Chapter 06 – Churning Butter

|| 06. PAIZE 1 ♥ ||

Large glass walls mirrored the brightly lit airport priority club against the dark clouds that continued their outpour. In the wee hours of the morning, battling lost sleep Mohana sat at the private mezzanine gallery awaiting her flight take off. Settled on a large couch trying to review an article she stifled another yawn. Tired eyes ready to revolt against her severely regretted having had to leave the cozy bed and her warm stuffy only after a brief nap.

An announcement rang through the airport terminal reporting another flight delay owing to the blazing storm that had taken the city by surprise. Cocooned under the lush black throw Mohana tried to ignore the shiver run through her. She focused at the document on her screen to highlight a needed correction.

“Miss Mohana, here you go..” Jojo appeared by her side holding two tall cups, extending one to her boss she added “..we’ll start boarding shortly”

Mohana appreciatively accepted the warm beverage from Jojo, when Leya approached them with a large box of treats. “Mohana darling, take a bite” Leya handed her boss a large warm cookie and then another to Jojo, checking with concern about Mohana “Why is she looking so pale?”

“Miss Mohana had a very busy night and it has taken a toll on her. But on the bright side, the good news is that the bold list course you prepared for us has been a great success! I saw the superb delivery live in action and will tell you all about it!” Jojo claimed excitedly between the three of them

Mohana gushed “Yes Leya, your hard work has been my savior! And I should feel fine by the time we land, I guess it’s just the weather but this coffee will help”. Cherishing Leya’s gesture, she paired a bite from the cookie with a sip from the cup

“You better, it’s soon going to be the most wonderful time of the year” Leya lovingly patted Mohana’s head. Speaking to Jojo she enthusiastically added “I’ll share these cookies with the team in the meanwhile we start boarding and let’s connect on the flight to discuss on the boldness outcome” exchanging greetings she left Jojo and Mohana to distribute the treats

Taking another sip of the warm beverage Mohana checked “I thought they just announced another delay for Honolulu?”

“Yes, such a mess! But it doesn’t matter to us, our flight’s all good” Jojo happily informed her boss encouraging her to take another bite of the cookie

Munching on the snack Mohana enquired “They are letting us takeoff in this storm?”

“Ya, these airport commercial ones are a different story entirely..” Jojo knowledgeably informed “..I don’t even understand why we are hearing these confusing announcements in the private terminal”

“We should have Sir Gallaghair register your complaint and he can open an airport for us altogether” Mohana teased her assistant. She pulled the throw around her shoulders hoping to ease the chills that had been pestering her

Jojo smiled enthusiastically “Won’t that be fun though! They say these terminals are private but there are at least five businesses with us”

“Yeah they’ve made it private for private fliers, but unfortunately not private for just Sophista team or we could have flown right from our roof in downtown” Mohana smiled containing her wishfulness to have spent more time snuggled in her bed than their drive to the airport

Picking up on Mohana’s feelings Jojo offered almost matter of factly “I like that convenience so much more. It would have been far better than being in this constant raging storm..” she then enthused “..I should talk to Ceria! No matter how shy and timid she is, Ceria can give our request to her fiancé and then Vance can supersede all voices to convince Sir Gallaghair”

“Ceria is shy and timid too?” Mohana spoke in surprise about her friend Ceria daughter of Sir Rael Gallaghair

Jojo affirmatively blinked her eyes “Of course! Haven’t you ever seen her with Vance? She is always blushing!”

