But among the seven in the room excluding him, silence seems the warmest greeting they could give.
"Have you met Jean?"
Maybe they are deaf.
“He is our new apprentice.”
He got their attention now. What is up with the word apprentice that seems to interest them in a way.
The man tap his shoulder with pure weight. He dare to know the face. Jean stands obediently and bow his head when he learn it was him. He look tired, his eyes are dark-circled and a little drousy, the smile is not pleasurely given but thoughtful enough to be offer. There are wrinkles when he smiles, on his forehead. Even his grasp and arms are filled with fine proof of greatness of visible beating veins. Ahh, his scent are like of those wild lavender but his appearance can be consider neat if he remember to iron it one fine day.
He thought of those days when silence steals the joy upon his lips. ‘Twas the people who sworn to take care of him that hardly tried to snatch it back. But for those days, it didn’t. The glare of the outside sunrays reflects toward his right eye, blinded for a second, he examine the source. It must be warm outside. He thought. Then they crossed his mind once more, their faces and their most peculiar character to remember. His mind travels on the midair and failed to notice the man who had enter the room.
He part his hair neatly on the left side, it was thick, darkest of brown and the scent of lilydew. His white polo shirt is sparkling just like his eyes and brows. His overall appearance is pleasing as always.
It was a room filled with blueprints and tracing papers. A quiet room full of serious people minding their own business, extroverts perhaps. Jean never greeted them, it feels like it is not even needed. Their eyes are judging, just like yesterday at the lobby. They are all good-looking, it depends. He sit on an empty seat, waiting for any sign of acknowledgment upon his arrival. But there is none. It is a feeling of sadness for no one seems to be glad of having a new apprentice. He had prepared for this day, chose it over the first oasis he had found seven corners away from here. He thought this is much better, livelier, happier. He thought he might lost his youthful spirit upon his stay in here. He thought too much.
"Apprenticeship, Mister." Jean said to the man on the main lobby of the second building he found interesting.
"Let me see your resume." his white polo shirt is tucked in his jeans matching his white rubber shoes and white teeth.
"Luckily, we have two vacancies. One of our apprentice left for two weeks now, the other slot is vacant for six months, I cannot recall. It says here that you attend a lot of seminars, well it’s a plus. It also states you know how to use 3D softwares and Cad, it is a must actually. Do you have your portfolio with you?"
"Yes." Jean hand him an A3 size envelope.
The man turn the pages slowly, his eyes might be mocking his works. Jean has this tiny voice of doubt saying that his work is not good enough. He look at the man, he look unimpressed. He is thinking of backing out, this is not a good idea, I should have not gave him the compilations! But nevertheless, its just a tiny voice.
"So, when do you want to start?"
But maybe he is.
"May I help you?"
Jean turn and found a man with an off-white polo shirt, khaki pants with a rip tip, dusty safety shoes and a crooked teeth next to the jerk.
"He said he is gon’ submit his resume, only he turned out to be a jerk." he insisted.
But this lousy-looking guy glance at Jean head to toe, serious of face then turn to the guy in blue.
"Where are you from?"
"He’s from a far away island two-days far from here and only him knows the place."
He never said a word.
"You could leave your resume to me."
"Do you have an appointment?" a man, smart-casual attire, blue-checkered polo-shirt, dark blue slacks, black shoes with some stain of dust. His brown hair must be needing a brush for it is as wild as the branches of a Filly Tree outside the building.
"I don’t. I just thought that I could submit my resume." Jean answered.
"Walk-in. Where are you from?"
"Grase Island." he replied.
"Where is that? I haven’t heard of that before."
"Of course. It is a two-day travel from here."
"What do you mean of course? That I do not know the place? So what if I did not know? Who do you think you are? Some king or something?" that man messed up big time. He could have act according to his attire, but just like a sour-tasted-candy, the wrapper will fool you with golds and shining glitters.
"Alright. Thank you." Jean find his way out. He realize that some oasis are not to be found for some people. Surely, this building is a beauty. A fusion of landscape and glasses, the edges could cut you by looking. Maybe he is not supposed to be cut by it.
It is a signboard at the main lobby of the building, he had seen it. Some unknown man must have said it, some employee put a frame on it then let it hang there and inspire some men like him. Jean thought he could understand it very well, it projects an obvious meaning. He never thought for sometime he was the man the quote’s been talking about. He always believe for all the days of his past, he is quite sure he was awake more than half.
"Once you had a chance to live another day, instead of staying awake till your heart’s content, you chose to spend the other half sleeping."
His eyes searching for semblance of those in the island. It was a two-day travel until he realized it is time to stop. Actually, he had no idea where to go, it is just that in this city, he had found this interesting building. An oasis born at the heart of the glasses.