I am at my desk, reading a review of this new book I already have plans on buying. My manager walks by with a man and a woman, I click down the tab and begin to click my mouse. Next to me my colleague, Benji, does the same except he has the football results up. I glance at him and we both smirk, then put on our professional faces. My manager walks by and my mouse hovers down to my tab again, I’m wondering if I can click and collect it. The trio walk back to my desk.
“O yeah Amy can do that for you, she is our tech girl,” my manager says smiling at the two people she is talking to. “This is Dorian and Lysa.”
I want to roll my eyes, but such actions could get me fired and I have plans to spend money, so I smile genially. The guy, Dorian, is handsome, looks like Tom Hardy my analytical mind points out, the woman, Lysa, standing beside him looks like Yara Shahidi.
I look back down, my finger inching to go back to my page, as I spy Benji who has shrank the footie results to a micro-size, so he can keep reading them.
I get an email from Benji. [You may be the tech genius but I’m the real clever one muwaha]
I burst out laughing then try and style it out as a cough, my manager who has been going on about my skills looks at me in concern as does her companions.
I email Benji a picture of a middle finger. Dorian who has just shifted, glances at my screen sees this and smiles, I am utterly mortified and look at my manager before meeting his gaze, he shakes his head smiling.
Something passes across his features as he stares at me and I am sure I haven’t drawn breath for a solid minute because my mind starts to haze over as I absolutely stare at him. My mind must have short-circuited because I can’t look away and I feel a strange energy build between us.
His companion, Lysa makes a comment and he looks away and so do I. That my face hasn’t caught on fire at how warm it is must be some kind of miracle. I look back at my monitor, my emotions in revolt, I take in a shallow breath, my heart jack hammering in my chest.
I can feel his eyes on me again and I want to look up, but strangely I am afraid, angry at how one look has done so much to me, but clearly some illogical part of my mind disobeys and I lock eyes with him again; electricity erupts between us once more as though by looking away we broke the circuit and our eyes need only meet again before the circuit was complete again.
A part of my brain notes that Lysa looks at him then at me but again I can’t look away for several long moments before sanity returns to me again and I look away.
“I think we should break-up, I don’t think this is working. I just…” I trail off as I say the words out loud, anyway I say it sounds harsh, cold and mean. Words that are used to describe me. I don’t want to be that person, but I refuse to stay in a relationship that after just two months makes me this unhappy I have to, no I need to end things.
Not just for me, for him, he is falling, I can feel it, it’s been hinted at and before he actually falls I need to stop him. He can’t fall not for me, I wouldn’t forgive myself if I allowed him to fall then broke up with him, even when I think of the idea of allowing him to love me, I hate myself a little, I can’t believe I’ve become this person, I roll my eyes at my own arrogance, but then it is true. He feels more than I do, he always did and that was why this would never work. When I felt more he was blasé, now he feels more I am indifferent. We are not on the same page, in the same book, we may even be in different library.
I jump as he picks up the phone, I’m scared because I don’t want to lose him but I can’t do this, I won’t, it’s cruel to pretend.
“I…” I begin, I hear him sigh and my heart which was never really invested wakes up from icey chamber to glance at me and shake it’s head, told you so, it says to my head, practical and logical, thought to cure itself with being practical but love is complex and despite this guy being good on paper, my heart doesn’t care.
To sleep no more
“If I die, I won’t blame you, I promise,” Amelia said earnestly.
Dipender flinched and he stared at her for a long moment before walking over to her and kneeling down so they were eye-level.
“Don’t say that. Don’t even think like that, you can fight –”
“I heard you talking to the nurse earlier,” Amelia said taking the oxygen mask off her face, “and I just want you to know that I don’t blame, just don’t lie to me.”
Dipender blinked a few times, swallowing the lump that was forming in his throat, he told himself that crying in front of patients was wrong especially children who looked at him with eyes aged beyond their years.
“I’m going to call your parents. I’m going to make sure they are here.” He promised taking her hand and he saw her try and hide a wince as the monitor beeped, Dipender let go immediately.
“You don’t always have to be so strong, it’s okay to tell me when it hurts,” He said, annoyed at himself for letting his voice break, angry at the world for wanting to even try and take this little girl’s life and powerless in his need to save her.
“It hurts all the time, so I have to be strong all the time.” Amelia said her voice modulated her gaze unwavering.
Dipender felt the moisture build in his eyes as he held her gaze. He carefully put the oxygen mask back on her face.
“It’s okay, it really is,” she said reaching forward and patting him on the arm lightly, as if he needed reassuring, as if the action didn’t cost her everything.
He didn’t even want to imagine the level of pain she would have endured to become that resilient.
“I’m going to call them, I’m going to…” he trailed off as she shrugged as though it didn’t matter to her.