Thirty Four

As narrated by Zee:

Dee pulls my hands off her face, not saying a single word.

I sit down on the grass next to her.

“A penny for your thoughts?”

She remains silent.

“Dee..”

Nothing.

I study her face. Her faint, arched eyebrows are knotted in a deep frown. Her usually bright blue eyes are dull and glisten with tears as they stare straight ahead. Her small teeth chew on her bottom lip.

“Go,” she whispers, turning her face away.

Hearing those words… seeing her like this, I’m suddenly taken back to that night.

I clearly hear Amaani’s voice, shaky and on the verge of breaking as she says, “Zee, it’s Dee. She’s… she’s..”

“Amz, what’s going on?” I ask, panicking as she bursts out crying.

“P..pl..please, just.. just come.”

And so, I went.

It was half past 10. A bitterly cold night.

When Amz opened the door, successfully trying extremely hard not to cry, something somewhere deep in my heart cracked as I pulled her into a hug. 

“She’s…”

“Shhh… I know,” I say, cutting her off. “I know.”

And that windy night, as we stood at the door, when Amz asked, her voice thick with emotion, “What are we going to do?”, I replied, “We’ll figure something out. Don’t worry, it will be okay.” 

But now, as I sat next to Dee, I wondered at my uttered words.

“It will be okay.” 

Oh those four words…

“Dee, you shouldn’t be out here.”

“Neither should you.”

“So let’s go back to the room.”

“No.”

“Do you want to tell me what’s wrong?”

Silence.

“Dee?”

Silence.

I sigh.

“Please don’t shut me out.”

This time, she turns to look at me. But still, she says nothing.

“Deeyanah, please, why-”

And then, more of a statement than a question, she cuts me off.

“Does life ever seem too perfect?”

She’s still staring off into the distance and for a split second I wonder if that’s directed at me.

“Do you ever feel like things are going too well?”

What the hell? NO, obviously not!

Please elaborate. 

“You know, when life was never okay… but it was fine because it was normal. It was.. life. And then things start going right. But it felt wrong…”

Although I hate to disturb her, I’m really confused!

“Dee… what do you mean?”

She sighs, chewing her lip again.

“I’m sorry. Just.. please.. leave -”

The sound of galloping horses cuts her off. She stares at her phone screen for a while before answering. It’s Meez.

I sigh. She won’t talk now, I know it.

But the thing is as much as I want to see her smiling, as much as I want to help her.. I don’t know if I can.. because..

How do you help someone who they themselves have left what they love, yet they want to return to it everyday. 

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