Chapter 1: Enemies
It was during his Sunday volleyball training he first saw Daphne; the start of the girls’ team marked a huge change. Having recalled the past, he warned himself every now and then not to get close to any of the girls, to prevent the history from repeating. He was disciplined enough to keep himself quiet and maintain a distance from the girls initially, giving the impression from the girls that he was fierce and he gladly accepted their judgement.
The first time they talked to each other, was when they were dining after training. He saw her photo taken 3 years back and she looked extremely sweet. He started to tease her, as her current complexion wasn’t good. He was in his usual crappy state of mind and boosted about himself wearing big sized bras. The first thought that came to his mind was that she was a rich spoilt girl who was crazy for anything in pink.
Daphne was his good pal for quarrelling with him with her rough actions. Despite being in a bad mood, he did not show his temper neither did he try to provoke her on purpose; but she seemed to think otherwise. He thought it was funny whenever she told him she hated him, especially in IRC.
One night, he was tongue twisting with her when she said she had to send her dad to hospital. He didn’t know if it was a trick but he didn’t dare to joke about it. He saw her IRC idling for some time before he started to get worried for her.
He finally saw her soft side. Things crowded into his mind and stunned him so much, for a girl of age 16 to bear the responsibility of sending her dad to the hospital. He knew she must be very strong in her mind to get through everything and he was even prepared to go down to accompany her anytime upon her request.
He didn’t dare to ask her directly about her family. All he did was to find out bit by bit through their conversation and slowly piece them up.
They continued to have online conversations. Whenever there were photos to be distributed, he had to spend extra time to send her one by one instead of the zipped file.
He didn’t stop teasing her with one of his team-mates. His other team-mates started the rumour but he seriously thought it was true. She told him he could have treated her nicer and he puzzled over her accusation. He knew he wasn’t against her and she might not be pleased with his frankness.
Chapter 2: Playful
Their first phone conversation was to discuss about the chalet together with other friends. However, the two of them were the main people who spoke up. They spent most of the time crapping instead. Daphne didn’t stop sounding negative at all.
He was disgusted to notice another guy trying to woo Daphne, though she kept denying. This guy had his reputation ruined and had impressed others with his bootlicking skill. He recalled his team-mates saying he had approached them for her number. Even though she was just a normal friend to him, he didn’t want her to be hurt. However, this gave him another opportunity to tease her.
It was only after her “O” level exams, Daphne had a friendly match with her friends and she asked him and his friends to team up with her. That was the day she lost her voice. She was so cute whenever she tried to talk and he didn’t miss the chance to tease her when she couldn’t argue back. It was the first time he saw someone carrying a big packet of cornflakes to eat. Nonetheless, it was Daphne, the crazy girl.
She had brought her male friend, a fine guy of her age, along. He started to tease her again with this third rumoured guy of hers.
She further amazed him by dropping a few cornflake into the soup at the fast food restaurant. They decided to go to a KTV after that. He took her bag so as to force her to go along with them. They changed the plan since the cost was too high, which landed them at a pool centre.
Daphne and he went to the arcade instead. They played Time Crisis 2 and he was stunned by her skill. He seemed so tiny and lousy when he lost the game so fast. They used their last token on a game called Photohunt. The rest teased both of them upon their return.
Daphne dozed off while leaning on the wall and he didn’t miss the chance to take a photo. He wanted to send her home since they stayed quite close and he had made her tag along with them. However, he didn’t dare to speak up in case the rest of them would crap again. He was fated to play the ungentlemen role again.
During that week’s training, he tried to pretend to have sore throat but failed to control his crappy mind. That night, he tried to send her photos in IRC but she didn’t accept it. He thought there was problem with his firewall and tried a few times again. She messaged him in a very rude tone and their conversation ended soon. She didn’t know he took more troubles to send the file than her to reject it. He was so sleepy but he wouldn’t stop feeling being so unappreciated.
A few days later, they had a beach outing. It was the first time he tried kayaking and was glad that Daphne and her good friend accompanied him. He managed to overturn their kayak after a big “battle” When he heard she was running a fever, he tried to get her panadol but failed.
Before they left the beach, she disturbed 2 kids in their game and he couldn’t help finding her cute. She suggested him to help her carry her bag. He didn’t mind but in order to prevent accusation, he exchanged his bag with her because it was much lighter.
She seemed so cute to him all along the journey even though he didn’t talk much with her. He tried to put her first and third rumoured boys in the same table when they were having dinner. He could have sent her home as a friend since she stayed quite near, however he felt there were 2 better candidates out there. He was afraid to fall for her as well if they were to get too close.
Chapter 3: True Affection
Daphne didn’t plan to go for the chalet at first even though she was the one who booked it. Then, he was told that she had decided to go for the BBQ with her second rumoured guy who the whole team wasn’t very pleased with. He felt it was crap.
