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|Entertainment fiction. A cute story. The inspiration came from my bedroom door, which shakes violently at random.||
A Perfect Match
I don’t hesitate before stepping through the door, clutching my sketchbook against my chest. In the beginning, I needed to take a deep breath and close my eyes, but not anymore. However, I still wince at the prickling sensation of wood and paint passing through my spirit. The door rattles in its hinges, making the two girls jump.
“It has been shaking like that a lot lately,” Silvia states, sprawling across her bed. “It’s nothing really.” The second girl, bearing a new face, nods in consideration, positioned in a chair opposite from the door. She shivers. “Yeah, it’s kinda cold in my room, isn’t it? I think there’s something wrong with the furnace, would you like a sweater?” Their mindless chatter soon resumes. They discuss their crushes and previous dates, the newest fashions and the latest gossip. Typical. I’m mentioned once, but only as a landmark as they discuss the characteristics of some guy who sits beside me in math class. Twinges of jealousy obscure my thoughts. They are gone instantly; a benefit of my ability to suppress emotion. I chuckle beneath my breath; why do I feel the need to hide myself when I am already invisible?
The hours crawl by. I watch Silvia; the way her hair frames her face with gentle curls, the way her chest rises and falls with each breath, the way she chews on her lip when she’s concentrating and drums her nails impatiently. I stare at her rounded features, soft eyes and rosy cheeks. I wonder if she is the one, knowing inside that she is not. Still, I wish she was. I long to end my searching.
The time comes for the nameless guest to depart into the night. I wait in the basement for the girls to finish their goodbyes. I smirk, imagining hugs and sincere words exchanged, as if both were oblivious of the blackmail and rumours that clouded their friendship. Silvia soon returns to me, wrapped in a red bath towel. I follow her into the bathroom.
I snuggle into the corner of the washroom, basking in heat as it slowly fills with mist. It is an unusual sensation. I sense the warmth and damp air, but I grow neither hot nor wet. I can hear Silvia carry a muffled tune beneath the pounding water. I take my sketchbook and outline her silhouette against the shower curtains. When she steps out, I add colour to my drawing, satisfied with its resemblance to its subject. I gaze up at Silvia. Under any other circumstances, I would mock the way she examines her figure so critically, then try different poses and smiles in the mirror. During my night-travels, I must discipline my mind to resist using any information against the ones I watch. There is a certain injustice in judging someone by their personal habits.
She pauses for a moment. I almost think that she can hear the grating of lead against paper. Silvia dismisses whatever captured her it with a shake of her head, spraying water everywhere. I flip to the next page in my book. It is the last blank page. Perhaps my visits have become a little too regular. A pang of guilt stabs at my gut, as if I’m abusing power like some immoral dictator.
A burst of emotion floods my senses, purging my own concerns. I have become accustomed to detecting out trickles of emotions and thoughts. They flow more wildly at night, I think, as feelings of social pressure and a desire for beauty, love and general perfection pour out of Silvia. A veil of worries follows in a chaotic mass. Homework, chores, hair, makeup, money, deadlines, misery, work, goals and future’s planning swirl madly.
I find myself backing off from the sudden emotional downpour. Overwhelmed and dizzy, I hold my head in my hands, waiting for the steady hum of my own thoughts to return. By the time I regain my senses, Silvia is directly in front of me and passes through me before I get a chance to react. I feel her soul, her essence flowing against mine. Its shape, colour, even scent hits me. I struggle to stand my ground, like salmon fighting the current. For a moment, lost inside, I know her better than she knows herself.
Some time later, Silvia is tugging her blankets past her shoulders, shifting restlessly beneath them in search of a comfortable position. I lay down beside her smoothly. Her thoughts take me in and her movements relax. She’s imagining a man holding her, protectively yet gently, as she surrenders herself to sleep. Little does she know, someone is actually there, holding her, listening to her breath slow. I wait for her unconscious thoughts to twist into dreams. Like a visitor lingering on her doorstep, I wait to hear specific thoughts.
When I know she is fast asleep, I whisper tenderly in her ear. I ask about the way she sees me. She replies, muttering quietly, that she’s not interested in pursuing a relationship. In fact, she’s been attempting to avoid me lately, to stop me from getting “ideas.” Hurt, I seep away from her world. I pause to watch her resting before drifting from her room, through the empty streets to where I lay.
I stand before my bed the same way I stood beside Silvia’s. I pass my eyes over my still figure. I have ebony hair, usually spiked, and I’m fairly muscular, isn’t that acceptable? I’ve treated her with nothing but kindness and sincerity, isn’t that enough? With a sigh I return to my body, testing the movement in my toes and fingertips before rising. I prepare to let both my mind and body rest for the night.
Another gorgeous sunrise, another horrid day at school. I eat lunch dreading the following history class. I scrutinize my friends, thinking of their naivety. Even if they really knew me, they wouldn’t understand. Ignorance is bliss, I suppose. Anyway, I wouldn’t want to complicate their simple lives with my own.
