves to adorn her glowing, porcelain-like skin. Her eyes, framed by long lashes, were a bright, hazel and seemed to brighten the world, my world. A straight nose, full lips, she seemed the picture of perfection. Had she smiled, the world would sigh with contentment.
I smiled at her, then she immediately ran towards me, as she got nearer, I dropped the flowers to the ground and opened my arms wide, then she jumped at me and I lifted her of her feet, but we both fall to the grass. We give each other the tightest hug there on the ground without saying a word. I started to get teary eyed and sniffing, so Mandi pushes herself up to look at me, then wipes my eyes and started giggling, then gave me a big kiss.
I roll over, so that she was under me, I propped myself up, and help her stand up. We wiped of the grass from our clothes and laughed, but before I could even say 'hi', she pulled me to her porch and sat me down on the swing sofa, then she sat on the other side of it.
"What are you doing here?" she asks in a cheerful voice.
"I'm spending my entire summer here, with you. I go home at the beginning of June." I say to her
"Awesome, but what were you doing at my uncle's house just now?" she asks me
"That was your uncle? That explains a lot." Face-palm moment. "I guess I had the wrong address, and your dad is such a great twin that I wasn't able to tell that it wasn't him."
"Haha, you're just as funny as I remembered."
We continue to talk forever, I tell her about prom and how lonely and sad I was since she left.
"I'm sorry, I never meant to hurt you." She asks for my forgiveness
"It's ok, I'm here now." I reply
Then Mandi's mom comes out looking for her, then she saw me and gave me a big hug.
"Jelo! Oh my god! What are you doing here?"
"I'm here for summer vacation." I say to her
"Well, since you're here, take care of my girl for me okay?" she says. "Mandi, I need to talk to you about something later." and then heads back inside.
"Sure mum, I'll be inside in a bit." Mandi says to her
I asked Mandi what all that was about. She sighed, and told me how sad she was as well, and would cry every now and then, and that her mum tried to cheer her up. After she told me that, I move closer to her and put my hands on her face, made her look at me in the eyes, and said
"I'm here now, you don't have to worry about anything, there's no need to cry anymore." Then I give her a kiss.
After I said that, she invited me inside. When I step in, it was like walking into an Apple store. Everything was square and black or white, and made out of glass, all I see were giant Macs and Apple gadgets. Mandi gives me a tour of the rest of the house. As we pass by the kitchen, one that would put Gordon Ramsey to shame, I see her mum cooking lunch and asked me if I was staying for lunch or taking Mandi out for lunch like I always did. I looked over to Mandi and asked her what she preferred, and she said to her mum that we would just eat whatever she was cooking up in her room so that we could catch up even more.
Then we head up to Mandi's room, which is very similar to her room back home. A giant four corner bed in the middle, a lazy-boy chair beside it, a dresser between them, a dresser right in front of the bed, with a mirror attached to it, to which all our pictures together are stuck onto it. The only new bits were that she didn't have a closet anymore beside the bathroom door, it's now a gigantic walk in closet, and she now had a balcony.
She told me to get comfortable, while she uses the bathroom. When she goes out, she's just wearing her underwear and bra holding two set of clothes on either of her hands and asks me to pick one. I picked the skinny jeans and tight sweater. When she got dressed, she grabbed her laptop and camera, and dragged me out onto the balcony, then onto the roof. We sat there under the shade of a very tall tree that reaches 10 feet higher from where we already were.
Up there, we just goofed of on the computer and took some artistic pictures with the SLR. Then her mom called us saying lunch was ready. I jumped down and told Mandi to stay and that I would get it.
I head back up with two bowls of traditional Italian spaghetti. When I sit down next to her, I ask where her dad was, and she said that he is always flying back and forth between LA and Phoenix. We just sat there and continued goofing off.
A bit later, Mandi got a text from her new friend here, Maria. Maria asked Mandi if she wanted to hang out at the mall. Mandi asked me if I wanted to meet her friends, and of course I said yes, I'm always up for meeting new people.
"How are we going there?" I ask her
"We can take my car, but you drive." She answers
"Sure thing, what's your car?" I say
"Uhm, go check her out yourself, boy are you in for a treat." She says
She jumps down back to the room, and I follow. She tells her mum that we were heading out, then grabbed the keys and headed for the garage. She opens the door, but it's so dark I couldn't see a thing.