On the first day of the chalet, some of them met up to buy the stuffs. They went to meet Daphne to collect the chalet’s document from her because she was working. He told himself not to talk to her anymore since she was so close with her second rumoured guy. In the end, Daphne didn’t even go for the BBQ.
They had training on a rainy day and had dinner at a fast food restaurant. Their friends teased that she had gone to the beach with her second rumoured guy and therefore both of them didn’t go for the BBQ. At first, he thought it was a joke but she admitted it indirectly. He was shocked and disappointed in her.
A few days later, they had another beach outing. They went to kayak together and she sounded crazy after having a little alcohol. She even wanted to paddle out of the boundary line. They went to the area directly opposite Sunsetbay and rest on the soft sand. Daphne started to chat with a little American girl with her accent so amazingly. Then she wanted to capsize him and he had to remain still for her to do it. Their friends who wanted to leave spoilt the romantic evening.
After that, they wanted to catch a movie. It was quite late already and they might need to catch a midnight show. He didn’t mind staying out the night since there was at least a cute girl like Daphne around. However, they dropped the idea.
After having dinner, they walked around. He was glad that Daphne was interested in those machines that had cute stuffs inside. He was interested too but was always afraid of people mocking him due to his age. He had a great time with Daphne, scouting for cute stuffs. He did try to stay away from her for some time in case of rumours again. The whole group of them had fun sharing a chicken outside the Plaza Singapura building near the road.
Two days later on a boring Saturday afternoon, Daphne called him to ask about the training. They were supposed to confirm about the training and Christmas Eve celebration at her house. Instead, they started to chat and lame around. She told him her plan to do voluntary work on her birthday.
The training for the next day was cancelled. They went to catch a movie in the evening and had a busy day finding misplaced present for their friend. Then Daphne left her wallet at the theatre after the movie.
A few days later on the Christmas Eve, he didn’t join his gang at the beach, as he wasn’t feeling well. He did meet them up to go to Daphne’s house in the evening. She wanted him to help to fix her PC but he could do nothing since there wasn’t even power.
They had chances to chat together. When some of the girls together with Daphne and him were chatting together, they asked him whom he liked but he didn’t know how to reply. He was too confused by his sad memories.
He had fun that early morning with Daphne. He tried to prevent her and other friends from sleeping. In the end he even had a pillow fight with her. It was near daylight when Daphne went out of the room and they all dozed off. He woke up during afternoon to edit the photos and Daphne came into the room in the hope to wake him up.
Daphne walked them down to the MRT station. It was going to rain and he told her to go back in a cocky manner. He knew she meant good but he meant the same too.
Chapter 4: Story of the Pink Balls
Three days later, after watching a match at Hougang, the big group of them went for lunch. They spotted a machine that had colourful balls inside. Daphne was so excited to see pink coloured balls. He studied it and was quite confirmed that the next ball to come out was a pink one. He forked out a one dollar coin to turn it. The pink ball indeed dropped out and Daphne was so excited that she lay on the floor.
They went for training after that. He had lots of fun disturbing Daphne on the way and she chased him around. Daphne left earlier during the training. It was until the late evening when he received a SMS from her, saying that she had lost the ball. He called her back and she sounded so sad. He left immediately to search for it along the way to MRT station. He even used his phone’s light to shine at the drains. It was after some time when she called back and said it was inside her bag.
That night, they exchanged some SMSes and she said that she didn’t want to celebrate her birthday with them. However, she asked him to help her to install programs for her after her PC was fixed. He had to go her house if he was to help her and he didn’t know if it was a good idea. He had to control himself against her cuteness for he didn’t want to risk hurting himself anymore.
They had another beach outing two days later. He didn’t expect to see Daphne at first, as she was very late. While they were at the MRT station, Daphne saw her ex team-mate, who was supposed to meet up with her ex stead and friends. He started to watch out for her in case she would be sad. He also tried to give his friend more chances to talk to her more since he suspected he was the fourth rumoured guy.
On the beach, he teamed up with Daphne to play with other friends but they lost. After some time, his right thigh cramped. Daphne had approached him to play another match and he didn’t want to disappoint her. They had a very good game and managed to win it by a close margin. That was the first game they won for that day.
The toilet was crowded and Daphne didn’t want to keep the rest waiting. She went to wash her hair at the open space. She called him along to help her hold her plastic bag and also to keep the water flowing. He was afraid that others might get the wrong idea and he kept his eyes away from her direction. However, he took some pictures to disturb her.
On the way, they decided to celebrate New Year at Daphne’s house again. They went to the foodcourt for dinner and most of the stalls were closing. Daphne shared 2 dishes with him.
He was the 4th guy to wish her happy birthday. She was sad because the previous year she had received more SMSes at 12 midnight sharp.
