She’s walking away with the guy now. He’s leading her by the elbow, the perfect gentleman. I’ve never held her like that. I’m not saying that I’ve never held her, of course I have. Just not like that. She turns by the door before they disappear from my line of sight. There is something in her eyes that I can’t figure out. She doesn’t respond to my smile, she looks straight at me, expecting something.
See, it’s at times like these when I suddenly realize that underneath that tomboyish attitude, there is a girl. There are times when I find her gazing into the horizon thinking thoughtfully, but when I ask her about it, she smiles and says nothing. I know womenfolk say it all the time, and it almost never is “nothing” but with Maya, I leave it at that. I guess when she is good and ready; she’ll let me know what’s on her mind.
She doesn’t find what she was looking for and disappears, dejected.
Sometimes I wonder… But that’s another story.
Just a minute, my date is here, wondering when I’ll pay some attention to her. You see, I’ve been running the whole show the entire evening and now that the clock has struck two, the party has start winding up, my date expects me to focus on her. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think she’s wrong. I just want to make sure Maya is okay with that clown before I take my date home. She smiles understandingly. I don’t know why, I don’t find my date’s smile as genuine as Maya’s. But then there are very few people who say things at face value, without mincing their words. Granted, that may not be the best of strategies but at least with Maya, you always know where you stand. If she’s happy she shows it, if she’s sad, she withdraws.
I take my date along. I want her to know that she’s special and I just wanted to check up on Maya. After all, it was I who insisted she come along. Maya wanted to spend New Year ’s Eve at home. But I know, when Maya says she wants to be left alone, she needs some company. When she says she wants to be at home, she actually needs to be taken out. Its twisted, I know, but I’ve learnt a thing or two about her.
Oh, there she is! Her eyes shine as she sees me and a wide smile appears on her face. You won’t believe it, I receive this kind of greeting every time! Even if I’ve been away for only an hour. She’s just always happy to see me!
I introduce Maya to my date and Maya introduces me to hers. I noticed the two women in my life regard each other. My date with suspicion and politeness, Maya with curiosity and apprehension. I on the hand, had no problems being introduced to Maya’s date. A firm handshake and a nod and we were set. I didn’t understand this about Maya. In fact, this was one thing I didn’t like about her. She never warms up to my dates. At least, not during the first meeting. She is polite and courteous but she doesn’t make an effort to make my date feel comfortable. I’ve learnt to keep Maya separate from my love life.
Anyway, Maya says she’ll be alright and practically pushes me away. Before I can say goodbye, she is gone. I don’t think I should be complaining though. This was what I was hoping for. That she would have a good time, meet a nice fellow. My good deed for the year is done. I smile indulgently and turn towards my date. We can finally start our evening together. What I can’t figure out is that uncomfortable knot in my stomach. Something feels so wrong.
Photograph via sxc.hu