"Get ready for this…." She says from behind and flicks on the light
And there it was, a black, 12 cylinder, V8 engine, Audi R8. My jaw dropped when I saw that car. I couldn't believe that it was hers.
Mandi steps down the stairs and tosses the key back to me and says
"A gift from daddy, he thought it would take my mind of you."
"I like how daddy thinks." I say to her. "This is seriously your car?"
"Nope, it's ours now, since you're here already." She smiles as she pulls me down.
I'm just looking at it in shock, also admiring the view of the car and Mandi
"Are we going or not?" Mandi smirks and ruffles my hair
I hop into the driver's seat and is left in awe. A Formula 1 style steering wheel, shining buttons and knobs on the dash, although the speedometer is simple, just the way we like it.
"So how do we get to the mall?" I ask
"Here, just follow this." She says as she inputs the mall into the GPS
"Hey, we should name this car, just like you did with Oliver." I say to Mandi as I back out of the driveway.
"Aww, Oliver, I miss that car. How is he?"
"Same as how you last remembered him. Hey, back to the task at hand, naming the car."
"Well, is this a boy or a girl?"
"I say boy, since it's an Audi and has a beefy engine."
"Alright, what about 'silver fox'?"
"Now why such a random name?"
"The fins on the side, they're chromed, hence the 'silver' in the name, and for its speed."
"Haha. I like it. From now on, this car will be called 'Silver Fox'."
Having new friends with a totally different background is actually nice. Maria was so friendly to me, it was like we knew each other for such a long time. Phoebe was such a kid, we go together well. Grant knows so much about Formula 1, almost as much as me. I guess Mandi surrounded herself with people who were similar to me in their own little way.
On our way home, I passed by In n' Out for dinner up on the roof. When we get there, Mandi climbs straight up to the roof, but I pull her down by her ankles, and she shreeks.
"Is there something wrong?" she asks
"No, not really. I just thought about eating here, on the balcony, much more romantic, hehe." I say
"Okay. Wait, let me grab the speakers." As she says that, Coldplay music starts serenading us.
After eating, we just doze of there on the balcony, with me leaning against the steel bars and Mandi leaning against me, still with Coldplay playing in the background.
I wake up with a drop of water on my head. I try to move my head up a bit and see where the water came from, it was starting to rain. I shake Mandi awake, but she was still so groggy. I tried carrying her, but I knew she was awake and playing with me by putting on dead weight. Then the rain just pored, and she just leaped out of my arms and ran inside her room, then to which I followed after grabbing all of the stuff. I got in soaking wet, and Mandi just smiled at me and tossed me a towel.
It was getting late and I had to go back home, so I gave Mandi a kiss goodbye and promised that I would pick her up from school on Monday since I had some family matters to attend to. So I borrowed the Audi to drive back home to avoid the rain, and Mandi would just drop by my place to pick it up before going to school.
A week later, I had really gotten so comfortable there that I spent the last 3 nights at Mandi's, and brought and picked her up from school. But during the day, I'm with my family.
This morning, my mum handed me an envelope with "Mandi" written on it, and told me not to open it until I was with Mandi and that she had to open it. So I just went with it and didn't touch it until I picked her up.
I pull up in front of the school, and wait outside, leaning on the bonnet with the envelope beside me. The bell rung, and as usual, Mandi was one of the first ones out, running to me. I give her a kiss and hand her the envelope.
"What's this?" she asks
"I dunno, it's from my mum, and she told me not to open it, and it had to be you." I say
She leans on the car beside me, opens it and pulls out a letter that reads
Hey kids, I got a real treat for you. I phoned am old friend of mine
that works over at the office of Disneyland, and she agreed to give
you two free VIP tickets, but you better hurry up and decide when
you two are going to go, because the tickets inside the envelope
expires in 3 weeks. Oh Mandi, consider this as an early
birthday gift. Have fun you two.
She looks in the envelope and pulls out the tickets, then looks at me, and we both smile.--- We both just decide to go this Friday, it's just the day after tomorrow, so why not.
