Moby Dick? The whale story? What on earth did that have to do with…It was getting very late. She had been waiting for over an hour already. There was no point pretending they would make it to the movie now, or anywhere. There was no point pretending everything was all right and nothing had happened. Had it been the case, there would have been no story. That is what she had been taught in class today, except she was now out of the classroom and she did not like it. She so wanted to be someone else, anyone else, even the drunken kid who sent a bad script where nothing happened apart from him getting drunk with friends, no brain and nothing to replace it. She would have loved to have been that woman who got on the bus and went blank, or the other one who had just gotten married and … nothing. Well, actually that should not be difficult to become. However, she was real, she was not a character. She had control over her destiny and she knew there was a problem. The street lights were alighting one by one. It was the first time she had seen it. How odd that they would light one by one. Maybe she was a fiction character after all? Well, it did not really matter, her life had taken the form of the cheapest chick lit she’d ever read and she was the sorry hero of it, the one to whom all the oh-so boring and predictable clichés and dramas happened. She was desperate to get out of that book and enter another one. One that, at the very least, was properly written; without grammatical errors and horrendous repetitions.
She was now debating how long more she should wait by the lamp post.
Clouds were gathering above her head – yes, yet another stupid cliché. Clouds had to gather over her head, the weather could not be nice, it had to be oppressive and heavy! – And she knew it would soon start to rain, one of those short but deadly spring showers.
She was wearing summer sandals. Her feet were killing her. The sandals were new, cheap badly tailored. She had bought them because she had read somewhere, well, not somewhere, in the latest self-help book she had bough herself: “Shop yourself through depression”. The pitch was that it was addressed to those people from the better world, the ones who were born with a silver spoon – or was it a golden spoon, she could never remember- in their mouth. It came with a list of all the shops to visit at the end. She bought it, read it, went to each and every shop, bought all she could and now, she felt not only more depressed but also much poorer. There she was standing in the rain with bleeding feet waiting for someone who would never come again. There would have been no point anyway. He had told her everything. He had confessed to everything. He had been caught red-handed and had not tried to deny anything. He had admitted he was guilty. He had not apologized. He should have, but he did not and all he kept saying was that he had finished reading an amazing book and she should read it too.
She had tried to understand, she had tried to play along. She could not understand why he would choose books over her. It drove her insane. Paper! That is all they were! Pages and pages and pages. She could give him warmth and love and cause him some pain even, – he sometimes liked it, but it had to be kept a secret so she tried not to think about it even, for fear some writer would come and steal her thoughts. So she could give him everything and he preferred his goddamn books. He woke up with them and fell asleep on them, instead of on her. She had to share her bed with him and his books and sometimes they would get more room than her, and most times they would form a wall between him and her. So she took action. That she also found in another self-help book of hers. It said if something bothers you, don’t be a victim, take action. So she did. And that is why she knew there was no point waiting for him. She had seen that look on his face when he had come back home and had seen the bonfire she had lit. He had been so silly and had jumped on it trying to save his most precious possession from doom and that had sent him straight to the hospital. He had looked at her from the deepest part of his soul. She had never seen that part of it. But it was what had made her fall in love, finally. Too late. The inner inner inner part of him that he had only shared with his books. For one very brief and tragic moment he had shown her his real deep self and now she was soaked. She had taken her shoes off. And crying, she slowly started moving on, remembering his last words to her on his way to hospital:
“I know not all that may be coming, but be it what it will, I’ll go to it laughing.”*
(July 10th, 2013)
*Quote from Moby Dick