It wasn’t a well organised gathering again. They had to shop for Daphne’s birthday presents on the same day. He knew she wanted a big Tweety bird but his friends didn’t reply early enough to discuss about it. He didn’t mind going out to find it himself but he was at a total lost. He had to give up the idea.
He wanted to give her a good birthday celebration and took some fire sparkles from his younger brother. After meeting up his friends at the supermarket, he dug high and low for candles but couldn’t find any.
They were having steamboat when Daphne’s younger brother dropped the pink colour ball down the windows. It was a construction site. Daphne and he rushed down immediately but the fence was too soft to be climbed. He cracked his brain a lot for the ball throughout the night. He also spent a lot of time staring down from the window.
He initiated to wash the utensils. Another friend helped him and when it was almost done, Daphne took over. They splashed water at each other and had fun. He couldn’t stop thinking she was cute.
He suggested going down to play sparkles but the rest of them started to play monopoly instead. It was around 4am when he went downstairs by himself without them knowing because he was worried the construction workers would wake up soon.
He strolled around near the playground, wondering if he should crawl over the fence through a hole. It was illegal to go in even though he only wanted to retrieve the ball. Suddenly, he was amazed why he was doing so much for Daphne.
He took up the courage to crawl over through the small hole. The soil was quite soft and he had to walk by the side. He realised his sight from the flat was wrong and there was only a deep slope down like a cannel instead of fence. Even though it was impossible for the ball to stop on the soil and there were metal poles lying around, he walked on.
He wasn’t lucky again. As he took the same path back, he stepped on a metal that caused loud noise. He didn’t dare to look back across at the workers’ house and continued to pace his steps. While crawling back from the hole, he cut his left ankle.
Upon his return, he realized his arm was scratched as well. He didn’t want to let anyone know about it and quickly changed his dirtied shirt and cleaned up the wound. He took a rest on the sofa, feeling disappointed for he couldn’t retrieve Daphne’s precious ball.
The rest of them finally decided to go down to play the sparkles. They started taking photos and they asked him to take a shot with Daphne. He was pleased but was nervous over how Daphne would feel for being put together with him. Sadly, the photo wasn’t well taken. They played game and he prayed so hard not to be forfeited in case they would ask him personal questions.
He was resting on the sofa inside the room when Daphne went in to share the packet of chocolate, which they chose together at the supermarket. Somehow she might be misleading him and he knew he had to control himself even more to prevent from sinking in even more.
Daphne woke him up at around noon and they had a little pillow fight. She dozed off on the sofa in the living room and he played her back. After some time, she finally woke up to fry French fries for them. He helped her at the kitchen and took nice shots of her.
When it was finishing, he went into Daphne’s room to transfer the photos from his camera to the laptop. She went in after finishing her work and she volunteered to take photos using the PC cam mode out of curiosity. However, her brother took over and suddenly there was bug with the software and it shut down. All Daphne’s act-cute photos were gone!
He played with her brother for some time before he rested on the sofa. Daphne was playing cards with the girls and she asked him to bend his legs so that she could lie on them. He was starting to feel lucky. He didn’t believe but have to admit; he did have some feeling for her, at least a little. She didn’t have a good very complexion or figure, but she was simply cute.
That night, they exchanged many SMSes and she promised him a kiss.
Chapter 5: He knew it
Two days later, they had another beach outing. It was the most boring day for him without the presence of Daphne. In order not to arouse any suspicion from others, he didn’t ask about her at all.
That night, he called her to ask about the girls’ training and they started to crap again. He had to change room to use another phone because the current one ran out of battery. When she asked him about his love life, he switched topic because his brothers occupied both the rooms. He didn’t mean to hide anything from her after all. Their 3 hours of chat ended at around 2am.
That afternoon, he called Daphne and woke her up. They had some chats before he packed up for training. Some rebellious kids disturbed the training and one of them splashed soap on him. While they were resting, Daphne approached him to play together but her fourth rumoured guy joined in. He pretended to go and clean his body again.
He seriously thought his friend was interested in her and he was the one who encouraged him when they first met. He was silly perhaps. At times, he wanted to get back his kiss from Daphne but he didn’t know if she really meant it. Besides, he had to think of the others’ reaction.
After the training, he took Daphne’s shoes bag in order to force her to go with them. He returned her the money for the food bought for the steamboat but she wanted to split the loss with him. They were sitting close but not on the same table as he didn’t want gossips from others.
His friend and Daphne were taking bus on the same side. He went over to accompany them by giving the excuse that his bus had left. He helped Daphne to carry her belated birthday present and then his friend suggested him to send her home. He took the chance and boarded the bus with her.