“Uh um but. that is because.. uhm she’s all rosy cheeks just because she has such delicate skin and generally like the whole deal with marriage and everything can be all a little exhausting?” Mohana tried to support her friend hoping to at least get Ceria to belong in the bold category

“Yes, it must be very exhausting, it cannot be easy to be a bride! I completely agree her skin is so delicate. Ceria always says she takes after Sir Gallaghair but I think she takes more after Madam Gallaghair because Inaya Gallaghair is always found blushing in her husband’s company too”

“But Madam Gallaghair can’t be shy! She was the editor-in-chief before I stepped in” Mohana struggled to deal with the knowledge of everyone around her not belonging to the certain bold classification

Jojo purposefully explained the distinguishing characteristics “We have to consider both sides to this Miss Mohana. Madam Gallaghair made for a rock solid Sophista leader just like you. But that’s only work. When Sir Gallaghair carries her in his arms haven’t you seen how she goes completely red? That certifies she’s so shy! Ceria is the same when Vance is carrying her in his arms”

“Hm.. ya ..that ya” nibbling on her cookie Mohana factually resonated at having witnessed that “She is very shy but it’s all because of Sir Gallaghair, he is so handsome”

“Exactly! And just like him Vance is so strong with all those muscles!..” heaving a dreamy sigh Jojo added “..But! Because you and Ceria are such close friends and you both are so timid and shy it is highly likely that when you get married, you’ll also keep blushing”

“No! Of course not! I was so bold yesterday night!” Mohana rushed to object with her reddening cheeks conflicting the very statement

Jojo beamed proudly at her boss “Yes, last night definitely! That was such an amazing execution!”

“And we will practice on that bold list Leya gave us and it will only keep getting better from here. So there will be no timidness and shyness or whatever!” Mohana stated with conviction happily taking Jojo’s approval as her attestation

Enthusiastically nodding her confirmation Jojo declared “Yes Miss Mohana, I’ll also review the list en-route on our flight. And I will request Leya to provide us further details on all the five levels to become bold because we both most certainly want pineapples and not those limp cucumbers!”

“Excuse me ma’am, we are beginning the boarding for your flight to Honolulu” an airport attendant informed Jojo and Mohana

Acknowledging him with a smile, Jojo scrambled to her feet “My boss and our team will be there shortly” turning around she added to Mohana “I wouldn’t say am a fan of this traveling, but am looking forward to touring Sarrata”

“Yeah for a change it might be fun and we’ll get a nice deep dive for our design issue” Mohana gave her a smile folding the black throw to shove it in her tote

“Yes December is going to be so happening! The super hot and sexy Omar Shaan will be on our cover with his extravagant exposé and Sarrata’s deep dive on the fabric front! This issue will be another feather in your cap” Jojo declared walking along with her boss towards the boarding area

Our cap” Mohana affectionately corrected her personal assistant. She brushed off another shiver accompanying the frantic jumping of her heart at the mere mention of the celebrity designer.

Mohana calmed herself with the knowledge that the entire cover shoot and exposé with the magnificent man had finally come to term. Despite her nearly sleepless night she felt relieved at having finalized the interview write up. She now had no need to review their interaction let alone be reminded of the resort server Peggy. The only place Omar Shaan could exist for the next few days would be in her own dreams.

Beaming at her boss, Jojo was discussing about Sarrata when an airport store attendant appeared ahead of them. The woman almost handed Mohana a confectionery box “Ma’am your husband’s order”

Her feet halted at the errored mention. Looking at the stranger in confusion Mohana took a tentative step behind making her back hit the wall of strength

“We’re not married” listening to his drawl her breath got caught

Her feet moved with the intention to make a sprint. Mohana wished to overcome the powerful presence of the designer celebrity she seemed to have backed into. Her desire to disappear from the scene came to a halt when his muscular arm slipped through her waist. Perhaps having picked on her thoughts the strong blockage securely rooted Mohana giving resistance to her escape plans

Affixing her delicate petite frame to his steel strength, the fluid move came accompanied with Omar’s whisper “Hey, alright?”

|| 06. PAIZE 2 ♥ ||

Feeling the encapsulation of his warmth her breathing went further askew. Despite being alarmed at the man of her dreams appearing out of the blue she nonchalantly nodded. Mostly hoping to assure her berserk heart that everything would be alright.

