"I don't remember much of how we met, to be honest," Lyra admits, blushing as she says it. "All I remember is having an overwhelming sense of fury when he spilled his coffee all over me."
"I said I was sorry," Alvin says in defense, "Besides, I gave you my extra shirt to wear."
Lyra snickers at this because the memory that was once ingrained as her single most excruciatingly annoying moment has become her single most life changing moment. The way it happened was quite simple honestly, but it's always the simple things that have the lasting impact.
It had been on the first day of senior year. Lyra had been dressed in a hoodie and sweatpants, her go to look. On the other hand, Alvin was wearing ironed out jeans, a polo shirt, and a blazer. In fact, he had put extra care into his selection of clothing on that particular day, he was dressed to impress. It was already a rough day for Alvin, he had taken too long to get ready and was running late for his counselor appointment. It was by chance that they had collided when turning the corner, even more by chance that Alvin's mother gave him a coffee that same morning. But maybe fate did have its hand at the cards, determining something before it had even began.
Luckily, the coffee had grown lukewarm from all the time, so it didn't burn Lyra as much as she had anticipated. The only thing was that the coffee had soaked through her burgundy hoodie and into her white t-shirt. The shock wore off of Lyra just as soon as the fury arrived. It wasn't that her hoodie got soaked along with her shirt, it was morce than that. And that something more had nothing to do with Alvin, it was just that he was the only person there.
"Look what you've done!" Lyra accused, "You need to look where you're going next time!"
Alvin was stunned, this had never happened to him before. He didn't know how to react. "S-sorry," he managed to stutter out.
"Sorry isn't going to fix what's happened," Lyra huffed, wringing coffee out of her hoodie.
She's quite pretty, Alvin thought. But just as soon as that thought came into his mind, he chased it away. Only he was too late because he was already blushing, which caught Lyra's attention.
"Why are you blushing?" she looked at him with a fixated gaze, arms crossed.
Looking at her made Alvin nervous because she seemed like such a strong girl, something that he was not. "Do you want my extra shirt?" he blurted out, much to his horror.
Lyra was going to refuse his offer, but then she remembered that she was wearing a white shirt. "Sure," then she added, "That way you can pay for what you've done."
Alvin scrambled to get the shirt out of his backpack. It was a blue polo shirt, much to Lyra's spite. She grabbed it out of his hand without so much as a thank you and yanked her hoodie off. Alvin turned bright red, he could feel the heat venture from his toes to his ears.
Quickly, he turned around, "Why don't you go to the girl's bathroom and change?" His heart was beating two times too fast. There's something that's different about Alvin than other guys. And it's that he's too considerate. That's why he was dressed like a private school boy, because he didn't want to be judged.
"Why can't I change in the middle of the hallway? I see guys taking their shirts off all the time," Lyra sneers, her voice muffled from changing.
"It's just e-embarrassing," Alvin mumbled.
Lyra grabbed him by the shoulder and turned him around. Pointing an accusing finger in his face she said, "What are you trying to say? That I should be ashamed of my body? That I'm not good enough?"
The moment Alvin saw Lyra in his shirt, he felt a shiver go down his spine. It wasn't that he was cold or that she scared him, it was just because she looked so beautiful. She wasn't like the other girls who needed to wear tons of makeup, her beauty was from the little things about her: The way freckles danced along her cheeks like stardust, the little arch on the bridge of her nose, all these little things made Alvin's heart flutter. His shirt was a little too big on her, coming down just after her waist. It clashed with her sweatpants, but there was something about it that made it...cute.
"N-no, of course not. You're beautiful," Alvin quickly said, flustered. There was a pause, a silence caused from the words Alvin had just said.
Alvin was too embarrassed from what he said to properly function. In fact, he was beet red and wanted to crawl under a rock and never come back out. Lyra was silent because she was embarrassed too, but she would never admit to it. Lyra's heart had skipped a beat when Alvin called her beautiful, but it had been stomped on as soon as it had come. Because Lyra didn't fall in love or have crushes. All she needed was herself and that was enough for her.
"Whatever," Lyra said, letting go of Alvin and picking up her stuff.
She walked away as if nothing had happened, but if you looked closely you would see the red at the tips of Lyra's ears. As soon as she was gone, Alvin was suddenly reminded of his counselor appointment. He immediately checked his watch and sighed, it was too late. Dejected, Alvin picked up his backpack and began to walk to his next class.
They were walking in two opposite directions, each thinking different things. That one meeting was only by chance, it wouldn't have any effect on their life in the future. At least that's what everyone thinks, but fate seems to have different plans than what we believe.