He was relieved, as she seemed to be enjoying his companion. As they walked along the dark path, they tickled each other. He had this urge to hold or hug her and he had this feeling that she was interested in him. He didn’t rush things off to avoid awkwardness in the future; he guessed he didn’t have the luck. He sent her up since her mum had seen him before.
He strolled to the bus-stop slowly. On his way home, they started to exchange SMSes. After bathing, they started to chat on phone. The cordless phone was out of battery and he had to stay in the room to use the small phone with headset. His younger brother seemed to be disturbed by the conversation; however, he wouldn’t want to ask his cutie to put down the phone.
They put down the phone at around 2am. Then they started to SMS each other. She strikes him badly when she told him she used to hate him. He didn’t know what he had done and all along he thought they were just joking with each other. He was very sad and he hated himself for sinking in again.
Chapter 6: Lost Memory
He was released early from school the next day and tried to date Daphne out. However, her replies were slow. He was sad hours later when she told him to meet on another day.
He was restless in the evening and was waiting for Daphne’s SMS. He was so crazy for her and nothing else mattered anymore. It was around 8pm when she SMSed him that her training was over and she was having muscle aches. He wanted so much to go over to fetch and carry her but she was already near her house.
They had an hour of chat that night before she went to sleep. He was so excited for the date with her the next day they settled for.
The next day in school, he saw his friend with 2 cute pigs on her mobile phone. They were in pink and could produce sound. The first thought was that Daphne would love them. He started to bug his friends to go to Far East Plaza to get it. In the end, his friend accompanied him there during the break. He was both sleepy and tired but he knew his efforts were worthwhile.
The heaven heard his prayer and the sky was clear for the full moon night. Even though they were supposed to meet at the shopping centre nearby, he waited at her void deck in order to get to see her earlier. Suddenly she told him that her mum wanted her to go home urgently and had to cancel the date.
He decided to wait there for her so that he could at least get to see her. Her brother was there too and started to play with his new phone’s camera. All he hoped was that the battery wouldn’t be finished before he could take some clips of Daphne.
They waited for a long time at the bus-stop before Daphne’s arrival. He helped her to carry her bag and they strolled to her house while he took video clips of her. Her mum was ready to go off to give tuition and he didn’t expect to be invited into the house. They played with the phone and her dog for a while before Daphne took her bath.
Daphne’s brother went to sleep early. She started to heat up the spaghetti and cook another packet of instant noodle. After eating, they washed up the utensils together and played together, tickling each other. Then they sat down on the sofa to study on the pigs he bought for her.
Her mum got home soon and invited him to go off at around 10pm. He stayed around for another 15 minutes before her mum spoke up again. He allowed Daphne to walk him down so that he could spend more time with her. He strolled off slowly again, in the hope that she would look down. They started to SMS each other again.
That night, his elder brother was home and occupied the phone line before him. They could only exchange SMSes and this time, she pressed him to tell her what was wrong when he sounded weird. He finally admitted his feeling for her but she seemed to be fooling around.
He couldn’t understand her messages but realized she wasn’t interested in him. She even asked him to be her “servant” Even though she was just joking, it made him sound so low class. He didn’t know what was wrong, perhaps he had thought too highly of himself to suspect she was interested in him too. He stopped replying her in the end and switched off his phone.
That night, his tears dropped for Daphne for the first time.
He checked his phone during the afternoon and realised Daphne had SMSed him to ask about him. He didn’t reply and switched off his phone immediately. However, he switched on his phone during late evening in case she would SMS him again. She called him near 10pm at his house and he told her he was alright. He didn’t know what she wanted from him but he knew he was stupid to avoid her.
The next day, he wrote the first poem for her. He was stupid enough to wait for her to contact him when he didn’t even reply her SMS. He knew nuts about what was in her mind; he couldn’t believe it was real, for she sounded interested in him.
He couldn’t stop thinking about her every moment. He couldn’t even joke like usual in front of his buddies anymore. He entrusted his friend to get another pink ball for Daphne from the same machine.
They had another beach outing on that Saturday. He stopped playing after Daphne arrived. Sitting alone under the shade, he stared into the direction of Daphne. His friend joined him but he avoided him by going for a swim. He went further down the beach and started to carve his name together with Daphne’s name using his legs on the sand.
He went back when it was getting dark. After some time, Daphne was back and acted as if nothing had happened. She asked where he was but he didn’t say much things.
They started to chat on the bus. They sat together on the next bus and his mood turned better. After buying food, he realised Daphne was leaving for home without eating. He wanted to send her home but didn’t know how to speak up. He sent her a SMS after she left. He tried to finish off the ingredients as he called her to confirm. He was lucky that she had missed her bus and he dashed to the bus-stop.
He was panting but he pretended he walked over. They started to crap and he helped her to carry her bag. He wanted to carry her on his back but she didn’t want. He didn’t bear to part with her and waited outside the lift as she was finding her keys.
