Memories into Ashes
“Gecko, what do you like to talk about?”. The whispered question came from Kristel’s curiousity after they’d shared some physical action together. She was sitting on the edge of the bed while he took the rest of the space …as if it was his own bed. He hesitated to give her an answer for a second there. He knew exactly the topics that he liked.
See, Gecko loved psychology. But he wasn’t sure if his answer wouldn’t reveal his true self. “I like planes and travelling. So, I prefer talking about such topics. I want to know that the person that I’m with will follow me in my travels. Maybe we could buy a boat and sail around the world.” Suddenly he gnawed on his reply, with his tail waggling from the opportunity to talk about himself and his dreams yet again.
Indeed he loved travelling. He loved to travel …not to see the world or to know different cultures. But to have it as something to boast about to his circle. To boost his ego. To have others be jealous of him, as he’d often put it. He did everything for public opinion. And if an activity did not promise any public recognition, it was totally useless to him. That’s just how he was.
Kristel love travelling too. But she had no money to do it. Besides, she enjoyed her life, which seemed to be finally stable after having lived a life of temporary homelessness. Gecko would usually try to convince her to leave her life behind …and follow him, “we could travel all the time, you know. Maybe work for people in an exchange for shelter and food. What do you think?”
Kristel had a knack and patience for listening to him. Not that she had any other choice. But because once Gecko was around someone, he’d make sure that he got all the attention that he needed. And the person wouldn’t even recognise that they’d stop focusing on their key priorities for him. He would suck all of it, and still want some more. He was a head without a body. A bottomless stomach.
To make things worse, Kristel enjoyed stirring his wild side. She would propose doing petty crimes with him. He loved it, and would even want to go further than petty. They’d look for prohibited places, and enter them illegally. Just to prove that “laws are stupid, and everyone who follows the law is stupid. The government wants to take our freedoms. We have to give ourselves the freedom to do what we like.”
They’d blindly convince each other. There was none saying no to the other… even with the 20 years difference in between them. All fun and games, and no responsibility. No accountability either.
One wanted to be cool. And the other one was cool, but she had decided to give the middle finger to the ‘harsh life’ that was bestowed upon her. Just like fire with air, they fed off each others’ traumas. And bonded like little orphans.
The very first time that they’d shared intimacy had been on their way back from a hike. A hike that had led them to the top of the hill where they’d enjoyed the beautiful view of the city. On their way back down, in nature, she had initiated the kiss …and then the rest. Directing him with Do’s and Don’ts. And he liked every minute of it.
But later on in life, he’d equate that very precious moment to one of the worst moments of his life. He’d tell that to each and every new girlfriend that he had. See, once Gecko was done with someone, all the beautiful moments would be turned into moments of hell …in his pity-me stories.
Eventually, as per his pattern with partners, he found Kristel boring. He found her scent from cigarettes disgusting. He found a problem with her drinking …because in his mind, he was a saint.
He had sucked all the energy and joy that he could get from her. He had met all the cool people in her circle, and had turned almost all of them against her. All the Rock ‘n Roll concerts that he’d attended with her were eventually memories of unnecessary noise. All the intelligent conversations that they’d shared soon became memories of Kristel’s psychometric moments …in his stories.
Of course he had met someone else. A prey that looked fatter and juicier than Kristel. And soon Kristel would be dropped like a block of ice in boiling water.