Over Coffee

12 Jan 2009

It has been years since Ada last saw Jordan. It’s been too long, and there has been too little contact that she never thought this reunion would be possible. Then the call came a few weeks ago, which her agent conveniently forgot until a few days later during one of their after parties, and if it wasn’t for his drunken state, she would never have known that Jordan was trying to get in touch with her.

And now there they were, sitting at the corner of a small coffee shop in the city, in the cold January day. There he was in front of her, looking very much like the Jordan she knew, only with less of the chubby cheeks. How long has it been? Ten, fifteen years ago?

“Ada? Are you okay? You’re spacing out.” Jordan’s voice broke into her reverie.

Ada blinked. “I’m sorry. I’m still just…stunned. I can’t believe you’re here! That we’re here in the same place!” She waved her arms for emphasis. “I never thought I’d see you again.”

Jordan laughed. “Me either. I was so glad when I finally heard from you. Did you know that for someone so famous, it’s so hard to track you down?”

“I’m sorry,” Ada said, truly apologetic. “It’s just been very, very busy lately, with releasing the new album and finishing the winter tour and all.”

“Ah, the perks of being Ada the famous singer,” Jordan said, smiling. The waitress arrived at their table and set two cups of coffee on the table. Ada watched as Jordan pushed one cup towards her and pulled the other to him. He reached for the sugar and dumped a teaspoon in and then stirred, not making any motion to get the cream.

“You like your coffee black?” Ada wondered out loud. Jordan looked up at her and for a moment she felt embarrassed but he just smiled.

“Yeah, never liked cream,” he replied. “Besides, it’s healthier this way.” He took a sip of the coffee and Ada had to stop herself from wrinkling her nose at how bitter it must taste.

Ada nodded like she understood, and then went ahead to mix her coffee. She could feel Jordan’s eyes watching her as she dumped two and a half teaspoons of sugar and one of the cream. They never got to the coffee-drinking part of the years they had known each other. The last solid memory she could remember of them was his seventh birthday, a few weeks before Ada left. The two of them pigged out on his birthday cake after all of their visitors had left. Hazel, the Bernabe’s housekeeper, allowed them to eat it even if it was past their bedtime, after Jordan convinced her to let them since it’s his birthday. Ada smiled as she remembered the moment when they finally stopped eating, holding their tummies from it being so full.

“You’re smiling again. What’s up?” Jordan wanted to know.

“I just remembered something,” Ada said, chuckling. There were so many questions she want to ask, but she had to ask the most important one first. “What brings you here? Are the rest of your family here too? Kuya Pete? Kuya Diego? Tita Victoria? Tito Ferdinand?”

Jordan took another sip of coffee before replying. “Actually, they’re also looking for you.”

Ada raised her eyebrows. “Everyone? Why, are you on a family vacation or something?”

Jordan shook his head. “No. It’s only me and my two brothers. It’s Dad, Ada.”

“Why? What happened to Tito?” Now Ada was worried.

“Dad’s been sick for a long time,” Jordan said, playing with the corner of the tissue paper beside his cup. “And well, frankly, we all think he’s nearing his time.”

Ada felt her eyes fill with tears. “Oh no.”

Jordan noticed her tone and looked up at her in alarm. When he saw her teary eyes, he picked the tissue up and offered it to her. Ada had some tissues in her bag, but she accepted it anyway. Her fingers brushed his and she felt a jolt, but it went away too fast for her to process.

“A few weeks ago, he told us he dreamt about you, and he said you were there with us. And he wanted to see you.” Jordan continued.

“Me?” Ada said, confused.

“Yeah, you,” Jordan said. “He was quite insistent. At first we dismissed it…we figured he just saw you on TV or something, which triggered his memory, but the next few days he kept wanting to see you. The doctor said it might be better for him if we could find you, and it would give him peace…so we set out to look for you.”

Ada leaned back, absorbing Jordan’s words. She and her grandfather owed a lot to Tito Ferdinand, and it was his kindness that took them in. She wasn’t that close to him, but she could always remember a warm smile sent her way every now and then, and the gifts she receive for her birthday and Christmas. Ada couldn’t imagine him sick and dying.

“Well…I can go there if he wants to see me,” Ada said. “I’ll just arrange for a break. I’m sure my agent would understand.”

“Are you sure?” Jordan asked. “I mean….we don’t want to impose on you. Maybe a phone call would suffice.”

Ada shook her head vehemently. “No. Of course it’s okay. I don’t want to let you guys down. And besides, I want to visit,” she said, trying to crack a smile at him. But when she saw his worried face, she felt a tear escape her eye.

“Oh Ada, I’m sorry,” Jordan fumbled for another tissue paper to give her. However, there was none, so he just reached for her hand and patted it awkwardly.

Ada did not know what made her do the next thing. She pulled her hand from Jordan’s comforting pats and just held his hand, feeling the warmth of his palm on hers. When she realized what she had done, she felt her cheeks flame, but Jordan squeezed her hand and did not pull away.

There was the jolt again, followed by a weird kind of warmth that came from Ada’s stomach, moving up and up to her chest. She looked up at Jordan, met his eyes and held.

It wasn’t that this was the first time they held hands. They’ve held hands a lot of times back when they were children, but this one felt different, like there was an electric charge running from his hand to hers. It was a feeling she’d never had before, not with any other guy she knew. It was like the first day of a long vacation: waking up from a long and uninterrupted sleep, feeling the sun shine brightly through the window and onto bare skin, and knowing for sure that there were good things to come for the day and the rest of the days after that.

“Oh there you are.”

Jordan broke Ada’s gaze and pulled his hand from hers. Ada looked up and saw a tall and beautiful girl approach their table with a bright smile, but it was only directed at Jordan. She knew from the moment his face lit up that this girl was not just anyone to Jordan, but a someone. Ada looked down as Jordan stood up and kissed the newcomer.

“Bianca, this is Ada, the one we’ve been looking for. Ada this is Bianca, my fiancée.”

[1244 words]

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