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Regrets

One moment. One glance. Actually, it was more like a collision. We were both biking on the riverwalk, in different directions, each one of us lost in our own thoughts. And then, out of the blue, CRASH! And you were sprawled on top of me. Neither of us was hurt, though, and the whole situation seemed quite embarrassing. So, naturally, I started to laugh. You quickly joined in. And this unlikely beginning of us was just that. One moment, one glance. A long time ago, you told me that was all it took for me to change your life. A long time ago, you told me that was all it took to fall in love.

A long time ago, I disagreed. A long time ago, I wasn’t in love with you. A long time ago, I would never have jumped in front of a speeding bullet to save your life.
But for me, that isn’t the case. Nothing changed in that long time, nothing made me love you back. Not the time you spent trying to impress me, not your incredible kindness and understanding, not your indescribably beauty.
So why, if nothing has changed in my mind since the first time we met, am I the one bleeding on the ground? What idiotic whim of mine could have resulted in my desperate lunge to save your life? My death will cause you so much more pain than yours could ever cause me. I was always the one known for acting on foolish impulse, though. I’m sure that’s all it is, because I was also always the one known for incredible selfishness and arrogance. I would never save you if I didn’t love you. Right?
I think all this in the time it takes for you to realize that your life has been saved at the cost of mine. But, of course, you won’t see it that way. You won’t acknowledge that I’m doomed, not until I breathe my last. I see your eyes widen in shock, see terror cross your face.

Without warning, the first wave of pain washes over me, and my body thuds to the ground. My hand flies to my stomach, where a gaping hole is giving forth a river of scarlet, and I hear the moan that escapes my lips.

You’re kneeling beside me now, your eyes frantic. You immediately begin to rip fabric off from your shirt, but I lift my hand and place it on yours, panting at the effort it takes, and whisper,
“Don’t bother.” With a jolt I realize how weak my voice sounds. A fresh stab of pain makes me wince, and you clutch my hand tightly.
To distract myself from the pain, I try to concentrate fully on your expression and movements, and am surprised to find that it doesn’t hurt so much when I manage to lose myself in the agonized lines creasing your face and the genuine pain clouding your eyes. It’s evident how much you really love me. I find myself feeling guilty that I was never capable of that level of affection, that all I ever did was brush you away. And still, you came back, over and over again. You never gave up.
A distant look must be creeping across my eyes as I reminisce sorrowfully, because I see panic in your eyes, and then you’re shaking me, still managing to remain gentle.
“Don’t leave me...please don’t leave me!” You cry, terror laced through every syllable you speak.
“It’s inevitable.” I mumble as you force me out of my reverie into the world of pain I had just left. I have never been afraid of death, and there’s nothing in my life that’s important enough to tie me to this earth.
That is, until you catch my eye and something falls into place. At first I’m not aware of the difference, because the pain has become overwhelming. But then, after thinking about your perserverance, your immense kindness, and the gentleness with which you now treat my dying person, I finally understand what you told me so long ago. That one moment and one glance is enough to fall in love. That’s all it has taken for me to realize what I’ve been missing, ever since the first day under the bridge. I tried so hard not to love you. I realize all this now, and now that I’m dying, it really doesn’t matter anymore.

What a waste my life has been without you.





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TerraTAZz said...
May 5, 2011 at 10:13 am
Loved this story so much! Your writing warms my heart! Keep it up!
 
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