You shivered as you slipped the cool silk over your body. Who knew that silk could get so cold if you left it in your closet for the night? You glanced in the mirror and smiled a little. Chinese traditional clothing looked pretty good on you. You twirled a little so you could see how you looked from all angles. You had found a nice Chinese traditional dress shirt in (your favorite color)
and pants in that same color that stopped three or four inches below your knees. You let your (long/short) (hair color)
hair tumble down from its messy ponytail and made sure it looked presentable. Why were you getting all dressed up? Because Yao Wang, one of your best friends had invited you over to his house to spend time with him in his garden. His garden was one of your most favorite places in the world. It was so beautiful and ornate. It always smelled of jasmine and some other scent you couldn't describe, but it smelled wonderfully sweet. It was warm in the garden, but due to it being outside, a cool breeze would always blow through, picking up the lightest strands of your hair and making them dance. The flowers were simply gorgeous. Pots of everything from roses to hibiscus sat on the ground, creating little paths to take you to a different wonderful part of the garden every time. Honeysuckle and other vine plants hung from the trees, making curtains that danced with color when the winds would blow strong. In the center of the garden was a mini waterfall, decorated with small ornamental tigers and dragons, who, by the light reflected off the water, looked almost alive. Flowers and vines also decorated the waterfall. A small tree stood at the top of the waterfall, carefully in a ceramic pot. It was a cherry blossom tree. You had asked Yao about the tree once, because you loved the beautiful little pink flowers it produced. He had told it was for his little brother, Kiku. You could tell Yao loved Kiku so much and missed him a lot. Whenever you'd touch the subject, Yao would either smile as if he was reminiscing, or his eyes would reflect sadness. He was proud of the boy he raised, and yet, he missed him so .
You wiped a small tear from your eye and looked at the clock. Dang! You had to hurry! Sunset would happen soon and you didn't wanna miss it. Sunset was amazing in Yao's garden. You could remember all the times you sat with Yao, watching the reddish-golden orb sink, painting the sky different hues of pink, red, orange, gold, and lastly, lavender. You quickly got in your car and drove to Yao's house. Your stomach jumped a little. You had liked Yao for some time now, and seeing him made your heart soar. You loved his kind, mature nature. His eyes that shone with years and years of wisdom, and his calming, cute voice. You wished you could run your fingers through the dark hair that he kept on his shoulder with his usual ponytail and listen as he told you stories, his sweet voice lulling you to sleep as you in sat with him in his garden paradise.
You were so caught up in your thoughts that you didn't notice no one answering the door when you knocked. You knocked again. Nothing. Hesitantly, you opened the door and stepped inside. You were met with a strong breeze, the smell of jasmine and honeysuckle gracing your nostrils. You called out.
No response. You walked into the kitchen, ever so often calling Yao's name. You looked to see the back door open. The garden! You gently tiptoed into the lush, flowery paradise, planning to surprise your Chinese friend. However, you stopped abruptly when you heard a strange sound.
Worry filled you as you stopped tiptoeing and began to sprint through the garden, searching for your friend. You finally found the path that led to the center of the garden and gaped at the sight in front of you. There sat Yao on the bench that you and him usually sat on. His form was slouched, his face in his hands, his frame shaking a bit. Small sobbing sounds eminated from him. You felt your heart break a bit.
"Y-Yao?", you almost whispered.
His head shot up, his ponytail nearly slapping him in the face.
" ", he said, wiping his face quickly on one of his long sleeves, "I forgot you were coming."
"Are you okay, Yao?",you asked, remembering the scene you had just found him in.
"Oh, yes, I'm fine, aru." He bit his lip gently, then took a deep breath."I cannot lie, it is dishonorable. No, I'm not okay, "
You went over to the bench and sat next to him. You gently rubbed his shoulder. You watched his beautiful brown eyes stare at his feet. You noticed some tears that hadn't dried on his face. Gently, you wiped away the wet drops from his smooth skin. When your hand pulled away, you noticed his cheeks were lightly dusted with pink.
"Thank you, aru."
You gave a small smile.
Yao cleared his throat gently. You bit your lip to stop from giggling at how cute it sounded.
"I'm sorry for ruining our plans for today, aru."
You gently patted his shoulder.
"It's totally fine. Besides, we can at least watch the sunset.", you said, staring at the sky. Almost as if on cue, the great red sphere began its descent. You smiled and gently squeezed Yao's shoulder as you both watched the sun disappear behind the hills and the sky change different colors, like a giant lava lamp. When the sun had completely disappeared, leaving the sky a beautiful shade of purple, you softly spoke.
"Why were you crying before?".
Silence met your words. Then, after a minute, Yao spoke.
"Just memories, aru."
"What kind of memories?"
Yao sighed. He got up off the bench and laid down on the cool ground. He patted the space next to him, inviting you next to him. You got up and laid next to him, thankful the night was covering your light blush. Both of you lay there, staring at the stars that began to shine and sparkle in the night sky. Another minute past before Yao spoke. He began to tell you of his history. He told of battles, of honor and of happiness, of peace and tranquility.He told of the peaceful, war-less world he dreamed of many times. He told of how he raised Kiku, how he was so proud of how Kiku had grown, but also how he misses him.
"You know, aru. When Kiku was little, we would always come out here and watch the moon and stars."
You looked at Yao,and saw a fresh tear roll down his cheek.
You turned and hugged him tightly, tears spilling from your eyes. You felt him hug you back, burying his face in your shoulder. You both just lay there, silently consoling each other. Finally, you realized how close you and Yao were. Your heart started to beat rapidly, your face getting warm. Yao looked at you, something shining in his eyes that you couldn't recognize. Love.
" , may I ask you something, aru?"
"Of course, Yao."
He smiled gently. He gently took hold of your hand and held it. Your heart- forget skipping a beat- leaped a beat.
"It is selfish of me to think so often of my past, aru. So I want to focus more on my future."
You felt your face blush even more. What was he going to say?!
"Can I ask you to be part of my future, aru?"
You felt like squealing your heart out. He wanted you to be his girlfriend. Yao. The sweet, Asian, long haired, wise, handsome man you loved had the same feelings for you. This was unreal. You started to grin and your heart soared.
"Yes, Yao. I would love to be part of your future."
Yao smiled happily. Slowly he leaned forward until your noses touched.
" Wǒ ài nǐ, wǒ de huā.", he whispered before gently pressing his lips to yours. You closed your eyes and kissed back, your heart ready to jump out of your chest, and your head spinning. After a minute or two, you both pulled away for air.
"Wǒ ài nǐ.", you whispered back to him, a smile pulling at the corners of your mouth. Yao smiled and cradled you in his arms. Softly, he began to sing. You couldn't understand what he was singing, but it was still the most beautiful song you'd ever heard. Quickly, your eyelids became heavy and a yawn escaped your lips.
"Sleep, my sweet one. You need your rest, aru."
You nodded and did as he said. Slowly you fell into a sweet, peaceful sleep, dreaming of how you would play a part in Yao's future. And he in yours.