It’s that time of night again, and I’m afraid I’m getting overly thoughtful and falling into my own mind creating some alternate universe that is spinning right along next to ours. It’s luxurious when you make up the plot and freeing when the sequential moments are the ones you’ve dreamt up. I’ve made a soundtrack to this life that is not mine. And each beat fits with the changing tempo of my heart.
The elevator opens, as I fumble for my keys, palming the hallway light switch in the dark to find three peonies on the matt at my front door and a single envelope. I peek over the railing down at the flights of stairs below but I’m still alone. Pick up the flowers and the envelope, turn the lock, open the door and step inside. I use my foot to shut the door behind me, drop my bags where I stand, place the flowers on the table and remove the paper from inside the envelope, fold it open and I silently mouth what’s spelled out right in front of me. Three typed sentences, black symbols in the middle of a sea of white. But those words feel so crowded with all the words that are missing and I resist the urge to just pick up the damned phone and call him because he’s said it all before and I’ve deleted his number anyway.
Wash the day from my face, take a warm bath, slip into my nightclothes, and wrap my robe around me tightly before folding into the covers. Bathed in candlelight, watching the glowing shadows on the wall dance lightly from the movement of the air, not sure what to think. And the doorbell rings.
Its him. I buzz him up. Look through the keyhole. And he’s standing there, snow on those shoulders of his that I loved so much.
Opening the door, letting him in, not exactly sure how we are supposed to begin. And before I speak he says everything I’ve needed to hear for so long without saying a thing. I help him out of his coat, he brushes my cheek and we fall into each other over and over and over again. That night behind closed doors and in the kitchen the next morning, me sitting on the counter top hugging his waist with my crossed legs as I pull him in close and refuse to let go.
Every scene that plays before my eyes are only made up of everything that happens before they call cut. Only the highlights and the laughter and the touches and the happiness. A walk in the park. Two hands finding their way to each other again, fingers re-acquainting themselves with each other, interlocking into one.
We drop it all and scrape up our savings. Buy a camper and drive across the US. He behind the wheel, my feet up on the dash in the seat beside him, a lazy smile across my lips as I drift into sleep with the sunlight refracting off the glass of the windshield. It bounces off in angles, slamming back into the world. That open road. Those endless panoramas. It all seems so vast but so small, comforting, and navigable at once. We’re driving along those windy roads with the double yellow lines to our left. We’re camping in the woods and hiking through paths we forge ourselves following in the same footsteps as the lovers before us, before our time. Before we were ever born. We climb higher and higher past the trees to view it all from above. Breathe in the fresh mountain air. We’re swimming in lakes in summer and carrying the warm breeze with us wherever we go. We might be walking but we’re really flying.
Our nights are spent by the campfire wrapped up tightly in each other’s arms wrapped up tightly in some warm red flannel blanket around both our shoulders, eyes half closed as the embers die low. And when the heat dissipates we crawl into our home on wheels and create our own.
Morning light streams through the window of our camper. Steam rises from warm mugs of tea. He’s writing that book he always wanted to write and I’m creating a series of still memories with my camera of every god damned adventure we have. It’s some ridiculously unfathomable love story.
This is fantasy and I know he’s not coming back. There will be no flowers at my door. There will be no sunsets spilling gold light between the trees causing us to squint as we watch the light fade behind the horizon. There will be no more nights tangled up in each other’s limbs and hearts. No mornings waking up with him being the first thing I see. Because the world loves tragedies. The people want their Romeo and Juliet. A broken Ophelia. Tears over smiles. The best books that have stood the test of time were never written about the happy endings. We’re more in love with sadness than the things that make us laugh. And I’m just a stupid lovesick girl whose head is full of silly dreams raised on fairytales and ever afters. The world is my reality. Not some ridiculous fanciful story from the recesses of my childish mind. Why didn’t they ever warn me? Time never remembers the names of the happy ones.