Sunday, July 27, 2014

Why I Return

He was sitting in the corner by the window, sipping a small cup of Cappuccino. A solemness washes over his eyes. It made the scene looked like a ceremony, an act of worship or something. His quietness fills the space around him, thickening the air, slowing time and condensing space.

The girl in the table across him has been eyeing him. She did not smile, nor giggle like the typical girl would. She looked at him with a genuine curiosity, her mind searched for imaginary reasons to why a man like that would stare so longingly to a line of trees in the distance.

Like a sudden jolt of electricity, a waiter tripped on a piece of napkin I dropped and spilled a half drank latte all over the girl's table. Her small note book is now drenched in the caffeinated liquid. In shock she stood up, and shot a bewildered look that does not match her sweet floral dress. The waiter's quick apology sent her slowly, but forgivingly back to her seat.

I did not want to ruin her book, believe me, it was not my intention. I just wanted to see if the guy break his melancholic gaze and trade it in for a more beautiful view. A view that would, maybe, lighten his heart just a touch. I mean, come on, who wouldn't be drawn in by her brown curls, the way they bounced softly as she tried to clean up the mess on her table. The way her lips curved into a weak smile as she told the waiter not to worry. The way her fingers traced back into her note book, just to check if there's not a letter washed away.

He was not distracted when the waiter lost his balance, nor did he gain an interest at the scene I arranged. However, he did take a quick glance at the girl who is now writing on a damp, coffee soaked book. His gaze was different, though. The icy, solemn gaze, melted into a shy observation. He stole another look or two, then a smile broke through the quietness of his morning. It was his first smile in weeks.

I thought he saw me. For a second prior to that smile, I thought our eyes had met. But, who am I kidding, I know he couldn't possibly see me. He has been trying to,  to no avail, every single day. That's why he sat on that table today, trying to remember the last conversation we shared before life decided to part ways from my body.

Then, from the heaviness of his heart, he rose from his seat and made his way towards the Girl. But before he reached her table, he knelt and took the napkin that began this whole situation. I swear I heard him muttered something lightly, but I couldn't make out the words. When he reached the Girl's table, he paused for what seemed like an intense 3 second for the Girl. She looked up slowly as he said, "You reminded me of someone who used to share a cup of coffee with me.." he cut the sentence with a chuckle, "but your hair is much nicer." With an air of triumph, he walked away as he threw the napkin right through my face, down to my palms and down to the floor where I stood.

At that moment, I know he is going to be fine without me.


Writer's note: I wrote this while listening to Warm Water by Banks.
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