He strolled off slowly like usual and missed his bus right in front of him. After boarding the next bus, he asked the driver for the time of arrival of last bus. They started to exchange SMSes again and she told him he was immature. He wished to have serious chat with her but it would be boring.
He called Daphne at night and her voice was weird for her throat wasn’t feeling well again. She told him she didn’t want to go for training the next day.
Indeed, she didn’t go for training. He exchanged SMSes with her but her replies were slow. She told him she most probably didn’t like him and his mood changed completely. There was too much to hide and his throat started to feel uncomfortable. There was a few times when he wanted to reply her during the break but his friends borrowed his phone to play with the camera. He was annoyed.
He didn’t talk much and failed to hide his mood. He sprained his finger, as he couldn’t concentrate. His tiredness and mood worsened his performance. As it was getting dark, he dropped out in order not to spoil their mood. Their training ended late and he didn’t join them for dinner.
On the way home, his mind didn’t stop thinking and he hated himself for showing his moodiness. He was very bothered by Daphne’s SMS saying that he wasn’t her type. After so many excuses she had given, that was the most reasonable one. He knew he was lousy.
He replied her with a long message divided into 3 SMSes. She replied saying that she didn’t know how to reply. He called her after some time even though his throat wasn’t feeling well. She wasn’t concentrating on phone as she was chatting online with her new PC. She even told him that was this mysterious guy who seemed to know her well.
He knew it was a tragic and she wouldn’t have time for him in future with the arrival of the new PC. She would be busy entertained by guys. She said she knew only one guy from a boys’ school but she was surprised when he raked up she was alone with a big group of them during their chalet.
After some time, Daphne wanted to put down the phone. She didn’t go offline. He guessed she should be busy with many guys and he didn’t want to bother her. That night, he dreamt of her.
She messaged his clone in IRC and he only realised it after some time. He messaged her back but her replies were slow. He started advising her to behave in school but she didn’t seem to take the words seriously. Eventually they started to crap.
He was disappointed when she told him she didn’t need his help to set-up her PC anymore. Maybe she didn’t want to be so close to him or maybe she didn’t want to owe him anymore favour. Even though she didn’t have much knowledge about PC and was lazy, she would rather do the things all by herself. She ruled his mind that night, causing him to lose his sleep.
They continued to exchange SMSes but she would only tell him she was hard hearted. It was the night when tears rolled again. He woke up wanting to forget his memory. That was the best way he could do to struggle on with life. He didn’t contact her to avoid hurting himself again. All he could do was to write his thoughts as poetry. No matter how bad his languages were, every word shown his sincerity.
Chapter 7: Be a Clown
He had wishful mind again for her to give him morning call. He guessed she must be hoping that he would forget her if they didn’t keep contact for some time. She didn’t know his heart ached badly each time he thought of her, but pretended nothing had happened.
Daphne’s images appeared throughout the day. He managed to pretend he had forgotten everything, except for the hurt, which couldn’t be stopped but lessened. Nobody understood what was in his mind, not even what had happened.
That Sunday, he started to contact Daphne and asked her to go down for training. She was impressed because he replied her SMSes very quickly despite the early morning. She didn’t realise he had placed his phone just next to him and he was waken up each time by her.
He had good news that his friend had gotten a pink ball from the same machine. The translucent ball was much prettier than the one, which dropped into the construction site. There was an extra ball, which he intended to give her as well so that her brother could play with it instead of the pink one. During the training, he slipped them into her bag.
She didn’t want him to send her home that night but he insisted. Maybe she didn’t want him to get the wrong idea. He was tired and didn’t talk as much as usual. She told him to go home when they were at the dark path but he refused to. It was until she was opening the door, he told her he had put something into her bag. She took a long time to search for it.
He walked slowly at the dark path as usual in the hope that she would look down at him. Suddenly she called him to ask him to go return a trolley with her to the NTUC. He waited for some time and hesitated to go to her door to wait for her. He took the lift up but she took the other one down. He dashed down the stairs upon receiving her call.
They walked by the inner road because she was afraid that people would stare at the trolley. He didn’t mind because maybe it was a longer path and he could spend more time with her. She held the trolley at the front and it was quite inconvenient for him to move it. He would prefer her to walk by his side anyway. She was looking for new a type of Mentos sweet but couldn’t find it. Then he walked her home and reluctant to leave once again.
That night, they chatted online but her replies were extremely slow. He wanted to call her on phone but she said she was in a bad mood and claimed that she wouldn’t pick up the phone. He was disappointed for she could have approached him when she was sad.
She woke him up twice in the morning by sending him SMSes. He had great dream as she was backpacking with him in another country. They were a couple! Suddenly he realised that was a dream but he didn’t want to wake up. It was a very weird incident for he could stay in the dream for quite some time.
