When I realized where I was I felt queasy. The summer heat, the humidity in the air, the golden hue of a sun slumping its way off at the end of a long day. I was standing on the rusty train tracks by the old station. I knew I could find you, I knew you were here. My sudden arrival made no sense, I could think of no logical reason as to why I would find myself in this town, in this country, at this time of year.
I'd had enough. Too many times now we had met under these circumstances and it was taking its toll on my heavy heart. I stormed up and down Railroad street, barging into every tavern and restaurant, marching into kitchens and busser stations. You were in none of them. And I had checked all but one.
Still? Would you still be in that place? After all of these years? My heart had sunk into my stomach. I marched in through the rear entrance, nauseous and shaking. I quickly swept the main restaurant and cut through the busser station and into the bar. And there you were.
You were dancing with a woman, a short haired brunette with glasses. I noticed the slight specks of sweat along your brow, the red that flushed through your pale cheeks. And then you looked upon me. I froze and wanted more than anything to storm out, to have never been there. For the very first time I felt terrified that this may be real.
"John-", you began.
"Don't!", I interrupted, "Just don't! This has to end now. It has to! This is killing me and it's not even real!"
"What are you talking about...", you looked afraid. People had gathered. This was not good.
"This! All of this!", I gesticulated wildly across the room, "It is not real, and this is not happening. But what it does- it's still breaking my heart. Every time I am in your embrace and it all comes back, all of it, it all comes back and it's so real. I can't! I can't!"
"Oh, John... it is, please.." you whispered, bottom lip trembling.
"It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter that you're crying, none of it does. I keep coming back here, and it keeps killing me. I can be irrational. I can be full of rage, it doesn't matter! It's not real!"
I reached for a glass at the nearest table, picked it up and threw it to the floor. The crowd that had gathered shuffled back a few steps as the glass smashed into a million pieces. I picked up a lime from the bar and squeezed it until it burst in my palm.
"This isn't my fault. You know that." you insisted.
"It still tastes bitter." I said, licking the lime juice that dripped down my wrist. Somehow I felt citrus had accentuated my point. I threw what was left of the lime to the ground and stormed out.
What was that? Where was I going? Where was I staying? Why hadn't I woken up? There is no way this was real. This couldn't really be happening. I tried to determine how I ended up here, for what purpose, but my ability to deduct such information from my brain had been turned off. So it mustn't be real? Not unless I had lost the ability to reason... But what if I had? And what if I just did that? To you?
I paced into a dark wood and everything that was summer and of days gone turned into an endless black of twisted branches, as the pale white sky turned a colder grey.