Ravi Lazy Arsenio unlocked his bedroom door and was surprised to find a scattering of black feathers covering the gleaming wooden floor. He stared at the tightly closed window, through which the morning sun's rays penetrated the transparent glass. The dark-haired man stooped down to pick up a feather in front of him, which felt softer and thicker than any bird feather Ravi had ever touched.
Ravi sniffed the air, which seemed to swirl around him, caressing his senses with a sweet scent of melted chocolate and a faint hint of freshly fallen rain. Taking a deep breath, he allowed more oxygen to fill his lungs; he had never smelled this unique combination before. He realized that the feather he held between his fingers also carried the same scent, only more intense, as though the aroma emanated from it. Ravi was almost lost in himself, forgetting about the state of his room, captivated by the intoxicating fragrance, until a sound shattered his thoughts.
The sound of rustling sheets made Ravi's head jerk towards his bed, his eyes widening in surprise, and unconsciously, he took a step back. A large lump was shifting within the messy blankets on his bed. Ravi's heart raced, pumping blood rapidly through his veins. Instead of fleeing, he found himself fixated on the lump, curiosity driving him to uncover whatever or whoever was suddenly in his room.
Ravi's eyes darted around, searching for something to defend himself with, and he found a tennis racket hanging on the wall. He moved cautiously to grab it, took a deep breath, and silently prayed for his safety, not knowing if there was any danger lurking beneath the blankets. He prepared to pull back the covers and confront whatever awaited him. Ravi gripped the edge of the blanket and began counting in his head.
But before Ravi could count to three in his mind, the figure surprised him first, causing him to instinctively retreat and press himself against the wall. The figure stood tall on his bed, still covered by the blanket.
Ravi could feel his own breath racing and echoing in his ears. He bit his lip as he watched a hand, tanned and strong, emerging from under the blanket, struggling to remove the obstruction covering the body beneath.
Ravi's breath caught in his throat as the figure revealed itself, accompanied by a strong, delightful scent of chocolate and the heavy scent of rain, filling Ravi's room until he felt suffocated.
Ravi's eyes widened as the figure, a man in black leather pants, remained standing on his bed, still covered by the blanket. The first thing that caught Ravi's attention was what was imprinted on the man's chest. In bold black ink on his tan skin, Ravi's name was written: 'Ravi.' Who was this person? A stalker? Ravi shivered at the thought. Why would this man have Ravi's name written on his chest?
Ravi had no idea who this stranger was or how he had managed to be in his securely locked room without a balcony. This man had suddenly appeared in his room right after Ravi had celebrated his birthday with his family downstairs. The man remained standing without making any movements.
Ravi's gaze slowly traveled up to meet clear gray eyes on the right and golden ones on the left, staring directly into Ravi's with an unsettling intensity. Ravi stood frozen, feeling the air grow heavy around him as those eyes seemed to draw him into a different dimension. He almost forgot who this person was and felt his knees go weak with just one look. He might melt at any moment.
The man's black, unruly hair stuck out in all directions but seemed to fit perfectly on his head, with a few strands covering part of his thick eyebrows. Ravi's gaze automatically dropped to the man's lips, which tugged at the corners in a way that was both enticing and strange. Ravi was jolted back to reality when he heard the bed squeak, and he realized that the man had stepped down onto the floor. Only then did Ravi notice how tall the man was, towering over him.
Startled out of his reverie, Ravi raised his tennis racket and pointed it at the man's chest. Ravi wasn't afraid of this man, who didn't appear to pose any immediate threat, but he still needed to protect himself. He began to ask, "Who are you?"
"Raymond, Ravi," the man replied almost instantly. Ravi furrowed his brow upon hearing the deep, resonant voice, which seemed to belong to a man named Raymond, as he stared into Ravi's eyes.
"How do you know my name?" Ravi struggled to keep from breathing too often, as the overwhelming scent filling his room might affect him in ways he couldn't fathom and felt deeply unsettling.
"It's a natural occurrence. When I was a teenager, memories of Ravi slowly surfaced on their own. I was destined to be here, Ravi," he said lightly, his lips curving into a smile. This time, Ravi's gaze sharpened as Raymond took a step closer.
With a firm grip on the tennis racket, Ravi pressed it against Raymond's chest to keep him from getting any closer. If he took one more step, Ravi promised he would call the police immediately. Ravi didn't understand why he hadn't called his parents upon seeing Raymond and why he was handling this stranger on his own, as if Raymond weren't a potential threat. "What do you mean by 'destined'?"
"Ravi asked me to come, so here I am. It doesn't matter that it's not yet the right time, because if Ravi hadn't called, this meeting wouldn't have happened so soon," Raymond said, speaking in a soft, almost whispered voice that Ravi could still hear clearly.
A furrow appeared between Ravi's eyebrows as he couldn't comprehend the last sentence from Raymond. He saw the sincerity in Raymond's different-colored eyes, which were now welling up with tears. But Ravi didn't understand when he asked Raymond to come. Ravi didn't even know Raymond until he suddenly appeared and stood before him. It all seemed nonsensical!