So, my answer was yes to Arief's phone calls. But I gave him the terms and conditions as well:
TERMS AND CONDITIONS BEFORE CALLING ME:
1. He must NOT call me during office hours.
2. He must NOT call me during lunch time - that is solely for relaxing with office mates.
3. He must NOT be too anxious to call me at 5.30pm - give me some space to deal with stuff first before I can concentrate on other things.
4. Respect my office discussion at ALL times.
5. I will entertain family/office calls before I'm entertaining his.
Which means, he could call me in the morning when I got up - just to say hi. Or later when I felt like talking in the evening. But as you already knew, folks, I was unofficially staying in that "aquarium" of mine in the office. So, how about Arief's time allocation?
"You sound sleepy," he commented.
"Yup..." I yawned. I quickly covered my mouth with the back of my hand.
"Me too," he yawned too. Cute.
"Dah minum coffee?"he asked.
"Selalu barista minum coffee apa ye?" he teased.
"Barista minum Kopi Jantan, takpun Lasindah Cafe, Cap Kapal Api ke...Kopi yang sampai patah kaki katil tu ke..tgklah, ikut mood," I replied stupidly.
"Kerek pulak dia," he laughed.
"Apasal tak minum coffee Starbucks?"
"Minum...tapi selalunya ada orang nak Employee Beverage tu. So, I bagi orang," I explained.
"Or you jenis macam I...tak boleh nak makan hasil tangan sendiri?" he prompted.
"Eeeerr...actually that was true," I smiled. He seemed to know so many things about me. Wow. That was a red alert sign, Sha.
"You enjoyed the game last night?" he asked.
"Mana you tau I tengok game last night?"
"I knew you liked football," I could sense his smile over there.
"Hmmmm...enjoy jugak. Though I was hoping that Germany was playing last night," I gave him a matter-of-fact.
"Germany dah dapat nombor tiga, sayang,"he said softly. Errrr...sayang?Wooooo...ninoninoninooooooooooo...I heard the siren.
But I ignored it.
"You sokong mana?" I asked him back.
"Team yang kalah semalam."
"Yikesss...peminat Arjen Robben ke?"
"You sokong Spain la nieh? Yikes-yikes?"
"I actually peminat France. Then diorang dah out, I suka Germany. Tapi...hmmm..." the sentence was unfinished.
"Then you decide nak sokong Spain sebab ada Fernando Torres kan? Liverpool?"
"Errr...yes. How do you know so many things ek?"
"Let's just say I'm good at guessing. Hehe," he laughed cheekily.
The sound of his laughter was like endearment to my ear. For some reason, I was kind of liked it but at the same time tried to refrain myself. Ninoninoooninoooooooo...the sirens got louder.
"Kalau you dapat pergi mana-mana, negara mana you nak pergi?" he asked.
"Maybe Scotland. Or Spain. Tp lately rasa nak pergi Spain," I answered truthfully.
"You mesti suka Paella kan?" he guessed.
And that was awfully true. A rice dish from Spain which made me drooled everytime I watched the tv.
"I knew it."
"Tell you what...why don't I make one for you?"
"You want to cook for me? Really? Paella ada saffron. Saffron mahal," I said.
"Yes...but I ada simpan sikit. I mean, a good chef will have a place for those."
"I tau....you takut I guna-gunakan you kan?"
God. This man knew everything in my mind. Geeessshhhh...
"Tak challenging la kalau nak amik hati you cara macam tuh," he said softly.
"Ish...apa you nieh..."
"Sama macam kopi patah kaki katil yang tak tentu lagi boleh buat katil patah tuh..."
I was silent.
"Boleh I amik hati you tak, Cik Sha?" he said with his nice sweet voice.
"Nak bawak ke Valencia..." he continued.
And there I was. Burning like a paella in a paellera~!!!
***to be continued***