Love in the fete

When the ride halted, all the passengers slowly got off except Sophia. Sophia was still sitting in the front seat, with a dull expression.

Suddenly, her eyes were alerted. Her face spoke of her attentiveness. She kept scanning the whole ground impatiently, with her fingers drumming continuously on her opposite arm.

She knew she saw a familiar face straight below, a person with messed up hair, lovely sky blue eyes, and a casual multicoloured shirt. He was actively talking on the phone while she was busy on a roller-coaster ride.

Slowly, she raised herself and paced downstairs and to the ground. In an instant, she changed her mood by walking to a stall exhibiting works of art. “Maybe I am so excited today that I began to see illusions. There are many people here, doppelgangers of many similar faces. It might be a fantasy created by my never halting imaginative mind and he, who I was expecting to be here, is not here,” said Sophia, assuring herself.

She moved her eyeballs up and down to the length of dresses, to glimpse at the Chinese traditional dresses, the bangles they used to wear and several other ornaments from ancient times.

Her eyes were stunned, seeing four pairs of sky blue bangles on the wooden stand. She lifted a pair out of four and pushed them into her left hand. She fluttered happily, jiggled those bangles in her hands and showed them to nearby people, when suddenly her head turned round to see a pair of sky blue orbs peeping at her, from in between the gap of three pairs of sky blue bangles, which were one up and two down.

Sophia’s eyes stared in shock, making her whole body rush to the other side of those bangles. There was no one to be found! Sophia’s heart skipped a beat, and her face and body lost the glow. She inserted those bangles into the log nimbly, without looking back, and left that stall.” Someone is indeed spying on me.” Sophia cautioned herself.

“What’s wrong with you, Sophia? Why are you thinking about him? Can’t you come out of your imagination? You were never like this. ” Sophia kept talking with her bewildered mind. But suddenly, her mind recalled his last words to her, which told her that he felt some sort of connection with her, which he would like to further develop. Sophia’s eyes expanded. Was it her imagination, or was Joe there and just annoying Sophia with his play? Sophia wanted to find out. His joke was Sophia’s anxiety.

But her main concern was Joe taking her as a maid. Sophia’s aunt had dropped her standards in front of the guests. Joe would not look forward to dating someone who hadn’t been to a five-star hotel, never rode in BMW, never been on foreign trips and many such things poor people only fantasize about.

How can she confront Joe in such an old taste? She had no Gucci, no golden earrings and other attractive stuff. She even doubted whether Joe was even interested in her. She was dumb! She had better look for the clues.

So, to make sure, he was not in the park, she roamed here and there in search of him. She went through almost all of the stalls, scanned every single person, and even looked at the gate, but there was no sign of him.

When she felt successful in her approach and was about to return to the stalls, her gaze shifted to a passenger car on a Ferris wheel. She recognised someone with the same multicoloured shirt and those charming blue eyes. She was a hundred and one per cent certain that he was Joe.

” Oh, gosh! there’s nowhere to hide.” she flipped her head frequently to her sides.” But there’s no chance, he has already seen me.” Sophia’s eyes widened as she panted.” Should I meet him? What if I create a bad impression? I can’t even exchange gazes with him in such poor dressing.” Several concerns gathered in her prosaic mind, creating friction.

Sophia stood there with an embarrassed expression and bit her lower lip. She was expecting a response from the fellow, who was walking straight toward her. She was about to utter a word when Joe pinched her cheeks, making Sophia’s eyes bulge open.

“I was about to turn up to you after completing my mischief. It’s my way of addressing my dear ones. And no one sent me to spy on you, got it? “answered Joe, with his joyful eyes fixed on Sophia. “What’s your name, girl?” asked Joe. As Joe smirked at her, Sophia stood still, failing to utter any word with her arms crossed and eyes shut. But then lifting her eyes to peek at the charming fellow, his beautiful eyes and fair white face, her heart melted.

She widened her eyes, parted her lips slightly and let out a mumble, “I am Sophia.”

“What a beautiful name,” said Joe, stroking the hair strands on Sophia’s head. “So, Sophia, can we be good friends now? I promise I won’t let your aunt know about it. ” After saying so, he extended a palm straight towards Sophia and grabbed her hand in a soft grasp.

Sophia’s eyes couldn’t take off from her hand in Joe’s hold. Her eyebrows wrinkled and her eyes narrowed. How did he know that Sophia was not a maid but a niece in the house? She raised her head and put forward the same question to Joe, to which he answered, “I am not a fool, Sophia, as your aunt considers me. I saw you going to college with your cousins while I was out for a walk in the locality. I promise I won’t tell them about our new relationship. I will not open it up till we are both about to marry. Surely, my heart belongs to someone like you. You will keep it safe and sound, just like your own home.”

Sophia’s brows creased as she looked at Joe. Her eyes continue to scan his whole face. “Could such an innocent fellow lie?” Her senses made her ponder on the sensation when Joe clasped his hands. ” I know our meeting is sudden. But it’s an opportunity to know each other better. Looking forward to your reaction, milady.” Joe spoke softly.

After rolling her pupils in an orbit, Sophia’s eyes rested on Joe. ” Promise me you will never break my trust,” Sophia spoke shyly. Her request was accepted by Joe with a nod.

Sophia’s whole body relaxed. She, in return, shook Joe’s hand and smiled while her cheeks gleamed with every stare, her eyes returned to his whole face.

Suddenly, Sophia recalled something as revealed by her chat-filled eyes. Her eyes tried to convey something. “Milady? is there anything…” Joe was about to complete the sentence softly when Sophia cut him off. ” You were at my office yesterday, were you not?” Keeping her eyeballs to the roof of her eyes just to look into his.

After deep thinking and stroking his chin, he spoke, ” Hmm, where’s your office, dear.” acting clueless, he asked Sophia.

” So, you don’t know? You invested rupees $1 million into my boss’s company and yet you don’t know the details of it? How?” Sophia kept blinking her eyes at Joe suspiciously.

” Listen, dear. I invest in such companies, not in the name of fame but charity. I invest in such companies and yet I don’t remember their details. It’s my way to serve humanity.” His words were as soft as a feather, making Sophia smile at him. Her smile revealed her interest in his gentlemanliness.

“So, girl, what should we do?” asked Joe. Sophia grabbed his hand and said, “I want to eat something, I am feeling quite hungry.”

“Your body is quite slim, Sophia. I will need to fetch a lot of food for you and I hope you won’t deny it,” said Joe. Both of them walked hand in hand to the stall, with their gazes fixed in infatuation in each other’s eyes.

On reaching the stall, Joe ordered two plates of momos with a red gravy, which was Sophia’s favourite dish. Sophia would eat a bite slowly while Joe, seeing it, would insert the whole piece of momo into her mouth. “Oh, it’s hot, it’s hot!” shouted Sophia, to which Joe would gently assure her, “It’s not that hot, dear,” and caress her chubby cheeks and pinch her nose. Sophia, in return, would flush more and pinch Joe’s nose and smirk. At least someone turned out to be kind to her for the first time.

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