There Kioko was, sitting at her desk when her phone rang. She picked it up with utter most anxiety and excitement. No one ever called her at this hour of the night. More like no one ever called her at all, besides her parents. So this was a thrill for her.
"Hello?" she answered, waiting patiently after to hear the voice of her caller.
"Uh… Kae?" a young male voice came through. Kioko didn't know who it was but it had been a while since someone had called her Kae. Kae was her old nickname from the other nickname Kandee; it was given to her five years ago. That was half the reason Kioko was rather surprised, the other half was that it was a young male voice; she was guessing the voice belonged to a boy around about her age, possibly younger.
"Uh? Hi? Who is this?" Kioko asked politely, uncertainty ringing in her tone.
"Kae its me…" the boy replied calmly. Kioko didn't know whether he was playing a joke or something since she had never heard this voice in my entire life, or she believed she hadn't so.
"Its me Ryle?"
"Ryle?" Kioko repeated, searching through her memory on whether she knew someone of that name and then trying to search for its face. After giving it a good few seconds thought, it hit her.
"Ryle? Raven?" the boy pushed on, trying to help jog her memory.
"Oh wow!" Kioko answered, "Hey!" she continued, trying very hard not to sound excited or astonished.
"Hey there. It's been a while huh?" Raven said, from his tone she could tell he was relieved she still remembered him. But whether he was relieved or not, Kioko wasn't too sure. It was her assumption anyway.
"Yeah. You could say that I guess," she replied, remembering the very reason why they hadn't had a good conversation in the certain period of time. As she recalled in her mind, he had blocked her on his contacts list thinking that she was annoying, whereas she was just going through a tight situation with her parents.
"Are you disappointed that I called?" Raven asked sounding rather concerned.
"No… I'm just trying to remember how I know you," She lied, pushing aside the disappointment he seemed to pick up.
"Oh well… I do remember I met you through Khanh," Raven began, "And that I wasn't really nice to you,"
"Huh? You were nice to me. You helped me a lot during my rough times," Kioko assured, wondering what he was on about.
"Yeah well. I just stopped talking to you and didn't really give you a reason why,"
"Raven, I don't look at the past any more. I only look forward,"
"Oh ok. Well that's a relief!" From the way Raven said this, Kioko could tell he was really happy about this.
"How come?" She questioned curiously.
"Well I thought that if you found out it was me who was called, you'd hang up on me instantly,"
"I don't hold grudges Raven,"
"It feels weird, you calling me by my real English name. You don't like the nickname you gave me?"
"I'm surprised you still remember it since it was so long since I called you that,"
"Yeah I guess. It kinda stuck though. Cause the guys were calling me that for a while. Khanh still calls me 'Ryle' to this day and funny enough I still answer to it. You can say I've adjusted,"
"So I see,"
Kioko really wanted to know the reason of why Raven was calling her but she couldn't bring myself to ask him. She swallowed hard as the next few seconds passed, with Raven sighing heavily on the other end.
"Raven?" Kioko began, in a curious-like tone.
"Yes?" Raven's voice rang in her ear.
"Not to be mean or anything but…" She paused, trying to find the right words; Raven beat her to it, but with the wrong idea.
"You don't want to talk me? Is that it?" Raven asked sounding rather upset by it. The fact he had jumped to such a conclusion made her feel uncomfortable in her computer chair.
"No? I was just wondering why you decided to call or contact me all of a sudden." She defended, then another question popped in her head, "How'd you manage to get my number as well?"
"Oh right… Sorry. Well I just thought…"
"I don't hold grudges Raven. Remember?"
"Yeah… Sorry about that,"
"You still haven't answered my questions?"
"Oh right… well I got your number off Patrick, who still had it and I asked Khanh to confirm it was right cause you still talk to him right?"
"Yeah I do,"
"And the reason I wanted to call all of a sudden is that. Well, Khanh keeps mentioning you randomly to us and its got me curious how you doing and everything else,"
"There's something else isn't there?"
"Umm well yeah. How did you know?"
"I'm just quick at picking up catches that's all,"
"Oh ok. I was wondering if you wanted to come hang out with us in the city on Saturday?" Raven asked. Kioko paused; loads of thoughts ran through her head. The main was why would she go in the first place.
"Can I ask why you want my company?" She asked him, hoping he'd give her a good enough reason.
"I haven't really talked to you or anything and Khanh reckons I should get to know you better. By the way, don't tell him that. He'll kill me,"
"Why would he kill you when you're only speaking the truth?"
"He just doesn't want you thinking he's setting you up with anyone from our group as such. Jason talks about you too yet he has never talked to you or met you in his life,"
"Is he Korean?" She enquired.
"Yeah! How do you know?"
"The reason why he seems to talk about me is that I'm always asking Khanh to get him or any of his other Korean friends to translate certain words in Korean and write them out in Korean characters,"
"So why do you want me there again?"
"Well not specifically you wanting me there," Kioko quickly prompted, hoping he wouldn't think she thought he was asking her out on a date, "But why the decision to include me to one of your group's outings?"
"Can't you just come and hang out? I promise you won't be excluded in anything, if that's what you're worried about," Raven replied quickly. He seemed rather desperate to hear her say she would come.
"Yeah I know you won't exclude me. I trust you guys, but why me? Of all people Raven… Why me?"
"Well I'll tell you when I catch you in the city,"
"Why not tell me now?"
"Well I wanna ask you in person," Raven stated in teasing tone. Kioko's heart lost a beat; he wanted to ask her something? But what was it? What was so important for her to come all the way to the city to be asked a particular question?
"Kae, I just want you there ok?"
"Wait… You want me there? Isn't that a bit awkward for everyone else? Do they know you're inviting me to come meet up with you guys?"
"They're stupid but not that stupid. Plus I think they would have some idea if I'm asking around for your number," Raven concluded smartly.
"If you put it that way yes. But wouldn't that be telling them that you like me? Whereas you don't?" She pushed on, desperately wanting to know what he had to say to this.
"Yeah I guess. But it'll be nice to catch up and talk for real rather than guessing what each other means on the net. Wouldn't you agree?" He cornered her there; Kioko was stuck with nothing smart to say in response.
"I guess so. Well how would I let you know if I'm coming or not?" Kioko said, admitting defeat, "Its not like I have your number or anything," she continued sarcastically.
"Oh that's right. Giving my number would make some sense. Here," Kioko scribbled down the number he recited in her English book.
"Hey wait a minute. Don't you catch the Glen Waverly line?" Raven asked; she could hear a small tinge of excitement in his voice.
"Yeah I do," Kioko could tell where he was leading to.
"You wanna take the same train? So you won't have any trouble finding us in the city?"
"Yeah sure why not," She replied with a smile on her face, she was always one step ahead.
After that phone call Kioko suddenly had his number on her phone and it was confirmed she was going to the city on Saturday. Kioko couldn't help but doubt Raven. All this sudden intimacy or closeness had tipped off her instincts since it had been a while since they last talked to each other, yet alone seen each other.