Crying In The Rain, Dancing In
By Leigh McEoghan
Disclaimer: They look like 'em, they sound like 'em, but they ain't them. Got
it? I own these here ladies so y'all cin just shove and bug sumone else, y'hear?
The Hamlet quote was used without permission. It belongs to William ' Could
this play be more tragic and depressing?' Shakespeare. Don't sue or else.
Violence and Naughty Words: There's no violence but you can expect some cussin'.
Naughty behaviour: nothing graphic but what does happen happens between two women so if that kind of thing isn't your cup of tea, or it is illegal where you live, go no further.
Authors note: It's been a while since I've written anything and posted it. I got really busy all of a sudden a while ago and I've only just come out on top of things. I'm still a bit in shock, I haven't worked so hard so fast since I did my Leaving Cert. (I started studying two years of work in seven subjects about ten days before the exams started. I know, some times I amaze even me!) Anyway. This story is a sequel/companion piece to another of my stories 'Thank You'. Thank You was a really short piece and I got a lot of requests for something more with those two rather mysterious gals so here it is. I would recommended that you read Thank You before you read this, trust me, it won't take you longer than two minutes. Please email me and let me know what you think, I always write back! Cheers, Leigh: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dedication: This is one for the fallen.
Ever had one of those days? You know the type. Nothing goes right from the moment you open your eyes to be blinded by the (much too) early morning sun to the time you tumble (often literally) into bed very late at night falling straight into a fitful sleep, fully clothed.
Ever had a week filled with that type of day, or a month, or five years?! That was my life once upon a not-too-distant in the past time. Day after crappy day of wall-to-wall Murphy's Law.
(Ironic, some might say, because my name is Murphy.)
It was my job. It suffocated me. It had me trapped. It nearly had me broken. But two months ago my contract ended and in a fit of reckless abandon, I decided not to renew it.
And then suddenly I was free. The effect was immediate. The sword of Dama-whats-his-name no longer dangled precariously over my head. The equivalent weight of several good-sized elephants was lifted from my shoulders. When I left that building for the last time, the stress that had been hanging out in me for the last half decade simply vanished. I felt lighter, so light that I ate a whole tub of Ben & Jerry's that night in celebration.
Why the hell had I become a stockbroker in the first place? I don't think I'll ever really know. Was it destiny? A stupid college dare more like. Whatever the reason, it no longer mattered. I was no longer Murphy Keogh the stressed out workaholic. I was Murphy Keogh the young-ish, quite comfortably off, single girl. My life began again that day. I was thirty-three years and three hundred and fifty days old.
I'm sure you have questions like; What did she do then? and Why is she telling me this? and most probably Do I really care? If you weren't actually asking any questions and were just kinda skimming along, well then skim away. For those of you who need answers and a reason to read on, this is for you. What I'm doing here is telling a story. It's simple. It's sappy in places and it's true. You don't have to believe it; you don't have to enjoy it. You don't even have to read on. But if you do read on, know this: for every thank you, there must be a 'you're welcome' and every story has two sides. This is my version of the truth.
There's a divinity that shapes our ends,
Rough-hew them how we will.
- Hamlet, Act 5 scene II.
I was loving my new life as a lady of leisure. I got up when I wanted, ate where I wanted, saw who I wanted, it was great. I had a new rule, a new motto in life. It was simple: Live like there's no tomorrow, dance like no one is watching and never, ever say die. In only two weeks I had done three things on 'the list'. I had made this list on my eighteenth birthday. It was full of things I wanted to accomplish or experience before I was too old. (Of course, back then, I would of considered thirty-three to be way past it.) Some of the things on the list were crazy, some were simple.
I did a 120ft bungee jump and loved so much that I did it again. I bought a dog. I had always wanted a dog when I was little but my mom was allergic so I could never have one. I was allowed fish. Fish! Whoever thought the up the idea of keeping fish as pets really needed to get out more.
On my second week out of 'captivity' I trooped down to the City Pound and brought home the cutest little golden Labrador pup. I called her Mac. I bought houseplants. They're still alive today. In about two months, I had done just about everything on my list. All that was left to do was visit the ancient Mayan ruins in Mexico and one other thing.
The Very last thing on my list was scribbled hastily as an afterthought. I remember I blushed when I wrote it down, it seemed so girly and I was anything but girly. It simply said 'true love'.
