Love Me Tomorrow – Part II

People were simply preposterous, making efforts to squander her precious thoughts away.
She moved from the main area to the little room where they stored the remaining stock of medicines. It was almost half the size of the front area, and that’s what made it more desirable for her.
She opened the cabinet over her head and took out the writing pad and pen. Her treasure. Her only comrade in her forlorn journey. She sat on the small chair that was tucked underneath the wooden desk, not so much of a desk, but more of a wooden board, and started scribbling.

So many places, so many hearts,
So many traces of love long lost.
No fear, no howl, no song, no growl,
So many faces of shadows in the past.

She read it once.
That made sense.

So clear, so murky. So wise, so unworthy.
Nobody to decide the fate of souls uncast?
She smirked at the clever use of antithesis.
So many lives, so many stories,
So many mysteries to uncover at last!

She read it once again.

So many places, so many hearts,
So many traces of love long lost.
No fear, no howl, no song, no growl,
So many faces of shadows in the past.
So clear, so murky. So wise, so unworthy.
Nobody to decide the fate of souls uncast?
So many lives, so many stories,
So many mysteries to uncover at last!

It made a good poem. She patted herself mentally.
Writing made her feel complete. Incongruent. Special.
She took a deep heavy breath. It relaxed her nerves from the quivering she was feeling from Dave’s encounter.
She read it again.
It was a poem that sounded good but what did it mean? Did it hold deep meaning like Emily Dickinson? Was it beautiful like Shakespeare’s? Was it worth anything?
The question left unanswered, dangling in her mind, evoked pretenses for moments to come.
She rolled over to the next blank sheet and started afresh.

A heart lonely, a heart at unrest,

“Mandy,” her father’s voice came from behind.
Sweet damn!
She couldn’t become a poet, not unless her father stopped tormenting her with his unwelcomed summons. There were no customers, no phone calls, no obligations to fulfill. Did he not embrace her art? If not, couldn’t he just swim away in the tide with her, like she did for him?
She forced the pad on the wooden board and the pen over it, exemplifying the anger surmounting her calm nerves.
She jumped out of the little chair and replied his uncalled attention.
“Yes, papa?” she said softly, not allowing the anger to reach his ears.
“Who was that? I think I heard some murmurs,” he said, wheeling out of his cabin.
Needless to say. No words pass unnoticed by his sharp wildly ears. He might have as well sympathized with Dave and heaven only knows, maybe, cursed his damned taciturn daughter.
“It was Dave,” she said, her eyes stuck on the floor. He held the ability to read one’s mind, just like her, by one’s eyes.
She didn’t feel the need to be victimized at the moment.
“What did he say?” he asked.
“Nothing. He just wanted his prescription filled,” she said, once glancing at him.
He rested his head back on the top reclining cushion and sighed.
Oh Christ! Sighing wasn’t a good sign for John Wright.
He twisted his head sideways and closed his eyes for a second.
He was going to inundate her about the goodness of Dave or her supposed silliness.
“And you gave it to him?” he asked.
“Certainly, why would you doubt my intent to?” she said.
“I don’t know,” he said, his head lifted up. “Since you detest him so much,” he said.
It was preposterous that her father should even think so. He should have known her better than that. She never detested him. Not Dave, not anyone. Perhaps, not being so fond of people around her, but not to the extent of detesting someone and depriving them of the vital medicines they needed. Why would she? And why would he think so?
“I certainly don’t detest him, Papa,” she said, her eyes, now daring for a direct contact.
“Then what is it, Mandy?” he said.
A tear of droplet rose from among the array of emotions emerging within her. She stopped it, not allowing it to come forth.
He knew.
He knew about Tim and he knew what Dave wanted. Moreover, he knew what she wanted.
“You know what,” she said.
“Don’t tell me it’s about Tim,” he said, rolling his eyes and shaking his head as if utterly disappointed in his only daughter.
How easily he said it. Like it didn’t mean anything. The reality being so converse of it.
The word meant so much to her. It meant to her, her life. The air, the wind, the moon, all her desperate moments and lonely nights, they were a witness to her love. And by God, by Golly! Her father wasn’t a stranger to it.
How could he?
“You won’t understand,” she said, shaking off the tear away.
Tear. It certainly did not belong there. A pest it was.
“Yes, Mandy. I won’t! And I don’t want to. I am tired of it. I am tired of seeing you like this. I have tried so much to understand you, and your feelings for Tim. It’s been fifteen years and you got to move on. You are holding on to a shadow. He’s gone and you know him what? Barely for few months and you both were kids for God’s sake! Waiting for him, that’s craziness even…” he stumbled for a second and continued, “even Shakespeare won’t understand.”
It wasn’t fair. He didn’t not have to call for Shakespeare. Why was he hurting her like this?
“Papa, you don’t need to drag Shakespeare into this. And to be honest, if he were here, he’d understand. You are talking about the legend who wrote Romeo and Juliet. He is the man who said,” she paused to recollect the classic lines she knew by heart.

“Amen, amen! but come what sorrow can,
It cannot countervail the exchange of joy
That one short minute gives me in her sight:
Do thou but close our hands with holy words,
Then love-devouring death do what he dare;
It is enough I may but call her mine.”

She closed her eyes and thought about it.
“Romeo was fearless, to face the death. It was enough for him to know that she was his, only his. He was talking about true love. So, I think he would understand,” she said and started to walk inside, to the little area where she could play with her pen and her pad.
“I hate to say this,” he said. “But where is Tim now? Do you even know?”
She stopped and turned around. He wanted a fight, she was going to give him one.
“To start with, I do not agree that you hate to say this to me. But now that you have already come forward with the thought, I think I would go ahead and lay to rest with an answer of mine. I know my Tim is out there, thinking about me. He is looking for nothing but the perfect time to stand forth me and ask me for marriage. There are so many things he needs to do before he comes back. He has to prepare for a lifetime. I have faith in my Tim, Papa. The question is, do you have faith in me?”
She looked at him with big resolute eyes, hoping for an approval.
“I have, always had. I just wonder if he still is the same person he was, when he left,” he said, with eyes that were almost poignant, to the point of breaking down.
“Oh, he is. I am certain. He made a promise to come back and I know he will. He still thinks about me night and day,” she said.
What else would her Tim think of, if not of her? For, he was her and she for him. They weren’t just kids when they made the promise. They were but personifying two hearts at unrest, without the other. The hearts would depart this life, if not together. The only thing that kept them going, was the promise they made for the future.
A promise for tomorrow.

Read Part III here.

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