Michaeline: A Love Story for Valentine Week

A stylish Japanese modern girl with a black bob, beautiful eyes and lips, and a stylish sheath dress. The art is titled "Tipsy".

Anna Kitt, on working holiday in New York City. (Image via Wikimedia Commons)

Every love story has its conflict, and weak lovers can see it. Their love is paralyzed, and eventually stillborn as they realize just how impossible it is to love this person at this time in this place. But true lovers don’t see the conflict. Love is blind, you see. The lovers are like two cats in a bag, struggling against this unsee-able confinement, but together for as long as it takes to make peace with the bag or get out. That’s why when I saw Anna for the first time, I fell in love instead of running away.

I walked into that bakery in Korea-town, looking for a little something sweet on a cold February day, and I saw her by the pain au chocolat. Black bob, perfect cat-eye liner capturing dark brown eyes, and she was elegant in something black and floofy around the hips with a red fur stole over her shoulders. I reached around to take the last piece of ganache cream cake, when she grabbed my wrist.

“I don’t think you want that, mister,” she said. “It’s mine.”

My first instinct was to back up, stuttering something like, “Of course, madam” and scurrying away but then she gave me the side-eye, and then I saw those red lips, and something funny happened in my chest, and I said, “Why don’t we share it?”

She smiled, and that funny thing in my chest turned into a raging, roaring fire. “My name is Anna,” she said.

“Ray Perez,” I said, and almost kissed her hand before remembering what century I was in.

So, that’s how we wound up sharing a little rectangle of chocolate cake while Continue reading

Michaeline: Christmas Week Stories: The Travellers

A Japanese transport plane flying over mountains

Even when things don’t work out right, take the next chance! Fly! (Image via Wikimedia Commons)

Kenji snuggled down under his airline-provided blanket, a mask over his nose to keep out the germs and to rehumidify the dry cabin air. What a way to spend Christmas.

He’d tried to impress his American girlfriend by showing up on her doorstep on Christmas Eve, but his “girlfriend” turned out to be a 300-pound trucker with a wife and three kids. Kenji had collapsed in shock, and then the littlest one sneezed on him and spilled some apple juice on him, accidentally. Kenji regretted those hours on the internet, building up a fantasy future full of love and happiness, only to have his heart dashed to pieces and drowned in a toddler’s fluids. So, now, he was back on a plane – expensive first class, because the economy seats had all been full.

He’d be home by New Year’s Day, and have to explain to his mother why he was in debt up to his eyebrows, and still unmarried at the ripe old age of 31. He asked the stewardess for a bottle of wine, but was informed that no alcohol could be served until the plane was in the air and at cruising altitude. Damn.

La Guardia was cold and snowy, and there were tiny icicles hanging from luggage carts and fuel trucks that dashed along the icy tarmac. The only thing worse than going home to Japan in shame was having a delayed flight. He turned away from the tiny window as a leggy blonde sat down beside him. She wore dark sunglasses, but her platinum hair was unmistakable. Babette Lawson, star of stage and screen, was sitting beside him. Great. As if he didn’t have enough social anxiety in this one day to last for a life time, now he had 15 hours in which to make a fool of himself with a famous, gorgeous woman. He grunted and turned toward the window, disdained the dismal weather outside, and slammed the shade shut. Maybe he could pretend to be dead.

But no! Continue reading