Saturday, August 10, 2013

Painful Love

He sighed, as he walked across the room and sat cross legged on his bed. He looked around his bedroom, settling his gaze on the giant smiling face on the wall. A tear rolled down his cheek. He gently rubbed it away as his mind wandered to about 40 years earlier.


"Do you love me?", she asked, her head resting on his lap.

"Of course I do! What kind of question is that!", he exclaimed, smiling.

"How much?", a question she loved asking.

He thought for a moment, "if you took the size of all the planets, all the stars and combined them all, it still would not compare to the love I have for you", he said, in his usual corny manner.

She smiled. She always did. It didn't matter how silly the line was, she always smiled. She just loved that he tried, always, to say something loving and sweet.


He got off the bed and walked over to the bathroom and washed up. He looked in the mirror. He was quite possibly among the fittest 60 year-olds in the world. Plus with his exploding wallet, he could've easily found a companion to spend his life with. But, he chose not to.

"No way, I could look at anyone the way I looked at her", he always reasoned. Slowly he had a warm bath. He thought of shaving the stubble on his face...


"Ouch, you're poking me", she joked with a hint of laughter in her voice.

"You want me to shave it off?", he asked, knowing the answer.

"Chi poda! You know i love the feeling of your stubble against my face, don't you dare shave it off!". With that she leaned in and kissed him.


Chucking the razor aside, he muttered to himself, "not tonight". He walked down the stairs to find a hot meal waiting for him.

"Aah lasagna", he muttered, "my favourite". Tonight was a special night. He wanted to have his favourite meal tonight.

He sat at the table and dug in. All around him on the walls of the massive dining room were pictures of him, with various important people, receiving some kind of award or the other. He hated every inch of it. But it was his late mother's idea. And since he hadn't obliged much in the grand kids department, he felt the need to go with her on this one.

He looked up at a large picture of his parents. While they were around, at least he had company at home. Since they'd left for their heavenly abode, he felt more alone than ever.


"Do you think your parents will like me?", she said in a worried voice.
He laughed aloud. "My parents are gonna love you sweetie, you've got nothing to worry about!"

"What if they don't?" she asked, for the millionth time.

He smiled and replied, "it doesn't matter to me. As long as I have you, I will always be happy".

Content, she leaned her head on his shoulder, smiling.


The maid walked in, snapping him back to reality.

"Your juice sir?", she enquired.
Apple juice, his favourite. Incredibly, he had refused to drink a drop of alcohol all his life.


"You're going there?! That place is full on drunkards!! They'll spoil you!! You'll change!! Don't go!!", she cried.

He hugged her and said, "I have to go finish up my studies darling. Two years will feel like twenty without you by my side! But what has to be done, has to be done! Think about it, I'll come back with an awesome job, and walk straight up to your parents asking for your hand!"

"You'll change!", she whimpered, tears now running down her cheeks as she hugged him tighter, burying her head in his chest.

Slowly he raised her head with his fingers on her chin, and kissed her gently. "If it'll make you feel better I promise I won't touch the drink, alright?"

She smiled through the tears. It occurred to him how lucky he was.


Dinner was done. He slowly walked past the window overlooking his array of sports cars. Different shapes, different sizes. Each bought with the intention of finding himself some happiness. It never worked.

He sighed and drew the curtains. Slowly he walked up the stairs. At the top was a large photograph. An old one. One they'd clicked together as teenagers. He paused.


"Someone's gonna come, hurry up!", she exclaimed impatiently.

"I know, I'm trying", he retorted, with half a smile. "There", he said, "it's ready".

He put his arm around her and pulled her close as the camera went off. As they pulled out to see the picture, in walked her cousin.

"What are you two doing?", she exclaimed.

He looked towards his blushing girl, turned to her cousin and uttered the most believable excuse he could think of.
"Yeah right", her cousin exclaimed and left them alone.


He entered his room slowly. On the wall was stuck a calender. Today would've marked 42 years together. "Seven times six", he thought, "our favourite numbers." It had been wonderful, until it all fell apart.


"Go away", she screamed.

"Please don't do this baby", he pleaded.

"How many times do I tell you, I don't love you anymore."

"I know you do sweetie, I know it! Don't chase me away like this."

"Just get the fuck away from me, leave me alone!".


The tears that had been frequently appearing all night, now streamed down his cheeks. He sobbed, uncontrollably. It was now about 37 and a half years to the day. Since she'd walked out on him. She was married, had two gorgeous children, with a doting husband. She was happy.

He had everything. Fast cars. A near unlimited bank account. The world at his feet. Yet, he felt empty. Alone. It didn't matter how successful he became, it just got worse and worse.

For a while, he convinced himself she'd be back. When she got married, he convinced himself it wouldn't last. After a while he convinced himself, that his parents would want him around.

Every last straw, had been clutched. His life had drained him. He neither had the motivation nor the will anymore.

He walked over to the dresser and opened the drawer. There was a piece of paper. He had no heir. No family. He knew who it all was to be left to. He always knew. Quietly he signed it, put it in an envelope and called over his maid.

"Mail this please", he said, "and take the rest of the day off with your kids."

The maid smiled. Such a sweet man he was. Always considerate. Always kind. He never seemed to want anything. In fact she had quite taken aback when he'd requested a specific menu for the day.

Thanking him, she headed to the post office, happy at the idea of picking up her little kids from school.

"The time has come", he thought to himself. Slowly, he went back to the dresser again. He pulled out a small box.

He carried it with him to the bed. He looked at the smiling face on the wall and sighed, "maybe in heaven. I love you."

Out of the box he pulled out a pistol. It shone in the light from the window. "Goodbye", he said to no one in particular. Within a couple of seconds, it was over.

As he lay in a pool of his own blood, a look of relief passed over his face. Even though he had had everything, without her, he had, in fact, nothing. His pain was over. Every day for the last 45 to 50 years he thought about her. Every fucking minute of the day.

He could finally sleep in peace, without her, or the daughter they always dreamt of having, ever haunting him again.

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