Ah yes, true love. Was this one of things I'd never have, like an honorary degree from Harvard or an expensive Caribbean summerhouse? I really hoped it wasn't. I had felt better than I'd felt in five years but there was something still missing. Something big. It was a niggling feeling that I wasn't a whole person. Like I was incomplete. One halve of a whole. I didn't really have many friends; my family lived a few thousand miles away. Except for Mac, I had nobody.
I was alone.
Good God! when had that happened? The more I thought about it, the more I realised that I had always been alone. I left Ireland when I was eighteen to come to college here in grand old Americay. I had had a single room in the dorm. To keep my scholarship I had to work and study hard which ruled out having a social life. When I graduated, I went straight to work for C/C&D and moved into an apartment on my own. I was able to count, on two hands, the amount of dates I'd ever been on, ever! I was able to count on one hand, the number of true friends I had. That grand number was three, and one of them was dead.
I began to have morbid thoughts on an hourly basis. My mind was constantly filled with questions like if I died tomorrow, would anyone actually notice? Would anyone come to the funeral? Who would look after Mac? and so on and so forth. I was having an almost mid-life crisis.
Things went downhill from here. My zest for my new life petered out and finally disappeared. What was the point of living free if I had no one to share it with? Would I be waking up alone for the rest of my life? I suppose I might have been a tad melodramatic about the whole thing. I started wearing an awful lot of black; I even bought one of those long, gothic-looking black leather trench coats to wear when I was feeling especially melancholy. I also took to writing bad poetry and 'experimental' cookery but that's best left for another day. My life was beginning to mirror that of a tragic artist's. I started to feel stifled again, not by an unrelenting workload but by emptiness, loneliness and even a wee bit of homesickness. I remember the day that it all changed like it happened yesterday.
It was raining and I was characteristically miserable. I was wearing my old jeans with all the rips in them and the water was getting in and trickling down my leg, soaking my socks and feet. My hair was plastered to my head, face and neck and I regretted, not for the first time, letting it get so long. Then again, the long dark locks did add to my mysterious/moody/strange-lady image of late. I was supposed to be shopping for a birthday present to send home to my brother, Tricky, but the crowds and weather were giving me a headache so I decided to cut my visit to urban hell short and head home. It was on the way back to my Jeep that I saw her.
She was sitting on the edge of the sidewalk on the opposite side of the street to me. She was obviously crying her heart out and yet, people were just walking around and past her like she wasn't even there. It took me less than a minute to make up my mind. Putting up the umbrella that I had been carrying, (I had left it down so far because I was enjoying the way the weather was complimenting my mood) I checked both ways and jogged across the street. For a while, I just stood to her side and watched her. She was younger than me, possibly in her mid-twenties. She was wearing an expensive looking pair of designer jeans and a green hooded sweatshirt. She was soaked from her sneakers to her stylishly cut short blonde hair. Her eyes were red-rimmed and puffy from crying. She was gorgeous.
It was beginning to get dark but it seemed, to me at least, that a soft light surrounded her. I stepped in front of her and when she looked up to see who I was, my heart broke. Her eyes were filled with the worst kind of pain and all I wanted to do was take her into my arms and make it all go away. Before I knew I was doing it, I offered her my hand. She was still crying but she took it and when her skin touched mine I could've sworn that sparks flew. I pulled her up under the umbrella. Her head only came to my chin so I looked down into her eyes, which reminded me of the colour of the sea near where I grew up. Take me home. She whispered, her voice hoarse with emotion. Our eyes remained locked and she gave me a pleading look. This woman was alone, afraid and extremely upset. I would do whatever she asked.
I put an arm around her and we walked the three blocks to where I was parked. Safely inside, I cranked up the heat as far as it would go and turned in my seat to look at her. Her head was bowed and she was staring at her hands, which were fidgeting, with the end of her jumper. Hey. I said softly to get her attention but she still wouldn't look at me. I reached over and lifted her chin with my fingers. She turned her head to look at me and I gave her what I hoped was a reassuring and warm smile. Hey yourself. She whispered back. We got caught in each other's gazes for what seemed like hours, jumping when a car backfired somewhere nearby. There was something so familiar about the woman. Did I know her? I'm sure I didn't but then again, I didn't know her name or anything about her.
I'm Murphy by the way, Murphy Keogh. I offered her my hand. She took it and we shook gently.
Hi Murphy, I'm Kelly Masters.
