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Strictly Professional - Chapter 11

Hey Everyone, I know I am terribly late, but life has been tough lately. However I am back with the new chapter of 'Strictly Professional' and hope you guys like it. Even though many people have stopped commenting, but I thought I would update for the people who do comment. So here it is... Well, all I can say about this chapter is - it's a killer. Read to find out.
Catriona's POV

As I came back to my room, all I could think of was how beautiful the whole world was. Life was beautiful, I felt like myself, in fact I had missed myself in all this. It felt like a big burden had been removed from my shoulders and wings were attached to them. Instead of sleeping I went out to the balcony and inhaled the chilly air of Los Angeles night. Nothing seemed to bother me, nothing could stop me and a new fountain of energy ran in my vein.

And all this because of whom - the one person Alex.

Suddenly there were goose bumps all over my body. Inhaling deeply I rubbed my palms all over my arms in an attempt to tame those small hair which kept rising on their ends at the very mention of his name. My heart started beating wildly now. What was he doing to me?

Closing the balcony door hastily I came back inside my room. I had to do something to stop these wild effects. It was good that he has freed me from my self-made chains and I was grateful for that. But in times like this I felt afraid, will this bring back the old pain as well? Before this thought could engulf me in the dark undesired clouds, another thought entered. Did he really have some feelings for me, I had seen that in his eyes. And this gave rise to another question - if I could feel like this, could he feel the same way? Could he also understand what I felt for him?

A nervous yet happy smile crept up my lips and I curled up in the bed. With his thoughts all over my body and mind, I finally felt sleep overtaking my senses and I fell into a deep peaceful slumber.

Everywhere it was bright, pink, white and yellow. The nature was at its happiest mood and roamed between - two souls holding each other's hands. Cheerful laughter emitted from their faces, echoed through the wide horizon. The resonance it made could heal all wounds and make life worth living. Nothing could stop them as they ran through the perpetual flowers and contributed to their healing odor. They knew they were destined to be together and destiny was with them. Halting to a stop they fell in each other's embrace and the hearts connected, followed by locked eyes and unspoken emotions. Soon their lips touched and it felt like two worlds united and merged into each other.

I would have continued to watch that blissful dream if my alarm had not buzzed oh so loudly. How beautiful it was? I was so happy in the dream and Alex seemed to enjoy every moment and... Wait... Those two people were me and... And Alex in my dream and we... we just kissed. I could still feel the heat in my body and it traveled up my arms and up to my face bringing out a probably tomato like shade on my cheeks. A small shy smile crept up on my lips and accompanied the heat on my cheeks. What was happening to me?

While the smile decided not to leave my lips, I dragged my feet towards the bathroom. The water was not too cold and it felt so nice on my hot skin. After a long, soothing and satisfying shower, I wrapped the towel around my body and another towel in my hair. After stepping out of the bathroom I chose some comfy inner wear and put them on after removing the towel from my body.

Looking at the mirror I smiled wider and picked up the mobile.

"Every night in my dream, I see you I feel you." With someone invisible and imaginary person I started dancing to the rhythm of the song while my lips were in sync with the words playing in my mobile.

"...Go on." I removed the towel from my hair and dried my hair again according to the rhythm of the song.

"Near far wherever you are..." I stretched my arms wide and opened the curtains fully to allow the sunlight traverse through my room and brighten my world.

"My heart will go on..." Standing on my tiptoes I made turns making my hair jump up and down.

"Mmhhhmm... mmhhmm." While I hummed to the rest of the song, I found a black tank top from the closet and put it on. Then I opened the balcony door and allowed the fresh air travel to my nostrils. Still barefoot, I went into the balcony and the song was still live on my lips. I loved the morning feeling and embraced it with whole arms when I felt someone was there.

Turning to my right I saw Alex on his balcony staring at me, a cup of coffee in his hand. Of course he looked priceless basked in the morning son, but what was more! He was shirtless. I was staring at him when he smiled and sipped his coffee. Only then I realized that I was singing so loudly and Alex must have heard it, because of which he had this 'small' smile on his lips. But guess what - that was not the only reason he was smiling. I just remembered that I was still in almost my inner wear other than a tank top covering my torso. How much embarrassing it could have been?

