94 Recall 2
Right after Nathan changed his clothes, he went straight to the kitchen to eat post-workout meal -- which was also his last meal of the day.
There, already sitting at the table were uncle Mabrook and his grandfather Sakhr. Meanwhile, his aunt Mariam was getting something in the kitchen.
His uncle Mabrook had his glasses on and was reading something on his tablet while drinking coffee.
His grandfather had a bored and pissed-off look as usual as he ate his gruel and vegetables with some fruits on the side.
And from time-to-time, he would grumble under his breath about how bad it tastes and would like to eat something delicious like a steak or something.
"Nathan, come eat," said aunt Mariam as she came back from the kitchen with some food.
"Good morning, uncle, grandfather," said Nathan before sitting on the table.
He grabbed some fried fish, soup, rice and some other seafood delicacies.
The food was really delicious when there's a dedicated housewife.
"Good morning, too," said Mabrook before resuming reading.
"Hmph! This is not a man's meal! This is a goat's meal! Always vegetables and fruits! Look at what my grandson is eating! Am I a prisoner here?!"
"Grandfather, Nathan is growing boy. He needs to eat a lot," said Aunt Mariam.
Every meal, his aunt Mariam and grandfather had this skit.
Aunt Mariam would console grandfather Sakhr, telling him that because he has no choice but to eat his meal to maintain a healthy diet.
"Then what about me?!" said Grandfather Sakhr.
"Grandfather, you're --" Aunt Mariam was about to tell him that he wasn't a growing boy but stopped after realizing that it sounded weird to tell a 90-year old that, despite the fact that he does act like a spoiled child most of the times.
But then again, some old people are like that. They regress as they grow older.
Uncle Mabrook put down his tablet and looked at Nathan.
"Will you be attending the mass today?"
As someone who works online, in most cases, their schedule differs from the normal work schedule of those who work on traditional jobs. Moreover, in some jobs, employees are required to always be available for contact.
Nathan has 2 online jobs right now. One was his main, while the other is part-time. However, due to some financial problems that the company of his main job is facing right now, there have been some issues lately.
On a normal day, Nathan would be going to bed before 9:00 am.
Meanwhile, on Saturdays, where it's considered to be a holy day for Iklasians and the ceremony starts at 12:00 noon where all its believers are required to attend and last for about 40 minutes, he would wake up around 11:30 am to go to church with his family to attend the ceremony. And once they return home, he would go back to bed and wake up around 4:00 pm.
However, today's Saturday was special due to the Holy Week, so the ceremony would last close to 2 hours which is why his uncle asked him if he would be able to join.
"Yes, uncle. I will be attending."
In Nathan's mind, of course, he was going to attend.
He had to or he would have a bad reputation here which will also affect his uncle and aunt's reputation, causing them unwanted attention from the people of the community.
"I see. That's good to hear."
Inside the Iklasian Church.
There were 2 columns and 30 rows each.
The men sat on the first 15 rows, while the women sat on the remaining rows.
As for those who were late, they had to resort to standing near their designated genders.
The mass has been going on for 40 minutes now.
Nathan was sleepy and bored to death but didn't show any expression of it.
Well, that's because he had some practice years before… though in a different church.
Back when he and Karen used to be together, she would force him to go to a Trinitian church and attend the mass with her every Sunday.
Because of that, although he wasn't exactly religious, he was able to learn their prayers and a few things.
At the moment, the priest was telling the story of the prophet Zalimun, about how he climbed Mt. Makanalah and wandered inside a cave for days before encountering God and received the holy teachings.
"One night, one of God's angels spoke to the prophet Zalimun in a dream, telling him to climb Mt. Makanalah to meet God…"
"When he woke up in the morning, he told his wife, Hayati, about the dream and immediately decided to climb Mt. Makanalah…"
"Hayati tried to stop the prophet Zalimum, telling him that it was only a dream and nothing more…"
"But the prophet Zalimun's faith towards God was so great, greater than his love for his wife and children…"
"The prophet Zalimun climbed the steps of Mt. Makanalah for half a day before entering a cave where he heard the voice of God…"
"Inside the cave, he searched for God for days…"
"And on the 7th day, he found God…"
"When the prophet Zalimun saw God, he was blinded by the holy light and overwhelmed by His presence that he could only kneel down and close his eyes as God passed onto him the holy teachings…"
The priest began to list the holy teachings and explain to them one-by-one…
The mass finally ended.
Nathan and his family exited the church.
Outside the church, they were greeted with the church's volunteers (mostly women) who were standing behind tables that had many dishes laid out on top of it.
"Nathan, watch your grandfather. Don't let him eat any food that's high in cholesterol," said aunt Mariam.
Another part of South Muwinian culture, thanks to the Iklas religion, was that men and women are not allowed to be too close together in public, even with certain family members.
In the case of Nathan's grandfather, although he was already 95 years old so it was okay for him to be assisted by women in public, he had a reputation for being a womanizer and also had a somewhat problematic attitude so not many wanted to be around him.
Meanwhile, in the case of aunt Mariam, the reason why she left Sakhr with Nathan was because she wanted to mingle with the other housewives and some of her old friends that came visit here at Liit town for the Holy Week celebration.
And as for uncle Mabrook, he was busy talking with some associates of his regarding business matters.
"Yes, auntie," said Nathan.
"I'll see you later."
Aunt Mariam left.
Nathan sighed inwardly as he glanced over at his grandfather who had a cane stick on his hand to support himself.
'Great, now I'm a nanny.'
