“What should I do?”

Leaving the bakery without seeing Rusty returned, she felt empty. She should have waited longer.

At home, the supper she prepared lost its appeal as her hunger dissipated. What she needed most was someone for the emotional yearning she craved for.

The night was cold, perhaps colder because she could remember too clearly how she toyed with his feelings. Her cruelty back then was totally uncalled for.

She deserved whatever Rusty would do to her emotionally. There was a genuine chance that he would not feel the same way again as he did when they were younger. He could have already killed his passion for her.

Lying in bed, covered with a thick blanket to keep herself warm, Wendy covered her face with shaking hands, sobbing uncontrollably, her guilt kept reminding her what a fool she had been.

But, she hoped it was not too late. She could hold on to the slimmest chance that Rusty would forgive her in the long run, forget all her transgressions and love her forever.

She opened the portable video player beside her. It was his, that even if he was not physically present, his possession could accompany her through the night.

“Please give me sign that you still want me,” she prayed fervently.

“Come back to me,” she wished to the moon, partially visible from her window. “I need your help.”

– 0 –

“I wish she has changed.”

Rusty stared at the same moon, looking for a sign on where he should be headed with his love life, if ever he should have one. The heavenly body had been true to him, lied somewhat, but otherwise a loyal company when he felt blue.

There was a hunger deep inside him he could not satiate, a thirst he could not quench, such loneliness he bore through the years after she left him.

“It won’t be easy, Wendy.”

He was old enough not to resort to petty tricks, faced her like any other man would. If their past could darken his working relationship with her, so be it. He would not pretend, he needed not pretend that everything was rosy and back to normal.

Rusty would not make the same mistakes again. What made him today was his ability to withstand emotional pain: loss of his parents, loss of her, loss of faith in love. What made him strong was his insistence that he could live alone and love no other girl.

People could not imagine his sacrifices, to look happy when he was sad, to show a face of joy but with a heart in sorrow. They could not understand how he could have survived with such a narrow mentality: the girl she once loved taught him to be cold.

“Convince me that I should fall in love again!”

Rusty knew that Wendy would scour his portable video player with clues about his current state of mind. She would probably guess that he was still the same Rusty who would be easily swayed by beautiful penetrating eyes and welcoming lips.

“You’re in for a surprise,” he thought out loud.

(to be continued)



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