It could be a very good day but Daphne spoilt his night again. She didn’t want to join him and his friends for volleyball the next day by saying that she didn’t want to spoil their games. They stopped replying each other soon.
He was waken up by her SMSes many times but her replies were very slow each time. He woke up in the noon and started to search for the type of mentos sweet that she wanted to buy. He couldn’t find it and have to contact his friend who gave him good news. He bought a pink paper at the bookshop.
His volleyball game that afternoon was spoilt by a SMS from Daphne who told him she was very sure she wouldn’t fall for him. He stopped playing after some time and started to write a cute poem he came up with on the pink paper and tried so hard to wrap the 3 mentos sweet with it.
That night, he went to her house after dinner. He left the sweet on the floor and sent her a SMS to collect them. She SMSed him to thank him for being thoughtful but she didn’t reply again after that.
She finally replied him the next morning and told him that she wasn’t going for Chinese New Year countdown with his gang because she wanted to rest her sprained ankle. She accused him of lying that she was sweet. She was the one who told him to compliment her daily to please her and he meant what he said. He was furious and told her he would live up to her expectation to be a liar. She replied him again in the afternoon but he didn’t reply her.
On the second day of Chinese New Year, his gang gathered in the afternoon but she was having movie with other friends. She seemed to be treating her other friends more important. He called her a few times but she didn’t pick it up. It would be a beautiful night if they were to stick to the plan; it was the only chance to get to see her and spend time with her. She finally called him back but she wasn’t joining them anymore with the change of plan.
They didn’t contact each other for days. All he did was to miss her. Dreams and tears accompanied him faithfully. He skipped training in order to avoid her. He even went to trim his hair so short ever; for more than 7 years, his hairstyle had never being changed.
He recalled she told him about she wanted to get a milk bottle to put on her bedside. He went to Bugis Junction to search for a milk bottle for her. He went up to the baby department in Seiyu and hung around there for very long. No matter how embarrassed he was, he wanted to choose a nice one for her. He contacted his friends and then went to Parco to walk around again.
He finally decided to try his luck at Plaza Singapura, preparing to try his luck around Takashimaya and in the worst situation, going back to Seiyu. His determination was rewarded as he found a cute pink colour bottle after spending hours.
Chapter 8: Valentines’ Day
Two days later, he spent hours rotting in school just to think of a plan for the Valentine’s Day eve. He thought of a plan to use balloons with helium to pass the milk bottle to Daphne through her windows. He was totally stressed out. He ordered some flowers as he remembered her saying about the new florist shop near her house.
Just one day before the actual day, he asked her good friend to find out if she would be at home on the next night. He was shocked when Daphne’s phone number wasn’t in use anymore. He thought Daphne changed her number just to avoid him. It was hours later when he started to get more worried when Daphne wasn’t home yet. It was until her friend called her to inform him she was back. That call scared him as he thought something bad had happened.
The next day, he got a bad news that his friend couldn’t get him helium gas for the balloons. The fact that countless balloons were required to lift the bottle up crashed his plan. He sat down in a daze, too sad to speak.
He managed to get four helium balloons but most of the gas had escaped. They could at most lift up a piece of paper. He changed the plan again when the balloons burst one by one. At the end of the day, He grabbed some normal balloons from the bazaar.
It was about 9pm when he set off with the balloons. A man carrying so many balloons should have amazed the passers-by. He squeezed them into a cab and took the front seat. He didn’t count but there should be around 20 of them. He was crazy, simply not the past old him.
He settled down at the seats in front of the lifts. However, nobody picked up the call. Her mum passed by but didn’t see him. After a while, her mum took her dog down for a walk and saw him, thus invited him up.
Daphne arrived home soon and was surprised to get to see him. They seemed to get back to like in the past where they teased each other so regularly. He was happy of course, because it had been very long since he heard her voice. He knew she had a happy day earlier on with the flowers on her hands.
Her mum heated up soup for them and also made a pizza. He was crapping with Daphne in the living room but the dog interrupted them often. It was until some time when her mum went to sleep but didn’t bring the dog in. The dog scratched him many times.
He didn’t want to leave even though his last bus was arriving. However, she got sleepy and he had to leave. She insisted in walking him down. His worries slipped his mind off to wish her happy Valentine’s Day. He wanted to get back the kiss from her but he guessed she treated him as a buddy only. It might be awkward. She walked him to near the MRT but the last train had left.
He was worried about her all along. He held on to his phone in case she would call him to report her safety. She didn’t. He took another bus but had to walk far way home since he had missed his bus. They chatted online for a little while after that but he would never think highly of himself.