Without any 'hi' or 'hello' or any word I ran inside my room and closed the balcony door behind me. Leaning against the door, I took deep heavy breath, my heartbeat abnormal and the dark shade of red was back to my cheeks. Even if I knew no one was watching me at that moment, but still I put on a shirt and jeans on. Sitting down on my bed, I calmed my hyped nerves and finally my breathing became even.

After some time there was a knock on the door and for some reason I thought it was Alex, even though it could be anyone at the other end. Making sure my little makeup was in place, my hair combed and my dress perfect, I went and opened the door.

"Rose?" I questioned with knitted eyebrows.

"Well, good morning to you too, but were you expecting someone else?"

"Good morning, I just... I just was not thinking anyone would come in morning." I tried my best to hide the blush. "Come in."

"Thanks, but I just wanted to let you know that we are going shopping. Would you like to come?"

Shopping? When did I last go shopping casually? The idea seemed alluring, almost dragging me with her, but I could not. The feeling that was with me just minutes ago was so strong, it reminded me that Alex had planned on going somewhere with the crew, so even if Rose and Anya were not there with the group, it still didn't matter. The others would go and enjoy the Sunday. I would not spoil Alex's plan for anything, even if it was shopping.

"Actually, w... I have some other plans, I have to go somewhere. You carry on, thanks for asking."

Why could not I say the truth? Wouldn't it have been easy to say Alex had planned some get together, why could not those words flow from my mouth? What was I expecting? Before I could clear my mind, Rose had left and I closed the door and leaned behind it. My breathing was uneven, I knew and I wanted to sit back and clear my mind. Sliding down, I just sat on the carpet only to be disturbed again by another knock on the door, which sounded rather impatient.

"Rose probably forgot to say something more... Is there any..." My voice trailed off as I found Alex standing in front of my door grinning like an idiot and me - just stared at him. He was a lot more casual in his white wife beater, a buffalo check shirt on top and a gray cargo pant. Once I was done checking him out I remembered our morning encounter and I immediately felt embarrassed.

"Good morning." He said still smiling.

"Morning." I said and stood there until I realized I had not invited him in.

"Come in." I made a path for him and he stepped into my room. This was the first time he came to my room. It took me some seconds to realize that there were towels on my bed, my comb was on the couch and I myself looked like a zombie with my long hair all over the place. Immediately I corrected my room and he made himself comfortable on the couch.

What were we supposed to talk? This was what ran in my mind all the while as I tied my hair and he kept looking at me. The tension in the air was so heavy that it bothered me a lot.

"Will you relax?" Alex who was keeping an eye on me wherever I moved, finally spoke, but I could do nothing. He came to me and made me sit on the bed.

"Why are you worried?" My mind was playing the morning situation when he had seen me in minimum clothes - not so professional. And the smile that was plastered on his face was still fresh in my mind along with the dream. The heat was still there in my body post the dreamy kiss - how could I relax?

"Well... If you are worried about... About the morning thing, then it's okay, happened is happened and it's not a big deal."

Somehow it soothed my mind and I tried a smile which mirrored on his lips also.

"So, where are we going?" He asked standing up and looking around my room, then I remembered that we were supposed to go somewhere.

"I still have to check with others about their plan."

"Well, I have already checked, some stupid people like Gary, Scott and all are planning to work. Vio is with them." He turned towards me and winked making me blush and continued talking.

"Others have already left for visiting nearby places or shopping. I have no idea about Rose and Anya."

"They also have gone for shopping."

"So, seems like it's only we two." A sudden chill ran down my spine at the mere thought that it was only we two. Upon seeing me not answering anything he again spoke.

"So where do you want to go?" He asked plopping down on the couch with a thud.

Was this real? Alex and me alone and together?

"I... I don't... I have no idea..."

"Well, then let's take you places which I like. How much time you will need to get ready?"

"Um, 10 minutes?"

"Fine, at around 9:40 I will come back again." With that he left my room, not before giving me a sweet smile. Though my heart pounded out of my chest, but I did manage to comb my hair, apply little mascara and eyeliner on my eyes, a little lip gloss, changed to a nice red top and blue skin fitting jeans and was ready in 10 minutes. My purse was with me as well my jacket - in case it got colder.

"Today we are not going to have breakfast here." He said once we were out of the hotel.

"But Sean wo..."

