aftertaste

It was a long day at work. Her head hurt. She pondered swallowing the Tylenol in front of her, resisted. Maybe some coffee would help.

4.58 PM.

She’d spent 9 hours at her desk and all she wanted was to sleep. But there was something she needed to do. It didn’t make sense to her but these days what she did made no sense to her absolutely. It was a moot exercise analyzing. As she gazed at the sidebar, she started writing what she hoped would be a small simple mail. Something to cheer him up as he went under. So she did, easily and naturally. Words and emotions flowed in harmony.

Hope you’re doing fine.
My day’s going ok… how’s yours?
Does it hurt?

Rhetoric. Simple. Obvious. Safe. Understated.

A reply when she reached home. A mail from him always left her feeling surprised and happy, and she reads his few lines. It was his usual. Until she reached the end.

3 simple words.

Oblivious to her surroundings she read as they hit her like large, strong, warm, wet raindrops in a tropical storm. They left her excited, breathless, happy and drenched. It had been a while since she was at the end of such closings. The last word. She’d yearned as a child and as a woman to be called that. There it was in black and white doing a little salsa at her.

On a high, she was a mere spectator as the two argued.

Left half – Is he drunk?
Right half – No he isn’t!
Left half – That is not him. Look at that. Do you really think he would?
Right half – I don’t care! He said it, he must mean it.
Left half – He’s been drugged. It’s the drugs talking.
Right half – No! Drugs don’t make you say lies. He meant it.
Left half – oh gobbledygook! Look, he’s a cautious dude. That’s unlike him. That’s drugs talking alright. Emotions are for you right-wing folks!!
Right half – Oh shut up already, read it again. I know it’s there, am just a little surprised and er..happy that he actually typed it out. you know, that’s sorta cute..
Left half – There you go again. Girl, get a grip. He’s an organized planner. Without proper reason and motive, there’s no frikkin way he’d ever type that.
Right half – But that’s his sub-conscious self typing himself out. I mean, isn’t that what drugs or drinks do to you?
Left half – You don’t get it do you? So what if that’s his deeper sense laid bare for you, that’s not him when he wakes up. Right? Tell me am right. You know am right!
Right half – Maybe you are, but you make it sound so devious like he’s planning a whole circus!
Left half – of course not! He is the whole circus!!
Right half – That’s it! I’ve absolutely had it with you. I don’t need no rhyme or reason. I am happy, happy, HAPPY! Can you hear me?! Leave me alone!

*bangs door shut*
With such unbridled enthusiasm, she skipped into the evening and night.

Bumping into each other quite unexpectedly next morning, each grinned happily, the usual hellos exchanged, and without a warning he brings up his mail. Apologetic for his stupor he sheepishly declared that he had no knowledge of what he wrote. She smiled. Teasing, she assured him that she wouldn’t hold him to his closing. That shook his already frayed nerves, and with a quick reminder he starts to laugh.
She gaped at him.

What’s so funny?
It’s so funny, that’s unlike me.

She smiled despite the brackish aftertaste. Was it the saltwater taffy she had an hour ago or was it just her imagination?

Like a child whose blanket got yanked off in the middle of the night, she sinks further into her chair. Can somebody shut the door already? It’s getting cold in here.

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14 thoughts on “aftertaste

  1. That was a jaffa, rads. You certainly had me fending. I sure am glad I wore my helmet. But, only one more bouncer allowed this over.<br/><br/>And I read this twice! sob sob!

  2. Dushti – oh well, I deviate occasionally, when the little things trigger me. :) Maverick – it’s the same – right = heart, left = brain. more or less…me thinks.

  3. SK – ahem! :) Pilgrim – I guess I could make one up now? “Don’t get drenched in the storm if you aren’t up for the cold that follows.” That work? :)

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