Friday, 31 May 2019

Part 4 : Dancing Days

Jimbo: "The heck you talking about mann (emphasising on the n) it's not your fault, none of that was, then why are you running away? It was that Mark grrr" I snuggled my head on his shoulder, sighing feeling a little more secure as he patted my head gently. Hearing his voice mixed with anger as well as still trying to hold a soothing tone I laughed listening to mad variation it bought out. The mere fact that this was Jimbo trying to sound threatening made it even more comical.



As much as I loved him he would always be a little boy to me and listening to a little boy trying to sound intimidating only made things cuter, heck I probably had more of a chance of causing Mark some permanent damage with my handbag then Jimbo did, but it felt comforting and strangely reassuring to know I always had Jimbo in my corner.





Ridz: "Stop it Jimbo, your nothing but a big Dumbo Jumbo who would easily be frightened off by a mouse… Mark is that mouse so leave it as it is; I don't want to think about it so please" what had started off as a light hearted comment ended up with a heavy heart confession. I wasn't ready to think about it and I guess having to recollect the whole thing for the benefit of not having the heart to say no to Jimbo earlier had just added salt to the wounds.



Jimbo: "But you are thinking about it… that's the problem Ritz" he continued in a softer more nurturing tone. "Is this why you didn't want to come back? You can't keep running away you know, you'll have to face things sooner or later and I'd rather you did it now, so you can move on… you have so much to give to the world… don't let a couple of bone heads ruin that for you… please for me "



I met his gaze; yes it was true I was too frightened to come back, to frightened to face reality… scared almost of what would happen if I had to face those people again, people I used to once consider my friends turned out to be… well with friends like these who needs enemies seemed very apt for this moment.



Ridz: "I'm sorry James, but I don't think I can…" my voice trailed off as a lump started to form in my throat. The tight lid I kept on my emotions I guess were ready to burst their dams, but was I ready to let them flow? I didn't feel ready so I gulped down that lump for the umpteenth time in the past… well I've kind of lost track of how long now… and met his eyes. Silently pleading with my eyes I begged Jimbo not to take me back there; I had come back to the UK after much persuasion by him, but getting back to my old routine… was that even possible now?



Jimbo: "But Ritz" an air hostess came to my rescue and stopped him from going any further with his reasoning, I knew once he started I couldn't say no and that was exactly what I wanted to avoid doing hence hadn't told him about my little life changing experience all these days.



Air Hostess: "Sir, Madam we're getting ready to land now, can you please fasten your seat belts" she hovered around us until the task was complete. It seemed we had missed the little 'fasten your seatbelts' ping from the plane while we were deep in our conversation and it didn't appear as though the air hostess trusted us enough to go until the belts were securely on.



I could feel Jimbo's eyes burning a whole into me as I sat there with my eyes closed while the plane descended.  This was it… I was back in the UK… and if I knew Jimbo the first thing he'd do is try to get this sorted out. I felt the heat rush to my cheeks as tears prickled behind my eyelids, fighting to come out. Closing my eyes tighter I fought them back in, I will not cry for nobody!



I had just spent an entire week in the most beautiful city to my memory with the one person I truly cared about more then myself and all I could think about was him… Armaan Malik. How I despised that name right now, I wished so many times he hadn't come into my life, if only Ms D'Sousa hadn't teamed him up with me, if only Jimbo's hadn't made him play the lead opposite me, if only I could have had a better understanding of men to know what signals I was apparently giving out so I could have stopped myself… the endless if's never bought back any answers. The questions always remained hanging in the air.



I watched silently as Jimbo loaded the luggage onto one trolley without asking and started pushing it towards the exits not waiting for me. Why was he acting like an ape now… what was I supposed to have done now? Again another question with no answer. *Sigh* That face that was always smiling, even when he was getting in some sort of trouble was now replaced by a horrible frown, creasing his forehead which would definitely leave wrinkles in the future and he would kick himself for.



