THE TRAITS OF GUY MARTYR’S CHARACTER
Just get up on time and meet Emily for friendly conversation! Simple, take it one little goal at a time. Point A to B, and don’t dilly dally the time in between. You’ll find your lover later. You’re sure she’s worried too. Enough of that, Emily first. That’s how you set up your day, to have breakfast with Emily. There is hope that changing your morning routine will skip the part where you zone out, lured to an abyssal adventure through perilous paranoia. To that end, there was little change today. Stop thinking about it, stay on task. You‘ve woken up in time and all you have to do is leave for the bus.The bus ride passes you by in such a daze that you were at risk of missing your stop. It has happened on lesser days, and you’re thankful today isn’t one of them. While you walk to the coffee shop to meet your platonic friend, the sun sweats bangs of hair into your eyes. Close them and you’re left with a sour impression from nothing in particular, but vaguely centered around your lover. The feeling parts while you sit parallel to where you‘d imagine Emily to seat herself. She greets with haste, late to the coffee shop patio. The small fold out table top already holds your drinks. Skim chai latte extra foam for her, a medium brew coffee for yourself.
Talk and talk and talk. Everything from chit chat to heavy doses of tit for tat. It’s an assembly of crashing ideas, far flung influences caught in cyclical winds for the brainstorm that devastates foundations. This is a casual conversation with a friend, like any other you’ve known and grown accustomed to. You talk distantly of you lover from time to time, trying to sound like you feel closer to her than you are. The idea that you are not close to her is all in your head.
You know it because that compromising depth insists upon itself with constant reminders. It’s there in every other hour you don’t hear from her but you know she’s not busy, probably chatting with others. She’s probably with another friend right now while you’re here with Emily. Then it pulls you down; Who’s she with? The question is striking; Your emotional response festers beyond logic.
Before you know it, Emily is leaving. She’s catching a bus of her own. The friendly meeting was a success. You didn’t look preoccupied with your lover in that subtle way behind the eyes; a triumph over that damn mirror inside you’ve been at odds with. Plus you kept yourself busy for long enough that a text to your lover is rightfully justifiable. Good afternoon hun.
“Stay on task,” said the bus in a non literal way following a fair jolt from the poor street. The activity in your brain is now fuelled by coffee and a positive experience; it really was nice to see Emily again. The brainstorm merges with the abyss. A hurricane mashes through your being. The foundations, the sense and sanity and patience and every other saintly quality you’ve acquired are uprooted and tossed hap-hazardly. The bus makes a steady climb in speed, you are nearing your stop. It’s a welcome distraction to prepare yourself for. Much better food for thought in the task de-jour-deux than a rotten plate of, “Why hasn’t she replied?”
Quick, in and out. Stress the simplicity for the sake of a nice experience. You emerge from the convenience store with a hand full of junk like milk, cereal, a magazine. You carry your lover’s quality cream soda in a pocket, not a crowded plastic bag. With the provisions met, it’s a short walk home. On the way you try to think about nothing, and for now the storm has passed but it left some hefty damages. They’re apparent in the frequent visits to your inbox, a virtually dusty locale. To shake it off you keep telling yourself that she’s coming over and that she knows that you know she’s coming over. Knowing your lover, she will make her way down when she feels like it, approximately at 20:00 hrs.
You’re devastated when she leaves you that message you were so dependant on. Apparently your lover doesn’t see eye to eye with how you feel. It’s ridiculous. Impossible to see coming. The passion for the month or two you had accumulated during your relationship rains out in tears and snot. The whirl wind inside you spins your eyes as you read that message over and over. Suspicious, you also check her social media for her recent activity. She has been having fun. She has been with friends that she’s had for a longer time than you. She’s meeting new people. You curse her, you curse her whole god damn life and you’re suspicious of her friends. They’re all keeping something from you, ready for this moment when you’d be cut out of their lives by association.
To hell with her, you’re strong. You’ll deal with it. Who can help it? She’s a bitch. You don’t know how she could leave a quality, caring man like yourself.
Skip the next few days wherein you, Emily, a friend of hers and more friends of yours lounge around with petty distractions filling all the space school provides. You call skipping free time when it is affordable.
Emily’s friend, name in question, is a neat girl. You talk well with her and conversation often takes a flirty twist. You take a chance and make a move, she responds well and in no time your tongue is tunnelling its way through her; an angelic chorus of Ohhs, Mhms, and Ahhs graces your ears. Your noises are put to no such exhibition giving way to a monosyllabic lull before the pressurized water works are set off. Simple entertainment for boys and girls.
Name-in-Question calls you frequently. Almost everyday. The calls drag on without silence. It would look different on paper but the feeling is offset. You don’t know why. Dates are fun and rhythmically sexual; meet, love, talk, intro, verse, chorus.
Pet names are given and the following two weeks are remembered nostalgically significant like the first album of you favourite band that you heard and grew to love, even though it’s not their best work by far. You call her Kezia in reference to such an album. Kaz for short. She receives the name well but soon proves emotionally erratic as any hard core melody. Nearing three weeks, after the second sight of tears, you ditch Kaz.
She’s baggage, obviously oblivious to social norms. You tell yourself that you are too good for her. Unlike the last poor excuse for a girl you dated, the break up with Kaz in done face to face. Break-up is not said, but break tenderly funnels her overcast skies. You ignore the cloud that pours from behind her face.
Soon after you’re given a sour phone call from Emily, understandably upset with the relationship you’ve sustained with Kaz. The storm you had cast in Kaz tossed razors to her wrists, breasts and thighs. Emily’s words carry weight you hadn’t accounted for and before you know it, Kaz is back on your anatomy draining passion all over your sheets. The stench is chemical as if she cums K-Y product. As happy as you are to oblige the activity, an anxious crack in your foundations leads you to the reflection that you have sacrificed happiness for the well being of someone else. It’s almost all you can think about, and soon images of a distant future flash through your eyes. Some happy, others sad, all to do with a reward for your struggles with Kaz. It’s so prevalent in your thoughts that you tell a buddy late at night, then another one, then another one.
