Gemma is a rich, naïve, innocent woman. She meets Kendrick by chance, and he asks her out. Mostly, he wants to paint her portrait, but she isn't sure she wants to. She finally agrees and goes to his studio, where she meets Vik, his roommate. There is an instant connection, but they don't want to upset Kendrick, so they keep it under wraps. This scene takes place after Ken and Vik get some really good news and party a little too hardy.
Persistent knocking woke Vik the next morning. Ken wasn't on the floor across from him, but he couldn't have been the one knocking. He had keys and he was too careful to lock himself out. Vik staggered to the door and tried to look out the peephole. It seemed to beyond his skill set at that point, so he opened the door.
Gemma stood at the door, slightly flushed and in a state of disarray. She pushed past him, striding into the room. Vik leaned against the door, which swung shut, nearly trapping his fingers. He pulled them out just in time and tried to focus on Gemma.
“Hey,” he said, gulping. “Sorry. We....” He gestured to the apartment. It took him a moment to realize that the mess was gone and he wondered, in passing, when that happened. “Celebrating,” he mumbled. “Hi.”
“No clue. Just woke up. I'll look. Gimme sec.” He stumbled to the stairs.
“Are you drunk?” she sounded rather disgusted.
“Lil bit.” He held his fingers an inch or so apart. He tried to put his foot on the step, but it retreated from him, sliding toward the floor. He missed, tried again and got it that time. “Lil bit,” he muttered and slowly climbed the stairs.
Ken wasn't in his bed. It was neatly made. His towel was dry, meaning he hadn't showered that morning. His toothbrush had been used. It was slightly damp when Vik touched it. He took a few minutes to empty his bladder, splash cold water on his face and brush his teeth. He ran his damp hands through his unruly brown hair and tried to pull himself together.
“Coffee. I need coffee.”
The stairs didn't present quite as big a problem going down, though he still had to be careful where he placed his feet.
“Are you okay? Is Ken here?”
“No. And no.” Vik wandered to the kitchen, heading toward the coffee pot. It was already set up. “He left coffee, though. Want some?”
“Where did he go?”
“No idea. He didn't leave a note. Might have an appointment. Might have gone to work. Dunno.” He hit the button on the coffee pot on the third try. Pulling out a stool at the bar in the kitchen, he sat heavily, unable to move another step. Head perched unsteadily on his hands, he groaned.
Gemma walked over, checking his forehead. “Are you sick?”
“Nope.” He burped. Even he could smell the saki fumes.
Gemma waved the air between them.
“Sorry. Saki. I really shouldn't drink it. It has a kick.”
“What were you celebrating?”
“Big things. Epic. I honestly can't remember at the moment. Let me get my coffee infusion.” The pot finished as he spoke. “Oh, come here you wicked, dark eyed minx!”
Gemma took a step back from him, but he turned toward the coffee pot and she giggled. “You're a mess.”
“Let me get that. You'll have it all over the floor.” She took his mug from him and poured him a cup. “How do you take it?”
“Light and sweet...like you.” He touched her cheek and burped again. “Sorry. Shouldn't have said that. Sorry.” He took the mug from her, gulping the scalding brew. “Ouch! Yep, that's gonna do the trick. He made it twice as strong.”
Gemma giggled, taking a smaller mug for herself. She put in her cream and sugar before joining him at the bar. “So, you were celebrating, overdid it, can't remember what you're happy about and lost your roommate? That's it?”
“You can't say anything else yet, huh?”
“Nope. I don't do this often,” he babbled. “This isn't how I usually—comport myself.” Vik burped again. “Sorry.” He stood unsteadily and took a couple Tums from the cupboard over the sink.
“You're using words over one syllable. That's an improvement.”
© 2015 Dellani Oakes