Daniel, Leila, rugby, rugby player, samoa college, Telesa book.

Daniel Speaks.

Somebody asked me the other day, ‘What was Daniel thinking when he first met Leila? Wouldn’t it be awesome to get his perspective on things?” I thought about it and yes, I agree – it would be kind of interesting…so I asked him. 

Daniel, what did you think of Leila when you first saw her? What did you notice about her?

And here’s what he had to say…
Did I think she was breathtakingly beautiful the first moment I laid eyes on her? No. Did I fall madly in love with her on that first day we met? No.

So what did I think then when I first saw Leila Folger? What made me notice her?  Her anger. She reeked of it. It came off her in waves. From the expression on her face – the thick dark eye brows, the furrowed brow, the determined set of her jaw – to her rigid posture and tightly clenched fists. The way she walked across the campus with her entire body tensed as if she expected someone or something to attack her at any moment and she was ready. Boy, was she ready. She was angry, ready to fight and she wanted everyone to know it. That’s what I first noticed about Leila. I saw her before she saw me you know. It’s true. It was on her very first day at SamCo. We were having rugby training on the center field before school started when Maleko nudged me.
“Hey, new girl.”
I looked. Heck, everybody looked. That’s how tight SamCo is. I mean there’s only 400 students in the school so anybody new doesn’t stay unknown for very long. So yeah, I looked over at this girl in the obviously new bright orange and yellow uniform, walking up the driveway with her schoolbag over one shoulder. She was scowling. That’s the only word I can think of to describe her face. Most new kids look a little wary, sometimes afraid, nervous. But Leila? No, she just looked angry. Angry to be here. Angry at everyone around her. She looked over to the rugby field in our direction and she even looked angry to see us!

Maleko whistled, “Sheesh, what’s her problem?”

I shrugged. Suggested, “I don’t know. Maybe she finds your naked chest offensive? I know I do.”

Maleko swung a casual left hook at me which I ducked easily. The others laughed and we all moved back to scrum formation. The angry new girl was forgotten.

Until the next day. When I walked into Ms Sivani’s English class and there she was. Sitting next to Simone. And staring. At me. This time, it was her eyes that caught me. Deep set, ember dark eyes that were scrutinizing me as if she wanted to burn holes in me with her laser beam vision or something. Great, the angry new girl wants to kill me. And we haven’t even met yet. For one crazy minute, out of nowhere, I had this crazy urge to poke my tongue out at her. To try and tease a smile out of her. I didn’t know why, but I wanted to make this girl laugh. Or at least  let go of some of that fury that she seemed to be struggling to hold in check. I wanted to make a face at her and coax an unwilling smile from her, just like how I always do with Mama, my grandmother. Instead, I smiled. Willing her, asking her with everything I had – to smile back.
It didn’t work. She just looked angrier. And looked away. Oh well. It was worth a try.

Ms Sivani was in fine form that day. She liked to challenge us, have us ‘push the envelope’, telling us that we were lazy, complacent students who needed to walk on the wild side of the intellectual stimulation wire. She put the debate topic up on the board and got us all started on a free-for all debate. One of her favorite activities. That’s when I first found out her name. 

That’s when ‘Angry New Girl’ became ‘Leila’. That’s when my life started to change. Irrevocably. 

26 thoughts on “Daniel Speaks.”

  1. Love love love it! It's almost better reading it from Daniel's perspective. Maybe you should always do a companion books Lani 🙂

  2. You think so Lan? I was just 'playing around' with the perspective question today and was surprised when it really flowed. I always thought that writing from a male perspective wouldnt work for me, but I enjoyed it. It was actually very distracting from the REAL task at hand which was supposed to be finishing off Book two…lol I would LOVE to put Bk2 on hold and rewrite book one from Daniel's perspective. Or am I just procrastinating here?!

  3. Don't think we'll let go our anticipation of the second book 😛 Cos we NEVER WILL!!But this was amazing procrastination 😀

  4. Love it Lani. Reminds me of the perspective of "Edward" that was started by Stephenie Meyer but never finished. Every guy would love to compare notes with Daniel, and find out how it feels to be in love with a flame thrower! 🙂

  5. Laura – 'amazing procrastination' is a very bad thing to say! that just gives me further justification to CONTINUE PROCRASTINATING! lolaitah – I liked that Edward perspective piece from Meyer. I wish she would finish writing it.

  6. Oi oi oi…Why u sucking me back in when it took me nearly 4 months to forget about Daniel lmaoooo..Now im hooked yet again.Shole lol.

  7. I don't even know what to say. I just keep wishing I was Leila…hahaha! As if! oh wells, back to reality! Thanks for the insight on chunk hunk Lani! Loved it.

  8. Enjoying Daniel's perspective hmmm I was just wandering whether this is the beginning of the second book..would've made it a great intro always wandered what Daniel thought, every girl will be the Leila:) I know I'll feel like he's talking to me;) Keep up the great work..as long as you're writing pieces like these Book 2 can wait hehe

  9. I tried not to visit your blog today after spending most of my work hours yesterday on it Lani.. I have come to realise that it is IMPOSSIBLE!!! Hearing Daniel's side of the story has made him more human… and not that demi-God, terminator, green-eyed beauty 😉 Its amazing how you have given these characters so much life!!! Two thumbs up for you Lani and if I had more I'd put them up too!!

  10. Here I am a 43 year old woman and finished your awesomeness called a book! I come home from finishing reading while at Subway eating and find this blog :)Since the book was so fresh in my brain I was glad for his perspective. Thanks so much! How long do we have to wait until Book 2 is out? Does your other book, the first book you wrote, have anything to do with the themes of your current books?

  11. wow this actually took me by surprise. I thought daniel wouldve had butterflies or a melting heart at the first sight of leila, but no. it kind of caught me off guard…in a good way though haha. amazing!! I love it!! more please (:

  12. ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT! im eager to read book 2! Daniel perspective was very unexpected love the twist on his thoughts of Leila every other person would think straight away shes beautiful but this is phenomenal. Love it.

  13. *sigh* That was beautifully written. Its always nice to have a guys perspective and to know what their thinking. You should definitely write a book about Daniels perspective. 🙂 What a hit that will be!

  14. Hand over heart loved it. Fitting like the last piece of the jigsaw!! Uber excited for the next book. Great work Lani. Hugs from Sydney!!

  15. I love it so much. Havent read the book, but it has just jumped to the top of my tbr list (Ok right behind those books that I HAVE to read by a certain date. If only I could stop time….)

  16. glad to hear you enjoyed it, thank you. No the first book I wrote is nothing like this one. Pacific Tsunami Galu Afi is a narrative non-fiction record of the 29/09 disaster that hit Samoa, AmSamoa and Tonga. The second Telesa book will be out in March. So not too long to go now.

  17. I am in love with Telesa. I have been suggesting it to friends and will definitely be including this on a must read on my book club list. Keep it going! Can't wait for Book 2!!

  18. oMG , i love this. like seriously besides my uncle who works in the Capitol Hill, you`re the most thoughtful polynesian person i know. seriously i now understand a little more clear on what went on in the book at this time and Daniel`s impression on Leila because it didn`t really explained his emotions in there at this part, but now that i read this it just cracks me up comparing Leila`s first impression of him and his for her. LOL . other than that i can not wait for the second book to come out. keep up the great work !!!

  19. Loving your book Lani. I never knew of companion books until now. It's the greatest! Please keep writing. Thank you. You are my favourite writer x

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