03 June 2014

Robin recruits Cesc to reunite at Old Trafford

     The warm, soft Catalan sun was shining down on Cesc's shoulders as he strolled along the water's edge, waves lapping gently at his toes, and all felt right with the world. Despite a troubling season that had seen Barça, finish without silverware for the first time in what felt like ages, Cesc felt confident that the upcoming World Cup would give he and his teammates time to bond and unite around—a loud buzz interrupted the reverie. Fumbling with his mojito, Cesc managed to get out his mobile in time to see the check the caller i.d.
     "Clothes for Charity? How did they get my number?" Cesc muttered to himself. "Ah well, it sounds like a decent cause. Hello?"
     Wincing at the caller's shout, Cesc pulled the phone from his ear and gawked. That doesn't sound like a charity calling me, he thought. He brought the phone back to his ear and asked, "who is this?"
     "Cesc, c'mon. Don't play like you don't remember the sound of your ol' pal's voice."
     "I—er, actually, um—who is this?"
     "Cessssssc. Cescy. You can do better. Not better than that, though. 'Cescy?' Eh? Eh? Pretty clever, innit? It's like 'sexy' but also like Cesc so it sounds like I'm saying you're sexy. No homo. Anyway, listen, I—"
     "I'm sorry to interrupt, but who am I talking to?"
     "wanted to—Cesc. Seriously? After all we played together, you don't recognize me?"
     "So this is not a charity that is calling me?
     "No, that was just a scam. I tried calling you from my own phone but I kept getting a message about being blocked. Weird. It's me. Robin. Van the Man. R to the V to the double-o P!"
     "Double-o P? I'm not sure that's really how one says—"
     "Sure, sure. Listen. Shut up for a sec. So I was thinking, we each had kind of sub-par seasons, right? What with you all finishing sixth like us—"
     "Second, actually."
     "What? Right. Anyway, I was thinking, with neither us playing Champions League next season, I was thinking, see, that—"
     "We're in the Champions League, Rob. First pot. Like always."
     "Oh. Of course. Anyway, like I was saying, wouldn't it be ace if we were to get back together? It would be like old times, right? You passing it to me, me scoring? Vanchester would be rockin'!"
     Ace? Cesc wondered to himself. Did he say 'ace'? How old is this man? "I don't know, Robin. I don't think people would like it much if I came back to England like that."
     "What are you talking about? I did it, no problem. Everyone loves me here."
     "No, I mean over at Arsenal. I'm not sure I'd want to—"
     "Will you stop worrying? Sure, they were butt-hurt at first, but they got over it once they saw my greatness on full display. I, like, won us the Prem all by myself."
     "Last year."
     "Hm? Oh, well, yeah, things under this guy Moyes are a little different. I can't quite hear the little boy within, what with other players occupying spaces I want to play in, but I wonder if he wants me to leave. you know, go somewhere where I can just get trophies without having to, you know, work for them?"
     "Uh, I'm not sure that's really the attitude that will win you many—"
     "Trophies? I know, that's why I was thinking of leaving."
     "I was going to say 'friends'. Weren't you just inviting me to come to play with you at Man U?"
     "I meant more like for me but whatever. It doesn't have to be at Man U. Rooney's always asking me to pass to him, which gets old fast, let me tell you. You and me, we could team up anywhere. Contracts don't mean a thing. We could probably get Pep to sign us both over there, and we could tear that Bundesliga up."
     "Robin, I never said anything about leaving. I'm happy here. I'm home. If I'm going anywhere, it'll have to be for the right reasons, to the right place. No disrespect to Bayern or Pep, but I'm not interested. As far as I'm concerned, I'm staying here."
     The other end of the line was silent. For a moment, Cesc thought that Robin had hung up. Then, he heard a long, drawn-out sigh.
     "Fine. Do you have Alex's number? He must have needed to change providers or something because the number I have doesn't seem to work. It just rings and rings."
     "I'll, um, tell him you called."
     "No, wait, just give me his number. All I need is five minutes to talk to him to convince—"
     Click. Cesc looked at his phone, chuckled, and shook his head. Sliding the phone back into his pocket, he turned his gaze out over the ocean. The waves rolling up on the beach were just loud enough to obscure the faint sound coming from his pocket. "Wanker," Cesc said, to no one in particular, and walked on. "I wonder what Arsène is doing..." He pulled his phone back out to scroll through his contacts...
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