Mikhail's Subway Musings

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Mikhail's Subway Musings

Unread postby Mikhail » Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:42 pm

So my commute to and from work is pretty lengthy. Almost an hour one way and an hour back. One of my ways to kill time is to write on my Blackberry, which is actually a lot harder than it sounds, especially when my batteries always seem to run out. Anyways, I've written a few, relatively lengthy things during that time.

I'll be unveiling them sporadically so here's the first one...

Also as a disclaimer, its like a story/synopsis of things that occurred. I'm not very good with dialogue and I don't really have the patience and wherewithal to write something super long and it making sense so please be lenient in your critiques, if you do offer them. It's just me writing of what would be a good story in my opinion would be. I have gotten a few good comments from them so, without further ado...

[Summary 1]

Characters: Alex, Phillip, Cassandra, Helen
Setting: Paris

Phillip, a naïve Canadian man, decides to visit his parents' home city of Paris. He had always wanted to see the places where his parents grew up since he had seemingly fallen in love with the city from all the stories that his parents told him when he was growing up. In secret, he had wanted to live in the city so he was scouting out potential locations to fulfill his desires.

Landing in Paris he immediately sets his mind to see all the famous landmarks of the city before finally settling in a cafe to end his night. While researching the area in his travel guides, the barrista notices his multitudes of books about the sights of the city and inquires if he was a tourist. They begin a casual conversation that seemingly lasts for hours until the cafe's close. At that moment, Phillip asks the barrista, who reveals her name to be Cassandra, if she would show him around the city. After a lot of hesitation from Cassandra and a lot of persuasion from Phillip which included financial incentives, the tourist finally convinces the local woman to show him her Paris. The two part ways with an agreement to meet the following day.

Phillip, buoyed by the possibility of seeing a city without being led around by books rises early and prepares to meet the lovely Cassandra in front of the cafe. However, after waiting an hour the barrista was nowhere to be found. Fed up with waiting he leaves and explores the city on his own, getting lost multiple times in the process. Eventually finding his way back to the cafe and hotel, he sees Cassandra working and he confronts her.

He tells her of the horrible time he had and demands an explanation. She tells him that she had family issues to take care of and she was held up for a few hours. Not impressed with her excuse, he motions himself to leave the cafe until he is stopped by Cassandra. The barrista offers to show him around the city at night after her shift and Phillip acquiesces to her proposal. She grabs her stuff and forces Phillip to hold onto it, as a sort of collateral. He hands her a long violet scarf and a red beret.

A bit of a wait later and the two begin their journey to see her Paris at night. Cassandra's first stop in their journey was a local park. They begin to talk about Phillip's motivation for going to Paris. He tells her about wanting to see the city since he was a child and then telling her that he was scouting out locations for areas where his parents could have lived in their youth, not revealing his true purpose of the possibility living in the famous city. Cassandra offers to show him around some of the residences in the area and he agrees. After touring the city, they end the night at a small bridge where they say their goodbyes and part.

Back in his apartment, he finds that he cannot stop thinking about the lovely young barrista. Thoughts of her were a constant throughout the whole night and again when he had woken up. The next day, as planned they meet again and explore the city and this continued on for the next few days. Each day, both parties seemingly getting closer and closer. However, while Phillip and Cassandra were getting more comfortable with each other, the Parisian stayed at arms length. While it is a distance which the Canadian respects, he continues to drop subtle hints of interest. At the end of the week however, Phillip seems to have made a breakthrough. He is invited to her apartment for dinner.

Ecstatic about finally receiving the chance he had been waiting for, Phillip dresses in his best attire with great hopes of finally wooing the lovely Cassandra. He proceeds to her apartment with flowers and wine and knocks on the door. To his surprise, a man answers, followed by Cassandra. The man is introduced as Alex, the barrista's boyfriend for a few years. The naïve Canadian kicks himself and for allowing himself to believe that something could have happened with the lovely Parisian and he is left tongue-tied and speechless for most of the introduction.

He is finally allowed to enter the apartment and he meets another person, Cassandra's younger sister, Helen. Helen is a girl of about 7 or 8 though she is under a slew of blankets. Alex tells the stunned Phillip that Helen has had bouts of illness ever since her birth and that Cassandra has always taken care of her. The reason for Phillip's visit was finally made clear. Both Cassandra and Alex thank the naïve Canadian for his financial support provided to the Parisian for her tours. It allowed them to buy some medicine that Helen so desperately needed. Phillip conjures up an image of joy but the evening remains an awkward one.

