Free – After A Long Time
This short story/flash fiction is written for the photo prompt at Describli.
This is it… Today is the day…
Today I’ll meet him almost after 10 years.
We’ve been complete strangers since the day I left my old town with my mother.
I waited for him to contact me for a long, long time. But he never did. And so, I gave up waiting for him. He was the one who wanted me gone, so how could I have reached out to him. I remember the day he told me to go, he didn’t even come to the station to say goodbye.
At one time, he was my world, my first love, my superhero, my provider, my saviour, my everything. But then, he was nothing.
He didn’t even come when I graduated. He didn’t even come when I got married, he didn’t even come when I had a child, but yesterday night, out of the blue, I got his call, after 10 lonely years, saying only 3 words – Can we meet.
And after the exchange of a few more words, I’m standing here in the rain, waiting for him like I did a lifetime ago. Yes, it does feel like a lifetime. I thought that I’ve learned to live without him, but yesterday after his call, I realised just how much I really missed him and he did in fact, meant something to me after all these years of living my life without him, the most important man in my life.
I tap my feet on the moist ground below me, the crunching of leaves making me more nervous. But why am I nervous? He should be the one who should be nervous, cause he wanted me to leave that day. He was the one who sent me packing to a new town, amongst strangers, alone.
For 3 years I waited for his call day and night. I was so desperate to get him back that I had no idea how to live anymore. So, I did what I had to do to drown my suffering. I got into smoking and drinking. I became a rebel and made my mom hate me for it. I became a loner, a nobody.
But when after 3 years I realised that he will never call me, I finally started to pull my life together. It took me a long, long time. And finally, when I was living a happy life with my family, he rises from the dead and simply calls me. As if we just had dinner last week.
Why? Who the hell does he think he is? How can he even think that he can ask me to see him? And why the hell am I here?
This is a bad idea… I really should not be here. I must go back, to my family who loves me for who I am.
I shake my head and get up from the bench, pulling my raincoat tighter around me.
I’m leaving. He deserves to be stood up. To be left alone.
And just as I’m about to leave… I see him.
He’s walking slowly towards me, from the other side of the road. And as soon as he’s close enough for me to see his face clearly, a sob escapes my mouth.
And somehow, after all, these years of pain and suffering and living like an orphan, I still feel that somehow his presence is going to make everything alright.
After all, he’s my father and he’ll always be.
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