True Love’s Kiss

Two writers sit in a room. The younger of the two in tears. His mentor patiently reading. “My life is over,” says the apprentice. “I know you’re hurting but it honestly gets better over time” replies his mentor. “Don’t act like you know my pain. You chose this life, but for me, it’s all I have left” barks the youngster. The old writer adjusts his glasses in the young man’s direction “Listen, Kat, you’re going to have to accept the fact that the choices you’ve made have led you to…”; “Oh fucking spare me the generic consolations. Sounds like you got it right out of a Gladwell book” says Kat. The cozy cabin is filled with laughter for a minute. “I’m really gonna miss her,” Kat says after a moment of comfortable silence. “Jay?” asks Kat. “Yeah?” replies the silver fox. “Is this why…?” Kat asks. “Let me tell you a little story,” says Jay. “Oh God, how patronizing is this one gonna be?” asks Kat. Jay looks at him with a smile and says “only the Godde…”; “The Goddess. The Muse Goddess knows. Why don’t you just say you don’t know like normal people do?” Kat asks. “Now where’s the fun in that?” says Jay.

 

“It’s around four o’clock on a warm autumn afternoon. My friends and I have been drinking on campus for most of the day. She is here. We make our way to our favorite watering hole and I somehow get to sit next to her. I’d like to think that divine intervention has something to do with it but in reality, it’s just my friends looking out for me. We sit on one side of the table, they sit on the other. We speak for hours about subjects so benign that if you ask me about them the next day, I probably won’t remember them. I would love to be focused on this fluff piece of a conversation but I’m too distracted by my inner voice’s screams. ‘KISS HER, YOU FOOL!’ it cries, but my body won’t let me do the things that need to be done to make it happen. Instead, I look, yearningly, at the side of her face as I try my utmost to keep them all thinking that I’m paying attention. We eventually leave and I feel like an idiot for allowing my fear of rejection to keep me from happiness. However, it’s this very thought that perpetuates my anxiety. I fear that the only place where I’ll kiss her and be happy is in the container housed above my shoulders.

“We walk out the back door, as we usually do. They all walk in front of us, and her in front of me. By the time she and I reach the door, I’ve found my confidence again. If only it wasn’t too late. But wait. She leaves her arm trailing in the moment. I decide to take action. I pull her back, and before she can resuscitate my anxiety I find my lips have made contact with hers. She kisses me back, passionately. Her lips are as soft as her gaze is. Her back arches under the pressure of my resting hand, bringing our bodies closer than they had been before. Her hands make their way to the back of my head and my heart is overwhelmed by beauty. The moment is long but to me, still a moment. I feel the throbbing pain of loneliness grip my chest as I watch her walk through the door. It doesn’t take me long to realize that I have to follow her. Nothing becomes of this day. I don’t get lucky because I have spent all my good fortune on this moment. I risked it all and, for my troubles, was gifted a moment in love. Only a moment though.

“I’m a man in my sixties now and till this day, I have yet to experience anything fill my empty chest like that moment did. I’m glad I got to experience it, but I’m also glad I didn’t try to prolong it. I was never meant to be a main character in her story and she was only meant to be a prelude to mine. I loved, I lost, but I was no better for it.”

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