And so the ice was broken. I asked where she lived so I could take her home but she got very pale all of a sudden and looked as if she would cry again so I offered to go to my place instead. Whatever happened to this woman had left her an emotional wreck and I was itching to find out who or what had hurt her and made her so sad but she never said anything on the subject and I didn't ask. I knew that when she wanted to tell me, she would. When we got to my apartment, I offered her some dry clothes and a shower, which she was reluctant to accept until I pointed out that I had two bathrooms and I wouldn't have to wait around in my wet clothes. She finally allowed herself to be ushered to the guest bathroom. I left her there and went to have my own shower. I was finished and dressed first so I decided to get dinner in order. Five minutes later, two pizzas with 'the works' were on their way.
While Kelly was in the shower I took the time to evaluate my situation. I had gone out to pick up a birthday present and had come back with a very distressed damsel. The absurdity of the situation washed over me like a tidal wave and I began to laugh a little. The sound of a throat being cleared made me look up. My mouth went dry. Kelly was standing there in nothing but my old high school soccer jersey. The green and white material had never looked so good. I was so taken by how gorgeous she was that I didn't hear a word she said. Huh? I snapped out of my reverie and attempted to take control of the situation. I said the sweat pants wouldn't stay up, they were way to big. Kelly repeated and gave me a shy smile. I can't remember but I think I might have melted. I asked her if pizza was ok and offered her a beer but she mumbled something about not being able to drink and asked for a coke instead. We sat in the living room waiting for the pizza. Every so often I'd open my mouth to ask her if she wanted to talk but she'd beat me to it and ask me questions about my family, Ireland and Mac.
The pizza finally came and as we sat there munching (I noticed that hers disappeared at an alarming rate and wondered when the last time she ate was) I decided to ask a few questions of my own.
Kelly, if there's something bothering you, and clearly there is, I want you to know that well . I know you don't really know me and visa versa and that we just met today and well, I'm a good listener and if you want to talk, that's ok. I stammered out. She looked at me, there were tears in her eyes again and I mentally kicked myself for upsetting her. She took a deep breath and put down the slice of pizza she had been chewing on.
First of all Murphy, thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You saved me. I sat there with what could only have been a stupid and very confused look on my face. She continued; Out there on the street, people must have thought I was crazy but you stopped and helped me. Thank you. She gave me one of the most dazzling smiles I've ever had the pleasure of receiving.
You're very welcome. Are you feeling any better? I asked her. Her brow furrowed as she thought out her answer and her nose crinkled in a way that I found adorable.
Yes, I feel like a person again, like life is worth living. I suppose you're wondering what happened to me, why I was crying in the rain? I nodded and let her continue. Up until about two hours ago, today had been the worst day of my life and believe me, that's saying something. You see . And she went on to tell me her whole horrid story. Someone she thought she loved and loved her back had used her. After that person broke her heart she went to her parents for love and support only to have them disown her when they discovered that she has been seeing another woman. I sat there and listened to her tell her tale, wondering how anyone could intentionally hurt such a beautiful soul. By the time she Kelly finished speaking, we both had tears running down our faces. Not knowing what else to do, I opened my arms and she fell into them, sobbing her heart out. We stayed like that for a short eternity until there were no more tears left to shed. Sniffling, Kelly slowly lifted her eyes to meet mine. It felt like she was looking straight into my soul and I fidgeted slightly at the scrutiny. She finally seemed to come to some sort of a decision. I was about to ask her if she wanted some ice cream when, in one sudden motion, her lips covered mine in a searing union. Shocked, I could only revel in the softness of her mouth on mine. I felt her tongue press against my mouth so I opened it. It was the most passionate moment. of my life. The kiss seemed to last forever, finally ending when we could no longer breathe. I tried to speak but she had left me speechless. Damn that was hot! Kelly smiled slightly at my goofy expression and I grinned back.
Do you believe in fate Murphy? She asked me in a small voice. I thought about it. At any other time, in any other place, I would have said no, absolutely not, I make my own fate and so on and so forth but now I wasn't so sure. Was it a coincidence that I had seen Kelly on the sidewalk or was I supposed to find her? I looked at her again, taking in every inch of her face, searching for an answer. When I looked into her eyes, I found it; I knew that this was meant to be. You make me believe Kelly. I said and was rewarded by another searing kiss.
That night, we began building our new lives by washing away the pain of our old ones. We explored each other's hearts, bodies and souls and melded them into one strong being. The next morning, the rain had stopped and the sun was shining brightly. My life began again.
Was it worth writing? Let me know! email@example.com
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