The attendant was merrily laughing “..waiting to get married causes the most trouble, you should ask my husband he didn’t want a day longer of engagement”

“Yeah not a fan of all this waiting myself” keeping the editor-in-chief glued ahead of him Omar smilingly spoke to the attendant. His free hand took hold of the coffee cup from Mohana’s dainty fingers, stealing a warm sip.

The attendant joyfully laughed looking at the fabulous couple they made standing snugly together “My husband would love to meet you, all he waited was for churning the butter too!..” extending the box towards Mohana, she kindly offered “..hope you enjoy these selections on the flight. I told him that we ship throughout the country but if you like them I’ll personally get them catered for your wedding too”

All words aside, the declaration from Omar Shaan ‘we are not married’ achingly kept ringing through her. Barely picking on the hint to hold on to the box that kept getting extended towards her Mohana hesitantly took the artsy parcel from the woman

“Will definitely keep that in mind” Omar pleasantly spoke to the airport shop attendant

Slipping the chocolate box from Mohana he just as easily dropped the case in the black leather tote hanging from the crook of her arm. His move made the back of her head brush against his chiseled jaw making Mohana anxiously purse her lips.

“It was so wonderful to meet you, stay blessed always” saying the attendant hurried away towards a shop on the periphery of the terminal gallery

“Am hungry” Omar whispered to the beautiful woman he held secured against his torso

The velvety whisper of his voice from this close made goosebumps on her nape raise a notch higher. Tired eyes had regained a sense of purpose. Deceiving Mohana her sparkling silver spheres eagerly turned to gawk at the handsome tall figure that stood behind.

Taking a sip from the cup Omar quipped “This is neat. Have you also been wondering how come I am not fed the same as you?” taking the remaining cookie from her smaller hand he munched it away with another drink of her coffee

“Jojo?” a mere whispering breath escaped her. Mohana looked at her empty hands. Hands that had held a cup which was now in his captivity and the cookie which had disappeared altogether

Peeling her watchful eyes from observing the attendant return to her shop, Jojo responded “Yes, Miss Mohana”

“We need to discuss this unfairness around how am never invited to these early breakfasts before breakfast. But the team’s waiting for us, let’s go” Omar joked, encouraging Jojo to lead the way

“You are so funny Omar. Definitely!..” with a smile Jojo assured her boss “..Miss Mohana, I’ll get your coffee and breakfast sorted right away” she stepped ahead of them towards the boarding gate

Capturing Mohana’s elbow Omar guided them to follow Jojo. Taking another sip of the caffeine rich drink he checked in a whisper “You’re feeling cold?”

His hold made Mohana welcome the trickle of warmth seeping through her. Encountering another chill she instinctively moved closer “I..” but her words halted at the verge of accepting her sleepless shivering botheration

The rampant pulsating of his earlier clarification to the attendant ‘we are not married’ made her gulp. Lightly turning her arm to free from his hold Mohana mumbled “Uh I have to talk to Jojo”

Easing herself Mohana stepped further ahead to accompany her assistant. Finding him in less than five hours had taken her by surprise, considering she had three days from their exposé interview to look at his fabulous sight in real-life again. To add to her sleepless misery him correcting doubts regarding their association made her wince. His not wanting to be even remotely associated with her, not even for a mere misunderstanding, not even with a random confectionery stranger had her heart twist.

“Miss Mohana, are you alright?” Jojo whispered with concern looking at her pale boss

“Ya, ya..” Mohana whispered picking up speed to increase their distance from the man she had left behind “..what is going on here?”