"He will eventually know that I am not gonna drink milk today, neither those stupid leaves." I laughed at his comment. We took a taxi and he said some place name to the driver and he sped off. Throughout the journey he kept looking back through the rear view mirror, after all it was Alex, but in between he threw some confused glances at me. The taxi drove for about forty-five minutes until I realized that we were very far away from the main city and it was a lot quiet where we were now. The roads didn't have so many vehicles and the footpaths didn't have the row of people.

We halted in front of a nice looking but small diner that announced 'Sunday brunch' in big bold letters. This was situated on the highway and there were no other shops nearby, in far distance some small houses could be seen. It was calm and soothing.

"How did you find this place?" I exclaimed once we dismissed the driver and started entering to the little diner.

"On my last trip to LA, I found this while roaming with some crew people and I can assure you that these people serve the best brunch."

We were greeted by an elderly woman who might be in her forties. She instantly recognized Alex and came rushing towards us. There was something in her smile, a love that was hidden, which reminded me of my mother, how she used to be before.

"Welcome Mr. Alex, what a pleasure!" She greeted happily and turned to me.

"I am his friend, Catriona." She gave me a smile that had a thousand unspoken words as if she knew something which we didn't. Once we sat at a corner table, she gave us the menu and asked what we wanted.

"I just want your Sunday special brunch, you may ask my friend here if she wants anything." Alex said smiling at me.

"I think I would also see what Sunday Brunch is!" She went back inside happily. I kept looking at the beautiful area until she arrived with coffee and sweet bread and omelet and... The food continued to flow and I could swear everything looked delicious. Both of us dug into the food and for the first time I noticed how much Alex could eat. After some twenty minutes, we slowed down, but continued eating till the clock showed 11:30. There were some other customers as well, but they could not see us as we sat at the corner near the back gate.

I was thankful Alex brought me here; I had the best brunch in my life. After we were done with almost all the food, we left the place through the back door, but not before thanking the lady enormously. With no intention to have any more lunch, we headed towards the beach and spent the whole afternoon there. I had no idea we had to go to beach, so we didn't get into the water completely, but just till our knees - well that's what we planned, but by the time we were out of beach, we were both soaking above our waist. We dried up ourselves and bought some comfortable clothes which would go for the rest of the day.

Talking about the rest of the day it was wonderful to say the least. Of course we had to duck and run at some places to avoid any followers, but other than that everything was so good. I had never expected I would spend one beautiful day like this with the superstar Alexander Fleming. Every girl would dream like this, but I was lucky. We went to so many places which topped the list of sightseeing in Los Angeles. It was so late when we returned, so we decided to have dinner at the hotel where we were staying. And Alex ate all unhealthy food again as Sean had already been snoring when we reached. There were just another couple having food other than us.

After dinner, I knew it was the end of the day and it had to finish. Ask me and I would say I never wanted the day to finish. After a long time I had so much fun and I didn't want the moments which I passed with Alex - to ever end.

"Let's go to the park, at this hour parks are the quietest places." Alex said once we left the restaurant. I nodded not only happy that I got to spend some silent moments, but most importantly because I got some more time with Alex.

After reaching at the same bench where we last met, I stopped unknowingly and looked at the bench. Alex silently took a seat and a smile played on his lips and he patted the place beside him motioning me to sit. We both sat in a comfortable silence and just enjoyed the soft cool breeze. After some time I laid my head back on the hard bench, but the back of my head touched something smooth and I immediately shot up.

"I am sorry, it was just relaxing..." Alex said immediately removing his hand from the bench.

"No, it's okay." I said and again relaxed to my position.

"So..." Alex paused as he slid his hand behind me and I understood the unasked question.

"It's fine." And then I laid my head on his hand, this just brought us a bit closer. I had leaned into his shoulder somewhere down the time and I found it so comforting. Soon sleep took over me and I let myself fall into a peaceful slumber.

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Alex's POV

The day could not have been turned out any better, I had not planned it for only the two of us, but it seems like the whole wide universe had planned it for us. Everything fell into place and we were two people only left to each other, which I was quite grateful of. If we were in the group, I would never have thought of going to that Sunday Brunch, I took Cat there and was glad that she liked the place so much. Throughout the day so many times we got so close to each other and she didn't seem to flinch at all for me being so close to her.

