At 35, I consider myself truly blessed to be able to afford my own place. A 2 bedroom condo on the fringe of town.
It did not happen by chance, I always wanted my own place instead of leeching off my parents. When I landed my first job at 25 after graduation, I saved and invested for most of my bonus and pay for my dream home.
Working in a stable company with predictable increment and bonus helped but I think what really sped up my accumulation was that I stayed single. With no dating commitments and spending, my biggest expense is my annual overseas trip.
I don’t mind staying cheap since I’m alone in a foreign country. As long as it’s safe and allows me to explore the sights on foot conveniently, I don’t mind a couch or even a bunk bed.
The reason I’m single is not because I’m gay or anything, I think I’m just too nice.
You know the saying goes that nice guys finish last ?
It think it applies to me perfectly.
I’m that good looking male colleague that all the ladies is comfortable with. The one that half of the ladies thinks I’m gay, not because I’m effeminate in my behaviour but I’m just too much of a gentlemen.
I end up having many female BFFs with many of them confiding in me.
The girls I like end up friendzoning me all the time before we can progress further.
I can’t explain it either. I don’t want to be friendzoned but I guess this is just life.
Anyway, I took my time house hunting when I saved up enough and it took me 2 years before I finally found a place that checked all the boxes I have.
It’s in a central location, pretty much. It’s in Bishan and I can walk to my work place in the town centre. The town is well connected, I’m located on a high floor with an unblocked view.
It’s windy enough that I can just open the windows at night when I sleep without the need for air conditioning. There’s plenty of food options too with shopping mall and supermarket just a short walk away.
Getting the property is also part of my retirement plan in a way. I can always sell it in the future and move to public housing, or I can always rent it out.
Unknown to even my parents and friends, I saved up and made enough in the stock market to pay for the house in full.
After a 3 month renovation period, I was ready to move in.
I did the whole pineapple rolling, ancestor praying, fengshui viewing shit. It’s a new chapter in my life and I want a good start to it.
On the first night of me moving into the bachelor pad however, something happened.
You see, the design of the condo was done in such a way that I only have 1 immediate neighbour. A neighbour that I have never met.
I know the unit opposite me is occupied because I have seen the lights on in the evening from the outside but we have never interacted.
It was a rainy evening and I could see streaks of lightning in the horizon. The cool wind came into the house and as I felt the drop in temperature, I was suddenly reminded of my recent trip to Korea in Autumn.
I heat up the pan and got ready to sear myself a good steak for dinner.
After I was done with that slab of meat, I let it rest while I whipped up a salad.
I opened a bottle of wine to let it breathe while I plated my dinner like a chef.
Transferring my dinner to the dining table in front of the balcony, i set the table and put on my spotify playlist.
I took a seat and looked at the view outside my place.
At that moment, I looked around the house, fingered the wine glass and I bask in the embrace of my new place.
A good glass of wine, a juicy medium rare steak, music and a priceless view of the skyline, what more can a man ask for ?
I was smiling to myself as I picked up the fork and knife when I saw some movements at the balcony.
A pair of legs.
Yes I saw the pair of legs swing over to my balcony before she appeared, dropping like a sure footed cat in front of me.
That gorgeous smooth pair of long legs deserved a 10/10 score.
When our eyes met, I was left frozen in the chair.
Wearing only a white singlet with no bra, I could see the pokies from underneath that thin fabric. On her bottom, she was wearing a pair of light grey cotton shorts that had this thin white line running along the hem of it, drawing attention to her delicious looking thighs.
I swallowed a gulp of saliva as she walked into my house like a boss and walked to my kitchen. It’s like I’m invisible.
The girl pulled a chopstick from my drying rack and slid it horizontally into her hair. With a series of turns and twirls, she got her shoulder length hair up into a bun.
“ hey, hey ! “ I called out to her but she ignored me, walking to the door.
My god, looking at her tight bottom and shapely figure from behind, I found myself licking my dry lips and swallowing another gulp of saliva.
Walking to the door, she opened it and spoke loudly outside.
I got up and looked outside my place and realised there’s 2 men outside my neighbour’s door.
They kept hitting the doorbell and when they saw the woman standing by my opened door, they stopped the ringing.
“yes ? are you looking for my neighbour ? do you all need help? “ She said
What is she saying ?
The 2 men looked at her before exchanging a look. Before I could react, the woman turned to me and called out.
“ Dear, you there ? “ She said while looking directly at me.
What the fuck ?
What ‘ dear ? ‘
Stepping aside and opening the door wider, the woman presented me with my fork and knife in my hand and looking at the 2 men at the end of the corridor.
“what ? “ I said, unable to react to the situation.
The 2 men ignored us and went towards the staircase instead of waiting for the lift.
The woman then shut my door.
Turning around, she started walking towards the balcony again, ignoring me totally.
“hey ! “ I raised my voice at her but she ignored me.
I grabbed her arm and I was about to demand for an explanation when I felt her reverse the grab, twist my hand in the opposite direction and by the time I felt pain, I was lying on the ground gasping for air.
I blinked a couple of times as I tilt my head backwards to get an upside down view of the woman climbing over the balcony back to her unit.
I scrambled off the floor and shook my head to clear my blurred vision.
