Tuesday, January 5, 2016
Gen 2 Ch 7: Happy Now
Bloom had never slept so soundly in his entire life! Matilda had taken to spending her nights at his place, more often than not.
She even took care of cleaning Bloom's apartment!
The care of the greenleaf was still left to Bloom, however. Matilda wasn't very good with plants, it seemed.
In the mornings, when Bloom had to head to work and Matilda was still asleep, it gave him great joy to leave little gifts behind for her to find later. She had always wanted to learn how to play the guitar, she had told him.
He imagined how happy she would be once she found it!
Things at the office had slowly gone back to normal. Bloom loved his job and worked very hard, receiving a lot of recognition. Simtendo's latest game, for which Bloom had done a bulk of the important concept art, was a major success and the task of promoting the game had fallen to him. He was becoming a bit of a poster boy for the company and somehow, because it was for something he was very proud of, Bloom felt like he could deal with the attention much better than before.
One night, when he was at a club getting a drink - for which he was getting paid, no less - Bloom heard a familiar voice whooping behind him.
It was his brother Broccoli, going wild on the dance floor!
"Broc?! What are you doing here?", Bloom called excitedly as his brother pulled him into a hug.
"Bloom! It's so good to see you!", Broccoli grinned when he finally released him. "I'm celebrating my wedding, actually!"
"Your... what now? But... "
"Yeah, sorry you have to find out like this, bro... But hey, come meet my new wife Aria!"
Bloom was still in shock when Broccoli brought him inside. His brother was here in Bridgeport? And he had gotten married and without telling him? Why?
He watched with his eyes wide as Broccoli approached an elderly lady.
"Aria, honey, come meet my brother Bloom!"
When Bloom regained his composure, it all became clear very quickly. Broccoli had met Aria Trill back when they had come to check out Bloom's new Bridgeport apartment. He always had had a thing for older women, Bloom thought idly.
Well, it turned out that, to everyone's great surprise, Aria had gotten pregnant during that fateful meeting.
"It was a bit of a shotgun wedding, you see.", Broccoli chuckled, winking at Aria.
They seemed to be very happy together, though.
When he left the club later and walked towards the closest subway station, Bloom saw a familiar silhouette down the street.
Was that really her? And was she talking to... was that the movie star Matthew Hamming?
"Hi there!", was all that Bloom could say. Matilda stared at him.
"Tilly, you know this guy?" Matthew Hamming wrinkled his nose and looked Bloom up and down. Bloom was used to this by now - a lot of the celebrities in Bridgeport reacted like this when approached for the first time. Most of them warmed up pretty quickly though, so Bloom was not fazed by the rudeness anymore.
Matilda, however, only rolled her eyes at the movie star. "Alright Matt, that was all I needed to say anyway. Come on, Bloom." She grabbed his arm. "Let's get out of here."
And so they did. Matilda was unusually quiet the entire way home. Bloom meant to ask her about what had just happened, but when they arrived, she went straight to bed.
Bloom didn't even notice her getting up before him the next day.
When Bloom got out of bed, he watered the greenleaf plant first, as had become his daily routine. Where had Matilda gone to? He wasn't used to waking up without her sleeping next to him anymore, so of course he worried. Maybe she had gone to the museum? He got dressed quickly and headed toward the elevator.
It didn't take him long to find her. When he walked out of the elevator, there she was, talking animatedly to Matthew Hamming in the lobby.
Bloom overheard a couple of snippets of their conversation.
"... where you live now, huh... not quite my mansion in the hills, but...
"... quit it, Matt. ... happy now... and you could never give me..."
"... well, if you say so... that guy..."
"Bloom. His name is--"
"Bloom!", she exclaimed, her eyes wide.
"Hey there, you two. Sorry to interrupt, but..."
"You're not interrupting." Matilda smiled as she put her arms around Bloom. "Matthew was just leaving."
"Oh, was I?" Matthew Hamming grinned.
"Well, I suppose I was.", Matthew grumbled, as Matilda pulled Bloom into a kiss.
"Matilda... what's going on with you and Matthew Hamming?"
"Nothing, Bloom. There's nothing.", Matilda sighed. "Please, can we go out? I need to get some fresh air..."
Bloom could not resist the pleading tone in her voice.
"Sure, how about the art gallery?", he suggested.
All the way there, Bloom had been mulling things over in his head. He trusted Matilda, fully and completely, but the unasked questions were burning a hole in his stomach. He couldn't help himself.
"Matilda, I'm sorry to ask again, but..."
She looked at Bloom with those violet eyes of hers and smiled. "Bloom, this is a little painful to talk about, but I suppose you deserve an explanation. Matthew and I... We knew each other a long time ago, but that is ancient history. I love you, and only you. Believe me."
And Bloom did.
"Alright, Matilda. That is enough for me." He took her hand. "How about we grab a bite to eat?"
She giggled. "You mean I grab a bite to eat."
Bloom watched Matilda as she slowly ate her meal at the museum's restaurant. He supposed he could use some nutrients as well, though, so he ordered himself a drink.
While the bartender mixed Bloom's drink, Matilda finished her meal and excused herself.
"I... I'll be right back. I need the restroom.", she muttered.
Once Matilda had left the room, the bartender gave Bloom a knowing look and said, "Looks like you've got yourself quite the girl there."
Bloom was taken aback and stared at the bartender for a moment, before giving a curt nod.
'Quite the girl'? What did she mean by that? Bloom was confused.
He sat there for a while, sipping his drink, wondering whether he should ask the bartender what she had meant. But wait, Matilda was taking quite long, wasn't she?
He found her outside, in front of the large wooden sculpture.
They stood in silence for a while, until Matilda suddenly spoke in a soft, quiet voice.
"I'm sorry, Bloom. I don't deserve you. You are so good to me and I... and I..."
She stopped, and turned her face away. Bloom took another long look at the sculpture in front of them.
Then he took her hands in his.
"Matilda, you are the best thing that ever happened to me. I have never been this happy in my life. Whatever happened before we met - it's in the past. What matters is the here and now."
He paused for a moment, gathering his thoughts. Her big violet eyes regarded him quietly.
"And in the here and now I want to ask you, Matilda...", he continued, dropping to one knee. He'd had this planned for a while. He had just been waiting for the right moment, and this was it. He knew.
"Will you marry me?"
Matilda stared at the sparkling diamond for a moment, which felt like an eternity to Bloom.
"Yes, yes!", she gasped and Bloom let out a sigh of relief as he slid the ring onto her finger.
She could barely contain her excitement!
Bloom was enveloped in the sweet fragrance of her hair when they hugged.
And the city lights never shone brighter.