36 Lies

As I wiped the remaining rum spilt on my face, I sloppily jumped onto the public bus and clumsily dropped change into the register, grabbed my transit ticket, and teetered over to the nearest seat. I managed to put on some make up, too much perfume, and a coat to cover my much too revealing dress for the middle of March. I leaned back against my seat and shook my head at all the lies I managed to accomplish for the day, and I kind of smiled to myself. I did it. No one knew where I was and who I was going to be with tonight. No one. “Everyone has vices”, I’d think. But I was ashamed that this incessant and consumptive tie couldn’t seem to come loose from this creature. My phone lit up, as I read a message from one of my friends, “where are you tonight?” Lie 36 of the day as I wrote, “I am staying in tonight. Feeling sick.” The bus stopped, I tottered off the bus, and looked up at the snow covered stop sign to watch a pile of snow glide off the sign and plop onto my boots. I breathed in a raspy breath from the cold air, and whispered, “Fuck it,” as I walked toward the only lit building on the street. A small trendy bar in the middle of the quiet yuppy neighborhood. There he was outside the bar underneath the entrance awning, standing in the shadows, swaying from one leg to the other to keep warm. He was disheveled, wearing dark clothes, and looking down as he waited for me. My stomach always turned in knots whenever in his proximity, as if to tell me, nothing could be good from the next few hours. I ignored it. He looked up and we locked eyes. I couldn’t help but smile. As I grew near I could smell his familiar scent; suddenly all of the 36 lies that had transpired that day were forgotten.

We found ourselves in a corner of the room where the world spun, and I felt none of it. His brown eyes could convince me to do anything. “I don’t think they understand you like I do, Mar” They meaning everyone in my life, they meaning all of the recipients of my 36 lies, they meaning everyone but him. I leaned over and grabbed his hand knowing full well that nothing beneficial came from him and I. I couldn’t stand the night ending without him next to me. It took every inch of self restraint within me to not pull him toward me and recklessly forget every opinion and naysayer. My neighbors were concerned whenever he traipsed around my life, my friends had to comfort away my tears from each of his disastrous visits, the string of his exes and I had crossed paths and they carried nothing but warnings of his corruption, it seemed as if every local pastor in town had dismissed him, and all of the rest of they had decidedly wanted me to shake this boy loose. However, they didn’t tell me what to do when he leans in, smiles, and whispers words dripping in affection and care, as the world spun but I felt none of it. I looked down and let my fingers trace his, wondering what is to become from such a love. Will this ever relinquish? He squeezed my hand and said, “let’s go.” I silently nodded– giving in to the wiry strings between us that held me captive.