there is something very strange about talking to a person you did not think you had a relationship with. you think it was all a one-time game, a way to relax and let go of some steam. you think this person was on the same page as you. and maybe he was. but then something happened, maybe you said one extra word, maybe you made a careless caress, maybe you gave him the wrong look, or maybe he cannot believe there are “good” girls who will not call him after sex. again. at all. forever. no.
so he calls himself. and he talks to you, wanting to gauge your reaction, wanting to see why there have been all those months without contact, why you are not melting at the sound of his voice, why is the magic not working this time. he does not know that the jury in your head has handed you the decision since the first 5 minutes you spoke, and while your body was nagging you for its own fulfillment, your heart had already closed its doors.
you talk, you keep the conversation light, you avoid dark curves and dead ends and you try not to hurt the other person’s feelings. you ask about his health, complain about your job, fend off compliments and hidden pleas and breathe impatiently hopping it will be over soon.
it is not so easy. the other side does not understand why you won’t come out to play, and why there is nothing now where there was illusion before. it is simply beyond him this level of indifference, this lack of interest, this maddening random treatment. he thinks he deserves better, he thinks he was special at some point or other of your life, for you to let him in so easy, and he wants that again. or maybe he just wants to get laid and there is no other person as good hearted as you once were.
so you do what any other woman not wanting the “naughty” branding does, you invent a boyfriend. a caring understanding individual with all of his hair and teeth, dream job and roses at your cubicle every wednesday (your lucky day). you try to protect his feelings and ego by doing the “not you but me” dance, because you are not a merciless soul. and he pushes and pushes, bringing independence and woman power into play, warning you about fully giving yourself away to one single person, and urging you to have your fun without him knowing of course.
you smile inside, itching to tell him that that is exactly what you are doing and that he never simply counted as more than one-time fun that unfortunately stretched into a couple of times but that is now over. forever, and ever. not coming back. at all, again. instead, you continue your diatribe about the imaginary boyfriend, mentally thanking an interrupting phone call from a friend, and “regretfully” saying goodbye to the blip in your past.
and inside you’re singing Ophelia’s song.
To-morrow is Saint Valentine’s day,
All in the morning betime,
And I a fellow at your window,
To be your Valentine.
Then up she rose, and donn’d her clothes,
And dupp’d the chamber- door;
Let in the fellow, that out a virgin
Never departed more.
By Gis and by Saint Charity,
Alack, and fie for shame!
Young women will do’t, if they come to’t;
By hen, they are to blame.
Quoth he, before you tumbled me,
You promised me to wed.
So would I ha’ done, by yonder sun,
An thou hadst not come to my bed.