the unspoken art of moving on

She had never considered herself the kind who would fight over a boy.

Why would she? There were plenty of boys out there. The trick was in picking the right one. Then getting them to stay.

But the lament here is that she had never thought she would be one of those girls. Yet here she was. There the other girl was. And there he was too. And of course there they were together.

All she could think about was how quickly she could get the other girl to bleed.

She knew the girl had a name. Something lyrical. Sweet to speak out loud. But in her head she was simply ‘the other girl’. And the boy – X, because how dare the traitor be dignified with a real name! She looked at them, every inch the perfect couple and she hated that.

She hated that she was not moving on and took that frustration out on her ice-cream as she looked at them strolling in the sun. The sun chose them too. Because where she was seated it was all dark and gloom. Forget that she had consciously chosen this spot too, all the better for her to do her spying on the happy couple but she silently wished that it would rain on them. A cloud hanging over their heads like Olaf.

It was seven months later. She should have healed. All the books she had read had given her the time frame of five-six months. She was a little over that duration and it still hurt like pepper in the eye. The other girl was pepper in her eye. She christened the other girl ‘Pepper’ and grinned slyly at it.

Out in the world, she had to be proper but in her head she could butcher Pepper. Rip her apart, tear her flimsy clothes to shreds, pull out her hair, bang out a few teeth. It was a good picture and she broke out in a wide smile. It didn’t matter that the rest of the world was bound to consider her mad.

Because life hated her, the couple managed to spot her and walked over. It was too late to run away. It would look like she still had feelings for him. Which she still did of course. But the art of moving was mainly hinged on faking it till you make it. She prepared her happy smile and the right lines to say, ‘funny finding you here’ – even though she had followed them over. ‘you make such a lovely couple’ – if you considered garbage lovely. ‘I wish you all the best’ – which is a break up in 24 hours.

Then she would have to talk up herself and all the achievements she has been doing since he has been gone. Those in all honesty only include making it through a day without crying and stalking him on social media or making it through a romantic movie or novel without wailing and getting angry. Those weren’t the achievements she was going to air. She would say she had an opportunity for a promotion at work and was considering moving into a new apartment, something bigger and better. All false but no one would know that.

“Hey Kiki. Funny seeing you here,” He started by stealing her line. Like he had stolen everything else -yes, somethings she had given willingly but that’s not the subject her. He had taken months of her life. She eyed his hand around Pepper’s waist with all the venom of a thousand snakes then looked up and smiled.

“Could say the same thing about you. And who’s this?” She hated herself for asking the question but she wasn’t going to let them know she was the unwanted third eye…and forth in their relationship.

“This is …. She is the love of my life, all the light in my dark places.” He said grinning at Pepper. She drowned out Pepper’s real name. She knew it too but this was her story and in her story Pepper was Pepper and X was X.

She steeled herself against the admission. She would keep it together, smile and wave at the camera till she got home. Then she would cry and start her X-cleanse afresh tomorrow.

Up close, Pepper was even more beautiful. If that were possible. She was kind and polite, laughed at all the right pauses and smelled like a flower garden. There was no flaw in her. Which made her more detestable but also proved that this anger and hurt was misdirected. Pepper wasn’t some witch who had spilled concoctions to get X (unless she really had and no one would know). She had to stop hating her and chaining herself to a ship that had already sailed. She had to move on.

Starting tomorrow she would really move on.

OK – Day 21 of 22. It’s hard to believe that all those days have already flown by but there we have it. This week is Storytellers Week and this is another story. I have had that title sitting in my drafts list for a while so it is good to add some flesh to it. I hope you enjoyed the story. Be sure to check out the rest of the stories from the community.

And then tomorrow we’ll wrap this up.

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