The next day, I bring Mandi to school, and head back home to spend some time with my sister. Before leaving to pick up Mandi, I pack some clothes for up until Sunday.
I pull up in the carpark of the school, and text Mandi to go there, instead of the usual front. Mandi comes out looking a bit confused.
"What's all this? Why back here?" She asks as she raises her hands.
"I thought you wanted to change." I say as I hold up a bag
"Change? Change for what?"
"You'll see." I say
She heads back into the school to change, and emerges in a whole new outfit, a very simple sweater and jeans.
"I still don't get why I couldn't just wear what I was wearing a while ago." She says
"Oh, right, oops. I just go used to you wearing a uniform back home."
"Let's just go." I say as I load her bags into the boot
"So where are we going?" she asks as soon as I hop in the driver's seat.
"A place where you would enjoy"
"You and your surprises, they're annoying, but that's one of the things I love about you. Haha."
I pull onto the 101 and drive towards the city. I pull of the Hollywood Blvd. exit. I drive all the way up to Hollywood at Highland and pull into an underground parking.
"Jelo, where are you going with this?"
"You'll see." I say to her as I back up into a parking space.
I open up the door for her, and make our way to the elevator. We step inside, and I press 'G'. The doors open, the interior of the El Capitan Theater comes into view. Mandi looks over to me still confused.
"I still don't get it, what are we doing here at the El Capitan?"
"Well, I thought that since we were going to Disneyland tomorrow, might as well get into the Disney mood, by watching our favorite movie, Toy Story."
"Aww, Jelo, I love you so much." Then she kisses me on the cheek
After we bought the tickets, we moved over to the snack bar and indulged ourselves with every piece of candy, chocolate, and sweets we could find, and we bought two buckets of pop-corn, and 2 gigantic cups of Coke.
We head inside, and sit middle seats at the very back of the theater. During the previews, which lasted 15 minutes or so, we acted like a bunch of 5 year olds, eating almost all our snacks, playing with them, fighting over the biggest pieces. When the movie started, we played a game during the first two or three scenes, on who could finish they're pop-corn first, which Mandi took very seriously. When she finished hers, I wasn't even half way through mine, she put the bucket on my head and laughed so hard that one of the employees went to us and told us to shut it or leave.
After all the sugar has died down in our system, at about halfway through the movie, Mandi took my pop-corn and put it with the rest of our stuff on the seat beside her, and sat on my lap, and cuddled me. We just finished the movie like this. When the movie was over, I looked down and saw Mandi sound asleep, so I just kissed her on the forehead, and woke her up. She was so startled, that she jolted up, almost making me spill the Coke.
We head out of the theater, without Mandi saying a single word, but just holding my hand and leaning her head against me. I pull out of the car park and head home. At the first stop light, I look over at her and see that she was sound asleep, again, using my jacket as a blanket, she must have had a long day at school.
When I pull into her garage, I slowly opened the door, and carried her into the house, up to her room and lay her down on the bed. I head back down, to get our stuff in the boot. On my way back up, I run into her father.
"Jelo? You're here?" he seemed shocked
"Oh hey. Yup, I'm here for the summer." I say to him
"That's great! But what are you doing here now?" he asks me
"Well, we just came from a movie, and she fell asleep, so I just carried her up to the room, and we're going to Disneyland tomorrow, a gift from my mum, so I'm spending the night here." I reply
"Well, that sounds great. Hey, I just want you to know that I never wanted to hurt either of you, and---"I stop him mid sentence
"Sir, it's fine, I'm here with her now, that's all that matters." I say to him
"Good, now take care." He says to me
"You too sir, goodnight" I tell him
I head back up, dump our stuff onto the floor, take of my shoes, and sleep on Mandi's couch
The next morning, I wake up early to buy ourselves some breakfast. I took a shower, and got dressed. Before I left, I left a note on Mandi's lamp shade with a Post-It, just to let her know where I was.
I go to the garage, and instead of taking the Audi, which when I would start up, would make such a rumble that would wake up the whole family, so I borrowed her dad's bike. Luckily for me, McDonald's was just a few blocks away from where Mandi lives.
