Excerpt: Encyclopedia Mystique

“Techie geek . . . at the national library? Interesting!” He curiously stares at me. Well, I like geek reporters with glasses. That’s why I have a little admiration, okay, a lot of admiration for him. I have glasses too by the way. That’s a match.

“See you around!” I leave him with a quick glance and a friendly wave.

Toni sees me smiling and asks, “The smile is for . . .”

“I am going to the restaurant now. Bye.”

Toni grabs a bit of my hair and asks again;”Don’t you want to meet your crush?”

“I met him just a few minutes ago. Bye Toni! I am late.”

“Call me!” Toni shouts and to my surprise, I hear another familiar voice.

“Wait! Ms. Jiu Jitsu!” Jay Diaz runs towards my way. And he calls me Ms. Jiu Jitsu?

I display a what-do-you-need stare. Jay catches his breath while saying, “Can I get your name?”

“Her name is Amelia. Do you need her number?” Toni smiles at me. I stop walking. A thought bubble seems to come out of my head: Is he interested to get my name? Or maybe he will get my name to report me to my boss?

I notice that he is an inch too close to me. I turn back to hide my smile. He immediately pronounces, “Amelia! Wait.”

“Yes.” When I turn, he is closer than half an inch and our eyes meet.

“Can you wait for me?”

I curiously glance at him with narrowed eyebrows. He clarifies, “I mean, can I do what I have to do and go with you. This won’t take too long, I promise.”

I want to ask why but my inner self appears and verbalizes aloud, “Sure.” What are you thinking Lia? Are you sure about this?

I wait for him at the lobby. Mr. Villar sees me and asks, “Are you not going to the restaurant today?”

“I am waiting for Mr. Jay Diaz. He might feature our restaurant.”

“Hidden motives huh.”

“Yes sir.” I laugh.

“I’ll go ahead. See you on Monday!” Mr. Villar salutes me first before going upstairs.

At last, I spot Jay Diaz with his crew after 30 minutes of roaming the whole place. It is exactly 12:30 in the afternoon when we leave the national library. His crew, however, will take their lunch before going back to the place for another set of interviews.

I am about to get a cab when he shouted, “Hoy! Di ba sa akin ka sasabay.”

“Maka-hoy naman to. Sundan mo na lang yung taxi.” I get in the cab and wave farewell. While I can see him get in the car and follow the cab, I instruct the driver to take me to our restaurant.

When I arrive, I run as fast as I can. A staff greets me, “Good afternoon ma’am!” He probably observes my nervous-me-what-will-I-do glances and asks,”Ma’am Lia, sinu po tinataguan nyo?”

“Yung crush ko, kakain dito.”

“Si Jay Diaz, Ma’am?” He curiously says.

“Oo.” I intensely say with so much excitement on my voice. I ask, “Okay ba yung itsura ko?” I don’t have the time to wonder why one of my staff knows who my crush is.

“Yes. You look gorgeous.”  My dad says while he and his business partner come and I pay respect to them by pagmamano.

Jay comes to me and says, “Huli ka!” He laughs and my dad clears his throat.