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Writings > Short Story > Love

Chapter VIII: THE COMMON ROOM & THE NECKLACE

Previous short story:
Chapter V: MY AMERICAN PIE
Next short story:
Part ONE: Squirrel

“Pretentious”, I whisper to no one but undoubtly for everyone. A gigantic piece hanging down, piece of golden triumph, a chandelier that reflects fake generosity (except to the champagne and red wine) in careful motion of lights, ever-so-glamorous. I judge. It’s just a light.

Lacey details embroider works in for charms,
The dangling darlings glow the night,
Serenading to the atmosphere which creates a fairy tale,
“Everyone is a honey”, they say and don’t mean it,
Hands to hold following the footsteps, moves,
Look at those shiny shoes of men being in Italians,
Who knows about these lyrics,
Could be about love, could be about life, grin anyway,
Her tones deafen the spirits calling for authenticity and a place called home,
This is not a home, it’s only in this room

I make my way into the ladies’ where bitches bitching around about others.
“I slept with him twice”
“…he has it soft like all the time”
“she has world’s ugliest ass”
“I hate Chinese girls”
“Jen’s thinking of becoming a vegetarian”
“My mom going for a divorce”

Now where could my necklace be? And where is my steel container?
There it is. There it is.
I spin open clock-wisely, beautifully opens the cylinder-pendant. Against my nostril, I sniff like it is a good perfume that I long to smell.
And it rushes, like an open river streams, to my mind. In my throat I bust the container. Bitter and sweet the water runs. Dual impact. I blink once. I blink twice. Again, hope, again, hope, again, hope, again, then there’s hope. This is good. I like this one. Just like the one before and the one before that. Now everything is all right.

I leave the bitches to perpetual narration, I walk back along the red carpet pathway pointing to a grand archway, “The Gateway To Heaven” written. If heaven is there, I can easily embracing my way to hell now. The serenade is back on the back of my head. It’s sweet this time. I take up one glass after another and resist one dance after another. Flashes of faces; the familiars and the unfamiliars. Grabbing my arms asking for opinions, an inter-conversation without a doubt pretending to care.
“hey how u’ve been?”
“in rehab” I say
Silence. Like the angels have an important thing to say.
“you’re kidding right??”
“Yeah”. No.
Put me in a lie detector, I rather, it’ll be more fun.
“Excuse me, I need to be taken away”, I say
“By who?”
“Myself”, I say

I’m high on this powders
I smile but I tremble
My hand shakes without I’m noticing. But someone notices.
“Is it cold in here?”
“Uh.. yeah, a little bit”, I say
“I think so too. I’m sure they can do something about the chills. They’ll do anything for cash”, she blinks and wait for me to laugh.
“Oh yes, you’re right”, I laugh. Lame.

Then the room starts to spin. Slowly and nicely. Then it’s steady. It is the perfect amount of headache. Just like I need it to be. I smile but I tremble.
“Tipsy, honey? Hey, it rhymes!”
“Oh yes, you’re right” I say
“How many glasses of this you had, darling?”
“I don’t remember”, I say
“Then you must’ve had a lot huh?”
“Oh yes, you’re right”
“Fantastic honey!. We can talk then. I’m not much of a talker but this turns me into Rosie O’donnell”
“Oh yes, you’re right”. I say
“Tell me darling, are you in blues? Your eyes, as big as those, tell me that you are”
“Oh yes, you’re right”, I say
“Oh you poor little thing. Hey! Listen! It’s my favorite song! Oh I must dance! I must!”, Vanishes, gone into the crowd, the half zipped back faggot.
“Oh yes, you’re right” , I say.

And then there they are. The antiques. At every corner. They ought to catch my eyes, but only for a while. My body is uplifted. The song doesn’t sound haunting anymore. Gracefully they become acceptable beats to my ears. The ones that ease your bones then your soul. Tremendously great, I think. I’m high on the roof. The room is a delight. I’m delighted.
Now where is my table. There it is, the oh-so-familiars but strangely don’t feel like one.

“Where you’ve been?!”
“No where. The ladies’, the powder room, whatever they called it these days”, I say
“What’s taking you so long?!”
“This is your problem because….?”, I say
“Were you sniffing in there?!”
“This is your major concern because….?”, I say
“Quit being a smarty ass. What are you on?”
“I need to be taken away. Air is what I need”, I say
“Are you on coke, again?!”
“I’ll be right back, with sizzling answers”, I say

Bitches and jerks. All eyes on me like on the Ouija calling for answers.

I walk out the door. I need air. I need fresh air. I light my Virginia Slims. This is just about right, the kind of air that I need. Wait, there’s a figure, a man. This one is a stranger now but not to my heart. He saw me from the very beginning, I think.
“Are you following me?”, he says
“Are you following me?”, I say
“No. I’ve been standing right here”, he says
“I’m going to that corner”, I say
“No, wait. Stay here”, he says
“Where’s your girlfriend?”, I say
“She’s uh… inside”, he says
“How u’ve…”, he says
“I don’t recall your voice. I don’t remember your smell. I forgot how it feels like kissing you. I hardly remember things you’ve said to me. That’s how I’ve been.”, I say
“Ok. Don’t you wanna know how I am?”, he says
“No”, I say
“Just so you know, I wasn’t exactly having fun, leaving you”, he says
“Just so you know, It wasn’t fun either, being left by you”, I say
“Why are you doing this to yourself. You need help”, he says
“This is the best help that I got”, I say
“I guess I don’t have the right to tell you not to do this”, he says
“Stop pretending that you care..”, I say
“Your nose”, he says
“nose? Try heart”, I say
“No. really, your nose. It’s bleeding”, he says
“It is not”, I say
“Come, let me…”, he says

My blood stains his Armani, both shirt and skin. A lot. Too much to notice.

“Would you marry someone like this?”, I say
“You’re not someone like this”, he says
“Then what am I?”, I say
“You’re someone that I would marry”, he says

Previous short story:
Chapter V: MY AMERICAN PIE
Next short story:
Part ONE: Squirrel
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about the writer

Nina Chezter Sarif

A person, with nothing much to say, except to write
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