I got there, and ordered the usual for me and Mandi, and something for her parents. Then I head back, attaching the paper bags on the handle bars.
When I get back, I saw Mandi already ready to go, sitting on the front porch swing, just playing on her phone. So I then shouted
"My lady, I have brought thee some grubage for you on this fine spring morning. Care to join me inside?"
"Well of course my good sir. And do you like-th what I'm wearing?" she replies
She then stood up and showed of what she was wearing. When she did, I almost dropped the food in amazement, because she was wearing the exact same outfit she wore when I first laid my eyes on her.
I saw beauty back then in a girl wearing banged up red Vans, dark blue short shorts with a loose half buttoned white polo tucked into it, with barely there make-up and Ray-Bans used as a headband.
I tossed over the food to Mandi, as I went back in the garage to return the bike. I meet Mandi inside the kitchen, and we both started to eat. I also made some coffee for her parents, and a special brew that Mandi likes, that only I know how to make.
Then we were both startled, because both out phones and watches started ringing, then I remembered that I set all of them last night to go off at 7:30 so that we would have an early start at Disneyland. We packed up, and left a note for her mum that we already left and would be back by midnight, and we had some food and coffee for them.
We loaded up the R8, but I didn't start up the engine, I told Mandi to sit in the driver's seat and put the car in neutral as I pushed the car out, as she steers and takes care of the breaks. When we backed out of the driveway, I hopped into the driver's seat and Mandi sat in the passenger's, and the R8 roared to life, then we were off.
When we get there, we were able to park immediately, right in front of the gates. Being one of the few already there given that we were really early to avoid the lines, which was really stupid because we forgot that we had the VIP passes, which made us cut through every line. The ticket offices were still closed, but with our passes, we could go right in. Although, inside, people were still setting up stalls, opening the shops, basically, still opening. So we just walked along Main Street USA, and ran in front of the castle and took pictures.
Throughout the whole day, it was like we were just a bunch of kids again. We rode all the rides, at least twice, had pictures with all the mascots we could find, but we absolutely had to take a picture with all the Toy Story characters. Since we were such kids, we were asked to take part in the parade, and gave us free souvenirs, to go home with.
After the parade, during the fireworks, I asked someone to take a picture of us kissing in front of Cinderella's Castle, as the fireworks explode behind it. I asked for the camera back, and she tossed it to me, then me and Mandi just slow danced to 'When You Wish Upon a Star' right there and then, with all the people looking at us or passing by us.
"This is much more romantic than a dance at prom." Mandi says as she looks up to me in the middle of the song
After that, we sat in this small café and had the last churros the man was selling, and looked up to the stars. When there were not as much people anymore, we got up and made our way back to the gates. When we got there, we saw someone selling the LGM hats we both loved starting to pack up, so we both ran to him and bought 4. We wore them all the way home.
When we get in the car, Mandi had the urge to play all the Disney classics songs she had on her phone all the way home. With us being us, and hyped up on sugar, we sang along to every lyric of every song until we got home.
Mandi didn't bother to bring down the stuff, as soon as I pulled into the garage, she jumped out of the car and went inside. So I grabbed all the bags of goodies, and her hand bag, and headed up. When I got into her room, she was already down to her underwear, lying on the bed passed out. I put the stuff on her dresser, got dressed myself, and tucked Mandi in, and passed out on the couch.
The next day, I woke up at already lunch time, I roll of the couch and fall face first. I went to the bathroom and took a piss, when I head out, I smell bacon and eggs, I look around the room and see where it came from, and I see a tray on the side table, a big plate of bacon and eggs with a note from Mandi's mum.
Hey kids, went out with my old high school friend
today, and I would probably be back after dinner.
I also made you some breakfast if ever you two wake up.
For lunch, you can just get whatever from the fridge.
Try not to burn down the house.
I put aside the note, and started digging into the food, but only eating half, leaving the rest for Mandi. Then I went down to watch the Spanish Grand Prix on their massive TV in her dad's office. When I get in I see her dad, in his golf attire, also waiting for the race.
"Good morning. Waiting for the race as well?" I ask him
"Uhm, no. It was over like 4, 5 hours ago, I'm waiting for the replay." He replies
"Oh right, mind if I join?" I ask him
"Of course Jelo."