The next day the two meet again for their tour. Phillip now is a bit more hesitant to approach her with the same energy as he did in the previous days in light of the new information provided to him. The tour becomes slightly difficult as it seems the Canadian now lacks any interest in what he's being shown. Cassandra notices Phillip's unusual distance and asks him about it. He denies anything was wrong and she presses him further, bringing up what she thought was the real reason for his attire and gifts at the dinner the night before. Stubborn, he denies that too and asks to continue the tour. She was about to continue with the inquiry until she gets a phone call from Alex in which he tells her that he and Helen were going to take a drive as she was getting restless at home.

After the phone conversation, Cassandra reluctantly agrees to continue the tour. Nearing the tour's end and arriving at the bridge where they had always parted, Phillip finally confesses. He tells her of the feelings he had developed for her and that even though there was a slight feeling of distance, he had thought the feelings were mutual. It did not make sense to for her to have led him on like she did and it was a cruel trick. She should have just told him earlier that there was somebody else in her life to end any confusion and settle things.

Taken aback with his confession, she turns away to leave. He grabs her arm and prevents her from making her sudden exit. As he turns her to face him, he notices tears rolling down her delicate cheeks. He asks her what he had done. She replies:

"You don't think that I had started feeling things for you? Nothing could be further from the truth. With you I feel liberated. With you I feel important. But you were only visiting and you saw that I had someone else. So I tried to keep myself from getting close to you. I kept myself at a distance because I thought if I didn't let you in, I wouldn't have the trouble of missing you. I was wrong. I haven't been able to stop thinking about you. I haven't been able to stop thinking about the possibility of us. Can you blame me? Once you get on that plane, you'll be out of my life and do you think I want to suffer through that? I don't. So I never said anything. I never did anything. I stayed away."

"Why didn't you just end it earlier then? Why continue to be with me when you knew you started developing feelings for me? And what about Alex?" He replies.

"I love Alex. I do. He's been in my life for a very long time. He's dependable, he cares about me and he'll do anything for me. I used to feel the same about him. But when I'm with you, I feel things I can't describe. It takes me all that I am to keep myself from kissing you. I feel like I want to explore every inch of the world with you and yet I'd be content just being beside you in the same place every day of my life. Alex will always be in my heart and that will never change. But you, I can't resist you. If you wanted my heart, you have it"

Immediately before a stunned Phillip could respond, Cassandra's phone rings. Not letting him speak, she answers. "Oh my god," she yells and she begins pacing back and forth. She ends the call in a panic and immediately calls for a taxi. The Canadian, being unaware of the situation asks the Parisian what the problem was. She reveals that there was a car crash. Both Helen and Alex are in the emergency room and in critical condition. After a few minutes of desperation in trying to hail a cab, they finally succeed and race down to the hospital.

At the hospital they visit Helen's room first. Only being able to observe from a distance, Helen is on heavy life support. She is unconscious. At the sight of her sister's state, Cassandra let's out a loud wail and breaks into a frenzied cry. Phillip hugs her to try to console her but she's inconsolable. They eventually make their way to Alex's room who is not as badly damaged as the little girl. Cassandra breaks down again. However, seemingly after hearing the barrista's cry, Alex begins to show signs of regaining consciousness. He opens his eyes and Cassandra rushes to his side.

The heavily injured man let's out a smirk and holds his hand out which Cassandra takes. Feeling that his time is almost up, he points to his jacket. Phillip grabs the jacket and empties the pocket. A small box came out of one pocket and he opens it. A ring. Alex, mustering his strength motions to Cassandra and asks her to marry him. Caught off guard and realizing how much it would mean to the dying man, she accepts his proposal. Phillip storms out of the room.

Cassandra finds Phillip in the hospital's chapel sitting without emotion. She sits beside him. Before she can get a word out, Phillip takes the initiative and says the first words:

"I was planning on staying. I made you take me to all those residences because I wanted to have an idea where a good idea to live would be. I wasn't sure that I was staying until I met you. I find myself waking up and the first thing I want to do is hold you. I feel my heart break in a millions pieces for every tear that you shed, and I curse the world and everything in it for making you sad."

"What are you...?"

"Let me finish, please. Every time I even think of someone else holding you in my place, I feel an urge I can't control. I'm crazy for you. Utterly and literally. And that's why I don't think I can stay here. I would have waited a year, ten, or however long it took for you to be mine because you're worth it. But now you're going to marry Alex and now I know I can't have you. And if there's no possibility of being able to hold you in my arms every day of my life, then there's nothing for me here. I'm sorry, but this is goodbye."

The barrista is left speechless. Phillip kisses her forehead and leaves the chapel, leaving a distraught Cassandra by herself who is now drowning in her tears. An accidental bump in the chapel doors reveals a lot of commotion. It can be heard faintly, the words "code blue". She rushes out the door and runs to Alex's room and the commotion was not in there to her relief. Then she remembers her sister and she runs to her room. She gets to her room and she encounters nurses and doctors trying to frantically resuscitate Helen. They fail. She falls on her knees and cries...

