Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What to do About You

A Short Story
by CJ Heck

Jessie sat at her keyboard, staring at the small black words racing across the white screen. She had only met Donald six weeks ago, but she had to admit, it had been a wild ride.  She was both intrigued and enamored. He seemed genuine, although, can anyone ever truly know someone they've only known online?

Jessie read his lovely thoughts and felt the familiar surge of emotion as he deftly fashioned each keystroke into another perfectly worded seduction. She had to smile. Donald was very much an artist, only his canvas was the heart, his medium, words.

When he finally stopped typing, she sensed he awaited her reply. Gathering up her thoughts and all of the questions that had been nagging at her, she began ... "Donald, do I know you? I mean, do I really, really know you? Sometimes I'm sure I do -- at times, I think I even know you better than you know yourself. But there are other times, like right now, when I'm sure I don't know you at all."

Jessie hesitated a little too long and Donald began typing again. "Sweetie Pie, you have to go with the flow. You know me, Baby, you know you do. Someday, we'll be together, I promise.  But just for now, this is what we have. Talk to me, Sunshine. You know you feel it, the love.  I know I do."

Jessie took a deep breath, stretched her mind along with her fingers, and began to fill the screen with her own thoughts to send across the miles. "Something is happening, Donald, I will agree.  Your words have caught me up in something big and, yes, we've made a real connection here in a very short time. But is this love? I don't know -- how can I know? We've never even seen each other in person.  Why is that, Donald?"

Jessie paused to collect her thoughts and immediately, Donald's words appeared on the screen.  "C'mon now, Babe, you know I love you. This is how everyone should fall in love. You and me, we've learned to know and love each other on the inside first -- this way, looks can't get in the way. We love each other for who we are, not how we appear.  Get a grip, Babe."

If only Donald would say the words she needed most to hear: "I can't wait another minute. I'm getting on a plane this afternoon. I need you and I want to be with you. I want to look deep in your eyes and see the love I feel reflected back. I feel like I'll die if I can't hold you close and breathe you in, and fill up my very soul with you. I love you, Jessie, and I can't live without you for another day."

Jessie knew she would never hear those words, but still she tried once more, "Donald, do you really know me? I'm sure you'll say you do, but I believe you only think you know me because I'm a writer and you've read some of my writings -- but those are only little parts of me, just thoughts I've sheared off to rhyme or not rhyme. But that's not knowing -- at least I don't think it is.  Donald, we need to talk about what's important."

Jessie didn't stop typing this time. Her fingers flew. "One thing I do know, Donald.  Your wants and desires scare the hell out of me sometimes and all my instincts tell me to run and never look back. Why won't you come and see me? I need to hold you. Don't you feel that, too? Where do we go from here, Donald? What do I do about you?"

Jessie stopped.  Now she watched as Donald's thoughts filled her screen one last time. He was smooth, she would give him that. But now, reading fast so the tears wouldn't blur the words, she read something much different than what she needed, "Geez oh man, Jess, what the hell?  Of course I know you -- it's too bad you feel like that.  You know how I feel about you, Baby, but you're moving too fast for me.  Maybe we shouldn't see each other anymore ..."

Jessie had seen enough. The last words she read before clicking the Power Off button were,  "... so I'm sure you understand.  Just remember, Babe, it's your loss ..."

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C,J., I wonder how many times a day this is played out...for real. There are so many lonely people out there and it's so easy to get caught up in the excitement of a love affair very quickly, only to be shattered and left more lonely. Thank you for this story.

CJ Heck said...

Hi Mike,
I'm sure you're right. It's sad, isn't it? The internet has become what the dating bars used to be. Thank you so much for reading and commenting.