Cupid leaned on his golden bow, looking at the scene below him. It was noon and a dodgy looking man was waving bunches of roses for sale to indifferent pedestrians and drivers along Jalan Telawi in Bangsar. The night before, even on Friday the 13th, couples had booked in early dinners to save on some dosh. The Rose Brigade had already begun their rounds assaulting every couple in sight and often shaming the dude into buying roses for the lady across the table. SMS business was up. People were still stupidly signing up for dating tips that cost them RM3 a pop. Daily. Some just forgot or didn't bother to unsubscribe after they got bored of the novelty but it sure added up baby.
Yet something troubled the little prick. He hated to admit it but he had to say there was a 'disturbance in the Force". He hated that line but found it apt at this point.
It was noon and yet, YET something was making him uneasy. Sales were not as bullish as expected even with some restaurants lowering their dinner packages. He had told those greedy bastards to try to control prices. Jacking up a sudden 100% just for one day would have it's backlash and he was sure last year's windfall for the F&B sharks would backfire on them in the year of the Ox. Super market sales were up. People were eating further out at smaller, less expensive yet more intimate locations.
But still, people are sheep. His clients made money from the sheep. Prudent spenders with copious amounts of common sense were not their target market. Hell, even those idiots who were REALLY in love were as far down his list as possible. I mean how the hell was he going to milk money from idiots who insisted on having a moonlit picnic on a beach, cooking a candle lit meal at home or worse those cheap shits who just MADE each other presents. I mean, can they even see how fungly that "best boy friend'" ceramic mug even looks like under the bright sunlight? He bet those mugs were relegated to holding tooth paste tubes and combs in the guest bathroom.
Yes, things were not at rosy but the sheep always came through at the end. Those school kids, those last minute "I think I can get lucky tonight" clowns, those single women who just wanna go to a restaurant and then to a club in hopes of finding some reprieve on this most romantic of days.
Still, there was something else...
Sure it was the crap economy that made that fat shit Santa lose a coupla pounds over winter but it was this Something in the air. Something that had crept in over the week, months and maybe even the past year.
He couldn't afford a bad Valentine this year. He had taken huge fees from De Beers, Tiffany, every greeting card company imaginable, even those Puerto Rican wine makers. If business fell short he was sure someone would send that no good mercenary bully, Bigfoot, to stomp on his baby smooth tush.
Holy Venusian Butter!!!!! He got it! He pulled out his Grand Meter of Love and took a reading.
He took another reading. On man, this was not good. notgoodnotgoodnotgoood......
True Love on planet Earth had dropped 30%. Of the balance 70%, half of it were parked at couples 60 years and above (fuck wrong demographic! selling calcium pills, hearing aids and false teeth didn't hold a candle to diamonds, wine and all that shines!).
Cupid slumped against the cold hard concrete behind him atop the Telekom Malaysia Tower. It was HIS fault. His dicking around when he was bored in the good times. Shooting arrows at random on those slow days, never minding that it hit married men and women, dating couples both straight and gay, and even 80 year old fossils who had easy access to Viagra.
This had set the seeds for disillusionment, pessimism and distrust in all that was Brand LOVE.
He looked around wildly. He still had arrows but he couldn't find any targets. In the cafes fake smiles and lustful looks abounded, disinterest and boredom hung about the young families with the howling child at the back seat..... ooooooh fuk..... he had nothing to work on. You always needed some real spark for these new arrows to work! Note to self he thought, "cancel Love arrows order from China factory".
In a distance a wispy cloud seemed to head towards him with purpose. It changed shapes as it got closer. First it was a Imperial Star Destroyer, then a bottle of wine, some E and used condom, before it settled on the face of that idealistic fool Karma.
As Karma passed Cupid on that high tower in the sky, he turned, smiled, made the 'V' sign with his fingers before flipping Cupid the finger before he disappeared into the warm sunny Malaysian sky.