We were arguing about something, which, for the life of me, neither she nor I can remember now. But the atmosphere was somewhat, undeniably tense. She was staring at her computer screen, uncomfortably seated on her sturdy office chair, possibly anticipating our juvenile argument’s end. Her large round eyes glued to the screen. Her light, soft brows tensely pushing the skin between each other wrinkling her smooth, pale skin. I found myself standing just a foot or two beside her, facing her with the same tense in my brows, but much thicker and larger in volume, staring with an equally uncomfortable glare on my smartphone.
Despite the tense atmosphere, I found my heart relaxing and growing soft as I took notice of her ever so subtle yet enticing fragrance. Followed by my detection of her little, innocent figure, crunched up uncomfortably on her usually comfortable chair.
I could feel little pockets of guilt emerging through my heart, slowly it was flowing through my veins provided with little chills through my body, urging me to comfort this beautiful creature who I have brought sadness upon. “Love” was the first word that finally formed in my mind. I don’t know how, I don’t know why but listening to her breath had an immense effect on me. Her quiet, soft and slightly fast-paced breath protesting against my lack of outward sympathy with each exhale insisting on an unfeigned apology.
To which my instincts decided to grab her notepad on her desk and reach down for my pen from my bag. My consciousness wasn’t doing the work anymore. This was something I have been wanting to confess. Something that I had hinted but my attempts had reached to no avail. This time, I was going to make sure she got the message. With the notepad on my right hand, I clicked my black, ball-point pen and without hesitation wrote down my feelings. It was to be short and direct and so it was. “I love you.” I wrote first. Then after a pause for a second, I wrote another sentence. “我愛你”. Thank god I had still remembered to write “I love you” in Chinese from my high school days.
With some hesitation and uneasiness of having almost revealed my inner most feelings to her, I tore the paper out of her notepad and flipped the paper around. I didn’t want her to read it before I left her room to the library. So I wrote, “P.T.O” praying to god she knew what it meant. Once I was content with what I wrote in the paper, I realized she had been speaking. I didn’t know what but it was something I didn’t want to hear, and it was about me. I interrupted her, “Do you know what PTO means?” to which I received a blank stare. “It means please turn over.. the paper” I added still unsure whether she understood what I meant.
There’s no way she won’t see the message now, I thought. With that, I placed the paper close beside her right hand with the letters “P.T.O” written on it. Ignoring her questions, I rushed out her room, then from her flat, then from the building with my heart thumping on my chest. It felt like my heart was beating against my ribs, wanting to escape so my brain would cease to function and so I would lose my consciousness and avoid to ever having to hear, see or read her reaction.
That was when I realized, I had given in. I had given in to this girl who I’ve just been dating for a shy of three months. She was mine, since she had declared her love for me earlier. But now, I was hers …