After the broadcast, he stood up and left to play golf, I said goodbye. I checked my phone, and I had a mini heart attack, because I saw that it was Mandi's birthday next Saturday, it totally slipped my mind. So I go grab my laptop and go into the mini home theater and plugged my computer to the projector and started planning stuff to do for her birthday.
I didn't know if her mum had any plans or anything for Mandi, so I called up her mum and asked if she did, luckily, I had the whole weekend to use up. So I just sat there in front of a giant screen with nothing on it. Then it hit me. I remembered that some of her friends from back home were here, so I sent them a message that there would be a party next Saturday, and that they were invited
I go up and grab Mandi's phone and call Maria and ask her help for the guest list, and she said that she would take care of the entire party, I don't know how many times I thanked her over the phone.
I've got Saturday night covered, that leaves me with Friday left to plan, but I then remembered that my grandparents has a lake house about 40 minutes from where we are, so I call them up and asked if I could use it, and they practically gave it to me.
All was set, I just typed them into my computer, but then I heard Mandi's voice looking for me, so I quickly closed all the applications, then opened the Formula 1 website and opened it to the results page, not to look ominous. I did all that just as she walked in.
"There you are." She says
"Here I am. " I reply
"So, what to do today?" she asks me
"Beats me, it's your house."
"Well, I would really like to work on my tan." She smirks
"To the back yard it is, but you don't have a pool."
"I have lawn chairs. That's more than enough for me to use."
We spent all day in outside in her back yard, both of us just laying there and listening to our iPods. I said goodbye after finishing lunch, because I had to do family stuff.
"Take the car" she says
"Nah, you'll need it. I can't bring you to school till Friday." I reply
"Oh ok." She says in a sad tone.
"I'm sorry, it's my mom." I tell her and kiss her goodbye.
On Thursday, I texted Mandi that I could bring her to school the next day.
Before picking her up, I went on errands to check and do things I would need for Mandi's birthday. Then I got a call from her asking where I was.
"What do you mean where am I? It's only 12, you're not out till 3:20."
"Don't you remember? I told you this morning that I would be out early."
"Oh right." I'm so dead. "I'm on my way right now."
I hop into the R8 and drive like mad to the school. When I get there, an hour late, I screech to a halt in front of the school, and Mandi was leaning against a tree trunk with her arms crossed and her mad face on. She struts her way to the car, and hops in without saying a word.
"Sorry…." I tell her, but she doesn't speak.
I head off to Topanga Mall. The tension and silence in the car is so awkward. When I parked the car, I locked the doors right as Mandi tries to open the door.
"I'm sorry that I was late, but were not leaving until you talk to me" I say to her.
"Okay. I accept your apology, but what are we doing here?" she asks
"Part one of your birthday gift."
"My birthday isn't until tomorrow. And 'Part one'? So there are multiple gifts?"
"Yup, this one being the new Formula 1 game, but lunch first."
We head straight for T.G.I.F. and have the usual. Then we head over to GameStop for the game. Then we headed back home.
When we get home, I grab their PS3 from the game room, and plug it into the projector and speakers in the theater, while Mandi got dressed. I pop in the game, and while it loads, Mandi comes in wearing my old PE shirt, it's so long on her, that she didn't even wear shorts, it acts like a night dress. We played against each other all day, until her mum came home at around 7.
Her mum walks into the theater telling Mandi to go and get dressed in something nice, and some makeup. Mandi asked why, and her mum just said that it would be a surprise. Madndi heads up, and her mum looks at me and says
"You have about ten minutes until she gets down, you better hurry."
"Thank you!" I tell her and kiss her on the cheek and go to the garage.
In the garage, I open the bonnet and grab my bag, and start to dress up there in my grey polo and jeans, and grab some flowers. Then I head back inside, and wait for Mandi at the kitchen and started to talk to her mum while waiting
"I don't really get why I had to get glammed up mom, I was having fun playing F1 with Jel-" Mandi stops mid sentence when she sees me.
I look over, and was mesmerized by a beautiful girl in a dark blue, polka dotted corset dress, with black pumps, putting on her pearl earrings. I nearly fall over the bar stool when she walked in.
