I’m panicking right now. These two crazy people are looking and talking to me. WHAT DO I DO? I’m never in these situations, my friends are, and I’m usually the bystander. I only just met this dude and now I’m meeting his friend? Taking a deep breath to calm myself, I open my mouth to respond.
“Hi, yeah, I’m fine. Nice hair by the way, how’re you?” I ramble. I realize too late what I’ve just said and watch as Vio runs her fingers through her purple streaked hair. Once again, my face goes red and I sink down in my chair, trying to disappear.
“Thanks! I just redyed it a few days ago. I’m fine. Do you need a biscuit or something?” I faintly hear Vio say. I shake my head, but she gets up and leaves. A few minutes later, I smell something cheesy and kind of greasy and I open my eyes. Vio is sitting back down, pushing a freshly warmed savoury croissant in my direction.
“Here, you’ll feel better.” She smiled and I tentatively nibbled on the treat. The young barista sat back down and started to play with Arti’s hair. The warmth of the croissant filled me up and before I knew it, it was gone and so was my drink. The two people watching me smiled and Vio took my trash and threw it away.
“Alright boys, I’ve got to get back to making coffees. You guys go and have fun.” Vio waved us off and skipped back behind the bar to take more orders. Arti looked at me, stood up, and held out his hand. I took it and he helped me out of my seat and led me to his car.
“Wait a minute, I’ve got to get my bike. It’ll only be a second.” I stopped, unlocked my bike, and put it on the back of Arti’s car. He helped me strap the bike onto the back of the car and we got in. Arti started the car and drove onto the main road, going to his campus apartment.
We arrived and went into his apartment to see the kitten. The little tuxedo was sleeping on top of an armchair across from a TV in the corner of the room. Putting down our school bags, Arti woke the little cat up and put him in his lap.
“He’s kind of shy, so don’t expect him to like you at first.” Arti warned as I started petting the kitten. He started purring and crawled over to my arm, claws digging into my skin.
“Wha- but, wait. It took him weeks to get used to me! How is he already giving you affection?” Arti asked, flabbergasted. He started spouting gibberish about how this wasn’t fair. I sat down on the floor while he was waving his arms around, motioning to the kitten and to me. Arti eventually deflated and sat back in the chair.
“Ok, so what should we name him?” He started.
“Chaz.” I suggested while listening to the kitten’s strong purrs.
“Too generic, Small Bean.”
“I don’t like that one, something more refined if you please.” He joked.
“Ok then, Burnt Chortackel.” I laughed, thinking of all the ways Benedict Cumberbatch
could be botched and misspelled.
“Maybe, but that one on the back burner. Charlie?”
“Very refined. How about Dr. Reginald of Tabbycat, PhD?”
“PhD? Ha, sure. Reg for short though.'' Arti laughed and we agreed that the little cat in my lap would be named Dr. Reginald of Tabbycat, PhD.