Here’s Looking At You Kid
She whispered in his ear & looked at him. A tear softly emerged from her eye and dripped onto her cheek.
He looked at her & held her tight.
He had no idea how it’d come to this. He thought about the days & nights together. The variety of meals, the long moonlight strolls along the dimly lit streets of the London river bank. The nights where they’d lay on the bed, intertwined as one, relaxing as the television pictures had flickered in front of their eyes. That amazing day in the French Capital, drinking coffee, walking until their feet didn’t function at all.
It all felt like a dream looking back. A time long gone. He didn’t know what he’d felt then, he didn’t know how he felt now. He just knew he had been happy.
Now, all that time later, he was losing her.
Their time together had been at the avoidance of one truth. Something they’d struggled to forget. One fact that there was no work around from. She was married.
He’d freaked out about it at the time, but when they were together, it faded into memory. He thought to himself on reflection that it would probably be insurmountable, but it was something to forget & savour their time together.
He saw himself as a Humphrey Bogart. A man who cared, but that would always lose her. She would go back to the husband & who knows what would’ve happened next.
His trademark curled smile appeared gradually on his lips & a faint chuckle. He’d been stupid. They both had really. To think that the other man, her husband of many years, to think he wouldn’t find out about their time together. About their bond. About this happiness. He was bound to.
Their escape from reality had been discovered. Their moments of joy unearthed. They’d looked into the abyss & the darkness of life had engulfed them whole.
It would go without saying that her husband would end their communion. That he would threaten her with the worst if she had anything further communication.
The husband wasn’t stupid. He, like the pair of them, was aware of the truth. The simple fact that history never really accepts. The fact that despite our better judgement, it IS possible to love two people at the same time.
She’d been put on the spot & she was only ever going to be able to go one way. Her husband, a decent man really, had been honest. He was hurting, but he loved her. He’d promised to be a better man, to talk more, to put more time into their relationship. To right his wrongs.
By contrast, our hero, our Bogart. He didn’t even know his own emotions. He knew she meant the world to him, but he couldn’t put his finger on it. He certainly wasn’t willing to put that “L” word out there. It meant too much to him. It had been thrown around by everyone far too many times. When he wanted to use that word, he wanted to be 100% sure. For her, that could never be enough. There was too much to lose from her old life, too much to risk. The husband was always destined to win.
So here they were. Parting. Was it for the last time? He didn’t believe so. He just suspected it would be a while.
She’d heard him chuckle & looked into his eyes.
He looked back at her & then softly, barely touching the skin, kissed her forehead.
“I don’t believe in goodbye.”
She frowned, looking at him like he was living in a dreamworld. Maybe he still was. For now, he wasn’t ready to lose her forever.
“I know you’ve got to go.” He softly spoke, stroking her hair as the words left his lips.
“This isn’t the end though. We’ll see each other again. One day. You’ll see.”
Her frown softly faded away & a her lips faintly curled, a sad smile gradually began to form.
The smile formed.
“And if not… We’ll always have Paris.”
She kissed him softly & then broke their connection. She’d stolen his line. He’d wanted to say that himself. In that moment though, it didn’t matter.
They sadly looked at each other, then, with a sad forelorn look, she turned around & walked away. He watched her as she went. Then, for the first & last time, a word left his lips.