5.59 am. The green numerals glowed on the digital alarm clock.
It was silent except for a person’s soft breathing.
6.00 am. Buzz.
A hand swiftly reached out from under the sheets and silenced it.
(A soft groan and sounds of sheets rustling)
It was going to be a long day for Jessica. She was the project manager for her district’s New Year’s countdown party and had been busy planning for the event along with her team members. She hardly slept enough, having returned home at 1am from setting up the event at the town square. Sweeping the loose strands of hair from her face, Jessica prepared to get out of bed. There wasn’t a single minute to waste.
“Don’t leave.” A hushed voice requested.
Jessica turned around and faced Taeyeon whose eyes were still closed.
“I need to go to work.” A soft whisper in reply.
A hand snaked around Jessica’s stomach and under the loose cotton tanktop. The corners of Taeyeon’s lips slowly pulled up into a smile as she puckered up her lips and moved towards her target. Her lips found Jessica’s easily and they moulded together perfectly, moving in sync.
Taeyeon’s eyes fluttered open once they broke apart. They gazed into each other’s eyes lovingly as Taeyeon brushed her fingers through Jessica’s hair.
“We’ve not celebrated New Year’s day together for the past two years.”
“I’ll try to come back as soon as I can. Watch out for me on television later tonight.”
Taeyeon packed a sandwich and prepared a flask of hot coffee while Jessica washed up. Jessica was touched by her lover’s thoughtfulness. She hadn’t expect Taeyeon to climb out of bed to prepare a simple breakfast for her.
“How about giving me a cuddle and a kiss to give me the energy I need for the rest of the day instead of sulking like a child?” Jessica requested sweetly, seeing the pout on Taeyeon’s face.
The older girl stepped forward and enveloped Jessica in a hug before meeting her lips. Jessica regretted her request of asking for a kiss as she found it difficult to pull away from Taeyeon. Taeyeon’s embrace was warm and comforting.
Ultimately Jessica had to push Taeyeon away unwillingly. She reapplied her lipstick before leaving her apartment.
It was only 6pm but the crowd at the town square swelled to thousands. Many people were crowding there, enjoying the hot food from the stores despite the cold winter night. Upbeat music was blasting through the speakers that lined the perimeter of the square. There was a huge stage on one side of the square and a large container-style control tower on the opposite side. The control tower provided a good view of the town square with its high viewpoint and that was important for Jessica and her team to manage the event.
Jessica wasn’t in the mood to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Her mobile phone had been ringing almost non-stop from her team and the crew that was involved in the party. On one occasion, one VIP’s car was blocked from entering the town square as the driver hadn’t submitted the correct documents for clearance. Jessica had to put on her thick winter coat and rushed to the main road where the incident was and to solve the problem personally.
It was tiring but that was part and parcel of the job. This was the third year which Jessica was involved in organizing the New Year countdown party of her district. Her company won the contract in the tender that was put out by the mayor. The project meant a huge bonus payout for her. It was good news for Jessica but there was someone in particular who wasn’t too pleased with the news.
Taeyeon and Jessica got together three years ago and Taeyeon was displeased that she hadn’t been able to celebrate New Year’s eve with her lover. Jessica often told her that New Year’s eve was just an excuse for corporations to make money and that they could always celebrate on any other day.
However, New Year’s eve held a special meaning for Taeyeon. It was the four years ago when Taeyeon met Jessica by chance at a New Year’s eve countdown party. Taeyeon’s friends stood her up; one of them was sick and the other had something “urgent” to attend to. Taeyeon had already arrived at the town square when her friends informed her of their individual plans. Her mood was spoilt and she decided to head home since it was pointless to ring in the new year alone.
While weaving her way through the crowd to get to the train station, Taeyeon decided to make a pit stop at a cafe on the side street. She took a seat along the bistro table that had a view of the crowd walking towards the town square for the countdown event. She was envious of the people who were out partying with family and friends.
