She sat staring away, out of the window. I thought of it as a trait common to most thoughtful people. In the beginning, it was something I liked about her even if it made me uneasy at times as it intensified my own fears of being a dull guy incapable of drawing his partner’s attention to himself.
The disquiet grew inside me with each passing moment and it had to be nullified somehow.
I gave her a nudge. She didn’t care.
We had known each other for almost six months. On day one she had confessed, “I’m a boring person.”
“Even I am. Some people are like that. ” Well, I had heard that mirroring is one of the best conversational tools that will boost likeability.
The wind blew a strand of her hair onto my face which had always had an elusive effect upon me. She knew that I was a romantic, a fact that meddled with my vanity quite often.
Something as trivial as a handheld conversation was enough for an entire timeline of
growing old in love to emerge out of nowhere. I don’t know how that works but it frightens me to realize how easily corruptible I am. I nudged her again.
And out of nowhere, it happens. She just pulls me by my shirt and bites my lower lip. A romantic never expect a bite. It is not on his
menu. I was clueless but with a mad surge of desire which vanished as soon as she got back to staring away out of the same old window like it never happened. Did it only mean, ‘quit bothering’?
The ease with which she slipped back into her reverie strengthened my belief. Unlike her, I couldn’t get back to where I was. Aided by her lack of attention, I was doing a good job chipping away at the roots of our relationship. Maybe she has this innate ability to sense the parade of disconcerting thoughts in my head which were potent enough to destroy our relationship by just being there. All Erased. Reset to zero.
After few minutes she says, “Tell me”. The “Tell me” that urges to bring forth a confession rather than sharing. But yes, It still served
its purpose. A shred of attention.
I said “Thank you. Shall we now go on and be a little romantic?”.
It wasn’t a witty line but an honest plea.
She held my hand and said, “I’m sorry.”
Followed a little laughter of hers which put me at ease somehow.
She continued, “My head is not in the right place now.”
“Why? It seems to be there by the look of it.” I just blurted it out to prolong her laughter, but it was not well received. She stared back
at me. An inopportune joke could be as puzzling as an unexpected pregnancy.
“I am sorry. What is it? Is it about him?” I asked with a half smile of understanding which masked my crooked agenda. More than the answer it was the fact that I brought him into the equation which mattered. It was a foolproof method to unnerve her.
He made her vulnerable, I never could. I was consumed with guilt whenever I exploited her feelings towards him to catch her guards down. I might have flicked the wrong switch. But isn’t everything fair in love?
“Maybe“. Her disappointment was evident. She murmured as if she was not interested in taking the conversation further. The magic that a ‘maybe’ works on me. Laden with uncertainty it simply ignites the restless curiosity that is stacked right on top of all my emotions, easily accessible.
“Okay, What is it, I wanna know?” I snarled with a sudden jerk which was usually enough for her to go on a throe of madness. But she was surprisingly calm.
“Why are you angry? It is just a thought. You can’t dictate what I should think and what I should not. Leave it to me.”
She made her point, a rational one with an air of superiority like she had already won the argument.
“See. If you are going to take this up on the grounds of personal freedom then all right. Think what you like. I honestly do not want to spend time with my girlfriend who is fantasizing about her ex.”
I exploded. It was more of a controlled explosion.
“How would I be your girlfriend if I have someone else in my mind? Can’t you take a hint? This is not working out.”
She lashed out at me. The insecurities that I harbored awhile ago materialized in her voice. We had finally reached an agreement, a tad displaced in time, so it felt. There was nothing left to say. The space between us was embedded with silent apologies, as I would like to think.
So often in life, we are guilty of accusing our loved ones with the most heinous of all crimes. They are not of a violent nature, no severed limbs or blood splattered across the walls. The pain inflicted is upon our feelings and the factors involved are metaphysical. One can only think of it as a catastrophe of loving too much. That is the only consolation there is.