Say It Isn’t So (Part 5)

Yun’s mind wandered as he thought about his just concluded encounter with the Javanese caberet singer. She can’t be from a well off family if she had to come here to earn money, he supposed. Neither can she be that well educated, for sure. Still, she was perhaps the most exquisite creature he had ever encountered, both visually as well as audibly. His eyes rolled blankly as his thoughts shifted to his wife, Asyikin, before Ferman, who was sitting at his side while looking at him with a grin on his face, snapped his fingers, causing Yun to snap out of it all.

“So you like her, eh?” he asked, smirking.

“Nonsense. I am married,” Yun retorted, his right hand reflexively reaching for his wedding ring on his left ring finger. A sense of reassurance came over him as he felt it with his right hand fingers. “Married, with two wonderful kids,”

“That’s how it starts, mate,” Ferman rejoinded, still smiling. “First you get struck before you know what hits ya, then the feelings within you fluctuate faster than mercury in a thermometer, while your head falsely reassures you that there is nothing wrong. Later, your heart aches to meet her again, and you won’t be able to resist it. And then..,”

“You seem to know a lot about human emotions,” Yun interjected suddenly, cutting Ferman short. “Didn’t think people who specialised in legalese could double as psychologists,”

“Hey now, me knowing this has nothing to do with my practice,” Ferman started again, his expression changed. “Come to think of it, you still don’t know why I haven’t married myself, do ya?”

“No, but you never told me. I assumed it was private,” Yun replied, obligingly.

“Well, there wasn’t any occasion to until now,” was Ferman’s response before he proceeded to tell Yun about his own situation as a child of a second marriage that also ended in divorce. Yun nodded sympethetically as he listened, but decided that he would not be swayed.

“Well, you’re different,” Yun spoke after Ferman had finished. “How so? If it can happen to my parents, twice at that, then it can happen to anyone,” Ferman said.

“You’re half..,” Yun began but stopped as he saw Ferman’s face turn black with anger. “Yes, continue please,” Ferman said angrily. “Half?”

“I’ve crossed the line with you, haven’t I? I’m sorry,” Yun apologised.

Ferman drank some of the Guinness out of his glass before holding it up to his eyes and staring at the remaining beer within. “Yes, you have. But you’re right tho. I’m half Celtic and proud,” He raised his glass in salutation before continuing. “Those who created this brand were Celts, too,”

“Of course. Hey, so what did your friend, Kee Thariq was it, tell you just now that made you so anxious?” Yun said, himself anxious to change the subject.

“Oh. I’d rather not talk about it at the moment,” Ferman replied. Yun could see that he chose the wrong topic and was about to suggest another before an annoucement was made that the last song for the evening was about to play and the bar would soon be closing. “Hmm. That’s my cue to go, it seems. Well, it was nice meeting you here, Yun, even if it is just fictional. We will meet again soon, both in this story as well as in real life. Till then, tally-ho,” Ferman said, as he got up, took a bow, and dissapeared into the dwinding crowd around their table before Yun could respond.

Wah, cepatnya, Yun thought, looking at him go. Quite an intriguing character, that guy is. But no where near as intriguing as…

A woman came on stage and began singing Sentimental Journey, the last number for the night.

Yun looked and sighed as he realised she wasn’t her. Barely an hour had passed since their first encounter and here he was, already feeling sentimental about it.

TO BE CONTINUED…