Heaving a sigh Jojo shook her head “I am equally surprised Miss Mohana no wonder we don’t like this traveling but for a fact we are never getting chocolates catered for your wedding from that confectioner”

“Why ever in this life would I get married” Mohana mumbled. Agitated she fished for a can of water from her tote, his words ‘we are not married’ refusing to halt their ringing within her

As if it was foundational logic Jojo plainly offered “Because when you are in love you get married”

“Rhetorical question, Jojo. There are no marriages happening. We have to stay focused. Our aim is to ace this whole bold-act” Mohana determinedly declared

“Yes bold! Definitely bold! But what was that woman’s confectioner husband thinking? Like why would she want to churn butter on her wedding night if he is a chocolatier?!..” Jojo exclaimed “..Leya would have never drawn dresses on her wedding night just because Salm is a designer! Who does that!”

The mention of the ‘designer’ keyword further made her heart race on a track that she knew had no possible end. Taking a gulp of water Mohana stated “It worked out for her perhaps she liked it. she’s married. she seemed happy”

“Yes, sure. But you are not churning butter and neither am I. I will have to report this to Ceria urgently! She is right about to get married in a few months!” Jojo shuddered at the thought still unable to accept the delivery of words from the stranger

Mohana thoughtfully agreed “Yeah ya I highly doubt Ceria wants to fly planes for Vance right after her wedding”. Taking another sip of water she clenched on to the can averting the temptation of her eyes. She didn’t want to see the man who had been so adamant to clarify their lack of belonging to each other

Coming to join the duo Salm informed about the drafted article from their Sarrata host “Princesa, we need to review the adapting trends discussion from Tyr, his office just sent it through”

“That’s neat, let’s sort it out the first thing on the plane” Mohana confirmed. Glad at the distraction she steered her heart back to work. Other Sophista team members joined by their leaders, filed into lines approaching the boarding gate. The crew was busy discussing their plan to Honolulu for the upcoming coverage of Tyr and Sonya’s fabric industry Sarrata

Not wanting to brave herself to find the whereabouts of her lost coffee or the dashing man who had taken it, Mohana walked straight ahead to board her plane. Making her way through the aisles she dismissed their meeting as pure happen chance

The argument of a busy airport, busy terminal, multiple businesses boarding various flights made her feel relieved. She convinced herself that due to their brief interaction, the absence of her bold-act would have also been easily overlooked. Accepting the welcome and introduction from her steward Ethan, Mohana followed him to her personal section.

“Ma’am I’ll help you keep the tote, did you need anything from this?” saying Ethan courteously took the leather bag from Mohana

Occupied in her own thoughts Mohana murmured “My digi” reaching for the thin screen she gave the young man a smile

Smiling broadly at her the steward stored the tote in the long closet compartments ahead, eagerly checking “Ma’am Jojo requested the order for you. I’ll shortly bring you a coffee, would you like a toasted bagel with cream cheese alongside?”

Mohana urgently wished for all thoughts that had appeared at the mention of ‘coffee’ to disappear as the beverage and the cookie from her hands had

“No. Not that. Nothing. I’ll only have sparkling water” she requested, making Ethan look at her with concern

The steward checked in alarm “No coffee? Nothing to eat?”

“For now?” Mohana nearly pleaded at the mention of the said beverage again

“Yes Ma’am, right away! But I must bring you some food offerings because you cannot stay hungry” pleasantly declaring the server stepped beyond the slim pocket doors of her lounge

Taking seat on the couch Mohana gazed outside through the rain covered acrylic windows. The hasty meetup running through her head seemingly did not feel any brief for her still thumping heart. She pondered about being able to withstand on ‘The Bold List’ for when their paths would cross again in three days. Rattled from within she wished to prove that his refusal of being associated with her didn’t matter in the least bit. She grumbled in the solace of her private room “Why would anyone bother with clarifications to a married confectioner! He can do what he wants, am anyways never getting married!”

