By Youssef El Kaid
By Youssef El Kaid
Morocco World News
Fez, January 11, 2013
Alone and moonstruck, she was sitting in a corner of ‘Sunshine Cafe’ turning her face towards the wall which was decorated with beautiful painted flowers. He suddenly popped up with a wide smile on his face and the finest attire as usual. He was alluringly tall and well arrayed. After saluting her, he sat in front of her face to face. They exchanged looks for a while, then he said after a pretended cough:
-“Sorry for being late. I couldn’t come before finishing some little things I had at hand.”
She quietly replied:
-“I thought you are not coming at all.”
– “Oh darling, this is unfair. I’m a man who always lives up to his word.”
“But I find a remarkable change in your behavior these days. You are no longer the man I used to know.” She faintly told him.
He did not comment. He just tied his eyebrows, dovetailed his fingers, then started twiddling his thumbs nervously and kept staring at her. She continued with a reluctant tune:
– “I wonder why human relationships lose their glitter and heat all at once. With time… they turn to be unbearably tedious… especially with their pretense… artificiality… and superficiality.”
– “Perhaps time plays a pivotal role in that. We are, somehow, submissive to time which is constantly changing and imposing change on us, too. We are weak and unable to retain our promises, thoughts and feelings for long. We are as volatile as the wind!” He philosophized.
She crossed her arms over her chest. She looked pale evincing clear signs of sorrow and despair. A sudden cold chill swayed over her body. She moistened her dry lips by scraping her tongue over them, and kept gazing upon him in an attempt to unravel and assimilate his philosophy!
-“You know? Our love is sacred and immortal.”
She interrupted him stressing every word and bitterly crushing it in her mouth:
– “This is… just… an idle… hollow… talk. I know that I’m just like an old artifact which does no longer attract you. You are fed up with it. Soon you will wipe your hands from its dust for good.”
-“I love you,” he said.
-“Love? Love is sacrifice. I made every sort of sacrifice just for the sake of gaining your approval and winning your love. You made nothing in return.” She said regretfully.
He looked strained and unwilling to hear her strong words anymore. Thus, he said:
– “What do you want me to do? I love you and that’s enough.”
A sudden sharp wave of coughing took her to the extent that she appeared to be spewing up her lungs. She turned her face backwards with her hands over her mouth. She felt a lump in her throat, a sharp pain, an inner cry. Trying to regain her emotional strength, she hid and suppressed everything and said:
– “Our love is stifling, it’s pining away, it’s dying. We will break up forever. This is the end that I guessed for our love story since its beginning.”
– “Don’t say that. Be reasonable. Our love is alive and it will live along. We will continue.” Replied he with a reassuring voice.
– “Continue?! Of course we will continue, but out of sight; in shadow. Isn’t this what you want?” She asked.
– “Again and again you are hinting at marriage.”
– “What’s wrong with marriage? Does it vex you to this extent?”
He scratched his neck, sipped his coffee and nervously said:
– “Of course not, but…”
She interrupted him satirically smiling:
– “But you belong to a high, rich social class. Unlike me, you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth. Your father is a prosperous businessman. He won’t approve of seeing his only son marrying a wretched, poor girl. How could he digest it?!! ‘My son marries the daughter of the custodian of one of my villas.’”
– “I didn’t say that.” Said he.
– “You didn’t, but your actions say that. Your deeds pronounce that loudly. You and I are a sharp paradox. To meet is impossible. The fissure between
our social classes precedes everything; love and all emotions.”
He gathered his shreds after having been completely dismantled by truth. He seemed so perplexed. He felt that she was sound in all that she said. Social disparity is a monster that breaks all noble feelings; love, virtue and all moral values. Those on the top rarely care about those at the bottom. He knows that his mind refutes the idea of marrying her even if his heart is crazily fond of her. The norms of his social class do not permit him to commit ‘class suicide’ by sharing his destiny with a poor woman. These norms, however, do not forbid such relationships, but there are limits that should not exceed corporeal pleasure, and nothing more.
She tossed back locks of her smooth black hair which covered her charming black eyes and said:
– “Absent minded?”
– “No, I’m here… I’m with you.” He answered.
-“You seem absent, what are you thinking about?” She asked.
In an attempt to hide his brewing feelings and thoughts he said:
– “I think of nothing, nothing.”
He couldn’t dare to express his attitude as she did. She took his hand tenderly. He felt strange warmth. Their eyes were fixed in each other’s. She said smilingly:
-“I know that you suffer just like me. Your mind is in the side of your family and your class, but your heart, I’m sure, is in my side. You are a victim of a dire contradiction, darling. I see that we will never be congruent. So, each of us should draw his own way. We can’t meet.”
– “But I love you.” He said with a warm-hearted voice.
The ironic smile she drew on her face turned to be a sad expression; she looked at him in the eyes and said:
– “I believe you, but you know that time flies. I don’t want to end up a desperate spinster. Your LOVE IS NOT ENOUGH. I should marry and bear children. It’s the dream of every woman on earth.”
– “It means that you are determined to leave me.” He said.
She sipped her cold coffee, turned her sight over every corner of the cafe where they used to meet as if she were saying farewell to the place, and then took her purse and said:
– “I think I should leave now. I wish you the best of luck with a woman from your class.”
She stood up. He was silent. They exchanged short love looks. She gave him her hand which he pressed softly. His eyes looked brimming with tears.
– “Good bye!” Said she.
She left ‘Sunshine Cafe.’ He stood numb gazing at her until she disappeared. Abruptly, he felt a great love and attraction to her. Souvenirs began to flow before his memory, but he could do nothing to rescue his dying love. He fell on the chair behind him and pursed his head in his hands lamenting the loss of his love in silence and tears. A faint heart never won a fair lady!
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