Yes, you read it right–I’ve come up with another extract from TRFTN (The Rose For The Night), because I cannot think of an interesting topic to write about. If I write now, I’m sure nothing is good is coming out of me. 😛
Well, this one is in continuation with the one I posted here, so if you haven’t already read the first part of TRFTN, I suggest you click on the link and read it before you go ahead with this one. For the ones who have, please go on and knock yourselves out! 🙂
We talked about casual stuff until Gina fell asleep on my shoulder, and Megan and I had to carry her to the guest room. After that, I kissed Megan goodbye, and she left me alone.
While lying in my bed beneath the crisp new sheets, staring at the canopy of the bed—Megan had gone all girlie while embellishing my room, and replaced my old bed with a four-poster with a net canopy draping it (not at all my taste, but I didn’t want Megan to think I didn’t appreciate her efforts)—my mind drifted away to all the happy memories of the past, my childhood for most part. The fact that after such a long time, I could be with both my best friends.
And suddenly, the agonizing reminiscences of all my years with Malcolm didn’t matter that much. Like it was only a bad dream, a nightmare that I would do anything to avoid. I guess I know why some people don’t have confidence in love—because in the end, it just doesn’t do any good—any good—at all, to anyone whatsoever. Call me an idiot to have fallen in that trap, and landed myself into all this trouble.
Well, I understand the every-cloud-has-a-silver-lining-deal now, too. All that I’ve been through has at least made me realize that love doesn’t exist. Even if it does, it only does so in movies, books and television sitcoms.
To cut the long story short, I pledge to go all ‘anti-love’ now. I decided to condemn love the very day I filed for the divorce.
Gina, however, has very different views on the subject. She plainly refuses to see things in the same light as me, even though she’s probably the only one who has seen me suffer each day with Malcolm.
‘Avra, love is never lost. It will never hate you, no matter how much you might detest it.’ She said to me the day that the magistrate gave legal importance to my plea for separation from my husband.
We were driving down to get coffee, and I was driving too fast for my perception. I drive fast only when I’m angry or disappointed.
‘Yeah, right. You can say that, sure. Because you haven’t been duped by the man you once believed would protect you from the evils of the world!’ I screamed, probably for the first time, at my best friend who was supposedly trying to make me feel better.
But I don’t think it is a great idea to talk about the ‘greatness of love’ to a recently divorced twenty-four-years-old chick with a sour temper. Gina picked up the hint, and didn’t speak anything for a good five minutes. Just as we were getting out of the car, she whispered something gently—emphasizing each word to make sure I understood everything—something I’ve not yet been able to get out of my mind.
‘I guess I cannot change what you feel at the moment, because of very obvious reasons. But someday, someone with just walk into your life and prove that you are wrong.’ She smiled at me, and there was something in her eyes, which told me that she really believed in what she’d just said. The look in her eyes and the words she’d said are still as fresh in my mind as the day I’d heard them.
Oh, well, that we’ll see. Gina can say what she wants—with all those divine looks and all—but one thing I’m sure of, more certain than I’ve ever been of anything at all, that I can never, ever fall in love again. At least, not intentionally.
Concluding on that thought, I closed my eyes, snuggling deep beneath the comforter. Life can get crazy for all it wants, but I’ll just have to fight it back. Because that’s what I do—I fight. And if I’m lucky enough—which is very likely, regardless of the situation—I win. More often than it rains in Lawrence–which is quite a lot, by the way.
The morning was unusually fresh. For a change, it wasn’t raining, and the sun shone bright and reassuring through the mist, which brought a big, goofy smile on my face.
Gina was even happier at the breakfast table. ‘Good morning, Camelot! Want some coffee?’ she handed me a cup of hot, steaming caffeine, and I noticed that she had already showered and changed, even though the clock claimed it was only eight-thirty in the morning.
‘Thanks. What’s up with you, by the way? You’re an early bird all of a sudden?’ I teased her, and she rolled her eyes at me.
