I've been loving her from afar for almost three years. I've gotten to know her through those years, and I've helplessly fallen in love with her. She is someone who really understands me, and always lets me cry on her shoulder whenever I suddenly felt sad.
Too bad I couldn't make her mine... for her heart was already captured by someone else... my best friend, Dao Ming Si. Ah Si and I have been friends for almost fifteen years, and nothing has come between us, and I plan to keep it like that. But when Shan Cai came along... I didn't know what to do...
"HUA ZHE LEI! YOU OF ALL PEOPLE!" Ah Si shouted his lungs out of himself. This was when I announced to Ah Si that I fell in love with his girlfriend, Shan Cai. He became furious and almost lunged forward to throw a punch. But luckily, Xi Men and Mei Zhou were there to restrain him back...
"I can't control this feeling, Ah Si... I love her... I've loved her for so long..." Looking up into his furious eyes, I almost begged him, "Please, let me be with her... before you both leave for Barcelona... before... you two get married..." I was down on my knees, my head low... I wanted this more than anything. I wanted Shan Cai for so long... yet I lost my chance, long ago... I don't think I can ever get it back. "Ah Si... please, I beg you... let me be with Shan Cai... for just a week... I promise, I will let you both alone. Just, please, grant me this request?"
Ah Si was not wild about this idea. I wouldn't blame him, letting his best friend go out with his fianc e, was truly out of the question. "Hua Zhe Lei, I can't trust you, especially with when you're with her... how do I know what you're going to do, is really what you're aiming for?" Ah Si asked coldly. For the past three years, we both were in a feud of winning Shan Cai's heart. I lost miserably. But all I'm asking now, is to have one last chance with her. Ah Si's gaze fell on me with a longing pity, a change of mind. "Lei, I, I will grant you your request. We leave next week. I will give you that time. But when this week is up, and after we are married, you are to leave her alone. Understood?" He clarified sternly to me and I nodded slowly in agreement.
The next day, I found Shan Cai working at the cake shop. She was dressed in her cute red uniform and braids flowing down her shoulders. I walked inside with a small smile. "Hua Zhe Lei?" she called me with a bright smile on her face.
"Shan Cai, how many times have I asked you? Call me Lei." I said as I continued walking towards the counter. She still continued smiling. "Doing anything this week?" I asked casually.
"Um... just packing to leave for Barcelona with Dao Ming Si." she answered back.
I laughed slightly, "why do you call everyone by their full name? You need to get used to calling Ah Si, Ah Si."
"It's a habit."
"Shan Cai, would you mind spending this week with me? Before you leave?" I popped the question to her. Her smile slowly faded as she let my question sink in.
"Hua... Hua Zhe Lei... I don't think... Dao Ming Si..."
"I already asked him. He said it's alright. Don't worry." I then took her hands in mine, and brought them both close to my lips as I continued, "Shan Cai, I would like you, to please, spend this week with me. Please don't ask me why, I just, would really like it, if you spend some time with me." I looked into her eyes pleadingly, "please, Shan Cai." Her facial expression was a confused look, but slowly turned soft, and she slowly nodded to tell me that she will grant me my request. "Thank you." I whispered into her hands.
The first day of the week, Sunday, I started the week off, with a picnic in the park. At around noon, I picked Shan Cai up and drove her to Central Park. Pulling out the basket of food, and a baby blue picnic blanket, we walked into the park. I asked her to choose a tree to sit under, and she excitedly walked around the park to find the perfect tree. A few minutes later, she chose the tallest tree with the most leaves. Setting the basket and blanket down, we began eating the lunch I proudly prepared myself.
I began to think back, last night, about how I sat in the kitchen preparing the meal that I was going to serve today. A few chefs and maids came in and out, wondering what I was doing in the kitchen, and why hadn't I asked them to prepare the meal for me instead.
"Hua Zhe Lei, what are staring at?" Shan Cai's voice shook me out of my thoughts. I looked back at her, and merely smiled lightly.
"Hua Zhe Lei, I know, you asked me not to ask you, but, why do you want to spend this week with me?"
"You'll find out after this week is up." I told her mysteriously.
From Monday thru Wednesday, Shan Cai and I have spent most of our time at our sanity, Ying De rooftop. On Wednesday night, I bravely held her hand while we sat on the edge watching the stars glitter in the midnight blue sky. Her hand was warm and soft, while mine was rough and cold. But her body heat radiated off, and onto me. I felt warm once we touched.
