There’s 15 minutes to 5:30pm and I’ve been watching the hands on the clock more than my computer screen.
My corner office at UTC is small, but it’s home – and has been for the last four years. I love people so much I decided to take a customer service gig at a newly established cellphone company ( sense my sarcasm ). The hours were long but the company was small so I was hoping I’d eventually move up the ranks. Besides, I needed something to occupy my time these past few years. Travis and I have been on and off these past few years and it was starting to get difficult to hang on without feeling sick. In the midst of a job I was starting to resent, and a husband I went days avoiding, fighting or both – none of the above was ever constantly on my mind.
” Nathan ” I started mouthing.
“…Philips Square ” I give in, losing the inner battle I’ve been having with myself not to think about Malachi – or Nathan rather, my “skating instructor ” is what I told my husband. I don’t know how much of my story about he actually believed, but it hadn’t mattered. I had not heard from Malachi in nearly four years. I say wondering if he thought about me, or how I felt. I click open my WordPress account and begin a new post. I begin on his eyes, but never leave the subject, ten minutes in I’m satisfied with my work and I’m ready to post. A window pops up on my screen explaining the PC is about to update itself. It’s 5:30 and it’s time to leave anyway. I click publish and let the computer turn off itself.
A few blocks ago I decided walking would clear my head, but I’m in heels and there’s not a lot of sunshine to walk on. I decide to catch the next available street car. I surf the internet to pass the time on my smart phone. I had had just enough of my service provider and by my next billing cycle I was ready to leave; running my data up somehow made me feel like I was winning – even when I wasn’t.
The street car’s door folds back like drapes as I enter I reach into my purse searching for my day pass.
” Your fare comes to $1,337 dollars” the driver says. Breaking my focus on my YouTube video is Malachi driving the street car. He’s looking at me grinning from ear to ear.
I dig around in my purse and pull out my day pass.
“Just put it on my card” I reply.
Malachi responds with an eye-roll and a punch to the leaver forcing the door closed.
“Well played Desire” he says finally.
I overstay my street car ride over an hour long. I stand the entire ride catching up with him, the soreness in my feet completely ignored by the freshness of the conversation. When I’ve exhausted his ear and every other passenger of the street car, I get off a block a way from my place.
I’ll be heading home to change and freshen up for our –
“Night meeting” is what we were calling it. Why would I take a happily married woman out on a date? I thought to myself. That’s just un-American, luckily I’m Canadian; I have no problem wining and dining a beautiful woman who won’t have the time to call me tomorrow.
We meet up at Nathan Phillips Square, where we went ice-skating four years ago. We glide around on the ice making fools of ourselves for an hour, and after a few questionable falls she makes to have me help her up we spend the remainder of the night at a Tim Hortons nearby.
” What would you do in a world where love was enough ? ” she asks without looking up, her eyes locked on the inside of her French Vanilla, stirring it to perfection.
” If love was enough…” I repeat out loud getting a feel for the question.
” I think people would be too afraid of it” I answer.
” In a world where love is enough, it essentially eliminates alternatives” I explain. My statement breaks her stirring as she looks up and listens in.
” If love is greater than all, I think we’d be too afraid to admit that we are in love. Announcing our love for someone would be a verbal commitment of eternity. It would trump the evil actions we are all capable of, and the pain we put our loved ones through, knowing that once they declared their love for us, we are free to treat them however we want. ” I take a breath, wondering if I left any stone unturned in explanation. Desire sits for awhile saying nothing and eventually goes back to stirring her drink.
I grab an abandoned newspaper in close proximity and look for another topic of discussion. I pull it up over my face to allow her to feel without feeling eyes barring down on her.
I peep over-top of the paper, she’s looking right at me. She seems unsettled, and finally opens her mouth.
” Tell me something that will keep me from going home tonight.” She says, blinking hard and biting her lip. I can feel her heartbeat from across the table.
I fold the newspaper up and put it in my back pocket. I match Desire’s gaze trying to win on the mental battle we are having. She leans back in her chair, surrendering to me.
“If your heart and your head is in it : you’re in love”
I begin my attack
“If your hearts in it but your head isn’t: you’re no longer in love ”
“If your heart’s not in it but your head isn’t: you’re in love with the idea”
“If your heart’s not in it and your head’s not in it: well, I hope the sex is good. ”
” Let’s check into a hotel” she says, standing up an grabbing my hand.