A few months later and the scene is in Toronto. Phillip is packing in his house. He's leaving the city. He's talking to a friend who keeps pestering him about details regarding his trip. He continually asks him whether or not he met a girl to which he vehemently tries to avoid answering. Eventually his friend finally gives up and leaves Phillip to his own devices. Phillip looks outside the window and let's out a sigh. He hears a knock and he approaches the door. Before he opens the door, he yells out, "for the last time there's no girl!"

He opens the door and he is stunned. "Hello," is heard from a familiar voice. "Its you" the feminine voice continues. A red beret is dropped on the floor and she runs to him and embraces him wrapping a violet scarf around his shoulders. She kisses him.

The end.
Soweneul Malhaebwa (Tell me your wish).
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Re: Mikhail's Subway Musings

Unread postby Mikhail » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:32 pm

Here's my second entry...

This one is an ongoing project that I started Fall of last year and I've been writing random parts of it whenever i gain inspiration or just suffering from undeniable boredom. This one is so far, an untitled (short?) story and I think I've written about 7 or 8 chapters or so. I'm not a very good writer and I'm terrible at setting moods and other stuff like that in words, but I think I'm decent in creating situations. So, if you can excuse the obviously amateurish work, hopefully you take a glance and enjoy the first chapter!

Chapter 1 wrote:"I've met someone else." A long silence followed the most heartbreaking words I've heard in my life. "It's over," she followed.

And just like that, we were done. Try as I liked, I couldn't get any words to come out of my mouth. I had so much I wanted to say; an endless amount of words running through my brain, and I could not muster a single one to voice what I had felt after she said those words. I knew what I wanted to say, but I didn't feel like any words I would have said would provide any justice to what I had felt. In more ways than one, it was indescribable.

"I really do hope we stay friends. You know how I've grown to depend on you."

And that was it. Just for good measure, not only did she break my heart, but she ripped it out and twisted a knife into it. It was painful. However, in the midst of the shock that I was clearly experiencing, I did something that I was forcing myself not to do; I nodded in agreement. At this point, any hope of competent speech was still only a distant dream and I couldn't take my nod back. It was a hopeless situation. She was killing me and all I could do about it was watch.

"I'll give you some time. I know this is a big surprise to you so I'll just leave you alone for a bit. I'm glad that we're okay. You mean a lot to me and it would kill me if you weren't a part of my life anymore. So I'll talk to you later.

"Uh-huh." With all the emotion I was feeling at the time, all I could muster was a measly five letter word of acceptance. MY acceptance. And God knows that was the furthest thing from what I wanted. Right now, I just have to keep myself collected. At least until she leaves. I couldn't allow her to see me break down and I certainly didn't want to let her know how I felt at the moment. Not that I could with the powers of speech departing me at such a critical moment in my life.

She finally leaves my room and I can finally digest this information. What was it? What just happened here? I questioned myself endlessly on what I did wrong and why the relationship didn't work out. I didn't know. I just couldn't figure it out. What did I do to make her even think of someone else? What was I lacking? Everything that I did, I scrutinized with the hopes of finding the reason for this seemingly surprising change of heart.

I pondered this for hours. I couldn't sleep. It was just one of those nights where even sleep wouldn't have been able to hide me from all the emotions I was feeling. Eventually, the whole night became an endless replaying of those terrible moments. Shutting my brain off was just an impossible task.

"I hope we can still be friends." Why would she say that I wonder? Did she really care about me? Did she really care about how I feel and how hauntingly terrible that is to hear after such a moment? I've always wondered. I guess that answers my question, doesn't it? In the end, she didn't really care about my feelings - only hers. And I should have seen that.

We met a year ago in the most regular of settings. She was the brand new girl at work and I instantly took a liking to her. However, being the awkward person that I am, it took awhile for me to muster up any courage to talk to her. And even then it wasn't anything that could be classified as a conversation. It was in an elevator...

"Are you new here?" I asked with a quizzical look on my face trying to seem innocent in my inquiry. "I haven't seen you here before." Weeks of trying to find something to say to her and that was the cleverest thing I could think of in the circumstance. It was embarrassing, to say the least.

"Yes," she delightfully replied until DING, the elevator signals that its arrived at its destination where she leaves without so much as a follow-up or a chance for a reply. It took a few weeks later for any sort of chance to talk to her again came by and then she disappeared for a few weeks. It was just impossible to get any sort of actual conversation with her. My only shot was to manufacture some sort of "chance" event that would afford me an opportunity but even then my plans and schemes were insufficient.