"You did give me your extra shirt," Lyra agrees, "It wasn't really something I'd wear, but it did get the job done."
"You looked darling in it either way," Alvin smiles, kissing Lyra on the cheek. She tries to squirm away, but Alvin holds her tight. Her ears turn bright red and she pushes Alvin away. It's not that she didn't like it, it's just that it's embarrassing for her. Lyra still isn't used to all the affection, even though they've been dating for years and are now engaged.
"What was darling was when you got all flustered meeting me again," Lyra grins, the memory sending her into a wave of emotions.
"Now that was not darling at all," Alvin sighs, "It was quite embarrassing."
They had met rather quickly after their first encounter. It was second period, photography class. Alvin took the class because he needed a fine art credit in order to graduate and Lyra took the class because she absolutely loved it. It was embarrassing for Alvin not because of what happened, but because of how it happened.
Alvin had come into class, as punctual as expected, and as he was walking someone stuck out their foot. What happened next was not by chance, not in the slightest. Alvin tripped over the foot, which sent him falling. As he braced for impact, he was surprised to realize that there was none. He opened his eyes and to his mortification he saw why he hadn't face planted on the floor.
Lyra was sitting in her favorite seat in the whole class, the only desk next to a window that faced the school's garden. It wasn't by accident that no one sat there, she made sure no one did. She saw Alvin the moment he came in, but didn't say anything. Why should she? He spilled coffee on her. Not the other way around. Besides, she was already dreading having to give his shirt back. Lyra did not like having to talk to people she didn't know. Ironically, she also happened to be someone that everyone on campus knew.
Despite her best efforts, her eyes followed Alvin as he made his way down the aisle. The moment she saw the foot come out, she leapt. The reason why Alvin didn't hit the floor and the reason he was utterly embarrassed was because Lyra had caught him. She had one arm around his waist and a smile dancing on her lips.
"I guess we meet again," Lyra grinned, amusement flickering in her eyes.
If it had been any other girl, Alvin would've still been embarrassed, but his heart wouldn't have been beating so fast. "Can you put me down?" Alvin laughs nervously. He could feel the whole class looking at them, this was not how he wanted to start off his senior year.
Lyra's grin broadens and suddenly Alvin is afraid she won't put him down. But, of course, she didn't do that. As he got back up, he straightened himself out and thanked Lyra who had sat back down. Alvin looked around to find a seat, but he didn't see any open besides the one next to Lyra. He sheepishly sank in the seat next to her and looked straight at the board. He couldn't stand the embarrassment of himself. For one, he had already spilled a coffee on her and now she caught him. It's going to be a long class period, he thought.
As Alvin was burrowing himself up in his misery, Lyra was trying to suppress a smile next to him. She couldn't explain it, but looking at him made her happy. It made a smile stretch across her face. It was a weird sensation for her, because one moment she was angry at him and the next moment she was smiling like a fool. And no, this was not love, at least in her mind.
"Not at all," Lyra smiles, "In fact, it was quite endearing."
"That's easy for you to say," Alvin sighs, "You weren't the one that made an utter fool of themselves." Alvin felt Lyra's hand intertwine with his. He looked at her and smiled. All the world's worth of embarrassment could never make him regret what happened on that day because it let him meet her.
"Thank goodness I didn't have to go through any more embarrassment after that," Alvin sighs a breath of relief, looking at Lyra with a smile to make sure she knows he's joking.
"Until lunch," Lyra squeezes Alvin's hand and he groans.
"Until lunch," he mumbles.
To Alvin's relief, they didn't have anymore classes together after second period. After all that had happened, he was had enough embarrassment to last him the rest of the year. He was looking forward to just having a mellow rest of senior year. No more of whatever was happening between him and that girl. It was unbelievable how much has happened between them and he still didn't know her name. Well, Alvin thought, It's not like I'm ever going to see her again. From everything that had happened, you would've thought that Alvin would've learned to believe in the impossible. But it seems that fate has to keep throwing the impossible at Alvin.
When the bell rung, signaling lunch, Alvin immediately started walking to the library. Not the school library, but the small hidden library in town. Having an open campus gave Alvin a sense of freedom, a sense of adulthood. It made him feel special to be one of the few who knew about the small library. As soon as he was off campus, he slowed down his pace. He just wanted to get out of school, since that was his last period. He was one of the lucky ones, being able to have both a free sixth and free seventh period. It was a joy for him to be able to get out earlier, in fact it made him feel more capable.