Post dinner in the park, I was just counting on the uncountable times she made me happy during the whole day. Her each action could, her each movement, her one glance, her one smile, everything about her could make me happy. I was glad that I could contribute anything to her happiness and finally she was out of her bubble and was spending time with me.

How could I become so lucky to have her company? I thought to myself and looked at her. She had not noticed me looking at her as she was staring out to the space, as if she was searching something in them. I took this time to just look at her and enjoy the view. My fingers, as if they had a brain of their own, automatically moved towards her face to remove the strand of hair that got the liberty to play on her face, courtesy to the wind. Just as I was about to reach her, I realized I might not be allowed to do so and I put my hand on the bench behind her.

Slowly she started leaning back and I knew she was doing so, but I could not remove my hand from its place; remember I told, they had brain of their own. She suddenly sat straight when she realized her head was on my hand and I thought she would not like it at all and apologized to her. But to my surprise, she was cool with it and even she laid her head on my hand and pushed herself a little towards me.

As I watched her falling in sleep, I had a smile on my lips taking in her breath-taking beauty. She was sleeping so peacefully, so nicely, she looked extremely cute in her sleeping position. After some time she completely leaned on my shoulder and was into deep sleep. The whole day we had walked a lot, so I guessed she was tired enough to sleep on my shoulder. I would have kept watching her, but soon her head started falling on my chest and before I would lose my control, I thought it was best to put her in her bed. But I didn't want to wake her up, so I decided to carry her. She did move a little bit and scrunched her nose, but finally settled in.

There was absolutely no one in the elevator and in the hallways, so it was easy for me to carry her, she was anyway feather-light. I rummaged through her purse and found her room key. Once she was put safely in her bed, she grabbed a pillow and clutched it to her heart. Well not that I was that of a pervert, but I wished I was that pillow and could be in her arm. Looking down at her, I could not stop but place a good night kiss on her forehead, she smiled in her sleep and I assumed that she smiled because of my kiss, just to make myself happy.

That night, sleep was peaceful, no disturbance and nothing, Cat even came in my dream - so sweet dreams. And the morning was blessed with pure and radiating sun's rays, it filled me with new energy and remembering the day before which I spent with Cat, just made me happier. After finishing my morning chores, I was about to go out when somebody knocked on my door. Sean had come with my breakfast; he left immediately.

So I wanted to have breakfast with Cat, I wanted to spend each and every minute with her. I went and knocked on her door, but no response. I came back to my room and called her from mobile but she didn't receive the call. Probably she was in bathroom or something. While I waited for her to call me back, I switched on the news channel "Today's Buzz" for the latest updates on movies world and the news that they were showing on everywhere shook me to the core.

They had almost made a scandal of it - pictures of me and Cat roaming all over LA was broadcasted with the headline - Alex's new-found girlfriend and some other cheap headlines. I was more shocked to read the repeating news which stated Cat was frequenting to my room at night and all non-sense. There were even unclear photos of me carrying her to her room while she was asleep.

After few minutes I realized that someone was knocking on my door, I opened it to find Cat standing on my doorway. One look at her - and I knew she had watched the news.

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In case some of you have not noticed, 'Short Story Basket' is updated with Story 6. Please read and let me know your views.

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Comment Replies

@Soul Searcher - Haha, sometimes I find myself grinning stupidly because of some story, so... same happens to me. Glad that you liked it so much. And about your question about their relationship - it's there in the preliminary chapters - 1,2,3.

@Tamika - I will tell you a secret, I hate milk. The same I have put for Alex. I am sorry I am so late, but at last I updated, hope you like it.

@Sammer - We will see what comes up and I already gave out a hint in this chapter.

@Ams Kingston - Where are you miss and where is 'Tarnished'? Please write soon. Hope you like this chapter.

@Karen P - This chapter, they spend more time together, but the last part is a killer, let's see where it goes.

@XXscenegurlXx - Thank you so much, what you think of this chapter?

@Unzel:) - Thanks a lot, hope you like this one.

@Mahak - I was a little out of track for this story, but I am back again.

@Ishaqzaade - I did put more short story recently, Didn't I? Hope you like this.

@Queenie - Where were you ma'am? I mean I seriously missed you. But thanks for commenting, keep reading and commenting please.
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Published: 11/23/2012
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