The Two that Got Away
“But we cannot be together,” he said to himself, pulling a long draught from his cigarette, already burnt toward the end. “How can this be? It’s true that love drives you crazy, but I never knew these clichés were actually true.” A voice of reason, try as he might, did not come at the times that he needed some signs that he was headed for a downright disappointment. Had he not seen in the past that this kind of relationship does not work? She was, after all, eight years above his senior. “But she looked pretty,” again talking to himself, wondering whether he really was going crazy. And age did not matter, he thought. A mere eight years? What is important is the love that they share. He shuddered at the very thought. But he was sure as hell with what he is going through – unlike puberty.
She was, after all, did not look like her age. Indeed, she was young, a 22-year old graduate student, but he thought fifteen was not a right time to fall in love. Yet there he was, thinking about her. She had deep hazel eyes, flowing black hair, and a smile. A smile that would send his emotions into fits of frenzy, wanting her forever. He had often acted rather like an animal whenever she would smile. His obsessive possessive nature, a trait he knew he never had, would often leap from its dying embers and would rear its ugly head like a wounded animal. He wanted her, and only he could only possess her and no other else. They had shared real moments, a complete connection with the other, and both acknowledged their happiness with each other’s presence. But love was without any thorns. Naturally, parents disagreed, his friends laughed at the idea of dating an older woman, her friends thought that she was wasting her life on a young boy like him. Yet, they stayed together; miserable with the world but happy with each other.
A time came when their love became uncontrollable. But love is like fire. The more it is covered up, the hotter it burns. On the deepest of nights, they have planned that they would escape the small city they lived their whole lives, ready to endure a new set of obstacles. At least they were together. On a cold night, the boy had escaped the house, only carrying a solitary backpack and the feeling of nervousness he ought to endure. For her. They had planned meeting at the park’s middle grounds. A large elm tree became their marker, and they would wait for the other to come. The stillness of the wind and the coldness of the night did wonders for his nerves. But his love carried him through the city streets, eventually reaching the eeriness of the park. He waited.
She arrived earlier than what they have talked about, eager to see his face and to finally be together. She had waited below the towering elm tree while the leaves gently rustled in the wind. She felt cold, but her anticipation provided her warmth. A scene suddenly startled her. She saw a hunched person silhouetted by the moonlight, was staggering as though wounded. The figure was carrying a long knife and apparently tainted with blood. She felt fear and disappeared momentarily from their meeting place, leaving behind her handkerchief. The figure staggered toward the tree, all the while dripping blood from an open wound in the cold earth. He saw the handkerchief and wiped the blood of his crime, the blade ripping the cloth. He left, leaving the bloody knife, apparently to die somewhere else.
He was expecting to see her, standing by the tree, illuminated by the moonlight, smiling and a look of longing. But the park was empty, so did their meeting place. He had noticed that there were black marks in the ground and when he touched it, the black instantly turned into red, illuminated by the pale moon. He felt fear. Instinctively, he looked around for a body but he saw her handkerchief. Consumed by love, logic escaped him, and immediately thought she had died from some random murder. Without hesitation, he plunged the knife to his heart.
She also felt fear, after having to leave their meeting place too long. What she saw plunged her into a disapproving daze. The body of his man, weeping blood, and drawing short breaths of air.
“I’m sorry…I’m sorry…” and he said no more.
Crying, she saw the glinting knife that had not left her hand. She took it and aimed it squarely at her heart.
“They may take your life, but not our love. Nothing can separate us now.” And she plunged the knife that was still damp with his blood.