"Uhm, Jelo, what's going on?" Mandi asks
"You'll see." I say to her as I hand over the bouquet of roses to her.
"I'll leave you two alone then." Anna tells her daughter. "Have fun" she whispers to her, but was loud enough to hear.
"Shall we?" I ask her as I offer my arm.
She grabs it, with the biggest grin on her face, she has no clue at all, and we made our way to the Audi. Mandi is left in awe, she was so quiet but was just smiling. Then I pull out of the garage, and into the night.
As I was driving, Mandi kept on asking me where I was taking her, but I would just tell her that it would be a surprise each time. I pull onto the 101, driving away from the city. Then pull of about 30 minutes later, and start heading west. 9 miles down the road, I pull off onto a dirt road, which apparently is not the best surface to drive an R8 on. So we start shaking, and when I look over at Mandi, I see her giggling.
"What's so funny?" I ask her
"You got to turn on the 'off-road' button" she says as she presses it for me, then looks back at me with a grin.
About a mile down the dirt road, the lake comes into view, with a two story Italian styled lake house on its edge. It takes us another 3 minutes to get to it though, due to the dirt road, but Mandi still has no clue that that's where we were heading.
As soon as I pull into the massive garage, decked out with so many toys, Mandi looks over to me in shock.
"What is this? What's going on? Where are we? Jelo!" she says as she flairs her hands around
"It's my birthday gift to you." I quickly respond.
"Birthday gift? You bought me a house?" she snaps
"No I didn't buy you a house, yet. It's my grandparent's old summer lake house, which they don't use at all anymore, so I called them up and asked if I could use it for now, but yes, for the next 24 hours or so, this house is ours."
"Next 24 hours?"
"Yup. We'll spend the night and mostly all day tomorrow here, then we go back for your party."
"Party? What party?" she says confused
"Again, yes. I called up Maria and asked her to help me throw a party for you tomorrow night with your old and new friends. You don't have to worry about a thing, I took care and prepared everything. You just enjoy the next day with me okay?" I tell her
I step out of the car, and help Mandi clamber out of the R8, and make our way to the front door. While I unlocked the door, Mandi turned around to look at the magnificent view of the lake, illuminated only by the full moon.
"Isn't it the view just beautiful?' she says
"I've seen better." I tell her
"Really? Where is it? Can you take me there sometime?" she asks
"I actually can't." I tell her "But only because I'm looking at her right now." Then Mandi blushes with me saying that. "But more on the lake later, let's have dinner first." Then I show her in.
As you step inside, it's an all wood floor, with the great room to your left, with a big 'U' shaped sofa facing a roasting fireplace and a flat screen TV on top of it. Dead straight from the doorway, was a long hallway, with entertainment rooms on both side, and the stairs leading up at the end. On your right, is the dining room, which can seat a group of 12 people, but tonight, it was already set for two. Behind the dining room is a traditional Italian kitchen with a few modern fixings here and there.
"The table is already set, is there someone else here with us?" she asks
"Oh, no. I told my sister to swing by awhile ago and help me fix up the place a bit."
"Shall we eat?" I ask her as I hold my arm out pointing to the table.
"Don't be so formal dude! It's just the two if us, and don't bother being all gentleman like on me tonight, like pulling back my chair and all that, let's just be us, the people we both fell in love with." She says as she pulls down my arm and drags me to the table.
When she said that, I felt sad and happy at the same time. Sad that I can't be
fancy and all that, but happy because I don't have to be. It was such a relief that I know that I don't have to go over the top to impress her, but a few hints here and there, wouldn't hurt.
Mandi sits down, as I went to the kitchen to grab the food. When I look over at the table just moments later, she wasn't there, and then I felt a tap on my back. I turn around and see Mandi barefoot, holding her heals with her left hand, and she says
"Jelo, it's just the two of us, like you said, so let's just eat here."
"Here? In the kitchen? But wh---" but before I could finish what I was going to say, she pushed me back so that I was leaning against the counter, then we were forehead to forehead, my hands on her waist, and her arms around my neck, just smiling and laughing.
"So what are we eating? She asks me
"In n' Out, our favourite. And since you don't want fancy shmancy, where do you suggest we eat?