Letting go of her hand, I disappeared into the staircase, and returned back with my violin case. Shan Cai watched me tune my violin and rozened up my bow. Lifting the violin onto my shoulder, and the bow in my right hand, I gaze at Shan Cai as she observed me playing. The song I was playing was a song I wrote, just for the occasion. I told a story, a story of a man and a woman, who's love for each other was always one-sided. And when their chance came, they were both brutally separated, and the story ended with a tear stained face. When I placed my violin back in its case, I noticed Shan Cai was crying. Slowly approaching her, I wiped away each tear that fell from her eyes. She looked up into my eyes and we locked a memorable gaze. Holding her soft hand again, I caressed it gently, memorizing each line and knuckle, and her sensitive part that would always make her giggle lightly. This was truly heaven. Shan Cai, here with me now, spending her last week in Taiwan here with me.
Friday, my last day to be with her. I bought Shan Cai a formal gown and shoes to match for tonights occasion. Tonight, I was going tell her my true feelings.
At six-thirty, I arrived at her house and found her waiting outside for me in the gown I had bought her. An ice blue color full length dress, spaghetti strapped and silver shoes to match. Her hair was pulled half up and lightly curled at the ends. She looked radiant, a more beautiful than I can ever imagine her being. A smile was plastered on her face as she and I met halfway on her pathway. "Hua Zhe Lei, you look very handsome in your tuxedo. What is this occasion for?" She asked me innocently.
"You will find out tonight."
We arrived at our destination minutes later. Stepping out of the limo I used as our transporation, I helped Shan Cai out of the car and walked her into a secluded area. An abandoned beach I discovered not too long ago. I knew this would be a perfect spot to tell Shan Cai my feelings.
Music was suddenly heard once we were in the center of the beach. Shan Cai looked around to find out where the music was coming from. But I kept her still, and put a hand on her waist, took her left hand and moved backwards with her following. We were dancing under the moonlight, listening to the waves crash, and the ominous music playing. Gazing into her eyes as we danced along the soft, white, sand, I could only think about how much Shan Cai really means to me. How she understands me, how she makes me feel that this world means something.
"Shan Cai," I broke the silence, the time has come, "I need to tell you something." We stopped dancing, and she looked at me, listening. "I love you. I truly love you, Shan Cai. I felt that it was only right for you to know my feelings, instead of me always hiding them, and only standing in Ah Si's shadow, catching your every fall..." I paused as I began searching her face for rejection, but I found nothing, so I continued. "Shan Cai, I've only wanted to be with you, and I wanted this last week with you before you leave for Barcelona with Ah Si and be out of my reach. I wanted these last days, hours, minutes and seconds with you. I truly love you, Shan Cai." Lowering my head, my lips landed on hers lightly. Feathery kisses were given to her, almost teasing her. I soon found myself deepening the kiss, and almost silently asking her to kiss me back. And she did, which made my heart soar. Does she have feelings for me secretly?
We broke the kiss minutes later and I found her eyes still closed. She then slowly opened her eyes, and two tears slipped from her eyes. I repeated again that I love her, and more tears poured.
"Oh, Hua Zhe Lei... if only you told me sooner..."
"What?" I was confused...
"If only you'd have told me sooner... I'm so sorry..."
"Don't be sorry... I love you, that's all that matters to me."
"I'm so sorry, Lei..."
She had finally called me Lei. It felt good to hear her say my name. "Don't cry Shan Cai, don't cry... shh, I'm here, don't cry."
Saturday morning, Ah Si and Shan Cai were getting ready to leave the country. Mei Zhou, Xi Men and I were there to send them off.
"Don't have too much fun!" winked Xi Men.
"Yeah, make sure to write or call." added Mei Zhou.
"Have a safe flight." I then added in.
The announcement went on for passengers from Taipei to Barcelona to begin boarding the plane. Ah Si and Shan Cai hugged Xi Men and Mei Zhou first, then to me. I shook Ah Si's hand, and mouthed a "thank you", then Shan Cai came up to me, hugged me, and secretly placed an envelope in my hand. She whispered a "good-bye" and started to leave with Ah Si.
I arrived home, and began wondered what was in the letter. Not waiting any longer, I opened the letter.
Thank you for everything that you have done for me. You will forever be in my heart, and I will always have you in my mind. You really are someone who understands me, and someone I can always go to in need of a friend, or a shoulder to cry on. You're my sanity. I don't know what I'd do without you. I'm very happy that you and I met, and that we could always comfort each other.
There is something I've wanted to tell you also. I love you too. I fell for you ever since our eyes met in the halls of Ying-De. I knew that there was something very different between you and the rest of the F4. But I was too late to love you more. I have Dao Ming Si now, and I know he and I will be very happy.
If only you'd have told me sooner. Good-bye, and I wish to see you again soon.
So Shan Cai had feelings for me after all this time. I didn't cry after I read the letter, I only smiled, because I knew that I had won a part of her heart, and that was all I really yearned for. I had my time with her, and I will always treasure those memories.