What the fuck ?
Now I’m mad.
Who the fuck does she think she is ?
I got up and was about to charge right up to my neighbour’s door when I saw my steak and wine on the table.
I sat back down to eat but my appetite is ruined.
The meat don’t taste as good.
The wine felt bitter and the more I thought about it, the angrier I got.
She’s hot I admit and if we had met along the hallway or in the lift, I would definitely try to get to know her. However, with the rising anger inside me, all I could think of now is to strangle her.
And because I am a nice guy, instead of going over straight away, I sat at the table fuming for a good 20 minutes before I decided to go knock on her door.
I even know what I want to say.
I walked barefoot over to my neighbour’s unit and was about to hit the doorbell with the most pissed off face I could muster when I realised the door is ajar. It’s open.
I pushed open the door but before I could speak, I felt a chill run thought my spine.
My jaws dropped when I saw 1 of the 2 men from earlier on the floor facing down with a fucking knife buried behind him. There’s a pool of blood underneath the body and when I locked eyes with my neighbour again, she was wrapped around the other man, choking the life out of him.
I covered my mouth and backed away, pulling the door shut as I ran back to my unit.
My door is closed and I jabbed nervously at the number lock.
The error tone sounded, indicating that I keyed in the wrong password.
“fuck! “ I cursed and I tried again before getting the right combination.
I got in and shut the door behind me. I bolted the top and bottom and I could feel my heart slamming against my ribcage.
Phone. My Phone.
It’s charging in my room.
I ran into my room and pulled out the cable.
Unlocking it with my thumbprint, I turned around and was about to hit the dial button after keying in triple nine when I came face to face with my neighbour.
I gasped and my eyes widened in horror as I saw her standing right at the entrance to my bedroom. She was looking at the phone in my hand while I was looking at the fucking gun in hers.
I pressed my eyes shut and covered it with my left hand.
“ I did not see anything. I did not see anything, I swear. I didn’t even see you ! “ I pleaded, throwing everything I could think off out.
When I felt the cold steel of the gun on my chest, I knew I was fucked.
I began to think how much coverage I had in terms of insurance and whether will they be enough for my parents.
I backed up as the cold steel pushed me against the wall.
Suddenly I felt her hands take my phone away from me and I knew I’m a goner. She’s going to see that I’m about to call the cops on her.
“ Open your eyes. “ She said.
“ No.. no. No. It’s ok, I really never see anything, I’m bad with faces, and I have very bad memory. “ I blurted out while covering my eyes with both hands now.
“Open your eyes James.” She asked again
I was about to reject her when it suddenly strike me that she knew my name.
How did she know my name ?
Opening my eyes, I felt my heart stop beating because she looks so good fucking up close. That intensity of her gaze melted my heart immediately.
She lowered her gun and the next thing I knew, I felt the knife I was using to cut my steak earlier on my neck.
“I know you James, I know everything about you. I know where you stay, I know where your parents stay, I know where you work, I know everything, whereas you know nothing about me.” She threatened
“I’m good with a knife, I don’t think you want to find out exactly how good I am with one.”
She offered me two choices.
“I can make you disappear, no one will ever know. I have nothing to lose.” she said with a cold stare that sent a chill into my bones
I swallowed a gulp of saliva and I waited for the other option.
She lowered the knife and instead gave me a warm smile.
Extending her hand, she added in a chirpy manner;
“Hi James, I’m your neighbour Chloe! Nice to meet you.”
I was too shock to shake her hand. I can’t even fucking move.
Then Chole raised her left hand with the gun and pointed it at my bed.
The moment she fired 2 silenced rounds into my $200 memory foam pillow, I immediate took her free hand and shook it.
“ Hi my name is James. Nice to meet you too ! “ I blurted the sentence out so fast that I bit my tongue while talking.
Chole gave me a radiant smile before replying.
“Alrighty neighbour! Have a great evening! The steak smells really good earlier, enjoy your dinner “ Chloe said chirpily before turning around and walking right out my room.
After a minute or so, I stepped out of my bedroom and looked around cautiously to make sure Chloe is gone.
The balcony looked clear. I walked closer and quickly shut the sliding door and latched it.
Feeling upset and frustrated, I pointed my middle finger at the balcony.
Then I cursed out loudly in a smattering of dialect and English.
“ Fuck you la, Chee bye. Fucking crazy bitch. Siao Char Bor. Sheesh. “ I jabbed my finger several times at the balcony before thrusting my bottom at sliding door, mimicking a thrusting and fucking motion as I cursed again.
I don’t remember the last time I was this angry that I cursed like this.
Shaking my head, I cursed again at the balcony, commenting that Chloe must be a fucking virgin who suffers from perpetual menstrual cramps.
“ Crazy bitch, I curse you get massive period cramps, bleed until you stain your panty ! fucking siao char bor! “
The curses quelled my anger a little and I turned around to reach for my wine glass and I fell to my knees immediately. I fell because in that instance, my leg left weak.
As weak as I felt after completing a full marathon.
Chloe was still in my house.
She was standing by my main door with her arms folded and her head cocked to a side looking at me as I find myself blurting out the same thing I said to her earlier.
“ Hi my name is James, nice to meet you neighbour !!! “