Standing on a platform constructed for such purposes, I watched as a vital lesson was whispered into my memory. Here in is the lesson:
At precisely four in the evening, I took a permit from the lady I was meeting and ambled down the gallery, taking the stairs in two. Dark clouds scudded along the sky, opting to be an ominous sign to what awaited me. Venturing into the more festooned building, I flipped the book off a brown table and started for the next floor, hurrying so that I wouldn’t be late.
As expected, she was there. Waiting. Always waiting. I slipped into the room, – not taking cognizance of her presence – flicked the book into a centerspread and read. She gave no indication if she understood or not, or if she even wanted to listen. I just read on, unconcerned.
Suddenly, I stopped. Lifted my head from the turned pages, bore holes into her face with my drills. She looked at me simply, her round face glowing in the dark room.
Are you listening?
Her lips parted a bit so that the response was hissed. No.
Why? Is the book not fascinating?
Sure it is.
Then why are you paying no attention?
I don’t want to listen today. I want to behold your face and be assured of your love.
My heart missed a step and stumbled over, regaining balance only when I placed a hand on my chest to steady it.
You didn’t say so earlier.
She looked at me with an expression that staggered between disappointment and surprise. Really?
Yes, I replied.
You never asked.
Like a timed bomb, a breeze swept into the room and slapped the book close. I felt the breeze take the shape of hands and cup my face such that I stared into blue eyes of her, like a serene ocean. At that moment, two figures hulked on the casement windows, deciphering the stifled communication existing in the room.
She drew closer and clasped her fingers around mine. They sent a cold chill across the nerves in my arm up to the vertebrae marking the spine.
Do you love me?
I swallowed at the question and turned my gaze steadily at the window, at the imposing figures content with watching. With gentle tugging, she directed my face back to her, to our arms entangled in a heart-shape.
Michael, do you love me?
I… You know I love you.
Let’s be lovebirds.
One of the figures harrumphed, and I wondered if they had decrypted what transpired.
Michael, the one who is mine, do you love me?
Yes. You know I do.
Let’s be lovebirds, she repeated.
I glance at the window. What about them?
Do they matter?
They’d be watching, I emphasize.
Do lovers care who beholds them?
A sound erupts, like blades slicing ice. I gape on discovering that one of the figures has brandished a sword, intent on gaining entry into the room.
She is unbothered.
Do… do they want to kill us?
Does it matter?
Verily, I remind.
No one can harm us if we are lovebirds. The tranquility in her blue eyes has taken up a corner, and calm fire glazes instead. Her face, however, is still sober. Beautiful.
The bolt turns and they march in, each taking concise step towards us.
Look. They are approaching.
Love me, she assures, and I wonder if she’s crazy. Let’s be lovebirds…
Let’s be love-
I snap awake. Gain consciousness of the white walls around and the fading gray tiles on which I dozed. The bible I brought along is open. I’ve been over here for an hour. A figure is leaning over me.
I make the transition. Connecting the dots takes priority. The phrase rings in my head still. Let’s be lovebirds.
Afterword: I’ve never been in love, but this is what God wants of us. That we love Him completely. With our whole being. Thank you for reading and following this blog. Kindly share to others.