Turning her head to the side, Taeyeon saw a lone girl with blonde hair sitting at the end of the long bistro table. The girl had a book in her hands and she was randomly flipping through the pages. It was obvious she wasn’t in the mood to read the book.
A moment later, the waiter came by. The girl asked for another cup of coffee, having finished the one in front of her. It appeared she was waiting for someone to come. Curious, Taeyeon wanted to wait around to see the person the girl was waiting for since she had a lot of free time on her hands.
It was closing time at the cafe and the person whom the girl was waiting for still hadn’t appear. The girl seemed disappointed and sad. Since it was 11pm and only an hour to the new year, Taeyeon picked up the courage to ask the girl if she wanted to join Taeyeon at the countdown party. The girl eyed Taeyeon for a while before agreeing to go. That girl was Jessica. It turned out that Jessica was set up on a blind date by her friend but the date didn’t turn up at all.
Both of them had a lot of fun at the countdown party. They ate, drank, danced and sang. Since that night, they kept in touch regularly and soon became a couple.
Jessica slumped into her chair when she got back from the rowdy crowd. It was exhausting running all over the place to ensure that things were going smoothly. It was 11.30pm and in less than half an hour’s time, the clock would light up and fireworks would shoot up into the sky to usher in the new year. Jessica changed into a tube dress which ended above her knees. She wanted to ring in the new year with something beautiful though she was at work.
Most of the people at the control tower were on the ground or at the various security points to ensure that the crowd was under control. Some of them were busy making last minute checks to ensure that the equipment and lighting system were working fine. They couldn’t afford to have any mistakes at the event.
The last of Jessica’s colleague excused himself from the control tower to get to the stage. Jessica was left alone in the control tower, watching the sardine-packed crowd at the town square who were eagerly waiting for the countdown to start.
Boom, boom, boom! Fireworks of various colours and shapes filled the sky as everyone cheered when the clock struck twelve. Even in the control tower, the sound of fireworks exploding was deafening.
Jessica heaved a sigh of relief as she watched the crowd enjoying themselves. It was proof that her hard work paid off. She lifted a glass of red wine off the table and was about to wish herself a Happy New Year when a whiff of magnolia reached her nose. She smiled, just a little at first but it quickly turned into a wide smile when she felt a warm body pressing against her back and a pair of smooth fair arms wrapping around her waist.
“Happy New Year, Sica dear,” Taeyeon whispered into Jessica’s left ear before pressing a kiss at the same spot. She spun Jessica around and their lips met. It felt like magic, the way their lips connected. Taeyeon circled her arms around Jessica’s neck while the latter had her arms around Taeyeon’s back as they kissed while fireworks were going off. It looked like a scene out of a movie.
They broke apart, breathless but deliriously happy. Taeyeon had the widest grin on her face and she could see that Jessica was pleasantly surprised by her unexpected visit.
“How did you get in?” Jessica asked curiously.
“Your colleague let me in when I said I had something important I need to pass to you.”
“What is it?” Jessica’s curiosity was piqued.
Taeyeon pulled out a red box from her jacket and opened it in front of Jessica. Inside the box was a ring with a small diamond.
“Sorry I couldn’t afford to get you a bigger one. I hope you’ll like this one,” Taeyeon paused and gazed at the blonde standing in front of her. She saw tears brimming in Jessica’s eyes.
“Would you be willing to celebrate New Year’s day with me until we’re old and wrinkly?”
Jessica bit her lips and tried to hold back her tears, touched by the surprise proposal.
“Would you be mine?” Taeyeon asked softly.
Jessica nodded a few times in rapid succession before shyly lifting her left hand. Taeyeon’s tears welled up in her eyes as she took the ring out of the box and placed it around Jessica’s ring finger. Both of them hugged tightly with tears of joy spilling out of their eyes.
Now, New Year’s day had become even more memorable for them.
= The End =
A/N: Written for 2015 New Year.