He waited for her call on that Saturday afternoon but his phone was silent. He called her and she said she forgotten her promise to call him back. It was such a disappointment. He knew he had no place in her heart. She refused to go to beach with his gang; instead, she wanted to go Orchard. He didn’t know whom she was going with and he didn’t dare to ask. There were tears in his eyes that he hid from his friend.
He went to Bugis with his friend to help another friend to get flowers. He didn’t talk much on the way. The more he thought about his sweetie, the sadder he became. Just after his friend went past the control station, he bid goodbye suddenly to go home.
Chapter 9: Life of a Mute
The next day, he was too sad to go for training. Most importantly, he didn’t want to show his face to the rest. He was surprised to receive a call from her to ask about who went for training. They ended the call soon.
After some time, he took the courage to message her in IRC to date her out for a movie. She had lots of excuses but they sounded quite reasonable. Her mum’s cooking of the crabs spoilt his plan eventually. She promised him a date on Wednesday instead.
They had a nice chat. He was extremely happy when she told him she believed he was serious about her. At the same time, he felt stressed too because there were ways to go before she would fall for him. More thorns were waiting.
He didn’t go for dinner with his family just to chat longer with her. After returning from her bath, she made him wait for almost 2 hours. She said she was on phone and had just rejected a Malay guy. She sounded weird and he knew something was wrong. She lightened him up by saying she would be using the milk bottle as water bottle. He feared for her embarrassments in school.
Suddenly, she told him to give up again, bringing in the deepest pain to his heart again. He lost count of how many times he stared at the screen after her replies. He controlled his tears, as his brother was still awake, just behind him. He didn’t reply her as she went on typing. His last reply was “let my tears do the talking” before he logged off after 3am.
He covered his face with the blanket. Tears dripped endlessly and he lost count. 10s, 20s, the pillow was wet. He had to control his voice to avoid waking his mum up. Daphne threatened him not to be depressed. She called his mobile phone but he didn’t know what to say. He didn’t say anything and she tried to crack some stupid jokes. He switched off the phone after some time. She called back but he didn’t pick up.
He decided to quit volleyball. He told his friend he would drop out from the school’s competition which the chance to get champion was so high. He gave up his only chance to get a good title.
He didn’t speak ever since he woke up. Other than apologising to a girl whom he stepped on the bus, he didn’t even greet his teacher or discussed in the class group work. He spoke up the second time at home because he didn’t want his elder brother to suspect anything.
After taking his dinner at around 8pm, he waited near her house. He was prepared to waste the trip if she were to take another route home. She messaged him suddenly to ask about and he asked her back where she was. He didn’t reply her when she asked about him again.
He went to her after she alighted and then carried her bag for her. He didn’t say anything. The walking speed was too fast for him to enjoy. He had to give some smiles to make her feel better. After seeing her up, she told him that she wanted to have a good talk and they went down again. He didn’t speak when she asked what he wanted. He wanted to tell her so much that he loved her and wanted to be with her.
She insisted in walking him down the route that she scared most. He dragged her by her bag and almost wanted to grab her by hand but held back because he didn’t want to touch her. They paused for very long there and her mum had contacted her friend to find her.
Out of no choice, he had to drag her by her hand. How he wished so much he could just hold her hand like a couple. He didn’t dare to. They parted after sending her up again. He walked off slowly and looked upwards to her windows like usual, wishing she would look down and admire him.
The next day, he didn’t even reply his teacher who was asking about his project. He went to top up his ezlink card without speaking. He helped a couple to carry things and the man praised him in front of the neighbours. The man recalled his house at the wrong storey but he couldn’t speak up. He pretended to have sore throat to entertain his mum. When his neighbour kid came to his house, he would only use hand sign to communicate.
He chatted with her online but she told him she had cross-country the next day and she didn’t have money. She wanted to cancel the date. Everything was excuse he knew. She went to bath immediately to leave him staring at the screen to study her 5 lines of messages. His few hours of joy ended, and so much torment was left. His headache and giddiness accompanied him.
She woke him up the next morning by a SMS to tell him she didn’t want to watch movie. He saw the light finally as he knew she was still keen to go out with him. He told her it was his treat and then quickly prepared himself when she replied him positively again.
He was all out ready to set off but she still didn’t reply him. He sent her another SMS and finally she told him to meet at Plaza Singapura at 2pm. He held back and took a bowl of instant noodle. His mum called home but he didn’t pick up. He set off an hour earlier and reached there very soon.
She was late for 15 minutes. There wasn’t any popular movie showing and the best he could imagine was “Along Came Polly”. She picked “Gothika” which they couldn’t find any trailer board. She said it was exciting to watch that way and she was really cute.
He bought the ticket by typing into his phone to show the salesgirl who treated him as a faggot. He pointed at the Vanilla Coke that she chose and managed to get it without much trouble. She told him her secret that she didn’t wear any short under her skirt for the first time because her friend told her it would look better. How he wished she was doing that for him, no matter how low the possibility was.
