“What do you want, Kitten” Tyson asked, piercing gray eyes regarded me through a forest of tentacle brows vast as the ocean in depth and knowledge of the world in with which I am trying to find my place.
I’ve been visiting him at least once per month, a fact he hasn’t missed. “There you are again,” he said when I showed up, a big smile spread across his face. The looming Evergreens, icy lake and silence of his world welcomed me. The chess pieces are in place.
I have deep love for my elders. Tyson teaches me much about the world, people, perspectives that may have taken a lifetime for me to grow into and for a woman far away from home and the guidance of my father, Tyson, as the saying goes is, the teacher who shows up when the student is ready.
“Shouldn’t you be out trying to find a nice man to share your life?” Tyson asked after a long silence that I had spent staring out the window, lost in a world of my choosing.
“I can’t think of a better place to be than right here, right now,” I said smiling at him.
“You’re not out here hiding, are you?”
“Hiding from what?”
“All that the world has in store for you,” He said.
“I’m not hiding,” I said but my words rang hallow between us.
He stared at me and the words poured out of how lost I felt in the ocean of broken people who kept showing up at my door. They have taken a tremendous toll on my life. I was still healing from kisses laced with poison and trust built on betrayal - still grappling with the fact that I had lain naked with a man come to assassinate me. These days the necessity to sit in the quiet of my mind was necessary.
Was I out here hiding? I don't don't know.
For so long I dated not looking for a life-long partner, but one to share my bed – a companion with whom I may choose to leave come morning and whom I didn’t mind much if he wanted to leave me, come morning.
I wanted no attachments.
It was hard to have any ‘real’ relationship with CX looming in the background poised to destroy anyone who got close to me. Every man I dated who came near Caesar was accused of being a ‘danger’ to him.
Someone I dated when asked in court about his relationship with Caesar told the judge that his relationship with Caesar was “distant.” It was. He loved and cared for Caesar and was nothing but kind to him, but he also knew that it was not in his best interest to get too close to Caesar because of CX who thinks nothing of telling lies about people to satisfy whatever sick agenda he may have. Everyone who came into my life soon learned of the lurking crazy ex-boyfriend.
It was clear after some time that the boys and I would have to live on an island all our own. I allowed few into our space.
I’ve gotten used to isolation and doesn’t mind it much. Give me a book and I will travel beyond space and time. Give me pen and paper and I can create worlds out of thin air. I knew that it would not be difficult to stay stuck on my island – come out only to feed my desires. I lived like this for many years.
“Is that all you want from a relationship to feed your desires - never getting close to anyone?”
Tyson’s question gave me pause and I stared blankly into the wrinkled face of my friend.
“I don’t want any more crazy people in my life,” I said.
Kenny used to ask similar questions. “You don’t want marriage, you don’t want any more children, we are not working towards anything, what do you want from this relationship, Kitten?”
I thought the question absurd. I thought that we had everything. I have never seen getting married or having children as a destination, mere snapshots in time like everything else. Married or not – children or no children I would leave if the relationship became destructive to my mental and physical health.
Now when I think of what I want, all that comes to mind is what I had with him…someone who loves my mind equally if not more than the body with which I bring him surrender. A man who stood by my side in the dark, cold and rain because I was his heaven – who when looked at me, I grew weak – for through his eyes I was the most exquisite, most enchanting woman I’d ever seen. A man who even when he took me half-asleep to satisfy his lust, could not help but make love to me – who loved me even when I was at my worst. And even though I refused to get married and have more children, it never crossed his mind to leave me for his world was nothing without me in it.
I could see him so clearly, standing in front of me, his eyes drinking me in – lovely Kitten, he whispered leaning to taste my lips. I could see the back of his head as he bent to take my nipple between his lips, trailing kisses along my stomach - linger on his journey to soothe my ache.
I must have drifted off - lost in nostalgia. Tyson cleared his throat, “To get what you want, you have to know what you want,” he said.
“I want what I had with Kenny,” I said. We lived every moment as if it were our last. We didn’t waste time planning a future that was never promised.
What do I want from a relationship?
Tyson pushed back the hair from my face and kissed my forehead. “You first have to get off your island,”
“I know,” I said taking another trip back in time. I didn’t have to search for a memory. I am filled with them – snap shots in time that are timeless.
“Courage allows the successful woman to fail-
and learn powerful lessons-
from the failure-
so that in the end,
she didn't fail at all."