The moment Alvin walked into the library, he relaxed. The library was his safe haven, it made him feel accepted in this world of unaccepting people. It was a little rundown shop, which some may say was too old, but to Alvin that was all a part of its charm. It had brick structures and peeling wallpaper along with candlelit chandeliers that illuminated yellow lighting. The little library was attached to an even smaller coffeeshop. The coffeeshop was the first thing you saw when you walked in, with chalkboards framing menu items. It had black and white tile flooring along with a couple of small tables by the window. It was a quaint little place filled with character in every single corner.
"Here's your caramel macchiato with a scone," Dina, the coffeeshop lady said. She knew Alvin's order by heart, in fact she already had his order ready by the time he came through the door. Alvin was a regular customer, he came everyday during the summer, everyday at exactly the same time.
Alvin smiled at Dina, grateful to have some sort of normalcy in his life. He took his order, paying the regular $8.50 and taking it to his little nook in the back of the library. Taking a sip of his caramel macchiato, he savored this one thing that he could have all to himself. Before he sat down in his corner, he grabbed a book from the shelf. Alvin didn't look at the title, he just grabbed the first book that his fingers touched. He thought that was what made it fun, not knowing what you were going to read for the day, and he reveled in the surprise. Some days he could be reading an action novel and another day he could be reading a cookbook.
As Alvin looked at the cover of his book, he smiled, it was a romance novel. He was excited to read it because it had been a while since he had last read a novel like this one. Just as he was getting cozy, he heard the bell above the library door jingle. He didn't think anything of it, it wasn't like he was the only one who knew this place.
"Ah, our other regular," Dina said, "A polo and sweatpants? Interesting choice in clothing."
A polo and sweatpants? Alvin thought. It couldn't be her, there's no way that's possible. "Oh this?" Alvin sucked in his breath, he knew that voice anywhere, "Yeah, someone spilled coffee on my shirt and lent me this one as a replacement." It was the voice of the person who saved him, the person he spilled coffee of, the person he still didn't know the name of.
"That sounds like fun for the first day," Dina laughed, "Well, here's your croissant anyway. Enjoy your lunch."
Alvin could hear the sound of money being exchanged and the footsteps of the person approaching. His heartbeat was picking up the pace with each step that brought the person closer. I have to get out of here, Alvin thought. He hurriedly swallowed his scone in one bite and scrambled to get away.
He crouched down, carrying his caramel macchiato in one hand and continued to stay low as he made his way to the door. Alvin made sure the person wasn't around, focusing on the sound of her footsteps, then he made his move. He scurried past one bookshelf and then another, not seeing her once. He felt accomplished as he raced towards the door. I'm going to make it, he thought. He was so close he could almost taste it.
As Alvin approached the second to last book shelf, someone stepped in his way just as he came to it. He crashed into the person, spilling his caramel macchiato all over them. He gasped, not only was that coffee expensive, this was also the second time he spilled coffee on someone today.
"I-I'm so so sorry," Alvin begins, until he sees the person he spilled coffee on. He stopped mid sentence the moment his eyes met hers. And then his heart swooned when her eyes crinkled up with a smile.
"You sure have a habit of spilling coffee on me," Lyra grinned.
His face turned bright red, she was here right in front of him again. Although, this time she wasn't angry with him, in fact she was teasing him. Alvin's heart was pounding, his heartbeat in his ears. He didn't know what to say, he didn't know what to do, he couldn't even comprehend what was happening. Alvin never got like this with people, never. Lyra had this effect on him, the effect where all he wanted to do was look at her, and it made him crazy.
All of a sudden, Alvin ran out of the library, not once looking back until he was outside. When he looked back, he saw that Lyra had followed him outside, but only to the doorway. She waved at him, and his heart soared. He kept running, running far away from her and what she was making him feel. But everyone knows you can't run away from fate and that's what Alvin was doing, only to be faced with it again. He met Lyra again and again, not always spilling coffee on her, and soon he began to welcome his feelings for her.
"You were so stubborn," Alvin smiles warmly, "I guess that's why I kept coming back."
"Not even," Lyra smirks, "You're the one who kept spilling coffee on me." Alvin shrugs, he didn't regret that, in fact if asked to, he would probably spill coffee on her again.
They smile at each other, the kind of smile one can only have once they've known someone long enough. In that smile it showed all their faults, all their insecurities, all their issues, but also all their love, all their accomplishments, all their patience. There was so much love in their eyes for one another, and it all started because of one spilled cup of coffee.
It's funny how life works out in the end. It's funny how one spilled coffee could bring two people together.