HER eyes wandered when she got inside Rowen’s house. Everything was organized, and it looked like the house was cleaned regularly, while Amara will just vacuum her floor to remove the dust and cats’ hair and mopped the floor. Then she will sit in front of her laptop and do her work. He was better than her.
She suddenly felt embarrassed to let her cats roam around.
“Let them out,” Rowen said as he nudged her on her side.
“Eh?” She turned to him.
“Your cats, let them out so they could stretch and get themselves familiar with their new home.”
“A-ah… is it really okay with you, Rowen? Your house might turn into a mess.” Amara was warning him just in case it happened, which she was sure would surely happen.
“It’s okay with me.” Rowen tugged her by the hand and ushered her at the back of his house.
He showed her the space he was talking about. It was quite huge, enough room for her cats.
“This is what I am talking about. We will turn this into a catio so that your cats will have their own space. We’ll build a huge cat tower,” Rowen told her giddily.
She looked at him, wondering why he has to sound like that.
“You don’t have to make this space so extravagant for my cats. As long as it has a roof, it was enough. We won’t live here forever, though.” She tried her best to smile.
Rowen’s expression suddenly changed.
“Amara… you don’t have to talk like that. I just want you and your cats to stay here as if this is your own. I want you to be comfortable.” He heaved a deep sigh. “Anyway, we should fill our stomachs first.”
Rowen sauntered to the kitchen and opened his fridge.
“What would you like to eat?” he asked.
“Whatever you have is fine.” She walked pass by him. “I’ll just feed my cats.”
ROWEN looked for Amara inside the house, but he could not find her. Then he heard a voice coming from the porch. He took a peek through the window and saw her squatting in front of her cats.
“Do you feel comfortable here? Are you at home already, hmm?” Amara asked her cats.
A smile curved on Rowen’s lips. She was talking to them as if they were humans. And for Amara, each meow of her cats meant something. And it was fascinating to watch them like that.
Two of her cats raised their heads and meowed at Amara.
“Yeah… yeah… that guy is generous enough to help us. But we must not let our guards down. We just entered a lion’s den,” she told her cats.
Rowen raised a brow. What does she mean by that? Did Amara think that he was some kind of a predator?
He opened the door.
“Amara,” he called.
She quickly turned her head to his direction. “Yes?”
“Well, the food is ready. I thought you’re starving by now. Come on in, let’s eat.”
Amara stood up and followed him to the dining area.
They sat across each other, one end to another. They were too far from each other as if Rowen was some kind of a harmful organism, and she wanted to run away from him. Rowen did not know why she had to do that, but if that’s what makes her feel comfortable, so be it.
Amara filled her plate with food and started eating. She was so focused on her meal; she did not even bother to raise her head to look at him. And the silence between them was starting to give him an awkward atmosphere. He decided to be the one to break the silence.
Rowen cleared his throat. That was when Amara finally raised her head and looked at him.
“Since you will live with me from now on, I think we should set our rules to avoid misunderstandings in the future,” he said. “I hope you don’t get offended. We are entitled to have privacy, after all.”
Amara put her utensils down and clasped her hands.
“I guess you’ll be the one to set the rules since this is your house,” she said.
“You can set your rules too since we’re partners here.” He beamed.
“Really?” Amara raised a brow.
“Hmm…” He nodded.
“You go first.”
“Uhm… first.” Rowen raised his index finger. “The room on the right on the second floor is my room. You’re off-limits there when I’m at home. You can choose between the room on the left or the one on the first floor. You can do anything in this house, clean, cook, redecorate, but you cannot touch my laundry.”
“And… uhm… my mom comes once a month to check on me. Sometimes she spends a couple of days here. When that time comes in the future, you…” Rowen scratched an ear.
“What? I have to leave the house?” she asked.
“N-no… we have to sleep together in one room.”
“I’d love that,” Amara said as she batted her eyelashes. She propped her hand on her chin and stared at her with desire flickering her eyes.
Rowen suddenly felt his ears and cheeks burning.
“I’m looking forward to your mother’s house visit. Did she visit you this month?” She grinned.
“No, and she might not visit me this month.”
“Really? What if I ask your sister to gave your mother a hint that you already have a girlfriend living with you? I bet your mother will come here very… very… soon.”
Rowen pressed his lips together and shut his eyes. Of course, Amara was teasing him. And he didn’t know why he was reacting that way. He felt like he was a different person.
‘This is not my usual self,’ Rowen told himself. He shook his head hard to clear his mind.
He rose from his seat and started cleaning the table.
“Hey, I am not done eating yet,” said Amara.
“Oh, I’m sorry,” he said and picked his plate instead.
“Put it down.”
“This is my plate.”
“Don’t take it away. Not until I am done. If I become an old-maid, I’ll ruin your life forever.” Amara glared at him.
“What’s the connection of my plate with you being an old-maid?” His brows furrowed.
“Just… put it down!” Amara exclaimed.
“Okay, fine.” Rowen did what he was told and raised his hands.
He heaved a sigh. Of course, Amara and her weird crazy antics.