Lingering Embers

{to E.D, thank you for the story}:

There you were again today. You asked me if I remembered you as if I come across someone like you that often.

When I moved here 3 months ago, something changed. I think growing up for me is stumbling around and finding myself chatting with strangers in coffee shops. Sometimes it’s just small talk but there are times when I come across people like you. Those who are burning bridges and looking for someone to share the warmth of loss with. I thought maybe my aura still lingers the embers from when I burned mine. But you shook your head and said honey attract bees.

Your story is one told one too many times. Desensitized. But it wasn’t black and white like how they are in the news. Clichés become clichés when they are real. But nothing is more real from the heartache in your wide eyes as you explained how you faced your friend’s interrogations. Why did your wife run off to New York?

But honestly… no one needed the answer, they already knew.

I’d like to think that the better part of the story is how you can now tell the tale without faltering. And how you learned that her change of heart wasn’t due to you. I nodded and smiled because I know what it’s like to be everything you think they want when all they wanted was freedom.

So I stood beside you, watched the ashes drift in the air and listened as the fire crackles. What you didn’t know was that there’s an argument in me. I don’t want to be the honey that attract bees. It’s too risqué, even for me.

I can’t help pocketing emotions for keepsake and let them combust. I might as well be wearing a suicide vest.