Everything was going well until I married her. I used to go to my university, come to my mother’s house, have tea with her, talk with her till she resigns in bed. I would pick up a book and go back to my bed, usually read it and fall asleep.
I didn’t have many friends, as I was not a person and preferred the company of books. I worked as a librarian until I completed my degree and was accepted into the university as an adjunct teacher.
One day I was coming back from university and released a book for myself about ‘paranormal activity’ when I first saw him. He had parked his car at the far end of the university parking lot and was trying to start his engine. I didn’t think about him until I fell asleep in bed that night. He was well dressed and looked moderately good. I put the book aside and touched myself that night after a long time.
The next morning, I had forgotten about him and went on with my day. On my way home that evening, I stopped by the bakery to get bread for the next morning. He was there again bringing a fancy cake for himself. What was the occasion, I wondered? That night I touched myself again. It becomes some kind of routine. Every day I would see him at university, the library, or the bakery and every night I would touch myself thinking about him while my book on paranormal activity sat on my bed, forgotten.
One day my sexual frustration escalated and I decided to approach her. Interestingly, he approached me instead.
‘Sorry, I think you left your keys’
I looked back and saw that it was him. i smiled
‘I don’t carry any keys with me, I don’t have a car because I can walk to my house on foot and mama always opens the door for me, so I don’t need the key.’ I spoke in my mixed French-British accent. My accent was part of the reason I shy away from talking to others and never make any friends.
‘Oh, then it must be mine.’ He put his key in his pocket with a clever grin. ‘I’ve seen you a lot in this neighborhood, do you live nearby?
‘Yeah, but I haven’t seen you before’ I decided to pretend to be innocent. ‘Have you moved recently?’
‘Yeah, oh yes, recently, I am a psychologist, and recently got a job as a student counselor on a university campus’.
‘Oh that’s great. Best wishes for your new job. I really had no idea how to proceed with the conversation and I was hoping he’d have something else to say. I think of you every night when I touch myself, so it feels so inappropriate to say. I blushed
‘Thank you’ he nodded and smiled. After this there was a strange silence for some time, finally I was forced to speak.
‘I must go now, I guess, it’s nice to talk to you,’ I said turning away from him.
‘Oh Oh! Don’t walk away! At least let me walk you home. You said you live nearby.
Comfort is history. Unlike most people, I found him very easy to talk to. He didn’t judge me for my mixed tone and was genuinely interested in what I had to say. He sometimes disagreed with me, especially my views on the selfishness of people, the system, and the world in general. But he was always humble. He believed that the world is a relative place and that nature has revealed us as people in our lives based on our perception and expectations.
Very soon he grew on me. Often I used to go to his office on his campus and sometimes he used to accompany me to my house and have tea with my mother. However, despite his uncle’s insistence, he never stopped for dinner. Till one night he invited me and mother for dinner and there he proposed me for marriage. It was wild. When he left our house after tea, we had no physical relationship other than the occasional hug and peck. Then a few days before I was about to leave his office, it was a dull kiss, gentle but kind.
Mother nodded excitedly, and although with complete hesitation, I said yes. We got married a few days later in a quiet private ceremony. I had no friends or siblings, only an aunt who flew in from Dublin in time. By her side was her sister, who lived in Montana, and two of her friends from campus. His sister Julie was a veterinarian who worked in a wildlife park. She looked good, and lived in our house, in fact, shared Mama’s room for the wedding and left after two days. He moved in with us, and left the apartment he was sharing with a colleague.
That’s when things started going wrong.
A month later, Ted started getting calls every night from a troubled student. He was with her on the phone for hours. Sometimes he would even leave the house in the middle of the night to see her. Clearly, she was having a tough time in her life and needed constant supervision. Found so much that it is hardly available to me at home or even on campus. it’s disappointing
Married and maybe she did too.
After a while I saw a girl lurking in the corner and staring at me. Whenever I tried to contact her, she disappeared. Every few hours she was staring at me from behind the bookshelf, at the other end of the aisle, or across the hall.
I tried to talk to him about Ted and told him about it. She confirmed that the description matched her ‘troubled patient’, but I don’t have to worry because she won’t do me any harm. But, I just couldn’t care.
Her name was Eliana. She was haunted by me during the day and kept by her at night. That nineteen year old kid had taken my life and there was nothing I could do about it. Ted prevents me from reaching him in any way. I didn’t have to complain about her, although she was quietly suffocating my life. No, actually he has hijacked my life.
I was angry. Angry at him, angry at Eliana. I was not a fool. I knew what was going on between the two. I tried to confront him, he called me ‘crazy and crazy’ once before dismissing the conversation.
Seeing him walking beside him was the last straw. I lost my patience, self-restraint and above all, my anger. I felt a boiling wave of anger running through my veins. I scored a run for it. I don’t even know why I attacked him. I hit him hard with whatever I grabbed and hit any part of his body that I could reach.
I was dragged by them to the dean’s office. While people picked him up from the ground, covered in their own blood and some of mine, I guess. But I was glad I finally got it. From the dean’s office, I was taken to the police station. There I came to know about a clever conspiracy woven against me.
I was told that I was being charged with assaulting a man, and that my job had been terminated for assaulting a fellow university employee. When I requested to call my mother, she said she died five years ago! Liars! I was horrified by what Ted had done to my mother. He said that I live alone at my house.
Next, I was told that Ted was married to another woman and that when I attacked him he was with his daughter, who also studies at the university. He went on to say that I was referred to Ted for mental health by the head of my department, and he was doing well with me until the therapy backfired and Ted became part of my delusional world. . Or so my files say.
After balancing the assault charges, the state will give my home to Ted as compensation for my loss.
Well played Ted, well played. But I’m not with you now…