In an instant you realize that you were a fool. A silly, unkempt, pathetic fool destined for the witless agony you now wallow in. You allowed it all to happen, and you sat still while you were prodded, poked and made to feel wrong in the process of finding out who and what you were. In that instant, you stop the tears as you slam your fist in the mud in the realization that you did nothing but accept the lies and deceit of a love lost in the conquest of something well beyond your grasp.
You then pick yourself up, mutter some curse that only you will recognize and find renewed strength in your muscles and resilience in your mind. You stand up, marvel at your nakedness, and wipe the mud from your body. You realize you hardly recognize the man who looks back at you in the mirror, and you shudder at the thought that you allowed this part of you to be silent while the softer part of you was ravaged and beaten by a foe you so wanted to love forever.
With disgust you clean yourself, and you find that suit of armor that once fit you so well. You don it with an oath that it will fit you again, and never again shall you discard it for some promise that was nothing more than the deceit of a weaker heart. You find your sword somewhere in the rubble, and you hold it up in front of you vowing never to part with it again. It feels good there, where it always was, and the weight in your hand tightens the muscles in your arms in a memory of a safe, secure and sure state of mind.
You sheath your weapon and look at the barren landscape all around you. The flowers you once longed to smell now have died, trampled beneath the feet of a fatal dance. The mango trees you once found safe harbor in lie broken and charred as an arid smoke rises from their battered stumps. You make your way down to the once fertile river’s edge only to find a dried and cracked riverbed. The river had lied – it would not provide you safety and it would not accept you in its flow unless you surrendered to it completely. Now, you only see tortured remnants that suggested it even existed at all, and with a certain amount of disgust you urinate where the clean water once had quenched your thirst.
There is no room here for that thirst. She will not quench it again. She has made certain of that. She was no warrior, no princess. Her idea of strength was retreat, and you are certain that she is lying to herself that the familiar acceptance of aloneness she now has made is somehow a sacrifice. She will be in another’s arms soon, she can’t help herself.
You accept your reality and you steady your mind. After days of debauchery and self-loathing you stand straight. You found power as you first planted your hands in the mud and made your way to your knees. You found strength in your legs as they raised you up from the slime. You found certainty in your anger as you wiped her dirt from your mind. Now, you find resolve in your heart as it becomes stone again and you take every vestige of her existence and burn it in a pyre made of every broken promise, every gentle word, and every phony request she made that you be who you are. Those lies burn easily, even if the memories do not as you hope the tears you shed now are the last ones you ever shed at the thought of her.
You take your knife and you slice a deep wound on your chest right where your heart should be. The pain reminds you that you are still alive even if you are not sure you want to be. The open wound reminds you that you once had a heart that beat loudly for your lover. Once…
Now, the echoes of her silence ring loudly as her final words bounce around your mind. You growl. Her words will not beat you this time. Her silence will not humble you as it has before. She knows this game all too well, and you will not be beaten by it. The scars created as her nails dug into your back will fade, and you will find new flesh to conquer. The sound of her whispers in your ear will be forced out, replaced by the ravaging sounds of a raging lion. Fuck her, you say silently, she proved unworthy of your greatness. She took you, slammed you down and rejected the best of you by falling in love with the worst of you.
She turned out to be a scared little girl unable to grow up. You soon followed her into her box and turned into a scared little boy unable to be the man you knew yourself to be. Imagine, a man having to be isolated because of some schoolgirl need to be special. Imagine a man having to be ignored and kept in the box because of some childish need to be the focus of attention. Imagine a man having to be kept away because of some impish need to protect something that does not exist. Imagine a master trying to teach a doubtful student that all of this is special, and that the lie did not exist in the behavior, but in the reaction to it as if the fire burning tender flesh should not be a reason to jerk the hand from the flame. No, she was never wrong, and her love of her box proved more than her love of a man who would have given anything to be with her.
Warriors should never become accustomed to the comforts of a woman’s soft breasts and tender touch. They are warning signs from hell telling the man to prepare to fight. Those lips will pierce your heart like a jagged dagger. Those breasts will choke your soul and drown you in a sea of your own misery. Those fingers that lightly touch your skin will one day wrap around your throat and choke the life out of you. Those loving words will one day drive you down into the mud and nearly kill you as dreams of your own demise dance around your head like a song you can’t forget.
And those eyes. Those eyes will be the death of you for sure. Look away my Warrior friend! Look away before the spell drives you deep into places you may never live to see your way out of. They are the gateways to both heaven and hell, the destination of which is determined by the woman who owns them.
Lessons learned. You know the only way to keep her from your heart is to encase it in stone. You realize the only way to keep her from hurting you any more is to find a rage that has been dormant. You see the only way to end the misery is to end the misery. “She’s not worth it” they say. “You are better than that” they say. “Forget her and move on” they say. “She had to be lying to you, no one is that weird” they say. “How could you have believed that?” they ask.
You sit back and you wonder. Is that voice within you that found nothing but love for her the voice you should be hearing? You believed her. You saw truth in her. She was worth your life, and she made you feel a greatness absent before her arrival. You can’t forget, and even now as she gives you no choice but to question it all you use their voices to find a strength that allows you to move beyond the darkness into at least something partially lit. Still, you do not believe them, but you call her way a lie because she has offered you nothing to suggest it was the truth. Nothing.
Fuck. Enough of this. You stand proud in your armor with your sword by your side. You move beyond the dust and mud and prepare for the night ahead. The dreams. You pray tonight they will be absent and you will find rest in the embrace of something that does not destroy you in the morning. Something wonderful. Something that reminds you of the way it should be.