Fanart: Hange Zoe from SNK

She's just so awesome as a character. She is flawed, gentle, knowledgeable, emphatic and so much more. Some people see her as binary but as the creator said, it is up to the audience to see her as a She or They. I see her as a mother figure so a she. Happy labour day you all.

Fiction : The tale of cafe owner Noah, and scientist Honey, Chapter 1

Honey could be rampant when her emotions override logic. This morning she was so excited that one of her major experiments had shown results, that she decided to treat everyone at Cravat Cafe. But… she ordered without checking whether she had brought along her wallet. Luckily the cafe was owned by none other than her best friend, Noah.

“Oh my goodness, I left my wallet in Nana’s car when she dropped me here. I should call her and make her return my wallet before you punch it in,” she exclaimed as her fingers typed furiously on her phone. Honey needed to do act fast before Noah ate her or something.

Farrah came up from behind and nudged Honey, “you forgot your wallet again senpai?”

Honey nodded and watched as Farrah took out her wallet and handed Honey a hundred dollar note, “This should cover part of it.”

Noah sighed and reached for his wallet in his pocket. Actually, he was about to go out when Honey arrived at his cafe. He thought that it would be a brief  updating session, but when Honey got her good results and decided to treat everyone, he had to delay his departure to help his staff cope with the sudden increase in demand. He took out his debit card and slapped it on the cashier table, for Jean who was cashier of the day.

“I think we already have it covered Miss Russo, thank you,” Jean explained to them

Farrah looked at Honey, who nodded at her.

Honey patted Farrah on the back. “Thanks Farrah. Noah saved my day, as usual.”

Farrah smiled at them, and placed the note back in her wallet. She returned back to her seat, where the rest of Honey’s colleagues were seated. Honey waved to the others to show them that everything was okay. Honey came in with them but she usually sat at the counter so she could speak to Noah, who always listen to whatever she wanted to rant about.

Jean punched in the order and swiped Noah’s card for payment. Jean placed the original receipt in a drawer under the counter, and reprinted a copy receipt from the cashier machine.

“Honey-san, this one’s your copy,” Jean called, as he handed the receipt copy over the counter to Honey. It wasn’t the first time Honey had forgotten her wallet, and Jean was already well versed in these kinds of things. Some customers do forgot their wallet and they do keep tabs for regular customers.

Honey raised her eyebrows and laughed when she saw the amount. She jumped off her high stool to peek at Noah over the coffee machines. “I’ll pay you back promptly Vi. There’ll be lots of fund coming in and maybe a raise for everyone at the lab.”

“Ok,” was all Noah said. Honey always pay back, and always with tips for Noah’s on duty staff.

Noah continued to prepare the rest of the orders and Honey went back to sit on her stool. He knew everyone from the lab where Honey worked because since two years ago, they frequented his cafe on alternate days for lunch and tea. They were great people, and Noah had became sort of friends with them after so many lunch visits. He was glad that they had successes in their work, knowing that their work had been only seen slow progress until today. And then he got an idea.

“When those funds really do come in, invite everyone and I’ll treat them to a buffet spread.”

“Really?” Honey asked. It was rare for Noah to treat everyone like that, especially when they're all her friends to begin with. Well, Mike and Omar took great interest in Noah, so her friends were now his friends too, she guessed.

“I’ll tell them that,” Honey replied happily to the back of Noah’s dark haired head as he worked in his kitchen. “Well, after the grants are sorted and all. Thanks Noah, that is a nice gesture.”

Honey beamed, she knew Noah had a soft spot for his friend's success. But unlike her who always found the smallest reason to celebrate, Noah celebrated things only when real success arrive. Honey was the spur of the moment type of person, while Noah always go for the bigger picture.

“Well, since the bills settled, I’ll text Nana to join me for lunch here. Gotta support my fave in their time of need,” Honey nodded.

This time Noah turned around and sighed at Honey. They then both sighed again together as Jean looked at all of them and nodded. He then gathered all the drinks Noah had made and went out to call their respective owners.

Businesses were having a hard time due to the increase of petrol and electricity prices. Noah’s coffee shop managed to survive because he was meticulous in his planning and he took care of his employees. His employees were mostly university students and fresh graduates, comprising of Jean, his cousin Nelly, Sasha, Dave, Jerry, Jackie and Marsha who were very loyal to Noah. Noah appreciated his current employees for their loyalty and treated them more than as employees.

“I think I'm going to spend some time at the bookstore next block. See you all at lunch,” Honey said as she slipped on her sandals and headed to the exit.

Noah turned around as he heard the unmistakable sound of slippers slapping the marble tile. “You wore that to the lab this morning?” he asked, judgingly.

“Yup,” Honey said as she waited for her favourite expression on Noah's face to appear.

Noah cringed, and Honey cackled at his evident judgemental expression. She then exited the cafe calling out to her friends, and the other patrons, “Enjoy your drinks.”

Honey left without noticing a series of playful taunts from her friends,

“Thanks Honey! You should pay for our coffee everyday.”
“Can I have seconds? Omar spilled mine”
“Good luck with work! Moblit sure needs one!”

Noah didn’t watch Honey leave. It was an almost daily occurrence. He knew she’ll be back for lunch, and definitely the next day, and maybe the day after.

In Noah’s life, Honey’s presence was something he didn’t take for granted. Though people who view their friendship must have thought that he would be annoyed by her sometimes silly antics, he was never truly annoyed by her. In fact, he was thankful that he became one of his close friends.