The aggravating ring of the bell shatters my thoughts. Like cattle I march through the halls, beside hundreds of other students, to my classroom. I snatch a copy of the school’s literary magazine before surrendering myself to boredom. I read one of the first poems, hidden behind my textbook. An ancient trick, I know, but the teachers continue to be easily deceived. I read it several times over. I’m surprised by how much I relate to the metaphors and images it portrays. I burn the author’s name into my memory, Aimee Kuroi. I’m determined to meet her. At the end of the class, by some stroke of fate, she is called down to the office during the daily announcements over the loudspeaker. Her name is still ringing in my ears with the bell as I dash through the door. I dodge students frantically until reaching the office and casually sitting in one of the waiting chairs.
The secretary calls to her when she enters. She’s an oriental girl with sharp features and long, straight, shiny hair. Like the Mona Lisa, much is hidden behind her smile. She receives a note from the woman, something is muttered about a dentist. She already has perfect teeth, I don’t know why…she turns to me suddenly, before I even think of approaching her.
“I’m glad you liked my poem, Damien.” I feel like I’ve been knocked backwards. My head spins with questions, too many. By the time I found my tongue again, she had already vanished into the swarming hall. Shocked and confused, I bumble down the stairs to my art class, her bright eyes fixed in my mind.
We’re painting today. My teacher comments on my eagerness to begin. I shrug and grab the black and the red watercolours. The strokes come easily, as if someone was guiding my hand. I draw Aimee in a red dress, posing on a park bench. When Steve comes over to talk to me, he stops to inspect my painting before saying,
“Whoa, dude. That’s awesome. You know, that looks a lot like Aimee. You know her?” Another shrug, as if all of my concentration was needed for painting, and not conversation.
Later that evening, I took the finished canvas to my room. My parents weren’t home yet, so I figured I’d work on my mind skills a bit. I sat down in my beanbag chair and closed my eyes. Her smiling face emerged immediately behind my eyelids, as if she was the only thought I had ever had. Now, I visualize her in the red dress, sitting on the park bench. I add a breeze to my vivid dream world and watch her hair dance behind her. She stands up and walks towards me. Confused at the change, I will her to sit back down again. She doesn’t. I try to shake her from my thoughts, fighting to open my eyes. She laughs, like chimes in my breeze. Then black.
The next thing I see are my parents’ troubled faces.
“Damien, honey? What is it?” My mother puts her hand on my shoulder.
“What were you doing? You looked like you were insane for a minute. It scared me, rocking back and forth like that!” My dad jumped in.
“And your eyes! Dear, they’re all red. Are you alright?”
“Yeah, I’m fine, just a little tired that’s all,” I reply. I glance at my watch. I had been like that for almost an hour. “Yeah, just sleepy, don’t worry.” I force a smile.
At about midnight, I leave my body again. I find Aimee sitting on her bed, amid scattered blankets. She scribbles down something. I sit beside her, and she leans towards me. For an instant, I regret my invisibility, wishing I could support her delicate figure. I catch a whiff of vanilla perfume when I peer over her shoulder. They’re notes for a story. Her writing is incomprehensible, but I think I see my name in a couple places. I try to read her thoughts, but they zip past too quickly for me to interpret. I catch waves of excitement and inspiration, but nothing specific. I watch in fascination as her hand tries desperately to catch up with her ideas
Eventually Aimee tosses her notebook aside. Her mind sighs, relieved to get those thoughts out, like weight off her shoulders. I hold her more delicately than I did Silvia as she searches for sleep. That same scheming smile crawls upon her lips. I lie with her until she seems to be asleep.
After reentering my body, my mind falls into a dream. Again, the scene from my painting. Aimee is sitting, smiling on that park bench, but something is very different. She rises to meet me, arms outstretched. Then it clicks, her dress has turned blue. In a moment I am lost in a loving embrace. She whispers gently in my ear,
“Red doesn’t go with my skin tone. Anyone with any sense would draw me in blue.” She laughs mockingly, but I don’t mind. I stroke her flowing hair, unwilling to let go of my dream. The sun was unsympathetic, as it ended my dream in the morning.
Aimee did not leave my thoughts for a moment. I had slept in, so I was alone on a later bus. Her mouth sat smiling on the bus driver’s face. Every pedestrian on the street seemed to have her long black hair. The bus seemed lit with her laughter. When I finally reached the school, I saw her standing before the front doors, wearing blue. I jumped out of the bus and ran to her outstretched arms. Her thoughts poured clearly into my mind through a kiss. She scolded me gently, like a loving wife would. I swore to never trespass in another’s thoughts again. My search was over. I doubted that I would ever allow my mind to drift from my flesh again. Now my body was worth being in, because it was being held by someone else. And not just anyone. I had found someone like me, who understood me, and who loved me. Or perhaps it was her who found me, the light in my darkness, my spiritual guide and perfect match.
|Poem - Medusa|