Bill loves driving. So he became a taxi driver.
It's amazing how much a taxi driver can make if they don't waste time. But living off of driving people all day for the sake of making money isn't a very rewarding and interesting job. That's why Bill is such a happy guy. He doesn't drive as an occupation, but drives to help people go about their daily lives.
On a stormy day, Bill is driving around the city quickly dropping people off to their homes. He drove people from young children to elderly women and men. However, few were grateful to him, as they thought of him as a chauffeur just doing his job. He doesn't mind though. He just wants to help people. He doesn't expect someone to thank him, and neither to remember him. But what he definitely did not expect was for someone to fall in love with him.
In the distance, he makes out a woman trying to grasp her umbrella, but failed miserably as the umbrella whipped out of her hands and across the schoolyard. He makes his way towards her, but another taxi driver pulls up in front of her. He wonders why there is a delay, and is terrified when the other taxi drives away leaving the woman behind.
Quickly, he stops in front of her, gesturing her to come in. She opens the back door with her soaking hand, peeking her head through the tight space.
"I don't have money," she says, in frustration.
Bill shakes his head. "I don't care, just get in the car."
The lady hesitates, before stepping in. Her trembling wet figure begins to soak the taxi seat, making the grey colour darken. Bill asks her where she lives, and she tells him in a soft voice. She watches as the price of the ride increases, checking her purse once more to make sure she doesn't have any money. She feels guilty, but there is nothing she can do about it.
The ride is long, as she lives on the other side of the big city. To disrupt the awkward silence, Bill tries to make a conversation with the lady sitting in the back of the car. He does not ask her name though, as that would break his policy as a taxi driver.
"What were you doing at the grade school down on this side of the city?"
He sees her look up at the back of his head from the rear mirror. "I teach at that school."
He thinks that she seems like the teacher type as she looks gentle and kind. "Isn't there a grade school at your side of the city as well? Why not go to that one?"
She looks embarrassed. "I used to live on this side of the city when I was a kid, and I always dreamt of teaching where I used to go."
He chuckles at this. "That seems nice."
"What about you? Why did you decide to be a taxi driver?"
"I like to drive," was his simple answer.
She smiled, but said no more. Another silence filled the taxi, but this time it was just a comfortable silence.
Finally, Bill stopped in front of a small house with a simple garden. The storm wasn't as strong on this side of the city, settling as a bit of light rain. The lady got out of the car, telling Bill to wait as she retrieves money she has in her home. He tells her not to worry about it, but this troubles her as she has never been the kind to accept something for free unless it was a gift.
"Well then," she says as she reaches into her purse, "at least take this, sir." She holds out a beautifully embroidered handkerchief that couldn't be anything else but handmade. Knowing it would be impolite to refuse it, he reaches for it, fingertips touching hers for a brief moment.
"Thank you, ma'am. It looks beautiful. Did you make it yourself?" He asks this, of course, while already knowing the answer. She nods, and takes a step back.
"Hopefully we'll bump into each other again. I will be sure to have money with me the next time." With that and a nod from Bill, she turns and walks away.
◊ ◊ ◊
He lay on his back feet propped up against the surface of his bed. In both hands, he gazes at the emerald and white handkerchief he received from the lady. Intricate line designs took up about half the cloth. At one corner, a single word, or name to be exact, was stitched in golden cursive writing.
It is an ordinary name, but interesting all the same. He rolls the name around his tongue, and contemplates that the name tastes like strawberry covered in chocolate fondue. It is an odd comparison but fits perfectly enough.
It saddens him to think that he will never see her again. But of course, we all know that he will.
◊ ◊ ◊
The next day is a sunny one. There are not as much customers today, so Bill drives around aimlessly. His driving eventually takes him to the school.
He looks at the time and realizes that the school session should be over by then. He parks his taxi in the parking lot and hesitantly enters the school. The chairs and tables in the school are puny compared to what he is used to, and he smiled deeply at this. He has always wanted kids and thinking that his child would attend such a school makes him unusually giddy.
At the corner of his eye, he spots a lady in white inside one of the rooms sitting at her desk. A bit surprised that he found her without much effort, he begins to have second thoughts of approaching her. For one thing, they don't know each other so him coming up to her would be entirely unreasonable. She may think he is some sort of stalker, for all he knows. However, it is too late as she spots him from the open doorway.
Although confusion was written on her face, she left her desk to greet him in the hallway.
"Ah, I didn't think I would be seeing you again, sir," she says, reaching out to take his hand in a gentle yet firm grip.
"Yes well, neither did I to tell you the truth," Bill states, laughing at himself a bit.
"Thank you again for that time. I really mean it."
Bill modestly insists that it was what anyone would have done. She doesn't believe so, but she does not care to argue further about it.
"May I ask if your name is Rebecca? It was woven into the handkerchief you gave me, and I was wondering about it yesterday."
She smiles – prettily in Bill's opinion -, and says, "Ah, so you noticed. Yes, that is my name, although my friends like to call me Becky."
"Becky, hmm? I personally believe that Rebecca is a beautiful name. It fits you very well."
At this, Rebecca blushes deep red. Bill asks her is she is busy and that he came at a bad time, but she insists that she was just about to pack away and go home anyways. Silence can be heard as Bill hesitates to say something.
"What is on your mind?" she asks him.
He brushes away a lock of hair that fell over his eyes in a nervous manner. "If you would, and by no means are you obligated to accept, would you care to have dinner with me?" Usually, Bill wouldn't be so forward in his mannerism and speech, but on this particular day, he seems quite motivated.
A look of surprise graced her face, but easily settled into a small smile. "I would love to."
Dinner is not fancy, but it is nice enough to have a good conversation and mood. They end up splitting the bill, although both insist on doing the deed.
They meet up again several times each week, mostly on Thursdays because that is usually when they have free time.
One day, Rebecca asks Bill, "Do you love me?"
Bill did not even falter when he heard this, besides a little blush. "Rebecca, I love you so very much. It is inconceivable for it to be otherwise."
She smiles, and kisses him. "I love you too."
A comfortable silence surrounds them as they snuggle into each other. Then Bill decides to speak.
"Would you like to get married?"
At first, Rebecca just smiles against his chest. Then she realizes what he has just said, and then she begins to laugh gently.
"What is it that you find amusing, love?"
She replies heartedly, "You say these matters in such a casual manner. It is just like you to do such things. Most men would make an elaborate proposal."
Deep chuckles escape his lips, and Rebecca can feel the vibration from their contact. "I'm not most men."
"I believe we have established this since long ago."
"You haven't answered my question yet, love."
Rebecca tickles him under his chin and at his sides. He erupts in little laughing fits. "What do you think?"
"I can't be sure. And saying that you would marry me would make me sound arrogant."
"Would it really? You need to be arrogant once in a while, Bill."
Bill takes this as an answer. "Alright, than arrogant I shall be. When should we have our wedding? Where would you like it? Big or small?"
She ponders on this for a minute, but no longer. "I want it as soon as possible, as close as possible, with just the two of us."
He cannot help but smile widely. "As you wish, milady." He reaches into his left breast pocket and takes out two small silver bands. Within minutes, rings are on both of their fingers respectively.
"Do we not need a wedding priest? You know, to do the oath and such."
"Who needs one? Did you not say you wanted a marriage right away?" He says, holding her hands in his.
She is surprised, but also beaming with happiness.
All they need left is that one special kiss that will bind them forever and for eternity...