Kezia leaves you unexpectedly, a face to face confrontation, and no, she would rather not be friends. It’s perplexing why she would leave you after all you stood to do for her. All the problems in the relationship were from her in the first place. Thus the conclusion that she was extending her charity in return of yours. Joy shines through your damaged being.
Emily is distant, but you’re moving on in life and have found a job. There are new guys to meet and girls too sweet for words. One such gal makes it obvious she wants you. Tempted but not at a loss for the lessons of yester girl, you decide to be her friend with benefits for two weeks before going steady. Friends, as you say it, but the benefits always follow. She is impressed by your reserve as you swiftly lure her into your room and she obliges you with her lips.
After said two weeks she decides to tear the veil from your supposed friendship and confront you with dating, to which you agree like any civilized man, all to see her painlessly dump you barely one week after. She says it is because of her lacking school habits which now need her full attention. When you see her with a bisexual work associate, you get the bigger picture. Euphoria builds you for the coming days as you choose to accept it and not make a scene. You feel mature. You brag about your maturity to your closest friends and curious others you’ve just met.
The dry spell comes. For seven long months you strike out, not as if you were trying, and work and socializing take up most of your time, education being separated from them by sleep (in terms of priority). You see beautiful potential leis and loves everyday, most of which are gay or committed to others for better or for worse. You find yourself spending a lot of time with a worse off girl, being supportive although her jealous boy friend carries the stench of danger. She stays with him with saintly forgiveness and vain optimism, clinging to the ideal life that she once imagined she’d have with Mr. Right.
You see that he is indeed Mr. Wrong, but she won’t listen and jeopardizes the friendship almost every time you pose protest to her love. An effort is made not to fall for her anymore than you already have. She is treated as a friend, sometimes as a distant one. When something goes wrong, you’re the first she comes to. Eventually their bond rusts and snaps, you’re there to catch her. She loves you, as a friend. Congratulations for braving the wrong ladder. Taking a chance, a kiss is given. She takes a risk with you and you make sure to shower her with a lot of attention and care. Every other day you are with her. Her scent, her taste; all her quirks are adopted as priceless. It has been said that four months is the time it takes to fall in love, but you can feel it coming by the sixth week of dating her.
Sometimes she has migraines and doesn’t wish to speak with anyone. You silently lay next to her for hours during her pain and hold her hand. You think it’s a sweet gesture and that it will keep you in her good graces. A friend circle is also shared between you two; a second reinforcement holding the cracks of your relationship together.
Then she stands you up. Thoughtfully, you suppose a migraine has taken her. One text, short, worried and caring. You’re being stood up outside her condo. It’s winter. You follow a car into the complex as it raises a community garage door. Text two. No reply. The least she could do is reply. Why isn’t she replying? That storm is rising in its erratically tempered way you’ve become accustomed to.
An hour passes by since the first knock leading to systematic knocks since. Then another hour, four text messages and twelve phone calls in total. She answers the door and tells you she needs her space. You oblige her but you know it’s over. There is a towel draped around her waist. Her hair and eyes are wet; make up ran down her cheeks. Not even a hug was given. The idea that she’s cheating on you sends flurries that are too much to deal with right now. An embarrassing display of waterworks is what you become for many sleepless nights.
You try not to bash her name when you tell others, but there’s a prevalent bias that floods with the hurt in your voice. In time, although you don’t reconnect with this particular girl, you tell others of her greatness and how she humbled you and that you’re a better person for all of the suffering that you did.
Then there’s THE girl. Dating her is risky. You know a broken heart will come about, but you put those thoughts aside for the sake of an easygoing time with this new girl. You’ve known her for months, there’s no questioning your friendship and shared interests. Sex is a subject best left for mutual exploration, but then again, when isn’t it? You feel you trust her and when she makes a move on you, a little talk flies by and passion takes its place. Mary’s reign in your life escalates quickly.
Feeling more mature from the cumulative experiences in your roster, Mary is treated to you in a greatest hits sort of way. You’re just as you as you’ve ever been, but more subtle and relaxed. When she asks for a break a year later, you handle it better than last time. She’ll be back, you tell yourself. Seeing her picture online; its like she is showing off the gold you had and lost. Clouds form but the downpour runs dry. Giving her the space to make this decision was easier said than done, and often times you refer to her by the sweet pet name you’d given hear while the two of you were happily in love. Love is something you bring up subtly to contrast when she doesn’t say it. Goodnight. I love you, goodnight Mary. Why doesn’t she say she loves you too? You feel used, as much as you appreciate the time you’ve spent with her. Your foundations shake with a dread to their core. While snooping online you overhear that one of her long time friends became single around the beginning of your break. Maybe she broke up with you for him? You disregard the thought but it stirs a dangerous twister.
By now you’ve gotten used to how backward most girls are. It’s assumed that there is something wrong with her before you even meet her. Why can’t anyone be as sunny and straight forward as you? It is concluded that the game of love and loss is best helmed by those with correlating atmospheres. You sputter that exact line to close friends, and those curious enough to inquire; you fell as if you’ve suffered for the lessons that you share with others. Emily knows you from a distance. She know you’ve learned nothing. That’s why she doesn’t let herself become trapped in your vacant land of narcissistic romanticized metaphors which orbit your martyrdom. Emily knows it’s all a fancy way of thinking that makes you feel unique and mature. For her, it’s a waste of time. Emily just wants a lover; a simple goal made complex by players like yourself.