I silently followed; I figured I could always get my luggage off him later and just get a separate taxi to my flat. The moment I saw him packing my luggage in with his I froze



Ridz: "Jimbo what are you doing?" I placed my hand on his shoulder which he shrugged away



Jimbo's: "I'm not letting you go back to that empty flat today… you're staying with me for a bit" without looking he walked around me and headed for the passengers seat



Ridz: "But Jim"



Without turning to looking at me, he stopped with his back towards me "Please don't say no and just trust me" the restraint in his voice was clear… what was going in that head of his. Again the silence prevailed and I silently got into the black cab with him.



The ride to his place was very quiet, neither Jimbo tried to comfort me as always; nor did I try to break the ice and make conversation… it seemed so strange. In all the years I had known Jimbo never once did we have a shortage of things to say to each other or understand each other and here I was staring at his face which was looking out of the window absorbed in his thoughts while I sat as the outsider looking on. I just realised I hated Armaan Malik more then ever know… I had just lost Jimbo thanks to him.



As soon as we got into Jimbo's posh little pent house apartment near the docks in canary wharf he made some excuse of having to pick up some shopping for the house and headed out again. It wasn't until then that I realised how much I relied on Jimbo's smile to get me through the day. Since our flight he hadn't smiled once and the lack of that sparkle was wearing me down.



Letting myself collapse onto his suede chocolate brown settees the tears that had threatened to flow before just couldn't be held back any longer. The feeling of having nothing anymore was unbearable; I had managed all this time with the belief that no matter what at least I had a friend in Jimbo and that was enough to keep me going, but now… whatever those feelings were that Armaan apparently had for me just snatched the only living relationship I had left.



There was that name again… why did everything have to be about that name now? He was probably out there enjoying his life, dancing away to glory at school with those amorous eyes and sensuous moves. He probably never had to work very hard to get what he wanted; those deep dimples that were aching to be bitten would have got him out of doing any real work always.



Jumping up with a jolt I realised where my thoughts were drifting to. This wasn't the first time this had happened; I spent most of last week starting with hating Armaan and then slowly by slowly my thoughts would drift of to somewhere else. What was wrong with me? Frustrated at myself I got up and went to take a much needed shower. Only a cold shower could bring my senses to normal again, I had to concentrate on how to make things up with Jimbo, I couldn't stand to see him upset over anything, and the fact that it was me he was upset over made things that much worse.





The cold shower hit me like lightening, immediately my thoughts started to concentrate on my breathing rather then anything else. The cold water seemed to be stopping my blood supply as I watched my toes turning blue. Maybe a cold shower was a bad idea, all my energy seemed to be draining out of me as I stood there letting the water punish me. Drumming against my skull it was trying to knock some sense into me. As unwelcome as it felt the more I wanted it, I wanted someone else to take control, I don't now what I'm doing I thought.



Feeling my muscles starting to ache under the cold water it seemed like it was time for me to get out. Getting dressed quickly in the bathroom I wrapped the bathrobe over my clothes, letting some warmth slowly seep in, letting my aching muscles relax. The next obvious thing to do would have been to get food, but the shower had worn me out so much that all I could think of was sleep.





As I drifted into deep slumber my mind went into hyper drive. All sorts of images kept flashing into my mind, one moment I would be looking at green hills then the next I'd be galloping on a horse through muddy plains, with apparently somewhere to go but where I didn't know. Then I was in the castle, walking through the high ceiling hallways, adorned with beautiful drapes and portraits of handsome faces, but nothing to catch the eyes. Then there was the most magnificent full size portrait ever seen, standing proud in the centre of the image was a very handsome gentleman, dressed in the most exquisite suit of that time… time, what era could this have been, everything seemed so grand and old, almost like in the old English movies where beautiful women were described with terms such as English rose.



As my eyes travelled up the length of the portrait I took in the all the details I could possibly fathom, knowing full well that I could never fully take it all in, and then I saw those eyes. A sharp in take followed as I started to realise who it was… it was my Darcy.