Absentmindedly accepting the sparkling water, selection of nuts and dried fruits from the steward, Mohana heaved a disgruntled sigh. The words ‘we are not married’ continued to circle in the pit of her stomach.

|| 06. PAIZE 3 ♥ ||

Halting by her lounge Salm checked “Princesa, you are looking pale, why don’t you take a nap and we can connect afterwards”

“Work always gets priority. Lets get this wrapped up, I’ll take a nap later” giving him a smile Mohana gestured welcoming the Sophista in-house designer to her room

“Sure my princesita boss..” Salm adoringly spoke to the young woman “..Should we get you something to eat alongside?”. Taking the seat besides her on the couch he pulled the article that had arrived from their upcoming host, the fabric industry mogul Tyr, owner of Sarrata

Murmuring her shy refusal “Uh no. I had the cookie? from Leya..” her pale cheeks filled with color having lost half of it to a handsome pair of eyes “Water’s good and these dried fruits that Ethan got me are nice” she added appreciatively for her assigned steward

Salm gave her a smile “Sure princesa but you need something more substantial”

“Yes, I’ll be taking complete care of Miss Mohana” Ethan declared entering the lounge. Brimming with happiness he served another selection of snacks for her

“Get her waffles too with these” Salm spoke to the steward who delightedly claimed “Yes! Yes! Most definitely, and she is going to love my recipe! I already set those on the iron, I’ll bring them shortly”

Sipping along her sparkling water refills, munching on snacks Mohana stayed absorbed with Salm discussing the details around Sarrata. In time wrapping the review and highlighting the discussion points on the article they moved along to other discussion points.

When the steward stopped by to check for coffee again, Mohana rushed to dismiss the idea that brought back any reference of her earlier meeting with the magnificent celebrity fashion designer. “Princesa rest some, you seem to have over worked yourself and we don’t want you to come down with anything” Salm concernedly suggested

Her heavy droopy eyes welcomed the idea. Giving in Mohana promised herself more than Salm “I’ll take a quick shut eye but I’ll wake up, I need to review the opinion piece”

“We have time princesita. Take a break. I’ll have them serve you breakfast and chocolate milk when you feel refreshed” Salm gave the young woman a warm smile

Giving him an acknowledgement Mohana smiled “Ya Ethan’s really caring”. Throwing her leg over the other she let her eyes swoop close. Images of Omar Shaan came rushing to her as if the uber handsomeness had been kept awaiting on the sidelines.

He looked devastatingly attractive sporting the black leather jacket over his white tshirt. Glancing at his dark tousled hair, her fingers curled of their own accord. Rolling her gaze lower needily she looked at his sparkling black spheres that stared right back before she noticed him take another sip of her coffee. Mohana’s eyes sprang open.

Flying feet above in the sky, her sleepy eyes hastily looked out from the window at the dark thunderous clouds beneath the aircraft. The miles of separation from the handsome fashion designer seemed obvious much to her restiveness. Memories of another flight, from another time spent with the phenomenal celebrity had her heart bounce.

Mohana managed all her Sophista responsibilities from the downtown head quarters making this flight one of the rare few exceptions. The last time she had flown, had been almost a year ago for Sophista’s Fashion Trend deep dive. The week-long coverage for the series of fashion events had presented her countless moments with Omar Shaan.

From their flight to the jam packed accommodations, the itinerary of runway shows, the over flowing social gathering invites, Mohana had one event after another found herself alongside him. The memories made the butterflies in her tummy flutter leaving her heart to yearn an unknown want of warmth.

Diverting her thoughts from him Mohana sleepily tried to think about her plush bed, her cuddly Polo and everything warm in her possession. But soon those images got intervened by his black shimmering eyes making her tummy lurch.

She wrapped an arm around her waist from where she remembered being held by him at the airport. Her heart partially eased at his memory yet the longing of warmth persisted. Taking a deep breath Mohana closed her tired eyes letting his images cloud her mind again.


Mohana incoherently murmured something in her sleep. Lost in slumber she lightly shifted her face against the firm surface. Forming a pout at the stubborn stiffness a mere whisper left her lips “mh..ha..rr..d?”. One of her sleepy hands attempted to grab onto the tough plane but unable to form a grip it skid lower

Her denim clad legs lay hung atop a muscular leg dressed in a shade tad darker than her own jeans. Landing to sprawl across the hard strength, her dainty arm joined her other hand which had managed to hook sleepy fingers in the belt loop of the jeans waistband

Gently stroking her blonde head the voice enquired “Get you something?”

