The past few weeks were miraculous or rather, heavenly. There was affection, trust, comfort, love even. We talked about a possible future together. It was about ‘us’ not him and I as different individuals but, US. We had become one before we realized it. Normally, this would prompt me to run away, flee from such attachment but I stayed. I stayed till the end. I was willing to take a risk, jump in with two feet, and take a leap of faith. Unfortunately, I seemed to be the only one with such intentions.
I had plans for the night with another one of my suitors. ‘P’ they called it. It was time. I knew where I should have been regardless, I bunked it. Refused to meet my appointment because I knew he was coming over. I knew I was going to miss another chance to glare at him. Miss another meaningless conversation with him. I knew I was going to have to wait another 24 hours before seeing him again if I left the confinement of my room and I couldn’t risk it. Who was he? Him? The real question should be ‘who did I think he was?’. Considering what we had been through for the past few months, I thought he was my other half. I believed he was the other individual needed to make ‘us’ a reality. How wrong I was at the time.
I succeeded in rearranging this appointment of mine to a later date which by the way, I intended on missing too. I dragged myself off the bed, tidied up my living space. The bed needed to be set for activities which I couldn’t tell the world about. My bathroom scrubbed from top to bottom just incase we needed a shower. My room; spotless with a hint of jasmine in the air. I changed into my newest pair of underwear and the nicest pair of nighties which I purchased earlier on. The scene was set and all I awaited was my surprise.
He came eventually. Two hours late but I wasn’t going to argue. I wasn’t going to question him. I couldn’t do anything to alter his joyful mood because I liked him. I liked him a lot more that I thought I could ever like any other man. There was company so, all I needed to do was act casual while patiently waiting for the uninvited guests to take their leave. Today was going to be our day. It was going to be ‘us’ finally. Did they know this? Were they just here to give support? My baby always surprising me in amazing ways. How thoughtful of him to bring along witnesses. I was beginning to daydream when I heard the door to my room close. They had all gone. Did they say goodbye? I had no idea. After I decided that they weren’t coming back, I tucked myself in and started reaching for the lights. Halfway through this attempted act, there was a knock on the door and I knew exactly who it was. I sat up, adjusted my shirt, bra, shorts, etc. ‘Come in’ I said in the sultriest voice that I could pull off.
He walked in. Headed straight to the bed and laid right next to me. This was weird, why skip the usual routine? I began to suspect something queer was about to occur. With my heart racing and fear in my eyes, I imagined all the possible outcomes of this conversation. Was this going to end bad for me? For us? There is no us so, what am I on about? Was this just an act? A way of building up the tension? An act..once again? I was confused already. I didn’t know what to think or what to imagine any more so, I went blank. “Overthinking will be the death of you baby girl”, my Father always used to tell me when he was around.
He lay unmoved beside me for what seemed like eternity. I too stayed immobile as my myosin filled muscles were too afraid to contract and hence, bring about any form of movement. Or was this immobility of mine due to the lack of production of acetylcholine in my presynaptic membrane? Was there a problem with my receptor cells? Did it have to do with the concentration of calcium ions in my T-tubules? Why on earth have I decided to think about biology at this crucial point? My room was as quiet as my last visit to the cemetery. My head however was more than rowdy. It was full of nothing but negativity. Tears, anger, me shouting at the top of my voice but most of all, doubt beyond any quantifiable amount. Then suddenly, there was movement and a break in the silence.
‘We need to talk’
Talk about what? About you? About me? About us? Talk about not talking again? I couldn’t give a reply to that statement so, I nodded.
‘I am aware of your feelings for me and trust me, I’m flattered. However, I fail to consider you the right girl for me bringing forth your past actions. The world seems to have a sound opinion about your promiscuous life and I’m not sure if I believe that you have changed. I come from a prestigious family and maintaining a good public image is what we strive for so, as you can see, such scandal is not needed. I say this with affection in my heart for you however, not as much as you have for me. The time has come for you to move on and find someone who can reciprocate this love that you feel’
‘Are you okay?’ He asked knowing that I wasn’t.
I had to force myself to say with the fakest smile on my face. Over the years, I had learned how to make my fake smiles convincing and I felt like I had perfected this skill because he kept on speaking.
‘Are we friends?’
‘Why not?’ was again, all I could manage.
He was still in the room at this point. Did he not know that he was overstaying his welcome? I had invited the love of my life into my room and now before me stood my biggest heartache.
“Honestly, I’m okay” I said partly smiling and partly laughing.
“I once got told that every beautiful thing must come to an end and that it is impossible to force other people to love me. I believe now that what we had was beautiful and I appreciate the time we spent together.”
I did not mean any word of that last statement but, it got him to lend me a pitiful smile and a kiss on my cheek. A few seconds later, the door slammed shut behind me. It was at this point that all the thoughts that I feared overwhelmed me.
Friends? I don’t have this sort of emotional connection with my friends. I was being led on the whole time. Lied to by the one person that I trusted the most! I thought he was different, I thought he fancied me but, it was all an act. I’ve had my heart broken in the past but this time, it’s been torn, trampled upon, homogenized and vaporized. There’s no going back. I’ve been broken beyond repair. My body, drained of blood. My soul, burdened with an unimaginable intensity of pain. I wanted to shout, scream, and unleash my fragile, demoralized soul but, I couldn’t. I wanted to speak to someone. That idea was soon discarded as I had numerously supported this lover of mine infront of the only one I could speak to. He’d never hear the last of this. I couldn’t face the shame.
So, here I am. Here I am standing in a home drenched in the most flammable kind of hydrocarbon. Encircled by a thin line of petrol. There’s a match box in my left hand, its brand is unknown to me. Tears fill my eyes as I ignite a single matchstick. A few moments away from death, a few centimeters away from suffocation. The tiny flame burns as I stay rummaging through my trail of thoughts. I’m frantically searching for a reason to put the flame out. I need a reason to abandon my suicide mission, a reason to stay strong and return to a life of misery. I’m looking for a reason to restore my sanity, something to revive my dead spirit. I’m seeking for courage from within. In desperate need for a feasible excuse to live past today but, the only phrase that came to my mind was ‘Ugly people don’t deserve love’. Beautiful people have it better while ugly people don’t deserve love. Without love, no man can survive. On that note, I let go of my matchstick and allowed gravity to do the rest. A few seconds away from the final explosion, my phone rang. ‘Who do you think you are…running round leaving scars…’ I knew exactly who it was but, it was a second too late. On this day, the world consisted of one less heartbroken female reject .I had lived through so many disconsolate days. The 8th of May was my last.