(7)

He’s so perfect.

Buzz Buzz. The fuchsia blink on her phone is an alert that he’s on the other end. She grabs her phone quickly and swipes up. (7). Seven. That means seven perfectly-crafted messages. Seven heartfelt thoughts. Seven things to look forward to.

He crept up on her. Quite literally. Not her type, she had thought. Wait, why did she care, she didn’t have a type. She didn’t need to have a type. Who needs a type when you don’t need anyone at all. When you’re done and dusted. Just good all by yourself. Who needs a type when you’ve thrown in the towel. Retired from the game. When you just don’t want to even think that you could love again – trust again. That you could give your heart to another human to destroy, again. That you could even find the pieces of your broken heart that are delicately being held together just so you can remain alive. That you could hand those pieces over to another being and trust that they won’t return your heart worse than it was?

(7). That’s seven more times that she’ll feel a touch of warmth and a shiver of cold all at once! Her body will quiver and she’ll sink into her bed and hug herself. She’ll close her eyes and imagine him there. He’d be staring right into her eyes and she into his. His eyes – so honest. Carrying the pain of years before and baring it bravely before her. She’d place her palm on his cheek, wishing his pain away. As if just the touch of her hand would be the cure.

He crept up on her. By God did he creep up on her! She prides herself on being able to sniff even the slightest whiff of interest from a mile away. She might need to pride herself on something else now, obviously! There really was nothing to sniff though. It was a greeting. And then a joke. And another joke. And then a string of back and forth – greetings and jokes. They were both worlds apart, minding their own. Each settled in their little corner of misery. Showing the best of themselves to the world while dying inside. Showing the best of themselves to each other while dying inside. Days and nights shrank. Encompassed in endless conversations about every minute detail of their lives. Only the human need to rest would stop them. Sleep. Wake-up. Repeat. Who would be the first to greet and joke, is what they became. They summit to the peak in just a few days. Without so much as a struggle. Seamlessly. They became each other’s worlds. Everything revolved around this little dream they had created. But who would be the first to break?

(7). She stares at them. As if opening them would set her up on a course for sure destruction. Maybe it will someday, but not today! Today she looks at her phone and feels him give her a back hug and kiss her neck. He whispers “I love you…” and she believes him. She looks at her phone and hears him get back at her for a joke she made at his expense the night before. She laughs, picks up a pillow and tries to hit him with it. A hopeless venture. He is always stronger, faster, more agile. She looks at her phone today and giggles as he wrestles her to the bed and pins her down.

He really did creep up on her! He did! They had absolutely nothing in common – until they did. Different worlds, different cares, different lives. One act of thoughtfulness led to the blossoming of a love so deeply rooted in honest and genuine friendship. Killing whatever snide notions of men she had left in her. Completely stripping her of the deep-seated anger and disdain that she had made a part of her all these years. One act of thoughtfulness. A greeting. And a joke.

(7). And so she clicks and scrolls. Before, in another life, she would be afraid. Afraid of what she would find on the other end of the click. Afraid that it would be (0). Afraid of the heartache. Afraid of the unrequited love. Afraid of harsh words spoken in anger that cut deep. Afraid of the end. But not now. She’s not afraid to click. She’s not putting it off any longer. That click is her play button. It signals the start of a new day of clicks! Of (7), (49), (158). The click allows her to dream. And to love as deeply as she chooses to love.

And she will be allowed to love and allow herself to be loved. Again.

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