Listening to the known sound Mohana heaved a satisfied sigh. She deliriously gathered a mumble “Yoooh”

Feeling contently warm she shifted her face slightly, wishing to sink into her fluffy’s plushness. Meeting rigid strength instead of the furry Polo her adamant fingers attempted another trek on the wall she slept against.

Capturing hold of her hand, intercepting it’s hike midway in a blanket of warmth the voice inaudibly murmured something. The black leather jacket enveloping her torso in it’s entirety hid his other hand on her waist. For the benefit of asleep Mohana the voice notched a tad higher for only her to hear “Do you feel like eating lunch?”

A delicate moan left the back of her throat resulting in the grip on her hand getting tighter. Moving her cheek to soak the exceptional warmth a mere whisper escaped Mohana “Mmm yooh”

“Sure, but we play fair so that will entail my getting to eat you in return” the velvety voice confirmed. Her captive palm got caressed gently letting her drowsy fingers curl around it’s hold

Blissfully Mohana shared a sleepy affirmation “Yaah yoo”

Playfully turning the ruffled layers at the hem of her green top the voice hummed murmuring gently “You and me. And I am darn hungry. Being patient is ridiculously difficult”

“Mmm.. yah hmm” snuggling against the solid strength her agreement came muffled. Despite the unforgiving plane she slept on, Mohana welcomed the luring warmth.

Getting pulled closer a moan filled with longing escaped from the back of her throat. Elated at the encircling protection a smile broke on her lips. This time the voice appeared more closer “Any guesses, how long you’ve kept me waiting for?”

Listening to the tone of his voice a concerned frown appeared on her forehead “mmh?.. one sec?” Mohana crinkled open her watery eyes feeling an urgent need to assure the beholder from his despair

“More. Definitely a lot more than that..” looking at his lips move Mohana’s sleepy blurry view trailed to find her desired black orbs “..but we’ll try to wait a little longer before I eat you up”

Blinking with adoration at the shimmering gaze of the dark spheres, her shy heart rejoiced with ecstatic happiness. The black eyes of her stuffy Polo seemed to glitter impeccably like those of her dreamy Omar Shaan. Declaring a whisper of “Noh! mine! now” she snuggled into her apparent fluffy hoping for her dream to stay.

The warmth level of her Polo seemed to have exceeded tremendously but the loss of plushness made it difficult to let Mohana sink in it’s fur. Letting her drowsy eyes swoop close she attempted to grip on to the solid surface again wishing to thump it into shape. Her tired fingers unable to grab on to her mistaken stuffy’s intended fur ended up curling around the large hand that held her instead. The exceptional warmth blazed her petite frame with heat relieving her cold jitters.

Tenderly smoothing her hand in his captivation the man being mistaken for her fluffy offered “Definitely. Though you should know all the caveats that come with this waiting, because there will be a lot of owing that you’ll have to fulfill”

“Hmm yaaah” she granted her affirmation inhaling a peaceful breath

Stroking her small waist from under the thick covering he checked “In the meanwhile we resolve this, how about getting something to eat for your tummy?”

Mohana adamantly declared “Noh..” her voice came muffled as she hid her face on his muscled strength

“We’ll sleep again in a while” the velvety voice coaxed but Mohana mumbled another refusal “mmh.. badd.. ni..ght”

“Because it was cold?” his tone grew concerned. The grip around her waist fastened pulling to secure her much closer in his embrace. Mohana heaved a sigh inhaling him. Basking in his fragrance an approving moan escaped her.

She slurred on her muffled complaint “mmh cuz ‘f him”. Her lips formed a dissatisfied pout at the fuzzy memories from her exposé interview from the night before.

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