THE SECRET OF SILENCE

“I’m not Luffy. I know when someone is in love with me. I guess, I’m just afraid to get hurt all over again.”

It was but a joke but I never thought that it would hit right home. I didn’t even intend to answer but I guess years of waiting for a moment to finally open up about how I feel about you made me want to grab the opportunity. I was thinking that right now, you may be too drunk to even remember anything by tomorrow.

You were looking at me, straight to my eyes and soul and I was hoping that you would see it there, all the words I never got the courage to say. Maybe if you can see them, I didn’t have to talk, I didn’t have to say the words and you’ll just know.

Better out than in, I told myself. It’s just been a little too long, waiting, loving you in silence, waiting for that one moment where I can tell you everything without worrying about looking back. I’ve almost lost you then and yes, I know that I might lose you for good this time by talking but I might also never get the courage to tell you this ever again.

“Then go. Just try. You have nothing to be afraid of anyway. Make the first move. I’ll wait for you outside. We’ll never know, she might be the one for you.” You said, leaving me there just watching you walk out with that smile on your face. You even winked at me then gave the pretty cashier a look.

I messed up, I guess. Telling you all these time that I was interested with someone else was a mistake. Just like tonight, flirting with all the girls that were just an arm’s length away; I was hoping you’d be jealous instead of you pushing me to every single girl that was interested.

I look at all the other girls and wonder why I can’t just fall in love with them instead. I’ve tried. For so many times, I’ve tried telling myself that you can really learn to love someone if you try hard enough, if you work for it as much as you can. I tried and failed. And like always, I am back to loving you in silence, watching you from the shadows, never speaking, never uttering a word.

I gave the pretty cashier a smile, a dismissal, but a smile nonetheless and followed you out. You were talking to someone on the phone and I would have gone directly at your side if I didn’t hear my name.

“He’s inside, flirting with someone else.” You said with a laugh.

I stood there, in the corner, wondering how easy it is for you to just laugh about me being with someone else.

“I know. I moved on. I needed tonight to finally get over it. He seems happy, playing around with every girl he can get his hands with. And I’m happy, knowing that I can look at him now without longing for him to fall in love with me, to notice me. Now, I can forget about having to love him in silence. People change and I guess I did better than most.”

I don’t know what was harder to take in; the thought that you were indeed in love with me or the thought that you are moving on.

I knew. I just doubted it back then because I wasn’t sure. I was too much of a coward to ask.

I walked back to our table and drank the remaining beer that I have. So much for telling you how I feel now. It was too late.

The cashier came to me asking if there was something else that we wanted. I ordered another bottle of beer and waited for you to come back. She came back with the order before you did.

“You two look good together.” She said.

“How about the two of us?” I answered, trying my best to smile.

“Sorry but I don’t do second best. And by the way you look at each other I know that second best would never be good enough. Nobody remembers who came second.” She said before going back to the register. She was right.

“You should ask her out.” You said. I didn’t even realize that you were back. I was just so lost in my own thoughts that I didn’t notice you already sitting in front of me.

You were eyeing the beer in front of me but didn’t say anything about it as I took another gulp.

“She doesn’t do second best.” I said, making you frown. When I didn’t say anything further, you just gave out a sigh.

“Who would?” You said after a while.

“Do you think it is possible for you to fall in love with me?” Mastering all the courage I still have, I asked you that. I almost cracked right there and then when you just love.

“You really didn’t know?”

“Know what?”

“I was in love with you for the longest time. It was hell but I thought that if I stayed long enough, you’d notice me; you’d fall in love with me. You flirting with me like the way you flirt with all the other girls you meet would have been good enough as well but that never happened.”

Again, silence. It’s starting to feel like home.

“That’s why I went away. I guess I couldn’t wait for a miracle anymore. Remember that night when I said goodbye? I was so hoping that you would ask me not to go, but you never did. That made me realize that maybe, just maybe, I was looking at us differently. So I didn’t stop walking and started to get over it right there and then. You were such an asshole you know. You didn’t even know anything about it.”

“Why did you ask me to come meet you tonight?” I asked.

“It’s silly but I needed to see you to know if I’m over it. We’re good at being friends.”

“So are you over it?”

“Thank God that I am. We’re good at being friends and I didn’t want to lose you.” You said with a smile.

I took one more gulp of the beer and stood up, paid the bill and walked away.

“Where the hell are you going?” You asked soon as you caught up with me. You grabbed my hand so that I can’t walk away.

I looked at you one last time and removed the hand that was holding me.

“It’s my turn to walk away.” I said with a sad smile. You just stood there.

I started walking away again, hoping that you would call my name. You never did. Just like I never did that night.

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