They sat by the edge of the row and her jacket spoiled his plan. He wanted to warm her freezing hands but he seemed too extra. She asked him why he didn’t want to talk and finally he typed into his phone for her – “watever i say u oso dun belief, so y shd I tok?”
It was a mystery horror show and somehow it was a right choice. She was the only one screaming in the theatre, which didn’t have many audiences. She was so cute. He wanted to hug her so much to keep her calm but he could only stare at her. He looked at her often. She replied to SMS often and refused to switch her phone off.
They walked around for a while, visiting shops like John Little, which he showed her the milk bottle that he bought for her. She played using the kid’s piano and he enjoyed them even though some were children’s songs.
They went to KFC. He insisted in treating her again even though her $0.60 turned out to be a $5 note. The cashier was slow and he was forced to reply her “crispy” and “chilli? The cashier stared at him so weirdly and he was so embarrassed.
They had fun eating there even though he refused to talk. He stared at her for very long. He didn’t expect her to say she was going home as she told him her mum didn’t have her new number to contact her. As they walked out, she told him she was going to Paragon to meet her friends instead.
He was at a loss. He wondered who her friends were and he started to suspect she was just trying to entertain him and was forced to go out with him. He thought she could accompany him till night. Maybe that was why she didn’t want to catch the show at 4.30pm.
He didn’t know how to reply her except to continue carrying her bag and following her. He didn’t mind sending her over but she seemed to be afraid of letting her friends see him. He felt being a nuisance. He was so sad when he thought of she might be not wearing the short inside for other guy. There was brightness but it was darkness for him.
She decided to go home with her annoyed looks. He felt she preferred to find her friends even though she was tired. He followed her decision since he couldn’t talk. She leaned by the windows on the double decker bus but he knew she had lots of things in her mind. He wasn’t feeling any better, as all the questions seemed to be exploding his brain. He had to press against his forehead to reduce the aches and giddiness.
She didn’t want him to send her up again but she gave up rejecting him. Maybe she didn’t want her mum to mistake him as her stead or she didn’t want to owe him too much. Before he parted with her, she recalled that her mum had told her to buy something.
They went down and she saw her mum near the lobby. Then, she told him to leave first instead of letting him go and greet her mum. He strolled off so slowly and sadly as he knew the only worst scenario could fit in most likely. How he wished she would hold him back or even take a little peek at him. He “missed” a bus right in front of him but there was still no sign or news from her.
The journey home was filled with poetic again. He didn’t see her online and there were only 2 possibilities – she dozed off or she went back Orchard to find her friends. He thought of if Daphne’s looks changed, would he still like her. The answer would be yes because what he liked about her most was her cute and crazy character.
Chapter 10: Believes
He remembered Daphne was having training the next day so he planned to go and find her again. He knew she didn’t visit his website, which he uploaded all the poetry written for her. Therefore, he copied down the last 2 poems for her on papers neatly.
He didn’t reply his mum as usual that night. He had a stomachache but he insisted in going. The long wait for the bus gave him an instinct that it was a bad idea to set off. He waited at her bus-stop and each bus dampened his hope.
It was around 9.15pm when he SMSed her to ask if she was home. She didn’t reply and he guessed she was bathing. He walked over to her house at 9.30pm and after some time she finally replied, saying that she was home very early that day. He dropped the letter at the door. He told her to pick it up and play a song on her piano if they were nice. He waited outside the lift but she didn’t open the door.
She told him she was sleeping. All the SMSes they exchanged couldn’t make her come out. He was so sad because he spent almost 2 hours waiting there and she didn’t even want to waste a minute looking at his efforts. He sat by the lift and gave up after some time.
His elder brother called him and told him his mum was crying. When he got home, the room door was opened with the air-con on and nobody was at home. He didn’t know what to do but tried to remain calm. He messaged her when he saw her online to apologise for waking her up and she told him to give up again. He stated all his doubts and told her about his current big shit.
He knew it was a wrong time to ask and tell her all those things but he couldn’t resist. She was waken up by her mum to do something and she was in no mood for anything. She replied him with big caps and he finally understood she didn’t like him in any way.
No matter what he did was useless and she just wouldn’t fall for him for whatever reason which he didn’t know. Even if she had believed him, it was impossible to make her fall for him.
He didn’t reply her and they stopped contacting each other. He didn’t want to pester her anymore. He didn’t attend any Sunday training ever since. He quitted going to IRC channels, which she went in to avoid her.
He continued to dream of her and wrote his thoughts as poetry work. He recalled about her daily but he tried hard to pretend he had lost memory again. He put in his deepest effort in his project that he was a month behind schedule, aiming to delicate it to her.