359: Balmy Evening (Jumbled SOC)
Think of it as a non-sequitur dream sequence.
I don’t know how but that’s why they’ve made the gov.net website so successful. Success not in the effort but in the intelligence and skill or something, something that would’ve come up in my muses. He won’t know this, but it’s silly. He’s silly. She’s silly. We’re all silly. History repeats itself. Time is vicious. At least time doesn’t play favourites like we do. We play favourites thinking we’re some God or something. Favourites suck. It’s good for the favourites, not so great for those who aren’t.
She was playing catch with her son, trying to fill the void his father left when he left the family, in pursuit of another woman, in pursuit of higher pleasures, in pursuit of a woman who was not suffering from numerous mental illnesses. They were playing catch in the front yard. She didn’t miss the flash of anger in his eyes as he flung the ball towards her. She thought of high school physics, the projectile of the ball as it shot towards her. Its trajectory wasn’t a smooth parabolic curve. She wondered if she could calculate the time it would take to reach her from where her son was standing, but the thought dissipated as the ball struck squarely into her clad palm.
A young girl was cycling down the road, flaming black hair kissed red by the afternoon sun as she pedalled furiously home. She tossed her bike aside next to the letterbox in the garden as she fumbled with her keys in her desperation to claim the empty house for the afternoon. She stripped her uniform and grabbed a towel before heading to the bathroom. Ten minutes later she was clean, the warm water having washed away her worries. She dried her hair as best as she could, and then pinned it up. Her boyfriend always thought she looked beautiful with her hair like this, but she only pinned it up when she was at home. She seemed twenty-seven when she was only seventeen, what with the lobster clip. Her boyfriend she loved dearly but had to focus on her end of year exams. Her lifelong dream of being a criminal lawyer couldn’t be thrown away for some boy she may never grow old with. She envied her girlfriends who had found boyfriends chasing the same career goals as their soulmates. Could she make this work, she didn’t know. An ear-splitting headache was coming on. She threw herself into bed, wet towel draped around her middle, gasping for sleep to wash over her.
The old man sat himself heavily down in his armchair as he waited for his wife to hobble down the stairs and join him by the empty fireplace. He thought of how much he loved his wife all these years with a terrible secret he had carried with him since they graduated college. He thought of how much he loved her despite her uncanny threats to leave him, despite her bipolarity, her temper, her desire for cheap thrills. He loved her, he loved her. The marriage was stable. Their life was good. He enjoyed the weekends where they spent the mornings cuddling in bed, reminiscing about their youth. When his wife did not appear, the old man dragged himself upstairs to see what the matter was. The empty bed save for a propped up note on the bedside table was all he saw. Walking over to it, he flipped the note open, his fears confirmed. She had found out about the terrible secret. He should have told her as soon as he committed the unforgivable. A sense of relief overcame him as she finally carried out her last threat to him. If you truly love someone, let them go. If they come back, they’re the ones you should be spending your life with. He wanted to apologise. He felt no remorse. Their lives had been lived, albeit foolishly, wastedly, and now he felt that he was able to die peacefully.