Learning to smile

“If I stand all alone, will the shadow hide the color of my heart;
blue for the tears, black for the night’s fears.
The star in the sky don’t mean nothin’ to you, they’re a mirror.”

(Rod Steward-“I don’t wanna talk about it”)

Olympic Beach, Greece

-Here…take this one! Is bigger! Why throwing only the little white rocks in the water, when you could throw this ugly big black rock? Now, Ali, repeat after me: with this big ugly rock…

-with this big ugly rock…

-I’m throwing away…

-i’m throwing away…

-All the pain and sorrow and anger…

-all the…I can’t! I wish i could, Henri…but the pain and the sorrow are still there. I think i’ll never smile…

-You will! Not only smile, but laugh and love and feel…Ali, you made this?

-What?

-All this big water lying under the cliffs?

-Don’t be silly…it’s the sea…

-No, you don’t fool me! Taste it! It’s salty, like your tears…you cried so much that you created the sea? Please…don’t drown us, you creator of the seas!

I started to laugh again even if my tears were still running down my face. He wrapped his arms around my shoulders keeping me warm and safe. I looked into his eyes…

-Your eyes are blue…like the sea…

-and my shirt is all wet from your salty tears! And you don’t even know how to remove the white stains produced by salt! Cause you never eat salt…you’re made of sugar, my sweet girl…

-Henri…do you ever talk seriously?

-i spoke to your father…

-oh, i understand…he convinced you that i’m a spoiled rich girl, an irresponsible and a liar…and that he and Phi…

-Stop! Stop talking or i throw you in the water! Look at me, Ali…now i’m serious. I didn’t recognize your father, he’s not himself anymore. He wanted me to convince you to accept…I told him my opinion and i guess i was a little harsh to him. I told him that you’re not for sell and that he just lost my respect for him. It’s true, Ali…he wants you to accept a relationship with Phillipe, regardless of your feelings. He was even capable of threatening me if i don’t “bring” you back the next day. Like you’re an object, a doll…God, i’m still furious…

-are you going to leave me? Because of my father, and Phillipe…and all my problems. Don’t…don’t leave me, please don’t…i’m so incredibly alone…

-Ali, did you heard what i said to you? Did you listened to me? I just said that i lost my respect for your father. I never said one word about leaving you! Sometimes, Ali, i feel like i’m talking to a big child! A big crying baby…look, i brought you here, no one knows where you are…no one will find you. We’re returning to Monte Carlo only when you’re ready to face the disaster. I’m with you in this! What else do you want me to tell you? Fight your insecurities or they are going to consume you. And never argue with me, cause i can talk more and faster than you!

-Henri, i’m so grateful to you…

-Show me how grateful you really are…let’s go back to the resort…

-what do you mean? i hope you’re not suggesting…

-Again…you’re talking over me…you’ll never learn, do you? Now listen to me! I wanna see you wearing that sexy red dress…we’re going to a club to dance till morning! Understood?

-Let me tell you a secret…Henri…come closer…this game of yours, playing dominant with me…my dear…it’s not working. Cause, you know what? I know how to play it too…only that i choose not to…You see…you cannot pretend to be a lion if deep inside your heart all you want…all you desire…all you need…

-yes…don’t stop…

-…is to stay at my feet…hoping i’ll give you the chance to kiss my little finger…

He started to laugh.

-Girl, you’re dreaming!

-Now, catch me if you can! See who gets first in the room. I bet i’m faster! You can’t catch me…wolf-man!

-You’re playing with fire, little girl!

Yes, i know…

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What’s the name of the game?

