“Why did you leave?”
You appearing out of nowhere, hearing you ask that question, you standing in front of me, accusing, angry, I wasn’t really expecting any of that. I wasn’t expecting to see you at all, at least not just yet.
I was on my second cup of coffee, about done with the book I was reading when you came. It’s been a hectic week and it was the first time that I actually got some time for myself and truth be told, I wasn’t happy to see you at all or anyone for that matter. I wanted to be alone, to have some little “me” time. But you chose that very day to come barging in so I guess that it is true, you never really do get what you wish for.
Closing the book and putting it on the table, I just stared at you, not saying a single word. I was sure that my face wasn’t showing any emotion either. I’m good at that now, keeping my face blank, not showing anything. It’s been three years after all.
“Why did you leave without telling me?” You ask once again, gentler this time. The anger that was etched on your face just a few seconds ago turned to sadness in a flash that I almost didn’t believe it. Then I remembered, you were good at that. I just smiled.
“You could at least say hello first,” I said before taking a sip from my cup. The coffee was still warm and strong but not enough to break the coldness I have nurtured for the last three years.
“You could at least have said goodbye as well.”
I let out a sigh. Word play, you’re good at that too. I still remember just how good you were at that, clearly actually, like everything just happened yesterday.
“Goodbye.” I said after a while.
“You wanted me to say goodbye, I just did.” I said with a straight face. You just gaped.
Your eyes never left mine and I got the chance to see those beautiful browns again, remembering how I used to get lost in them, even melt. It was like mocha, your favorite. I wonder how many other stupid people got lost in them in the past three years.
“You’ve changed.” You said, almost a whisper. I just smiled again. I’m starting to be good at that too, smiling. There are even times when even I start believing it too.
“Three years is a long time,” I said before asking you to take a seat. A flash of hope ran through your face which almost made me laugh. I was just getting tired of having to look up that’s why I asked. I was actually expecting you to walk away.
“What happened to you?”
“You don’t really want me to answer that,” I said. I tried to catch your eyes but as always, you averted yours. You do know when to look away, when to run, when to hide.
“You didn’t even give me the chance to apologize,” I chuckled after hearing you say that. There was a time when I wanted to hear those exact same words, not because I actually believe that you are sorry but because it would at least give me the chance to say everything that I wanted to say back then.
I snorted. I wasn’t trying to be mean. It just came out naturally. They say it’s a natural reaction to bullshit. I guess it’s true.
“I love you, you know…”
I just stared at you, not really believing what I just heard.
“You don’t want to go there.” I said coldly that even I had chills.
“I gave up everything for you,” The accusation was back in your voice and that pissed me off.
“You took everything away from me,” My voice quivered a little, my hand shaking from anger. I took a deep breath to calm myself down. Three years of practice did its magic.
“I made a mistake, Michael…”
“Which part of it was a mistake? The drugs? The alcohol? You sleeping with half of my friends? Or you killing my son in the process? Take your pick.”
You averted your eyes once again. I guess that’s the thing that I have learned in the past three years, to never expect anything from you anymore. You will never own up to anything that you have done.
“You said you’d never let me go…” I was so stunned with just how shameless you are that I started laughing, so hard that the other people in the café started staring at us.
“You left my son, on a table, so that you could fuck one of my friends, on my bed, in my house, and while you were grunting and moaning, my son was crying as he fell to his death. Does that even mean anything to you?” There was a certain calm coldness in my voice as I said those words, as if all those things actually happened to some other person and not me.
“You’re talking as if that wasn’t hard for me too,” You said with a sniff. That’s when I burst.
“Hard? It was hard for you?” I said, a few notch away from shouting. “I died every single day since then!”
It was a good thing that you didn’t say anything right after that. I wouldn’t have been able to control myself.
“Will you ever forgive me?” You asked after a while.
“I already did,” I said and that was true. I have forgiven you. That was the easy part. As for forgiving myself, that’s something that I’m still working on.
You gave me a weak smile before standing up and walking away. You turned to look at me one more time, a few steps away from the café door.
“You’re still the best dream that I ever got…” You said. I just smiled. That was the same thing that I used to tell you.
“But nightmares are dreams too…” I whispered as you walk away. And the worst part of it all, even at that very moment, I still love you.
I kept my promise, or at least a part of me did. My heart never did learn to let you go.