He noticed that his grandfather's eyes were shining. It was as if he was a wolf that hasn't eaten for days and finally seen some fresh meat.
'Well, I guess eating gruel and vegetable day-in and day-off would make someone produce such reaction,' Nathan thought and looked over at the direction where his grandfather was looking.
He knitted his brows.
There was a table.
On top of it was a roasted pig and some other tasty, yet high cholesterol dishes on the side.
It was the type of dishes that aunt Mariam warned him about not to let his grandfather eat.
However, there was also a very beautiful woman in her late teens behind the table, serving as a server for the guests.
She had her long black hair tied into a ponytail. Her skin was white and flawless, like a baby's. She was 5'7" tall and had a slim figure.
And if Nathan was going to rate her, she was probably a 9 by the very least.
Furthermore, she had this very pure and innocent look that makes you want to protect her.
Basically, she wasn't the type that you'd fuck. She was the type you'd make love to, go on a date with like take her to fancy restaurant, hold hands, and do all those sweet and cheesy things that lovers do.
Nathan wasn't familiar with the woman, nor has he seen her ever since he arrived here at Liit Town 2 months ago.
'My god, grandfather! You'll get us killed! The woman is like less than 5 times your age!'
Nathan placed his hand behind his grandfather's back and pointed at another table that was filled with fruits and vegetables.
"Grandfather, let's go get something to eat there."
"Yeah, yeah. Let's do that. I want the food there."
Of course, Sakhr was headed towards to the table where the beautiful woman was.
"Grandfather, the food there isn't --"
"Shh! You brat! What do you know what I can and can't eat?! I'm not a goat! I am a man! I do what I want! I eat what I want, whenever I want! No one tells me what to do!"
'Oh, God help me…'
Nathan didn't want to cause a scene so he agreed.
His grandfather was already 95 years old anyway so Nathan figured that even if his grandfather did something crazy, they would not really take it at heart… probably.
And as for his health, he'll try to do something, like try to minimize the food that his grandfather ate.
Nathan and Sakhr arrived at the table…
"Hello, do you already have any spoons and plates? If not, let me give you some," said the woman.
Her voice was so soft and sweet that it could make a man relax and put his guard down. Add-in her very beautiful face, one couldn't help but fall for her.
Although Nathan wasn't struck by something like a love at first sight kind of thing or whatever, the only person he dated was Karen and he was devotedly faithful to her.
And in terms of looks, Karen was only slightly above average.
Because of these factors, he couldn't help but be overwhelmed by her beauty and was left tongue-tied.
"I- I -- We- We…"
"What my useless grandson is saying is that we don't have any spoons and plates left," said Sakhr.
The woman smiled sweetly.
Her smile was like something that it could make one's heart melt.
The woman took out two plates and spoons from the side and handed them over to Nathan and Sakhr.
Sakhr hit Nathan's legs with his cane, signaling him to take them.
Nathan took the spoons and plates on her hands.
"Thank you very much for being such an angel," Sakhr said with a very warm, friendly smile and held an expression that looked like he couldn't break a glass.
Nathan's eyes were wide as saucers.
Although he wasn't a stranger in lying and acting, this was just a whole new level.
At the moment, gone was the grandfather he knew, the one that always had a bored and pissed-off look on his face.
It was like he was replaced by a completely different person.
"Oh, it's nothing really. I'm one of the volunteers and I'm just happy that I could be of help," said the woman.
"By the way, are you perhaps the granddaughter of Raisa?"
"Yes, I'm her granddaughter."
"Oh, no wonder I was surprised earlier when I saw you. You looked just like her when she was your age. I almost thought I was seeing a ghost."
The woman smiled. "Yes, many have told me that I looked a lot like my grandmother when she was my age."
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"I didn't catch your name. Sorry, I'm a bit old and I tend to easily forget about things. What was it again?"
"It's Reatha, sir."
"Oh, please don't call me sir. Just call me grandpa Sakhr," said Sakhr as he weakly waved one hand.
"This is my grandson Nathan."
Reatha looked at Nathan and smiled. "Hello, nice to meet you."
"Yeah -- I mean, it's nice to meet you as well."
"Reatha, dear. How's Raisa? It's been a while since I've seen her."
"Oh, my grandmother is at Banya City and I'm staying there with her. We were supposed to come here and attend the mass today but her health hasn't been too good lately so I came with my parents instead."
"Oh, I see. Please do send my regards to her."
"Of course, grandpa Sakhr. I will tell her. I'm sure she'll be happy."
"Hohoho~ My, my… I didn't know that to be called grandpa Sakhr by you would feel this good. I feel like I can eat everything here in this table."
"Oh, please stop teasing me." Reatha blushed and covered her face with her hands.
Hearing what Sakhr said, Nathan also couldn't help but feel embarrassed as well.
No, he was mortified.
However, he was no doubt impressed.
'Perhaps maybe he knows he's old and no one is very tolerant of him?' Nathan thought.
"Reatha, my dear, what do you recommend?" said Sakhr.
"Hmm… I heard that this roasted pig is really good. Uncle Jabir roasted it himself."
"Old man Jabir from the steakhouse? No wonder it looks really delicious!"
"Here, let me cut you a slice."
"Oh, thank you so much!" said Sakhr and looked at Nathan. "The plate."
"Grandfather --" Nathan wanted to stop Sakhr but Reatha already began cutting off the meat and his grandfather was also pointing at the other dishes so he decided not to say anything and just give in.
I hope you guys enjoyed this chapter. Thank you for reading!
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