“I’m enjoying this,” she said.
I waited expecting some sort of sting in the tail. It didn’t come. Perhaps she’s softening, I thought.
“I especially liked the bit about the ruby fairies,” she said.
“Really?” I replied. “I can’t imagine why.”
She hovered judgmentally above my nose. The she settled on the desk in front of me between the keyboard and the mouse. “Right,” she said, “I’m comfy. Get on with it.”
I gave her a warning look.
Summer’s Over – Continued
We’d been together maybe four years when you asked me to marry you. Was it leap year? I can’t remember. But I knew the question would come one day. I was prepared for it. I tried to explain to you that no matter how much I loved you, I could not do as you asked. For I was legally wed to another who would not release me. And that despite this, my heart was yours. I would live with you as long as you would stay with me. I don’t think my answer ever really satisfied you. So perhaps even then, all those years ago, it was the beginning of the end. For, from that point forward, your attention seemed to focus beyond the boundaries of our relationship. I asked you not to change. You told me you couldn’t prevent it. You were urgent to grow. I can’t blame you. I had turned down your invitation to the altar. You needed to make whatever provision for yourself you considered fit.
It can only have been another year or so after that that you determined that an academic future would be yours. You bounded yourself about with the tools and trappings of book learning and I could feel you beginning to slip away from me. I could have fought it, I guess. But this was your route to personal growth and your tutors were so complimentary about your mental prowess and achievements. Who was I to hold back a superior creative power? I guess, looking back, the real surprise is that it has taken you so long to come to your final decision to leave.
How greatly I enjoyed observing the growth and increasing sophistication of your intellect. Does that sound patronising, Sweetheart? It really isn’t meant to. I’ve always had the utmost respect for your cerebral capacity. And that’s without reference to the overwhelming artistic capability that you have displayed throughout the time that I have known you. Where does it come from? I know both your parents very well and neither of them shows anything like your capacity for artistic self-expression.
Your early works, those that you executed soon after coming to live with me, were in some ways the most impressive all. Abstract in the extreme, I never understood what you were getting at in them. But I could tell from the intensity of the way you tackled the canvasses that these were no mere scrawls. Rather they were the work of a true artist whose talents had yet to reach their zenith. You painted life as you saw it then, a unique perspective to which I found it so hard to relate. I don’t know if you remember, but you gave me some of those paintings. I kept them. I always will. They are a part of you I don’t have to relinquish even now.
I looked down at her.
“Do you have to stop?” she asked wistfully. “I’m really enjoying this.”
I nodded. “You were the one who said I have to keep blog posts under five hundred words. This one’s gone over six hundred.”
“Promise me you’ll finish it next post?” she said, with that appealing, helpless expression on her face. How could I resist?
“Maybe,” I said.
She made a face. “I can’t believe your parents were married,” she replied.