Read chapter 30 here with greenlydia
I awkwardly stand leaning up against the counter top and squeeze the piping bag with my good hand, I don’t know why I always set challenges like this for myself but I was bored and decided I wanted cupcakes so I carved out a section of the kitchen for myself, claimed a few tools and ingredients, dug out my favourite recipe and got to baking up a yummy treat. These are my own recipe, I’d started getting creative once I was more comfortable in the kitchen and came up with this delicious vanilla and coconut base with avocado and chocolate frosting, most people would never even guess that they’re completely vegan. Papa walks in and swipes my first batch of iced cupcakes off the table. “These are going in the shop” I just smile and shake my head, I always make extra because I know he’ll nab at least a dozen or so for the front. I finish off the last one with a flourish and stand back to admire my handy work. Not bad for someone with a cast. I’ve come to realize that there’s more mobility than you’d think there would be with having a cast which is great because signing with one hand is terribly long and time consuming.
I decided that I’m finally going to take Michael a little something to work, seeing as last time a bus interrupted my journey. I pack all the cupcakes neatly into the cupcake tin and ask Papa if I can borrow Noah for a few minutes. I can sort of hold the handle and my crutch at the same time but I won’t make it all the way to his office without dropping them so I need a little help. We get there at a slow and steady pace, Noah carefully puts the handle into my open fingers and I clamp them closed around the handle and the crutch before he heads back to the café. I hobble over to the elevator and press for the 5th floor, reading off the numbers as the elevator does its descent. Eventually it stops and opens up on my floor and I get inside, bobbing my head to the music in my head.
I get off on the 5th floor and look around, I’ve only been here once before but I vaguely remember the location of Michael’s desk, I don’t have to look for too long though as his currently stands out like a sore thumb. I head on over to where he’s perched and looking slightly bemused and unceremoniously drop the cupcakes on the table right before they’re about to slip from my fingers. Michael startles but smiles brightly when he sees it’s me, he stands up and pulls me into a tight hug before giving me a kick kiss on the forehead.
Michael: To what do I owe this surprise?
Me: I felt like baking and thought you might like a cupcake. What happened to your desk?
Micheal: Iris happened to it.
Me: Iris did this? Oh I think I love that woman. Is she here?
Michael: Nah, something about working from home today I think. Probably just too scared to face my wrath.
He tries to pull a “wrath etched face” but it doesn’t work and we both just end up laughing. He opens the tin, grabs a cupcake and pulls the liner off of it, I showed him a few years back how to properly eat a cupcake and he still does it today. One of Michael’s collegues come up to his desk to ask him something and I hand him a cupcake, poor soul is so disheveled and the bags under his eyes look like he’s going on holiday. He accepts the cupcake and ambles off to the copier room with the paperwork that Michael has just handed him.
Me: Who was that sad looking creature?
Michael: That would be Mark, he’s usually in much better spirits but him and Iris had a falling out yesterday over something about the secretary.
Me: You mean big tits pam?
Michael: *snorts* Yeah that would be her. Apparently he helped her out with her internet connection or something that was spotty downstairs and Iris walked in on Pam trying to thank him in a less than appropriate way.
Me: Oh fuck.
I feel so bad for my friend, I know just how much she’s into him and can only imagine the heart break she’s going through. I wonder if she even let him explain, somehow I don’t think she’s the rational type when it comes to things like this. I say bye to Michael and make my way back to the café. I need to email Iris but how do I broach the subject without her getting all defensive and accusing me of picking sides. Maybe I should just leave it, but I can’t, I know he makes her happy.
I’ve been staring at my computer for a while now, there was a rather abrupt mail from Iris asking how I know the Mateo’s and I’m not sure what I should read into it, it was followed up with a much chattier mail so perhaps she hit send by accident, I’ve done it a few times so I chalk it up to that and ignore the weird feeling it leaves behind.
Subject: Are you okay?
Right, screw the chit chat and beating around the bush and all that other crap, first things first…
ARE YOU OKAY?
I went to drop off some cupcakes for you and Michael today but he said you were working from home and then I met a poor disheveled and unslept looking soul who was introduced to me as Mark. Well of course the story of big tits Pam and the copier room came up. Did you give the poor boy a chance to explain that the hooker was coming on to him and not the other way around? Somehow I don’t think you did, I don’t mean it in a bad way but I have a feeling that your heart makes decisions a whole lot quicker than you do. That bitch just better be glad she was out to lunch when I was there because I totally would have gone all kung fu casts of fury on her skinny blonde ass!
I couriered the copy of Feathers and Fur back to you but sent it to the office, it probably arrived after you’d left already. PS – the post it notes! I laughed so much I nearly peed myself. Totally wanted to go and high five you, not that Michael was that impressed with me being in awe of your skills though. Just careful, he’s the master of revenge tactics.
The Mateo’s, they are the closest thing to a family that I have ever had aside from Michael. When I moved here I was your typical starving artist and Papa must have felt sorry for me when I was in there one day as he asked me if I wanted a job. He’d known basic sign language so we were able to communicate at least. He put me in the kitchen away from the people and prying eyes and taught me his tricks and for some reason they let me worm my way into their live’s. They’re very secretive about life before I arrived and they always say it’s simply that they were waiting for me which is cute but at the same time I’m pretty sure it’s bullshit, I’ve just never felt right about prying, if they wanted to tell me something I know they would so I know them but I’m not sure I can claim to know them very well despite it being so many years now. I’m actually staying with them at the moment as I can’t make it up to my 5th floor apartment. Can you imagine trying to climb all those stairs in my condition? They could probably make a movie out of it hahaha. Something about your mail tells me you know them as well?
I wonder idly to myself why we’ve never met.
I really hope this mail finds you with a smile on your face instead of a grim frown and a hangover. I know you and the wine made friends, wine and bread are my comforts as well so no judgment there. But without sounding like a cliché, give the guy a chance to explain, he really seemed out of sorts with you gone. You never know, don’t let your insecurities get the better of you. Rather live your life without “what if’s”.
Kurt Vonnegut once said – Be soft, do not let the world make you hard. Do not let the pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness.
Sending you healing thoughts and good hopes
I sigh and hit send, I sound like a hallmark card, what I’d give to show up at her door with ice cream, tissues and shitty movies. To give her a hug and let her know that everything will be okay and that the world isn’t really a bad place. But what if this friendship we’ve cultivated goes no further than the emails we send. I don’t want to lose her as a friend and in thinking that I’m also hoping that this mail won’t wedge a log into our friendship but I can’t sit by idly and watch her throw away what could be a once in a lifetime kind of love just because of some stupid bimbo who’s jealous of how amazing she is. I close my laptop and get myself a cup of coffee before settling down to get to work on a few other projects that my agent sent through last night.