Thursday, September 13, 2012

S.004: Led by Scent

Hi, hello, I'm Saku. - It's been two weeks since we moved into Cobalt lot.

Kiiro and I had been fervently looking for the right place since we heard about the alternative therapy for Chenkov. Really glad that we found this place not long after our search. We hope to see Chenkov recover soon so that we all can go travelling or outing like we used to.

But ever since we moved in, Haagen have been missing a lot of dinner time and it got me worried. I couldn't get Kiiro to help me look for him because he's in his attic most of the time. High up.

Then, after a while, I stopped worrying. And it all started a week ago...

"Hmm, something smells nice," I walked into the kitchen after seeing off Kiiro and Haagen getting on their school bus. "Are you roasting something, Chenkov?"

"Me? No," he said. "I thought you had something cooking in the oven."

"I was planning to," I inhaled again. The air was filled with such a savory smell. "Just need to shop for some ingredients later."

"Sorry, I couldn't be of much help," he apologized. Chenkov did the groceries back then. "Really wish I could help you with those little stuffs."

"It's ok," I smiled at him. I know it's not easy for him as well. "I can manage. You don't have to worry so much about it, alright?"

"But first, I have to know who cooks this well," I said as I walked through the back door. I can't shake off that curious thought and this sudden spike in appetite.

Even though I just had breakfast.

That was when I saw some faint smoke in the woods behind our yard. And I didn't hesitate to see what was going on. - I had to know.

As I peeped through our fence, squinting through the thick greens, I finally saw where the savory aroma came from.

Someone was, indeed, roasting something!

And it was a tall and slender woman. 

Then it suddenly came to my mind... we didn't have any next door neighbor. Who might she be? And why is she in the middle of the woods instead of the Chrome lot backyard? Wait, she is a Chrome resident, right?

So many questions running through my head.

"Don't think I didn't notice you there, young lady," said the woman in a deep and calm voice, without turning her eyes away from her grill. "Would you like to join me?"

Before I could react to being caught peeping, the fence suddenly swung open by itself. Not swung apart broken, just swung open... like a gate. - As if by magic. Or some unseen force. How was it possible?

I stood there motionless... part amazed, part terrified.

"Don't be afraid," she was done cooking, and turned towards me now. "Come on in."

"Um, I-I'm sorry," I stammered as I slowly approached her. "I didn't mean to bother you, I was just..."

"What's your name?" she interrupted soothingly, as I was getting a little too awkward.

"Uh, Saku," I replied. "Just call me Saku."

"Pleased to meet you, Saku," she smiled warmly. "I'm Pol. - Come. Join me for breakfast."

"I-uh-yeah, sure," I smiled sheepishly. As if she knew all along why I was there in the first place. I mean, who could resist?

So I found out that she's not the resident of Chrome lot. In fact, she had been staying in Sorbetview when it was still known as Sorbetwood.

She didn't tell me exactly how long it has been and I didn't think it was polite to pry in too much.

What I do know was, she had been living on her own in the woods, not caring much about the outside world. And whenever things get a little too boring around here, she would go downtown or the shores.

Then one day, when Haagen intruded her quiet life, things started to change. And among other mischievous things he do at times, she told me he has started to learn fishing and cooking his own catch. - Although, the cooking bit still have room for improvements.

"In fact, this fish..." Pol offered me half of the slice she was roasting. "Is the boy's biggest catch as of yet."

"It's a relief to know he's in safe hands," I said, receiving the slice. "I was wondering where he might be running off to after school all these whiles. Good to know he's learning a thing or two from y - OUCH!"

"Careful, dear," Pol blew her roast furiously. "It's hot. Don't get singed."

We talked and talked about Haagen at first, then I started to open up to her about our family; of how I met Kiiro, how we met Chenkov, where we've traveled together, when we took Haagen in, how Chenkov got into an accident... all that. - Up till when we decided to leave our old place and into Sorbetview.

Although I just knew Pol, it felt really good to be able to talk to someone like this. I guess I needed to get that load off my chest.

Before I knew it, it was already time for me to prepare lunch.

So that was how I met Pol, and I no longer have to worry about Haagen's whereabouts from now on.