someone else’s momentPosted: August 25, 2010
“I’ll see you soon. But if not, I’ll see you later.”
There he was. Standing there, slightly hunched over, looking into the eyes of someone else’s unrequited love. “You’re breaking my little heart, you know that?” Two feet away from a face pined over by another who confessed a desire that had been festering for quite some time. “I’m going to marry that girl someday,” he was told over two pints and a dusty tablecloth. There wasn’t much he remembered from that night, and this is what had stuck. Now he’s there, grasping her hands, assuring her that their goodbye was only temporary. “I don’t want you to go,” she tells him, as someone else is outside waiting behind the wheel of a worn-out automobile. The sound of it reverberates through to the entryway where this lonesome pair stands.
After this night, there wouldn’t be much he could do to go back to the way things were. He was leaving, she was leaving, and there they were, parting ways from the youth which they spent more or less together, as nothing more than friends. There they were, both afraid of what was to come, both naive enough to think that the future could be held off, even for a few more minutes. Standing two feet from each other, close enough that he could hear her sobs being masked by the strength of her own will. “If not now, then when?” he says, his voice struggling to escape his throat. The engine noise had stopped with a click audible only from within that worn-out automobile’s cabin, and there he was, suddenly holding her in his arms with a fervor shared between lovers.
“I don’t want you to go,” she says again, to his chest. “But if you stay any longer, it’ll make it harder for me to let you go.” He’s perplexed. She should be saying this to someone else, someone who needs this catharsis. He has gotten calloused, and though they were extremely close, he wasn’t the one this message was meant for. This was something she was supposed to tell to someone else, someone with whom their hearts and intentions would connect. Instead, this was adding wrinkles to a recently ironed shirt. Between him and her were no complications, if any, they were in matters of the ephemeral. What to eat, what to drink. Not what to do when they say goodbye.
Someone else was meant to be there, in the entryway, holding that girl trembling with the weight of things that might have been, faces inches apart from each other. Instead, someone else was busy outside, staring at the stars while he felt the gentle texture of her skin, almost porcelain in the incandescent light. The warmth radiated to his fingertips, and he could feel her breathing on his neck. They didn’t need closure, they didn’t need justification. He hadn’t spent years pining over her, and she hadn’t spent years deluding herself into thinking they were merely friends. He was merely a constant in her life, and she was meant for someone else. And yet there they were, unable to break apart.
It was only moments after this realization that they kissed. She stood on the tips of her toes to make her face meet his. For a few brief seconds, they were together. It had taken him this long for his hand to caress her cheek, grazing strands of hair and pushing them aside until they tuck neatly behind her ear. It had taken him mere moments to continue this descent into this frenzy of lips and tongues. He could tell how her body reacted. There he was, living through hour-long minutes, savoring the scent of flowers that emanated from her clothes, the taste of her warm breath. An experience so vivid it must have been a deception.
There was no explanation for this, none at all. He wracked his brain as her arms grew tighter. The alcohol consumed as a farewell. Heretofore unmentioned attraction, simmering under the surface finally coming to a boil. The parting of ways, moments before the sun’s rise. There he was, stealing someone else’s moment, and yet he couldn’t pull away.