‘I’ve always been an early bird, sweetie. You’re supposed to be the sloth, remember?’ was her witty rejoinder. I snickered at that.
‘See I got to go check out some case papers at Mark’s place, so I’ll be out for four hours, tops. What are you going to do?’ she asked, catching me completely off-guard. I had no idea about what I was going to do, not in the least.
‘I don’t know, really. Read some books at the library, maybe?’ I said. It had been quite a while since I’d been to the library, with all the legal proceedings going on. Mrs. Flynn—the librarian there—must have missed me a bit. After her son got married, he moved out, leaving that poor old lady alone. I’m pretty much all that she has for a family.
‘You and your boring books, Camelot.’ Gina sighed to express her world-weariness, and then said, ‘well, I’ll leave you to it, then. See you later, babe.’ She slapped my hand on her way out, grumbling loudly as she stepped out and into a water puddle. It might not have rained, but water in any form—except the one that comes in the shower—is always a thorn in Gina’s side.
I heard the engine of her new M3 purr silently outside as I dragged myself out of the couch and climbed upstairs to get ready. I didn’t like being alone in the house. I wanted to get back to civilization. Urgently.
And so, in less than thirty minutes, I was at the doorstep of the public library, showered, clean and ready to face another day. Mrs. Flynn’s face lit up as soon as she laid her eyes on me.
‘Avra! Oh dear, it’s been such a long time! I thought I’d never see you around here anymore. Are you okay? I heard what happen’—she began, but I cut her off.
You know, I’m sick and tired of anyone and everyone asking me ‘Are you okay’ and saying senseless stuff like ‘It’s so sad’, ‘I hope it turns out fine’ and blah, blah, blah. If someone talks that way to me one more time, I swear to God I’m going to start throwing punches.
But not at Mrs. Flynn, sure, because she’s over sixty and I really like her. So, to avoid any violent outburst, I smiled at her and said, ‘I’m good, Mrs. Flynn, really. And I’m sure you’ll see me around more now. May I have my book now, please?’
‘Oh yes, certainly! Here it is.’ She handed me ‘Sense and Sensibility’—the one book I always like to read when I have free time. I do read other books, sure, but this one book always finds its way into my hands when I’m stressed, angry or really happy. It is, for want of a better word, my favorite.
I took the book from her, and went to sit on my usual seat beside the window, towards the southern end of the library. I like sitting at the corner; that way, nobody disturbs me, and even if someone does get lost and venture into my corner, he or she never talks to me. Never. I mean, come on, who would like to talk to a girl sitting in the corner of the library all by herself, reading Jane Austen? No one. Except Jenna, Mrs. Flynn’s assistant, who delivers my regular vanilla latte at my table.
I’d barely read past the preface when a paper cup smelling of vanilla essence came down at my table. I smiled, thinking it was Jenna, and mumbled—since it is considered rude to speak loudly in a library—‘Thanks, Jen. A little early, don’t you think? I just got here.’
I said, and took a sip nonetheless. I cannot resist vanilla latte. It’s my only vice, so to speak.
‘Since when did you start bothering about time, Ria?’ a man’s voice answered me. A very familiar, deep voice, craggy because of the cold he’d caught. Though I knew who it could possibly be—because there’s only one person who calls me by that nickname, Ria—but when I looked up at him, he definitely noticed the astonishment in them, as his lips pulled up into big grin of self-satisfaction. ‘Last time I checked, you couldn’t care less about the seconds ticking by.’ He smiled even wider after making that remark.
‘Avra, love is never lost. It will never hate you, no matter how much you might detest it.’ Sound familiar to you? If you’ve been here a few times, you must know where this particular quote comes from. Someone, somebody very, very special, told this to me once. I don’t remember how many times I’ve mentioned it in my posts. For the first time, in this one
Let me know what you think about the second chapter, especially if you find any typing or grammatical mistakes. I’ll be waiting! 🙂