“Maybe you were right, but baby i was lonely,

I don’t want to fight, i’m tired of being sorry…”

(Enrique Iglesias-“Tired of being sorry”)

He was trying to look serious…Not a chance!, I said to myself…this is my kind of game…

-Come and get it from me if you want it…i said with a glorious smile,

-Give me the key! C’mon, Aly, i will be late! And i promised your father to stop by. Your parents are worry about you…they don’t even know where you are…

-Look…the key…and look what i’m doing with your key…take it if you dare…i can show you where i’m hiding it…i said placing the key in my bra…

-Now you’re challenging me! Let’s see…i’ll take all of your clothes…and then…the key…

-Now you’re getting! Finally..Matt, let’s see…what would you say if i throw away the key…and you’ll be locked with me all day long…

-I would say that you’re crazy…and that i adore you…

Matt was getting closer…he looked into my eyes and smiled…i knew that smile…

-I’m better then you…i said jumping on the bed…catch me if you can…i bet you can’t handle me…i’m thinking of keeping this key to myself…my god…i lost it…i cannot find it anymore…you’re stuck with me…i was laughing while i continued jumping on the bed.

Partly, i was right…in my agitation, the key felt on the floor…only that he wouldn’t saw it…

Matt was trying to stop me from jumping…so i ended falling in his arms…as he was gently laying me on the bed.

-And now…let’s search for that key…he started undressing me with very slow moves, kissing every part of my body. The sensations were all new…like nothing i ever experienced with him before…it was breath taking…a feeling of being out of control…I remembered how intense we were…8 years ago…how much we enjoyed making love…but now was different, he seemed different somehow…

-I remember…Matt…i tried to say something but i couldn’t concentrate…

-Are you sure…Aly…there’s no way back…if you’re not ready, say it…cause you started something and i can’t stop…

But i felt so sure about this…so ready to take him back in my life…how could i let him go before…just feeling his body on mine’s, his breath going faster and the beatings of his heart…he wasn’t that boy i left eight years ago…he was a man…completely changed. I felt unable to recognize him…the passion, the pleasure…all so new…it felt almost frightening…like a game that i knew i’ll never win…but the ecstasy i was experiencing was much more then a game…

And i wonder how did i manage to transform my life into a game…was it the search for the perfect romance that brought me here? Was it my obsession for a man that couldn’t give his heart to me? Or just…me being afraid of the loneliness…and trying to go back in time to recover my hope and my dreams…

-Are you ok, baby? You’re so quiet…i hope you’re not having second thoughts about us…

-Are we back together, Matt? i asked him, hating my insecurity…

-Of course, silly…what did you thought? But i need to be sure…because if you’re playing again…

-Never again…i’ll never do what i did before…i’m sure about that.

He kissed me and looked deep into my eyes…like he was trying to see my soul…

And being happy was so strange to me…If this is a game, i really don’t wanna win…not if it means that someone  has to lose…

You know what i want…

“I know the things you wanted, they’re not what you have,

With all the people talkin’, it’s driving you mad

And if i was standing by you, how would you feel,

Knowing your love’s decided, and all love is real…”

(Guns n’Roses-Don’t cry, alternative lyrics)

-…and make sure that the balloons are NOT blue, ok?

-But they are expecting a baby boy…

-They are designers, Aly, said Peter with a big smile on his face. They don’t want blue, is overrated, they will dress the kid in black and white…

-Like a little vampire, i said laughing, can i buy, at least, a doll or a teddybear? I know they have a little girl, she’s 5…

-No dolls, no bears…maybe a Rubik cube, but no pink either… said Peter ironic. Did i said thank you for going there, Aly? You’re doing me a big favor…and i’m sorry for not being able to go with you…

-It’s ok, i like them, they are a nice family…

-They are not…did you knew that it’s going to be a divorce after baby’s birth? They already had spoken to their lawyers…

-Can’t believe it…

An hour later i was at the door, being late to a party where i didn’t even wanted to go…With three blue balloons in one hand and a doll and a teddy bear in the other hand…

-Alicia, i’m so glad you’re here! Where’s Peter? He’s coming later?