I jumped up in bed, sweating profusely, did I just… shaking my head I got out of bed thinking I could do with a cold glass of water. As I went nearer to the door I heard a voice outside in the lounge area. I was certain I locked up before heading into the shower and there was no one in before I went to sleep. Maybe Jimbo was back… perfect time to patch things up, I'd make him his favourite snack and we'd head out.



My hands stopped at the handle as another voice joined the first; the one I thought was Jimbo's. what was going on? Maybe Jimbo bumped into someone from school while he was out shopping and they came back to the flat, who was it though? I pressed my ear against the cool wooden door trying to listen harder but it still all sounded muffled. Looking around I found nothing that could help listen more clearly without opening the door, so that's what I did. I opened the door and peeped out. my jaws hit the floor as I stared stunned. There was James sitting on the couch looking gravely into his palms looking down and across from his was… Armaan. What was he doing here?



My heart pace quickened, it was getting ready to jump out, just like I wanted to do… escape from here, from this god forsaken country. First he ruins my life, then my dreams and now his here… again to ruin something else. The anger, rage, all of it just overflowed as I found myself marching out into the room. Taking both Jimbo and Armaan by surprise which was evident from the way they both sprung to their feet's immediately; grabbing hold of Armaans' collar I tried to yank him up so I could throw him out, once and for all, out of this flat and out of my life. But of course this was the perfect time to find out how weak I was… my taking him by surprise didn't lessen his strength and I was left fumbling with his collar as his hands held my wrists in place.



The anger erupted in me as I tried to pound his chest, where all this anger was coming from completely surpassed me, all I knew was I hated this man with a vengeance right now and I wanted to hurt him as much as I was hurting.



My eyes glazed over as I registered his face, there were those eyes filled with nothing but deep longing and love?, maybe I was expecting him to mock me, or ridicule my foolish behaviour, but no…  there he was looking lost in my eyes trying to send me some silent message with them.  I didn't know why but at that particular moment every hateful thing I ever said or thought about him completely vanished, for the first time in the past couple of months I wasn't looking to run away, to escape… I was just lost and held hostage by those eyes.



I pulled away, not wanting to let my emotions get the better of me; I must be tired or delusional. Thinking of this man for so long had started to affect my rational thinking otherwise what could be the reason for me not wanting to pummel him when I had the perfect opportunity to.



I looked around trying to find JImbo to ask for his help to het rid of this monster, but he had gone…



I shook my head laughing a little; I knew he would try to sort this out, but this soon? This was a record even for him. Taking a deep breath I looked at Armaan, trying to loathe his existence, but every time I saw that face I felt my heart betray me, it was forgiving him while my mind was screaming to attack him. Tearing my eyes off him I walked away and stood by the balcony hoping this was a horrible dream and he would disappear… minutes felt like hours but he stood rooted to that one spot. Not making any efforts to approach me not leave me in peace. Why was he so adamant to torture me like this, I'm sorry for heaven's sake I wanted to scream for ever coming to into your life, for ever offering you hand of friendship, for everything! But the words stayed in my head, nothing passed my lips, not a single sound.



"I'm sorry" he whispered



The pain shot through me as the tears started to cascade down my cheeks. Looking at his reflection through the window I saw him standing there with his head lowered… he was ashamed? After all he had done to me!



"Sorry for what?" my voice was eerily calm, portraying the complete opposite of what I was feeling. My words seemed to have him confused, I saw him look up and look around, unsure if the words had actually come from me or somewhere else. It was at that point I realised I hadn't said a word since getting into the cab at the airport. Although there had been a constant battle in my mind with words flying left right and centre, I had been silent all this time. I turned to face him with new courage, there was no running away from this I realised and knew this had to be settled one way or the other today.



"I asked sorry for what?"



Without a hint of hesitation in his voice he went on "Sorry for loving you more then I've ever known or thought possible, sorry for knowing I can never be happy without you, I'm sorry I think of you from the moment I open my eyes to the second I go to sleep, and even then you haunt me in my dreams…. I can't remember happier moment in my life till I met you… I'm sorry… for everything"



To be cont...

 Lubna

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