"Uhm...Hello, Tokyo", I had my hand out, while shyly looking slightly away. I didn't dare to maintain eye contact as my social anxiety is creeping up on me. I have zero esteem if you have to know, and even though Tokyo and I went a long way, this is the first time I'm finally seeing her.
"Konichiwa, Ronnie-san!", she smiled and took my hand. I could felt her tender fingers, how the stretch marks of the folds slowly reeled me in. Then she had her arm around my shoulder while teasing my shyness. She took my stuff and started walking, asking me to catch up. I heave a sigh of relief and started slow jogging towards her, and we started talking.
Her Onsenmonogatari jacket slipping off her shoulders, where I could see her Akihabara tattoo. There's also her TAITO ring on her fingers, the trademark space invader logo which is encased behind acrylic. Her Gundam sling bag gives away how much of an otaku she could be, together with her Anello and pokemon keyrings. She wore a pair of cute Tokyo Tower and Sky Tree earrings, while her Kabukicho and Tsukiji bracelets traced around her right arm. She painted her nails Cherry blossom pink because it's the sakura season, and within each nail, there's a hypnotizing shade of pink as if drawing you in.
I fell in love with the Cherry Blossoms, as we did hanami in Yoyogi park, after which she took me to Meiji, who picked my heart and whispered to me what I need to hear. We were so addicted to playing the UFO catcher and we played them almost every day! The store attendant, fallen prey to her puppy eyes would always give in and make it extra easy for us to win the prizes. She's even more competitive than me, and her adorable cockiness while parading the streets of Akihabara while waving her meter tall plush toy.
It's fun hanging out with Tokyo, and it's also comedic how she's afraid of the cold. On our night walks, sometimes she'll kneel down and hug her knees complaining of the cold. And we'll seek refuge in the Lawson. Then she'll come back to life again, as she waltzes around the aisle, coming back with various cup noodles. She'll look at me with these huge beady eyes as she slurped her noodles up as if screaming to the world that she's happy
Here's what happened when Tokyo bought me to the game center for the first time, and it was adorable to see this competitive side of her as she's trying to get a plush in the UFO Catcher.
"One more! one more!", she exclaimed as she furiously pushed the tokens down the slots. I could see her clenching her left fist for good luck as she hit the button and we watched the claw descend in a draw of our fate.
"Y-yes..", I muttered as if alittle prayer could tilt the odds in our favour. I could see Tokyo eyes gleamed as we finally lifted the Agumon plush up.
"No! No! No!", Tokyo repeatedly tapped the button as the plush fell off halfway on its way out.
I watched Tokyo in amusement as her peculiar determination was too adorable, but part of me didn't want her to keep going. The cynic in me find the prize almost impossible to win.
"Hey! it's okay lets go", I said tugging her sleeves.
"No! I must win this" she replied, and pulled back. Tokyo is too committed now. "Just watch okay, I'll win this!"
It took Tokyo 3 more tries, and the euphoria when the doll fell through the slot was indeed indescribable.
"See! I WON!", she said gleefully while waving the Agumon. "Here, for you!"
"W-what?!", I was actually surprised. I thought she wanted it.
"I just want to win haha, here's something for you to bring back home", she said pushing the doll into my arms. "And this is how you never give up", she wink before we left the place for some late night ramen.
I wish I could ask for more time, but I told her I'll definitely come again.
"I'll see you next year, Tokyo," I said, looking away, but this time it is to stop myself from crying during our goodbye.
"Yes, I will see you soon! やくそく (約束)?!" She looked at me with that same beady eyes, while stretching out her pinky in her hands, gesturing me to "lock" my promise.
"Yes, it's a promise.", I had my head down and I could felt my tear dropped onto my thumb. Tokyo kept quiet, but I think she must have noticed.
Our story would never end, for I'll definitely see her again.
(Tokyo went on to become my favorite city)