I remember not being able to muster up the courage to visit that little coffee joint at the cross-section of my street. It smelled of hazelnuts, freshly brewed coffee and you. I know the thought is irrational. I mean, how could a place still smell of someone who hasn't been there in over six months?
But today, I decided that I'll finally do it, even though as soon as I entered and heard that bell ring, it gave me goosebumps. I remember how you adored that bell, how you would walk out twice just to hear it ring again and how annoyed everyone would get. You would have that sly smirk on your face, and the first time I saw it, I knew I'd never get over it.
I went around the tiny little room and somehow got myself walking towards our very own table, the table we'd spend months sitting around. It was like a reflex; as if I knew I had to go there. And I did.
The table still had our initials scrawled on its far corner. I remember how mad I was at you for doing that and how you justified it by saying that the table finally had a story, something all of us spend our lifetimes finding.
Joe looked at me and had the widest smile on his face. You could almost see a tear in his eye but I guess that was just Joe, with his happy, too-good-for-this-world smile, which was a comfort to me. It was like that large oversized hoodie you drown in, but wear it anyway.
He walked over to me and bought me the same order I got, except his time it was for one. I remember how you couldn't stand dark coffee, you said it's the hazelnut extract that made Joe's coffee, the best in the world. How coffee without the heart made out of heavy cream was just coffee that needed love. Love that all of us wanted, love that the two of them had.
There was no hazelnut in my coffee today, and there was no "you", staring at me while I ate that blueberry muffin. No matter how slowly I ate that muffin, you would just stare at me and watch in silence, with that smile on your face that made me fall for you ten times over.