letter 8: realization

Miguel,

i remember that fateful lunch we had; that fuss about “tinidor” and “kutsara” and how you think my Espanol sucks. i remember that time i found out how amazing a person you are; and the settling in of the realization that one can be fun and reserved at the same time; smart and unruly. i also remember the email exchanges and unnecessary phone calls. more importantly, i remember the times you squat around my work pod and tempt me into non-business related chat because playing solitaire wasn’t fun for you anymore. i remember the stories, your stories, and the laughter associated with them. when I look back at this in the future, I would remember us for the laughter, more than anything else. you see, i had never laughed this hard and this often with anybody else.

but that was just the one side of you, a side -that if I had a choice- i would have not tainted, or question, or challenge. a silhouette- of either what you are or what I think you are- that i cannot get out of my head.

the other side of you is a whole stranger to me. not because I do not know it, rather, because i know it even before you existed, and confirmed it even after you did. it being strange to me is not unknown to you. you knew all about this and did nothing. i cannot blame you, i guess; this is a part of who you are. in fact, this side that seems strange to me is the side that you mostly show. i hated this side of yours because i cannot touch it and that they could; because it is a territory you are restricting me just because I fucking ended up on the other side first. i hated this side of yours because it is taking you farther and farther away from me.

my jealousy is ruining me, Miguel. it is so great and blinding that it is not yet clear who or what or which part i am jealous at. it pains me to realize that i know a lot about your pasts and your dirty secrets but i do not exist in your normal world. you asked me the other day which bad trait of yours it is that i found out, and i answered you, half mocking “You are too good to be true. you know what they said about people like that… if they are too good to be true, they probably are.”

“that can be true.” you replied in a tone as if what i said was neither good nor bad; as if, i was reciting a statement, a fact.

“i cannot read you.” i added, afraid that if i will not tell you right there and then, i would lose the chance as i had in the past.

“not that i wanted to read you ‘cause it is not really a good thing to read people. but you seem to be having this façade that i cannot pass through…it’s like i am only seeing a side of you that you wanted me to see. the same holds true for the rest of them.”

for the first time since our eyes met, Miguel, i saw fear in yours. and it frightened me in greatest heights. i never saw fear flashing in your eyes before and i am dead-shit scared, more than anything else that i may have caused them. and then your face lit up and you grinned, “you just proved that you can read me pretty well. but this kind of talk is not made for quick breaks, when we have ample time, i can tell you about it.”

but i know right then that there will never be ample time for us. but hope is a funny thing, you know. it recognizes a fact but it doesn’t accept it yet; rather, it challenges it. it turns its attention away from the fact and concentrates on one factor, may it be a simple, unexplained glance or a quick side-track comment and invests on it. i have hope, Miguel, and so i told you, in a lousy shot of making it appear as if I was joking, “perfect, the list of our topics to talk about is crowding in my mental note. maybe you should start tracking them down for us.”

“and maybe when we have time left, we can talk about your bad traits. i have a feeling it will take thrice as much as discussing mine would, but we will manage.” you were joking but neither of us is laughing anymore.

we could fool the world, Miguel, but we can never fool ourselves. What started as an innocent, civil conversation turned out to be a passage to a dangerous journey into an unknown; i, braving to take it but too weak to survive it; and you, strong enough to conquer it but unwilling to start it.

i do not understand you. i cannot fathom you. i do not understand this anymore. if you could just curl back your tongue and cease to exist from this moment forward, it would do me good. do not hurt me in little bits, Miguel, for the hope is big enough to erase it and make it not matter. hurt me in big quantities; hurt me in one big bang that my mind can watch my heart bleeds and dries out. hurt me as you would have in the quest of revenge to the one that betrays you. make me ache so much that body shall surrender to the pride of the mind; that the lips may cease to smile and the sound of laughter will nothing be but a coarse sound coming from the throat.

destroy me so i may cease loving you. pain is painful only as long as the realization of something better to come is alive, breathing, and pumping. pain matters only as long as there’s a flicker of hope that it can be eased. destroy me so I may not look at the coming days as stock of burning hope for better tomorrows.

help me so i may fall into the pit of nothingness where nothing else matter; thus, death and pain are worthless.

author’s note: as I took my sight off her handwriting as it wavered and paused in uncertainty, I saw Miguel in a distance looking at the space, his expression unreadable. I watched her again and watched the good things draining out of her, watched a prologue of the time she might stop laughing her heart out. And in that split second I turned to Miguel, he was watching her as he had watched her that particular lunch that brought their world together.

Sometimes, what made a love so great is the tragedy that befalls it.

letter #7: denial
letter #6: gloom
letter #5: fear
letter #4: elation
letter #3: anticipation
letter #2: discovery
letter #1: birth

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