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Forgetfulness is Bliss
In a panic, I opened my eyes, trying to shake the clammy feeling of being submerged under water. I didn’t recognize where I was or why I was there, though I had the strangest feeling I should.
Suddenly, at my side, dark eyes peeked at me, delighted or perhaps simply curious.
“Who are you?” Only three simple words and yet somehow they knocked the light right out of his eyes and I felt horrible for speaking. The all trees around us swayed slowly in the cool breeze, leaves rustling like a long forgotten symphony.
“Kathy.” He whispered, its’ significance lost to me in my hazy mind. Though I searched desperately for anything clear, only fleeting shadows appeared in my head. At my lack of response, I could see his heart shatter, this boy man who seemed to know me and yet was nameless.
“I’m so sorry.” He finally said, sitting down in the dirt beside me. “I should have come back to you sooner.” I remained silent, unsure of everything. “I was a fool! You were right.”
An image flashed in my mind, another man with an impish grin and something wondrous in his hands. A name well known that just now escaped me. A bargain of some sort, and then darkness that would take away the blazing light.
My silence did nothing to encourage the one beside me. Moving over so that he faced me, he tenderly looked into my eyes as though trying to search my very soul. “Kathy?” The assurance in his voice now wavered.
Stiffly, I stood and took a few steps in no particular direction. More images were creeping and flashing in mind, making me dizzy. Patiently, I waited for clarity. One image, eyes that looked at me and then turned away, leaving me behind in the light…the light of truth. Truth that was too much to bare.
“You.” I said, looking at the pitiful boy on the ground. “I’m this way because of you.”
He didn’t understand, or perhaps he was too afraid to admit he did. Though the haze still hung over my memories, my feelings were awake. “I can’t remember…because of you.”
“Can’t…remember?” His disbelief quickly turned to horror as he looked at the object I suddenly realized I held. A glass bottle with only a single drop of green liquid remaining. “Kathy, you…you didn’t! You went to…him?”
Him. The man who grinned and promised relief from the burning truth I’d been mercilessly thrown into. Yes, he gave me that precious glass bottle, the key to freedom, to healing from….but I knew not what from. That was the cure.
The boy had dropped his head into his hands, shoulders hunched as if bearing a great weight. Perhaps he was, bearing the weight that had been taken from me by the green liquid.
“I…well, I’m not sorry.” I said matter of factly. “Obviously I had to do it. To be driven to a point of such pain that the eraser of the memories was the only solution, well…clearly it was my last hope. I assume you know whatever it is that I’ve forgotten.”
“I didn’t think…oh Kathy. I thought, in my heart, you’d always be there in the end and…well, I was scared! But I didn’t think you would…choose to forget me.”
“I knew you then?” Indifference, plain honesty was all I felt and spoke, far more interested in the rest of my memories, which were finally sharpening. I was Kathy. I had a life to get back to.
“I’ll get you back.” He was chattering, speaking more to himself than me. Standing up, he took my hand once more and gripped it desperately.
“I should have said this when you did, but I was frightened. A coward. But I’ll say it no; I love you too. And whatever you’ve done, I’ll find a way to bring you back!”
I knew then, without remembering. “I had loved you.” I said, interrupting his dreams of heroism. “And I told you so, but you ran away.”
“Yes.” It pained him. “But I’m not running away now. I’ll save you, bring you back and then we can start a new life, together.”
I pulled my hand from his and touched a steady finger to his lips, silencing him.
“Why do I need saving?” The question startled him. “The potion saved me. Clearly I was in unbearable pain before and now I’m perfectly well. I feel….” Looking up, I could see in the far distance, through the leaves of the trees that sunlight was just up ahead. “I feel happy. And I think that’s something I haven’t felt in a long time. So I have no desire to be ‘saved’, understand?”
Slowly, I began to walk through the forest. “I don’t even know your name.” I said, leaving him behind among the swaying trees, leaving the shadow of the forest to enter the light of a new life.