Mandi moved her head back, but was still clung onto me, and put on her 'thinking look' on. Then she unclasped her arms and stepped beside me, with my eyes following her, and pushed herself up onto the countertop.
"Here!" she says. That makes me smile, so I pull out the burgers, fries, and milk shakes, and put them beside her
I stand beside her and in front of the food. I grab my burger, but before I could take a bite, she pulled me, so that I was between her legs, and she wrapped them around me.
"The food stays there, but you eat here, in front of me" She says in the cutest way with her mouth full of food.
"That was a great dinner. So what else do you got planed for me tonight?" she asks me.
"I was thinking about heading out to the lake, and just chill." I tell her
"That sounds great! Let's go." She says just as she jumps off the countertop and drags me out of the kitchen.
When we get to the dock, Mandi just drops her shoes and sits down on the edge. I stayed back a bit and took off my shoes and rolled up my jeans then joined her. Our toes just barely touching the water, we skim them across. I take out my iPod and ear buds, pop one into my ear, and the other onto Mandi's, and press shuffle. Mandi rests her head on my shoulder and I put my arm around her and we just sat there.
Then suddenly, Sunday Mornings started playing. I jolt up and pull Mandi onto her feet
"Dance with me." I tell her
Mandi just gives me a smile, then I pull her closer to me, and we just slow danced there on the dock. On the bridge of the song, I give her a big twirl, then she laughs as I pull her back in
"What's so funny?" I ask
"You're such a hopeless romantic when you become sweet around me, it just makes me laugh, but this, this I love." She smiles up to me just as the song ends.
"Can you blame me? I fell in love with one of the most beautiful girls in the world." I say as I give her a quick kiss
"And you still are….." she adds
"Hey, there's one more thing I have planned for tonight, but for that, we have to go back into the house." I say
"By all means then" she tells me
We make our way back into the house, through the hallway, up the stairs, and to the master bedroom door. Before I opened the doors, Mandi grabbed my arm, looked at me in the eyes and said
'Jelo, I know where this is going, you don't have to worry about me or my parents finding out."
"Your parents? What are you talking about?" I ask he'
"Oh come on, don't play with me. We've known each other for 3 years, and I know your style. Besides, I've been waiting for this moment just as much as you have. My dad gave me the 'Birds and the Bees talk' when you two first met, so no worries there, and I trust you that you won't hurt me, right?"
"Of course, so okay then, let's do this." I quickly reply
"Not to fast big boy." She says as she pats on my chest. "First of all, none of those 'passion shit' I know we want to be intimate, but let's keep it real. Second, I won't try to impress you and you won't try to impress me. Third, NO FAKING! Understood? Good. Lastly, I love you!" with that, she lunges at me and starts to kiss me wildly, and we fumble into the room…….
I wake up feeling a bit woozy. I look to my right, and I see Mandi naked with the sheets draping over her body, sleeping on my shoulder with my right arm around her. I look to myself as well, and I too was naked. I grab my watch on the bed side table to check the time, and see that it was only 5:15am. I look out the window and see that the sun hasn't risen yet. So I slither my way out of the bed, making sure not to wake Mandi up, and I put a pillow in her arms to replace me. I grab my bag from the closet and grab a set of clothes, and head into the bathroom to freshen up and get dressed. When I finished, I slowly tipped toed my way out of the room and went down to the kitchen and made myself some hot chocolate, then headed for the dock.
On the dock, I find this old wooden crate, and place it in the middle and positioned it to face the direction of the sunrise. I sit down and waited for the sun, having a sip of my chocolate every now and then. I just closed my eyes, and remembered how this weekend has panned out so far. Then I feel a tap on my shoulder, I look over, and see Mandi standing there, holding the 'newly' blood stained sheets up to her body, to cover it, with really messed up hair.
"Good morning birthday girl! What are you doing out here?" I ask her
"Thanks." She says as she gives me a kiss. "I woke up, and you weren't there, so I went looking for you."
"Just wearing that? Without even dressing up." I ask her while pointing out the sheets.
"It's only the two of us, so might as well do whatever." She says sarcastically.
