Like a good movie, I never get tired of seeing this view.
I always like coming here. Perhaps, because I always have good memories of this place. From when we used to have picnics here when I was a kid, to the high school retreats, to the day or overnight trips with my family and friends. You could even say that this is where I fell in love.
Or, okay, of course, I’m being melodramatic. But shouldn’t you be, when talking about love?
This was the backdrop when he and I first looked into each other’s eyes and knew. And perhaps we’ll never know if it was the reason why we felt the things we did–I mean, who looks at this view and feels the cool breeze and hears the quiet in this place without thinking of romantic things? But does it really matter?
I am a bit saddened by the fact that it seems they’re overdeveloping this place (if they haven’t already, and really, I might say the same for the rest of the world). And the next time I come here, or the next time anyone comes here, the atmosphere of wanting to fall in love would be gone. Already, instead of respite from the city, I can hear the screams of people on the roller coaster at the amusement park next-door. Not that that can’t be a good backdrop for two people falling in love either.
So, yeah. I always like coming here.
I was on the verge of getting mad at him. He’d said something, I now forget what exactly, but at the time I thought it was important to let him know my negative opinion of it. And it was in the middle of my now forgotten rant that he suddenly said, “Wait.”
I stopped talking. But he didn’t say anything. “What?” I prompted. And still, he didn’t respond. His video was backlit so I couldn’t even see his face properly. I couldn’t get a clue as to why he interrupted me. There had been a few seconds of silence already. I was getting impatient.
The next thing that happened was that a message alert popped up on the screen of my phone:
Anton Alvarez sent you a photo.
I furrowed my eyebrows. “Why are you sending me a photo now?” I asked irritably, wondering why he couldn’t just tell me what he wanted. We were already talking. Why send me a picture, too?
I tapped on the message alert.
“Oh. It’s me,” I said as I found myself looking at my face from a few seconds ago.
He’d taken a screenshot of our video call. “You look pretty there,” he said.
I didn’t say anything I was so caught off-guard. A few more seconds of silence passed.
He broke the ice. “So, what were we talking about?” he asked.
“Um…” I started, struggling to remember. I shrugged. “Nothing important.”
There was an audible silence at the other end of the line. Or, it was really from both ends as it wouldn’t have been a silence at all if it weren’t mutual. She didn’t know what to do. She was looking at the timer and so she knew, it had been at least three whole seconds since either of them spoke. She pressed ‘End Call’ as soon as the second timer turned into four. After all, the last statement they exchanged was ‘Good night.’ And for a phone call, that was as good as ‘Goodbye.’ The phone call was over. But she couldn’t ignore the four seconds between the last things they said, and the actual end of the digital connection. It was as though they’d left enough space for each other to say one more thing.
“I love you,” she whispered, staring at the extra four seconds on the timer on her phone.
“I love you,” he whispered, too.
So many things can be attributed to Fate when it comes to you and me.
If I hadn’t been on a holiday from work, I wouldn’t have gone to that bar in the first place.
If that guy hadn’t bought my friend a drink, I wouldn’t have stayed long enough to see you come in.
If my friend hadn’t asked me to translate the menu, I never would’ve known we both had a passion for food and languages.
If we hadn’t gone out of the restrooms at the same time, we wouldn’t have walked back to the bar together.
If there had been more beer left, we wouldn’t have shared the last bottle.
If there had been any seats left, we wouldn’t have sat next to each other on the steps outside, looking out onto the dark, empty street, comparing it to our dark, empty lives.
If your workplace hadn’t been so close to where I lived, I never would’ve invited you over for dinner.
If you hadn’t liked wine as much as I did, we wouldn’t have finished that bottle.
If we both hadn’t been recently heartbroken, we wouldn’t have revealed such intimate details about ourselves to each other.
If you hadn’t smiled as you looked into my eyes, I would have never fallen in love with you.
If you hadn’t still loved her and gotten back together with her, I wouldn’t have become so devoid of joy or hope or life.
If Fate hadn’t intervened with our lives so much, perhaps this love wouldn’t have been so fatal.