Don't get me wrong. I wasn't hovering around like Wile E. Coyote spending all my days scheming to catch my roadrunner, only to have it all blow up in my face and then back to the drawing board straight after. While I would see her here and there around the office, it was only after those particular moments where I would have to create some form of courage to even think of talking to her. But when she was out of sight, I tried not thinking of her. As you can see, I'm pretty timid and it would be normal for me if there was a certain distance between other people and myself. However, I thought she was different. Special, though I just didn't know exactly how. I wanted to get to know her. She was the exception to my rules.

She wasn't just an average woman, like she'd vehemently try to convince you she was. She was beyond beautiful, to me anyways. It was not like what you'd see on today's television or movie stars. Her looks weren't manufactured or painstakingly took hours in a mirror to look somewhat decent. She looked as natural and as classic a beauty that you can find. Her milky white complexion was gently accentuated by her slightly visible freckles. She had shoulder length hair and piercing green eyes; the kind of eyes you feel can gaze into the inner reaches of your soul and you'd let her. She also had a gorgeous, wide smile but her teeth had a light brown stain which betrayed her addiction to coffee. Any way you look at her, she was a sight to behold.

She never went anywhere without her beret. It sat softly and tilted on the top of her head every time she had it on, seemingly defying the laws of physics. It was red and looked slightly worn by time, but it was her favourite accessory by far. Her onyx hair served as the curtain to her delicate features. Whenever her beret was off, however rare that was, her hair would be position so some would cover her eyes, adding a sort of mysterious dimension to her that just drove me wild. Her style was very modern, very hip. Lots of blazers with folded sleeves and jeans. Though there was a sort of mature sophistication to it all in the end.

It just so happened that at the end of the year, she and I were grouped together to run the company Christmas party. It was the break that I was looking for. I would finally have a chance to actually talk to her during the planning process. It was still difficult to talk to her. Well anything of substance that is. Things like "do you have a pen I could borrow," was about as insightful of a conversation I could provide. It was awkward to say the least. Even though we were on the same team, we never formally introduced ourselves to each other. For me it was a feeling out process. I didn't know what it was for her but she wasn't exactly striving to talk to me either. I couldn't tell if she was shy too, but she was always talking to other people, specifically some other guy, Christopher, so I thought it was just me. They got along greatly, it seemed, with meetings in the lunchroom and the like.

A few more days of getting to know how to approach her, worked well to my advantage. The minor moments of contact became more frequent but she still didn't know my name. I was able to get hers though. "Siena. Like the city," was her standard line of introduction, always followed by a chuckle. It was a joke, I guess, that she liked to tell. I always saw it as a test of sorts, with her trying to see if you were smart enough to get the reference. However, everyone already knew it so it wasn't as effective as she'd have liked it to be. Still, she led with it hoping to get a laugh or two.

Deadlines started to approach so everything got a little more frantic. Being grouped together meant that we'd actually have to work as a tandem which hasn't really happened much since the start of this endeavor. Knowing that I might not have a better chance to get to know her, I had made sure I would make any attempt at that on this particular day. Her coffee addiction was evident so I thought it would be my "in". Coming in slightly late to our meeting, I arrived with coffee in hand and left it her with her belongings. Minutes later I receive a tap on my back. As soon as I turned my head, she was there, with the biggest smile and her face lit up. It was a face I would never forget. A face that I would strive to see every day as long as I knew her.

"Thank you," she tells me. "Just what I've been looking for this whole day. It was getting impossible to do anything without my shot."

"Shot?" I inquired, feigning my lack of knowledge of the obvious. "Oh you mean the coffee? It was nothing. Since we're going to be working a lot today, I thought it was the right thing to do."

"Whatever the case, you're my hero," she replies as she turns away from me.

It was such a good feeling to hear those words coming from her, however fleeting it was. A minor victory scored with the hopes of having more in the future. It wasn't the biggest set of actions but it was worth a lot. After the moment, I finally snapped myself out of illusion I was experiencing and began looking at my work once again. Another tap on my shoulder...

"Sorry, I can't believe we've never been properly introduced and you've already bought me coffee," a she said, positively beaming. "And we've worked together for a few weeks. It's kind of odd, isn't it? Here I am accepting coffee from a relative stranger." She was rambling. I can tell she was nervous but I didn't mind. And I wasn't going to interrupt her to make an awkward moment. "I've seen you around so much, how come you've never really talked to me before?", she asks.

"I could ask you the same thing, but I guess we'd be going only in circles," I replied. "I guess we were just too busy."

"Well it doesn't matter now. The least I can do for you to thank you for being so nice, to start, is to tell you my name. I'm Siena..."

"Like the city!", I add, unable to restrain my enthusiasm as she finally said the lines I've been waiting months for.
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