I knew I had fallen asleep, because when I opened my eyes it was far later than I had expected. I groggily pulled myself upright, memories of a nightmare fading into the distance. I knew it wasn't an intense nightmare if I was able to forget it easily, and that helped calm me a little. I don't think I could handle anymore distractions at the moment.
All I could honestly think about was how I was going to start to tell Cynthia my Life Events. I took a deep breath and exhaled slowly, hoping it would come to me soon. I stood and stretched away sleep, making a move to the mini-fridge to check what was inside. Eventually I settled for a bag of chips kept on top of the fridge, and settled back on the couch to eat and think.
I sat, opening the bag and stuffing the chips as quickly as I could into my mouth, savoring the saltiness. Eating fast as if I would never eat again was a bad habit of mine that I could never seem to break. But now wasn't time to think of that, not with these other things weighing down on me. I sighed, crumpling the bag slowly. Anything to keep my mind from going back to what's going to happen tonight.
Almost two hours passed, and it was nearly eight PM when Cynthia called, telling me she'd be back soon. My hands shook and I had trouble breathing. It was almost time, and I wasn't ready. I had rehearsed my words several times, both outloud and in my head, and both sounded pathetic. There just didn't seem to be a way to explain myself without looking foolish. I didn't have much time to dwell, however, because as soon as I changed into nightwear, she was back.
"Hey there, lazy! How's it goin'?" She bounced, her chipper attitude unstoppable. I noticed she had bags of books and leftover food that she steadily placed on the coffee table. I pretended there wasn't a thing wrong with me tonight, but I knew I wouldn't be able to disguise it for too long. She hummed to herself, digging through a bag for a good book. "Anyway, I got some stuff I think you might like. Why'd you stay behind, anyways? It wasn't a very eventful day planned, ya know." She smiled at me, her eyes shimmering with playfulness.
I sighed, getting up to walk to the bedroom. "Yeah, well, I didn't feel too swell, alright?" I told her, too tired to think of an actual good reason. I needed to save my voice, and to say I was nervous was an understatement. She was silent a moment, but then followed right behind me with her book in her hand. "Well, lemme know when you're off your man-period, kay?" She winked, snatching her night clothes and rushed to the bathroom.
I stood there, shaking my head, and went to sit at the right edge of the bed, doing the best I could to smash down my thoughts until they disappeared. My efforts were, of course, useless. Immediately I felt my inner-self feeling for her, while my outer-self tried hard to strangle it down. I secretly hoped she'd wear her orange tanktop and shorts, and just as quickly as the thought popped up, I crushed it, feeling disgusted with myself.
As much as I love looking at her, I'd never stoop down as low as to touch her or perv after her. Too much time with my father killed any chance I would have ended up like that. When Cynthia came out of the bathroom, she was in fact wearing the tank top, but wore long purple bottoms instead. I turned away, keeping my back facing the wall, away from her. She hummed again, opening her book to read. I breathed hard, looking into my hands. It was now or never. I waited no more than five minutes, and then I jumped in.
"Cynthia...I have to tell you something." My voice cracked, and I coughed to clear it. I sat in momentary silence, listening hard for her reaction. "Hm? What is it?" She mumbled, lost in her book. I took a deep breath, still staring at my hands, facing away from her. "There's something you need to know. About me." I braved a peek over my shoulder, and I could see that she was putting her book down and turning to face me. She sat with her legs crossed on the bed, leaning her cheek into her hand. " What is it?" She asked quietly, staring at me with genuine concern.
I sighed, moving my fingers nervously. Here goes everything.
"I know what you and Xavier are doing. And I give up. You win. I want to tell you some of my life events. Not all, but some." I rambled on, looking at only my hands as I told her. This wasn't even the hard part. I suppressed a groan. She tilted her head at me, a small smile playing on her lips. "Really now? Well that sounds nice. What are life events, by the way?" She smiled wamly at me, and I refused to meet her eyes. Then I gave in and groaned.
"Life events...You know. Big important life happenings! You know..." I mumbled, exasperated. How do I explain my own stupid word inventions? She seemed to get it though, because she nodded, a look of clarity appearing on her face. "I get it," she said. "Well, I'm all ears my friend. Go on and tell me." She cupped her chin with both hands, giving me an encouraging smile. I breathed. So far so good.
"Alright...Well...a long time ago...I met this woman. Her name was Rosary," I began uncertainly, the painful memories already beginning to flood me. I turned back around, staring only at my lap. Cynthia sat in respectful silence. "And at first, I was confused by her. I didn't understand her and she seemed bright and unnaturally happy. Kind of just like-" I stopped myself before I finished. Kind of just like you, Cynthia. It was right on my tongue, but I stopped it in time. No need to let out embarrassing hints that I had felt for her, especially knowing that she probably would have laughed.
She didn't say anything, though. She just continued to look thoughtfully at me, her expression serious. "Well, it took time, but eventually I fell for her. And I was baffled to find that she liked me too. After a few years we got married, and it was the happiest time of my life." I breathed, feeling the weight of my own voice (That I hated.). When I glanced back, Cynthia was grinning at me. "Chax, that is so precious! How sweet." She said, dreamily, happy vibes gushing from her. I merely shook my head, unfortunantely knowing the whole thing.
"Yes, well, it was the one time I truly loved my life, and I don't exaggerate when I say that." I sighed, bracing myself. "Eventually...she was pregnant, and we found that we were going to have a girl." I bit my lip hard, the inevitable sinking feeling that I knew would come, was beginning to enter my chest. Cynthia let out a few soft "Aww"s. I almost laughed at that, knowing my story was nothing to coo over. "I was so excited and thrilled to be a father." My voice cracked again, and I swallowed. Breathe, breathe, breathe.
Cynthia sat and listened with silent intensity, hanging onto my words. I looked at my hands, now sweaty. "The day finally came," I forced the words out. "And Rosary went into labor. It seemed like a thousand life times, but our daughter was finally born. But there was something else..." I coughed to hide my feelings. My heart was an anchor, and the memories were sinking it down lower and lower. "She had a problem with her heart...And three days after delivery, she....She died." I breathed the last word, holding onto my arms. I bit down hard on my lip, damning the tears that were about to spill.
Don't do it, fucking idiot. Don't you dare cry in front of this woman! It's bad enough you do it at night! I breathed hard and heavy, eventually turning to look at her. She gazed at me, her eyes warm and full of care. She placed a hand on my shoulder, and I bit my lip harder. "There, now. Calm down, hun." She said tenderly, and I almost lost it. One life event. That's all I could handle tonight. Anymore and I'd be a complete mess. She caressed my shoulder, not saying a word.
I turned around to face her, staring for just a second, at her beautiful face. I wanted to lean in and kiss her, but I gripped the thought and tossed it away. No need to ruin any more parts of my life. Instead I let my tears flow, bowing my head down so she wouldn't see my face. She surprised me by pulling me into her. She held me, leaning my head on her shoulder, and I honestly couldn't handle it amymore. I sobbed, wrapping my arms around her, breathing in her sweet scent. Please don't let me go, please, please, please. I silently begged, my tears running onto her shoulder. She didn't show any signs of any of it bothering her. She just held me, not saying a word. No "It will be alright.", No "Calm down.". Nothing like that at all. She just sat there and comforted me, dulling the pain in my heart, if only for an evening.
And honestly, that's all I could have asked for.