Saturday, January 2, 2016

The Beginning of a Change - Part 4

They eventually agreed to meet up at Bar 9, which coincidentally was opposite the campus. Although it was technically a favorite among the law students, it was far enough to avoid the university buzz. Michelle was additionally confident that they would not cross paths with familiar faces due to the chosen time.
    "Hey."
    Mike looked up at the sound of Michelle's voice. "Oh, hey."
    "I honestly thought I was late." Michelle sighed, as she sat next to him. "How's life been?"
    "I'm doing quite good. What about you?"
    "I've seen better days, I'll admit. Life hasn't been exactly smooth-sailing."
    "Assignments, huh?"
    "Make that one after another."
    "Yikes! I know the feels. Where's the co-creator you've been speaking of?"
    "Sophia? I have no idea. She said that she'll be coming on her own from somewhere, but I'll call her shortly if she doesn't show."
    "I actually thought she'd be coming with you. She knows where we are, right?"
    "Yes." There was annoyance in Michelle's voice, but whether at his obvious question or towards Sophia, Mike couldn't decipher. "In fact, she was the one who asked me to arrange it."
    "Oh."
    "Yup, says that she wants to meet you too."
    Ten minutes later, a grim-faced Sophia was seen riding the escalator down to the food court.
    Michelle pointed in Sophia's direction. "Yup, that's her coming."
    "Sorry for my tardiness." Her face softened as she apologized. "I was carried away with another errand."
    "It's alright." Mike nodded, offered a handshake. "You must be Sophia. I'm Mike. It's nice to meet you."
    "It's nice to meet you too, Mike." Sophia accepted the proffered hand. "I've heard a tad bit about you."
    Michelle's eyes widened in horror and shot daggers at Sophia.
    "About your work in critical analysis, I mean," Sophia corrected herself, embarrassed that she gave voice to her thought. "I hope I didn't miss anything important."
    "Nah, you're fine."
    "Mike and I were just talking about random stuffs," Michelle added. "And, babe, take a seat. It's really awkward talking to you when you're standing."
    "Sorry." Sophia smiled sheepishly before a seat opposite Michelle, diving straight into business. "I actually have my laptop with me now. Do you want to critique it on the spot, Mike? And I'll write it down?"
    Mike nodded. "Sounds like a good idea."
    Sophia rummaged through her knapsack and fiddled with her Mac for what Mike assumed was the soft copy of the parody.
    "Here you go." She handed the laptop to him. "Because it's the unedited footage, don't expect the scenes to be perfect."
    "It's okay, Oh yeah, why don't you two grab a coffee?" Mike suggested. "I don't want you girls to be bored out by the waiting and dying from the thirst."
    "Okay."
    "And, uh, Michelle?" Mike dug into his wallet, passed her a $10 note. "Would you mind to help buy a small cup of chamomile tea?"
    "Sure, no worries, Mike." Michelle rose to her full height and signaled a stunned Sophia to follow her.

"Sounds like the two of you are buddies now," Sophia commented when they were out of earshot and queuing for their order.
    "What's that supposed to mean, Soph?"
    "Well, he asked you to help buy his tea? I'm assuming it's something only good or close friends will do?"
    A thought suddenly dawned on Michelle, but she wasn't about to give Sophia the satisfaction.
    "It's just that I asked for his advice for Classics and he feels obligated to return the favor. That's all."
    "You'll kill me for saying this, but there's more than meets the eye here."
    Michelle rolled her eyes, sighing.

"Hi, how are you?" The cashier greeted Michelle. "What can I get for you today?"
    "I'm good, thanks. A small cup of chamomile tea and a regular flat white, please." Michelle shoved Sophia's wallet aside, reading her thoughts. "Make that two regular flat white. With no sugar."
    "Thanks for picking up the tab, Michelle," Sophia said.
    "Aye, no worries. Let's grab the number and return to the table before Mike thinks we've ditched him..."

Knowing better than to disturb Mike and Sophia, Michelle whiled the time away on her Mac as she attempted to pen the pointers for the upcoming Public Law research essay. She occasionally raised an eyebrow, threw in a comment or two whenever it was needed or addressed Mike's queries - as she was the one who drew the storyboard and more familiar with the scenes than Sophia.
    Mike had to pause and play the video multiple times to provide Sophia with the best feedback and advice on improving the quality and content.
    "Um, Sophia, you might have to edit this scene where Michelle and another girl are throwing papers in the air in the library. Try to include the time-lapse effect, so that the audience won't be bored out and it will enhance the creeping insanity that you're throwing to project. It will blend in with the chorus too. I'm assuming the chorus is on how law students are stressed and turning psychotic from the amount of work?"
    "Not psychotic, just stressed." Sophia tried hard to envision Mike's suggestion as an image. "Ah... I think I see where you're coming from."
    He sighed suddenly.
    "What's up?"
    "I don't think a day is going to be enough for the constructive criticisms. Do you think you can send me the hard copy via email?"
    "It's just that uploading it for me and downloading it for you will take quite a while due to the size and broadband. I actually have another suggestion. Since Michelle has a copy of it too, it'll be faster if you obtain it directly from her."
    Which will also give you two more time to socialize without me being the light bulb too.
    "It's in my pen drive and I left it at home," Michelle protested.
    "That's not a big problem. I have mine with me now." Mike shrugged. "Perhaps you could extend another copy of the video into my pen drive? That should be the fastest."

4 comments:

  1. This is a beautiful new platform. The background and the white space give it a very peaceful feel. Great banner photo too.

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    1. Thank you so much, Yum List! ^^ The credit has to be given to the appropriate owner, though. I mean, the one who created the template and the CSS coding. =)

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  2. I always enjoy reading your short stories, and I always feel they have so much potential. I myself have often procrastinated about my book, maybe we should both start writing one. Haha.

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    1. Thanks for the kind compliments, HB. I never considered myself capable of being an author, especially not now since my brain's been fried dead after an exhausting semester. But who knows? We might just wake up one fine day and decide to continue from where we left off for our books. =)

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