-Peter had something to do, he wishes you all the best, he’s so sorry for not being here…He told me about…i’m sorry…

-Don’t be! It’s only a divorce…and after the paternity test i’ll get a small fortune…

(too much information for me…i couldn’t hide my shock)

-I was smart enough to sign a prenuptial agreement, in my favor, of course, she said whit a mean smile. He wanted a boy, it seems like  faith was on my side, but don’t just stay there, come and sit down, Alicia, you’re a little pale…

I can’t remember what i said to get myself out of the house…The whole world was spinning around me. I needed to take a long hot shower…

Feeling the warm water running down my skin, i was imagining that all the burden goes away…i could let the tears fall with the water…they were warm and salty and, before i could even realize, i was sitting there, hot water burning my skin, hot tears burning my soul…crying like never before…I was thinking about their children, the little girl who probably wouldn’t get the doll and the teddy bear i bough for her. God, i was 5 when my parents divorced and my dad won the custody trial…i remember being moved from my home, having to speak english and french (i still can’t speak french correctly…)when all i wanted was my old room back…

I looked in the mirror, trying to hide the effects of my cry of my skin…i was going to wait for Peter, dressed like he liked…It was night and the wind was so cold…with the laptop on the bed, next to me, logging on my favorite game (who’s much more than that, i know it now)…Second Life is always the best place to dry my tears and look and act sure of myself. I was searching for a romantic place…

You seems so lonely in here, are you waiting for someone? asked the man, looking deep in my eyes…i noticed his dark hair and the black eyes, darker than the night. He was taller then me, his strong arms and that voice like a far away thunder…He took me in his arms and my body was responding without a single word…His fingers caressing my hair, touching my face, my lips…moving gently on my neck, making me tremble with unspoken desire…

– Aly, are you there? Close the laptop, there’s someone here who want to meet you! And please, hurry, he can’t stay long…

My mind was trying to follow his words. It’s Peter and we have a guest…at this hour. I felt angry, at least he could told me so i would wear something decent…

-Peter, wait, i’m going to get dressed…

-Why? Let me see you…he came in the room without any warning…you look beautiful, you can come like that, he’ll like you…I invited him in our bedroom…

I looked at him completely shocked. Part of me was still believing that this is a dream, more a nightmare…he never said nothing about something like that…

-You’re joking, right? You want to tease me…i almost believe it, you scared me a little…i said trying to smile…

-Alicia, i’m serious. Now we’ll go upstairs, don’t want to hear any comment…his voice sounded so heavy…

-No! I’m not going! You can tell him to go to hell, you know i’m not into this…

-I though you’ll like it…after all, you spend hours with strangers on Second Life, doing god knows what…Anyway, is too late. Keep your voice down and relaxe, you might enjoy it…

-NO!

-Now, you leave me no choice…saying that he lifted me up in one move…i had forgotten how strong is he. He was holding my hands so tight with an arm, i couldn’t make one move.

-You can close your eyes, if you think it will be easyer, he whispered in my ear, making my heart almost jump of my chest…

Still trembling and with my eyes closed, he lay me on the bed. I sensed a move next to me…

-Baby, please open your eyes, it’s ok…his voice was now so gentle…Give me your hands…

In my arms was now a little puppy…Eyes like olives, a little wet nose, looking so scared. I started to cry again…

-How could you? I really thought…and…you brought me a  puppy…you knew how much i wanted that…but you never agreed to this…i said with a voice that didn’t sounded mine…Peter, don’t ever do that again, this kind a game, i’m still terrified…

-You know, this little friend of mine needs a mommy. I told him that you’re the most amazing woman in the entire world and that i was a fool to neglect you like that. It’s yours if you want him…

-Peter…

-And you thought i could share you with some stranger? Like i’m crazy to do that…i feel bad only thinking that someone else could touch you…even on that stupid game you play…

And, feeling his arms around me, hearing every beat of his heart, the feeling of safety and love was overwhelming…without flirting or chatting or playing games…just us…

But how can i control this desire to go back into my virtual world? Is it addiction? And who’s going to pay the price for my madness?

(to be continued)