"Well, you found me. Join me, let's watch the sun rise." I say to her as I pat the crate. "Here, have some." I add as I hand her the cup of chocolate.
After taking a sip, she doesn't sit, she just lays down on me and rests her head on my lap. Just as she does that, there it was, the majestic sun. Too bad, that when I looked down at her, she was fast asleep. So I just sat there, soaking up the sun. When the sun got up high enough, I looked at Mandi and she started twitching in the glare, so I carried her back into the house and set her on the bigger than life couch.
I turn on the enormous TV and set it onto SPEED so that I could watch the qualifying Session of the Monaco Grand Prix once Mandi wakes up. But first, I had to make breakfast. So I head into the kitchen and whip up some waffles, and orange juice.
When I finish up, I place the food and drinks on a plate. I head back into the great room and set the food on the table in front of the couch, and sat down beside Mandi's head. While waiting for both Mandi to wake up, and qualifying to start, I ate my food, and started playing around with Mandi's by making a car out of her waffles.
Just before qualifying started, Mandi woke up. She looked up at me and smiled and giggled. I smile back. Then suddenly, she put her head back down and covered it with the sheets, and started laughing.
"What's so funny?" I ask her with a grin
She uncovers her face and says "Nothing, it's just that , when I left, I felt so sad and guilty about leaving you like that, but since you got here, you've made me forget about all those feelings, and replaced them with all the good ones we had and more. My days have also been so amazing. And last night, was, heaven, thank you for that. But it's not just that, it's everything that you've done and given me, ever, and I thank you for that."
"I love you too. But, have more in stored for you today. Starting with this." I say to her as I point to the TV.
She sits up, fixing the sheets a bit, then grabs the remote from me and turns the volume on full. As the sound of 24 800 horsepower, V8 engines serenades the whole house.
I love how such a girly-girl Mandi is, but I love her even more when she becomes a total dude. Just like how she knows so much more about cars than her dad, and was able to get him to buy the Audi, or how she knows and loves Formula 1 just as much as I do, although, not as religious in watching the races. Lastly my favourite, is how she eats, just like last night, and now--- I look over to her during the breaks between Q1 and Q2 as she devours the waffle-car. The thought of that just makes me smile and laugh a bit.
"What? What's so funny?" she asks me with a mouth full of waffles.
"Nothing" I say and just smirk at her as she turns her attention back to eating.
"Well that was an exciting quail," she says "what a mixed up grid for tomorrow's race, can't wait to watch it." Mandi exclaims
"I'll say. Hey, why don't you take a shower and get dressed, let's go do something."
"Okay. Wait, how? I didn't bring any clothes." She complains
"Yes you did." I tell her
"Huh?" she says with her 'confused' face
"I took the liberty of packing you a few sets of clothes, and if you'd go into the closet, you'll find them laid out and with a surprise waiting for you hanging at the end of the closet in a black garment-bag, let's just say that it will come in handy for the party tonight."
As Mandi headed upstairs to change, I took the plates to the kitchen and dumped them into the dish washer along with the stuff I used to cook the food with. My next task was to figure out how the dish washer worked, I quickly gave up on that and started pressing buttons until something happened.
I head back into the great-room and flickered through the channels. Then I heard Mandi call my name, I look behind me and see Mandi dressed in a red and white striped long-sleeved shirt tucked into a pair of black high-waisted shorts and red flats. Then she asks me
"Is this fine?"
"I guess. Now, let me get dressed."
I head up to the room for a quick shower. As I was dressing up, I hear Mandi shouting my name followed by a scream then a laugh. I quickly run down and look for her. When I get to the kitchen, all I see are bubbles, bubbles everywhere, from the floor to the ceiling, from wall to wall.
"Mandi, where are you?!" I shout at the wall of foam. Nothing, so I shout again "Mandi! Where are you?"
Then she whispers "Here." and she suddenly emerges from the wall of white and pulls me in.
We both fall onto the marble floor and start laughing. We both try to get up on our feet, but couldn't because we kept laughing and slipping, so we just crawled our way onto the patio. When we got out, we could finally stand up.
"What the hell was that?" Mandi asks me
"Hold on, let me get this." I say to her as I step closer to her and wipe the foam off her face with my