I am 17 and in love with a slightly older man. In the eyes of society it would not be acceptable, not just because of the age…that is not what makes this a sin. I have a problem with liking older men. I know that, I’ve always known that from the beginning. But what makes this different is he’s 28 and there’s a silver band glistening on his left ring finger. It’s silver, custom fit, and I’m sure I’ve seen engravings, but the names I dare not read. 559Please respect copyright.ＰＥＮＡＮＡBce078OQQE
Here we sit. It is early noon and the sun just made it past halfway up in the sky. People buzz by unknowing. Chattering happening in the tables both to the left and right of us. A woman past the fence in the back with a little toy poodle. The waiters and waitresses are filling up empty glasses and carrying around trays in one hand as they carry a press clean white towel on the arm of the other. No one ever looks our way. No one notices or cares.
There is nothing unusual about us, yet I keep feeling like a hundred eyes are piercing through me. I am holding one delicate, lengthy menu in front of me. I casually flip through the pages at a slow and measured pace, but can not see one word on those pages. I’m looking around again, in small glances trying to take in the surrounding, hoping no one I knew would pass by and interrupt. But it’s a pointless fear, we are far from where any of my mates would venture. Yet it isn’t the fear of others seeing us that I couldn’t prevent from penetrating my mind every ticking second. Something else deep inside me already catches my breath in between each second. I could only hear my breath catch as I am looking around. I could feel my chest rise and fall, and hear the heartbeats twice as much. It remained suffocating in this open space in which we sit.
Time passes in a blur. I can hear him speak, but his voice seems so far away. My own reply even sounds like it tinkles within a bubble and only I couldn’t hear it. I could have sworn I haven’t spoken but it seems I have, for the waitress extends her hand out before me. It takes me a few seconds to realize she was waiting on me for the menu. I look up and over at the waitress as I try to draw on a smile as I hand her my shaking menu. I don’t remember what I ordered, in fact I don’t remember ordering anything at all.
I am trying to focus on his words, but I could only concentrate on how I was holding my hands over my stomach as I feel my chest catching once again on my humid breaths as the weight of the world seems to tunnel in. Suddenly I am looking through this tunnel, the rest of the world seems to be just a bubble on the outside. All I see are his lips forming words, but I could not comprehend. Then they are speaking again, it seems so astonishing how they could be moving again, but still, once again I could not hear. All I could hear is the world outside, it is like listening to people speak while I’m underwater in a swimming pool. It echoes, it is loud, it’s comforting, and one could easily be lost in the collection of random noises, as if it is a lovely symphony, but nothing makes sense. However, it is also that sudden need to understand the voices that breaks the spell and causes that lovely melody to erupt into a horrendous screeching. Everything slurs into everything else, and cohesiveness is abruptly lost.
“I’m so sorry” I hear myself say as I stand up abruptly without even having the idea to do so. The waitress hesitates slightly from putting down our plates to glance up at me briefly, before hastily putting down the last plate and standing to ask if there is anything else. One could tell she wants to quickly take her leave. I’m gripping at my head slightly with one hand as the other continues to rest on my abdomen. I could see him staring as he dismisses her to go casually about her way.
Then to me he asks “hey, you alright?” with a softly whispering voice.
Yet I could only shake my head slightly because I could not breathe.
“Sit down won’t ya?” he stands and walks to my side, standing & waiting to help push in my chair, once I would have a seat again. I could feel my eyes glazing over as I was no longer focusing on him. I could feel my brows inch closer together, my hands are sweaty and too my side they clench. His eyes are naturally gentle, but his composure is always cold, unmoving and demanding. Yet all that patience he has seems to be escaping into the world. I inhale a breath so I could proceed. It is as if the smallest motion, such as sitting, inquires all my concentration and effort to successfully complete.
He, joining me, resumes his position, unfolding his napkin and placing it on his lap. I do the same, but for me this lunch is merely just about going through the motions. I know, I could feel him watching me analytically, but I couldn’t bring up my usual giddiness. I could not bring myself to meet his gaze.
Finally, he puts down his fork, picks up his napkin, wipes his mouth and folds it beside his plate. Then he proceeds to push the plate forward and folds his arms on the table in front of him and leans in, just looking at me, unmoving.
I continue at poking my plate of linguini with my fork, pushing it from one side of the plate to the other side of the plate. I could not look up, and I could not speak, I remain mute.
“Alright what’s wrong? I’ve spent the whole day chatting the daylight away here and you have yet to say a word?”
I look up with only my eyes, but my head is still cast down. I could feel the moisture build up in my eyes, and I curse internally at myself. I remember my promise from earlier, that I wouldn’t cry. I am not going to sit here looking like a fool, and I am sure enough not going to sit here looking like a weeping fool. “I just,”I start to say, “I just,” once again I have no clue on what I want to say. I just what? I just want? can’t? need? what!? What is it that I want to say. “I just can’t…” I could feel my voice quivering, weakening at every word and attempt that is coming, tumbling after, “I just can’t...do this anymore”. Now I could feel the tears threatening to overflow, pushing at the brim.
“Do what?” his husky voice remains low, only loud enough for the two of us to hear, but I could feel a tinge of anger rise and echo through his voice. “What can you not do?” the rage resumes picking up. He seems to be rising, as if at any moment he would be ready to step out of his seat and lean even closer into my face.
I let my head continue to hang and allow my eyes to cast down at the edge of the table before me, resisting the urge to flinch. I feel the air press against my chest. Words form into bubbles and caught in my throat. My jaw hardens as it clenches tightly close. I force my eyes close and could feel the heat rise into my face as the cold proceeds down my spine to surround me in every direction, causing me to descend into a state of a quivering fit.
Finally he leaned in, hovering over both me and the space between us. “Look at me damn it!”
And at that demand I obey. I do look up. I look up and a tear escapes the rim of my eyes, spilling down onto my blazing pink cheeks. Then seconds later another one follows, and then another, and another. I couldn’t prevent it and I was shaking my head back and forth, at myself, not at him though I’m sure he’s angry by how I could not stop.
“Don’t cry. God please, don’t you cry!” He shakes his head as well and sat further into his own chair no longer hanging over the table. “God. I come all the way out here, just hoping for this to be a good time. A break from the foolish upper class narrow minded dullness and what do I get!?” He pauses looking at me, who is still trying to wipe away my tears. I’m looking down in hopes that it will cast away my foolish looks. “I just don’t know what I’ve done.” he finally said.
For the longest time he just remains there unmoving. I could hear the comments passing under carefully low voices in the surrounding tables and even in the tables over. People watching, yet not seeing at all. They glance only to turn away in uncertainty considering what they’re witnessing.
Yet no one, not one single person knows. Not the mother in the powder blue dress with ringlets of blond, not the father in his delicate vest, nor the elder man with his cane, or the girl with her doll, not one person sitting out in the sun or in the shade knows, that today I was 17.
Nor would the man before me ever know, that in eight months time, I will be caring for a child, who will never know of his father, because today I will be crying for him, because he never will.ns 184.108.40.206da2