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Fiction

Crazy love
Short story

March 10, 2004
iranian.com

I sit on the bed. Outside it's raining. It's been raining all evening, since I arrived in Dulles airport, when she came to pick me up. We got soaked before we got to her car because her little umbrella didn't cover the two of us; and then of course the wind broke the umbrella and took it all the away down to the end of the parking lot.

My suitcase is still on the floor, half emptied. The perfume and the pair of sunglasses I bought for her in Heathrow are lying next to it. The little monkey doll she gave me before I left is sitting comfortably on the armchair next the bed, her eyes sparkling and laughing like hers.

I get into bed.

"I really missed you," She says..

"I missed you too, a lot," I say.

"I love youm" she says seductively, but melancholically.

"I love you too" I say, trying to reach for the bed lamp, next to her side of the bed, to switch it off. She looks so beautiful, as my eyes look over her, as my hands reach for the lamp. I kiss her lips.

"I wish you could say more," she says.

"What more could I say? I love you, and you know that."

"No, I mean why can't you express more feelings. Are you in love with me or do you just love me?"

"I don't understand, what's the difference? Sweetheart let's go to sleep. Its almost 1 am, and I am jetlagged."

"No I cannot sleep, I cannot stay here, in your bed, if you're not totally in love with me. I need to know. I've done a lot of thinking while you were away. We cannot continue like this."

"Continue like what? You know I love you, and I just said it, I say it all the time, isn't that enough?"

"No its not, and you know it. You know your feelings are not totally with me."

"How can you say that? I am in love with you and one day maybe I will be more in love with you."

"No, the truth is you can never be in love, your heart is closed to such feelings."

"What has happened to you all of a sudden? You know I am a romantic, I fall in love too easily, maybe not immediately, but sooner or later. We've known each other only a few months. Just give me time..."

"If you could love me it would happen immediately, spontaneously, you wouldn't need time... you know that. The truth is you are an introvert, you only care about yourself, about having your own space. You only have feelings for yourself and for some imaginary woman... You're in love with the idea of love, you cannot be in love with a real person. That is not being romantic. That is perversion."

"What are you saying? If one of us is not in love it is you. What you feel is not love, it is possessiveness and jealousy. As for me, I love you genuinely and that is why I do not want to possess you."

"If you love me say you hate all your ex-girl friends and admit they were all whores..."

"What is the matter with you...? Why do you talk like that? That's not like you. Why do we argue? I have just got back, can we not just be nice to each other? I am going to sleep now... Good night"

"You see you cannot say it..."

"Please stop it. Why don't you admit all your previous boyfriends were good-for-nothing losers... which everyone knows they were, anyway... Let's just sleep. Good night."

"No, I cannot sleep, let's call a cab, I want to go home. You're insulting me now." 

I close my eyes and think for a moment. Why should all of this happen? Why? I think of how much I love holding her body next to mine, the whole night, kissing her full lips that fit mine perfectly, whispering sweet words of love in her ears. Words that convince her in bed but mean nothing to her outside of bed. I think of how I love to hear her say how much she has missed me, how much she loves sleeping next to me, putting her head on my shoulder, wrapping her legs around mine.

But I hate arguing. I hate this situation. Why is her love blocked by jealousy and possessiveness, and mine by stubbornness and introversion...? Why are we like this?

I call a cab. She gets out of bed, puts on her clothes, and picks up her bag. The ever ready bag. I stand next to the phone, holding my head in my hands.

The phone rings, the cab is here.

"I don't want to leave," she says.

"But you wanted to go. You asked me to call a cab."

"I know, but if I leave I'll never come back."

"Then do not leave."

"You don't love me."

"The cab is waiting."

"So what? I hate you. You don't care at all."

I put something on, pick up an umbrella, and walk downstairs. I apologize to the cabdriver, and pay him the fare.

She wants to sleep alone, in my bed. I sleep on the sofa.

It rains all night. It takes me a long time before I fall asleep. I miss her. She's only next door, but I feel far away. Why is our love so different? Why do we not connect mentally? Why do we have so much doubt?

I wake up late. Its almost 11 am. A Saturday morning. I quietly walk to her bed -- to my bed, which she's taken over -- before I go to the bathroom. She seems sound asleep. I sit down next to the bed and look at her beautiful, fully symmetrical oval face. She's breathing peacefully. I put my head on the bed next to hers. My breath momentarily mixes with hers.

I go to the bathroom. In the shower, I quietly do my best imitation of Elvis Presley...  "Are you lonesome tonight, do you miss me tonight, are you sorry we drifted apart.. Does your memory stray, to a bright summer day, when I kissed you and called you sweetheart..."

I hear her walking into the bathroom. She is not asleep after all... She draws the shower curtain slightly and puts her head half inside, rubbing her eyes.

"Who did you kiss one summer and called sweetheart?" she asks with a sleepy voice, her beautiful eyes half closed.

"What do you mean? It's just a girl in the song,...why do you ask?"

"I know you still love her, no use denying it.." she says.

It's a nice Saturday morning, the rain has stopped and the sky is clear. Why argue? I smile. "I wish you stopped imagining, there is no one else, you know that very well. Everyone in this town knows I love you. Only you."

She goes back to bed. I get out of the shower and wrap the towel around my body. In front of the mirror, I count the number of grey hairs on my head, I count the number of remaining hairs on my head. I put shaving cream on my face. She's back in the bathroom now, to take a shower. I turn around, hold her tightly from behind, and kiss her neck. She kisses back.

"I love you," I say.

"Do you? Why do you put all your shaving cream in my mouth then...?!" she says laughingly.

I prepare breakfast. The stereo is playing Vigen. This cassette was playing in my car when I first kissed her. When she first kissed me. It was a beautiful sunny Saturday in May.

After breakfast, I hug her, I kiss her. She is so lovable, huggable, when she doesn't want to possess me, when she doesn't ask questions, when I do not ask questions. I wish I did not want her so much.

The phone rings. I do not feel like talking to anyone, now that I am holding her tight. My unwelcoming voice mail comes on. "I cannot get to the phone right now, I swear to God. Please leave a message." The voice on the other side says..."I miss you, why don't you call? Where are you? Please call."

She jumps out of my arms. "You liar, you said you were not talking to her anymore..., I knew you were cheating on me, you shameless liar..?" Damn it. Why should she call now? Why should she call at all? I try to explain. "I swear to God it's nothing, she's like a cousin to me now, she just likes to tease with those messages... it's nothing"

She sits quietly on the armchair. All of a sudden she's surprisingly calm and collected. It's as if she is trying to make a rational decision. I sit in front of her on the floor and hold her knees. "I am sorry, but it really doesn't mean anything, please believe me." I say. She looks cold. Not insecure anymore.

I feel I would die without her. But I know I could not live with her either. It's so hard to break up. Before I say anything, she makes it clear what she wants to do. The proof is she packs her stuff and calls a cab. This time she does leave.

"One day you will regret a lot not being able to keep me, and it would have been so easy." She says before she leaves. I already do. I know that and I say it: "I have always loved you and I will miss you terribly." But I know we are not made for each other. I hug her. There are tears in her eyes. There are tears in my eyes. She slam shuts the door behind her.

She's gone and I have all the space in the world now, but I feel so empty. She doesn't leave much behind. Only a little monkey doll that sings I love you when you press its belly, as it looks directly with her sparkling eyes into yours. .................... Spam?! Khalaas!

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