Yes, his friend because when she left for someplace else he would miss her as that, and nothing more.


Throwback to twenty five years ago

Noah watched the silhouette of Kenneth in his bowler hat and trench coat left the building. He wanted to watch until the image disappeared from the door but the lady beside him tugged on his forearm to catch his attention.

“Are you ready to meet your siblings?” she asked.

Noah looked up at the woman and frowned, but he remembered Kenneth’s words and immediately nodded. Kenneth had told him a million times before they came here, to just follow whatever they say, and whatever they told him to do, because it was for his own good. Kenneth said he would come back for Noah when he was richer and able to take better care of Noah. So until that time arrive, Noah had to follow whatever the house rules and the elders say. Noah was eight and the Sunny Sunshine Children Home became his new home.

A year passed, and then two, then three. Every year at the home Noah watched kids younger than him at the home being taken away. Where was Kenneth, Noah thought. Will he come to take me too? Did he miss me? Is he rich now? Of course, Noah did not know what it meant to be rich at that age. He was fine eating from a steel tray and sleeping on a thin mattress with a blanket. The kids played well with him and if they don't, the matron would always be around to control everyone into submission. He never had a taste of the luxurious life and often wondered what it meant to be rich.

Noah’s mum died when he was six years old and Kenneth took him in, He went to school during the day and in the evenings he would stay in a child care center. Kenneth would fetch him on a motorcycle when the sun was low on the horizon and fed him at a local diner before going home. After he did his homework Kenneth sent him off to sleep in their one bedroom apartment. The following year, he entered an elementary school. After school, Kenneth sent him to stay with a knitting and smoking grandmother whose house was not far from their dilapidated apartment. Noah would often fell asleep in the evening while waiting for Kenneth, and woke up to find himself lying on his own bed at him. When he came out, he saw Kenneth in the living room sleeping on a mattress.

When it was Father’s day celebration at school, Kenneth declined to come to his school because he claimed that, “I am not fit to be no one’s father, and not even yours.”

Noah was at the children's home for about five years. Right after he turned twelve, Kenneth finally came to fetch him. Noah noticed that Kenneth looked cleaner and dressed better. He looked good like one of the actors in dramas Noah had to watch with the other kids in the evenings. The dramas which the matron forced him to watch saying that it built character.

After that, life didn’t change much. Kenneth sent him to a nearby school. When Noah returned home the first day, Kenneth was nowhere and he found himself home alone. He didn't need to have a babysitter anymore.

At first, Noah was clueless of what to do beyond eating and watching television. Kenneth’s home was larger and more furnished than the children’s home. But after years of living at an orphanage and doing chores, Noah began noticing things needing attention in his new house. And soon he started to take care of maintaining the house.

Noah also realized that Kenneth was only home in the mornings. Noah never knew where Kenneth went during the evenings and nights. He tried his best never to ask Kenneth about it. One day, Kenneth left him a huge sum of money and a blade. There was also a note telling him to go buy whatever he wanted, or he could also join the new neighbourhood’s taekwondo class. The instructor was Kenneth’s friend. Noah decided to join the class instead of spending the money. He started his lessons, and got to know a pair of cousins who became his eager kouhais. They called him senpai.

At school he was cordial with his classmates. But he was bullied once for being small, though he fended them off with his martial art skills. When confronted by the teachers, he told them that he was defending himself, and his teacher believed him. All because he always get good grades, and being good in studies meant that he was honest, at least to the teachers.

“Excellent students don’t have time to play around”, he overheard his teachers claimed. Noah didn’t care about their assumptions, he only cared that the bullies left him alone.

Noah had some admirers in school who claimed that he was cute and tried to ask him to junior prom, but he was not interested. He did go to some parties, with Fred and Isabel, his kouhai from taekwondo.

Sometimes Noah wished that Kenneth made time for him, as Fred’s and Isabel’s fathers did for them. Noah couldn’t help thinking whether he should give Kenneth something for Father’s day, buy something with all the extra money he saved from his pocket money. Even though it was all Kenneth’s money, Noah thought it was the thought that counted. But he never got to do it anyway. Instead he restocked their kitchen with premium tea, which he could see Kenneth enjoy drinking during his rare times at home.

Isabel and Fred left Noah when they turned sixteen and seventeen, to study at a State University. So a few months later when Noah was twenty he realized that his life was going nowhere. He had a nice office job in  town, and volunteered plenty of times at the local children’s home but decided that he needed something long term for his future. So he moved out, and Kenneth gave him a sum of money as starters, and also a mobile phone. When he thought about calling Kenneth to tell the old guy that he found a rented house and a job, he realized that he could never make the call. Kenneth never gave Noah his phone number, and Noah was too busy  to visit home and they soon lost contact.

And that was his story. Not long after he started getting comfortable in his new city, he befriended Edrie Smith, but Edrie was no longer in town too, he now lived with his wife Marie in Shanghai. Noah missed him, Edrie was among his first friend here. They bonded through time of need, and Edrie had supported him in his early business venture. But Noah had accepted that everyone he cared for will eventually leave him and that all he could do was appreciate their presence while he still can.

Author's Note : This was originally a fanfiction, but the story's mine so I changed all the characters name and make it into an original fiction.

Fanart : Levihan

Fanart of my levihan fanfic. Will post it on wattpad soon.