I didn’t meet her till the day she died. And that was my greatest regret.
It was a rainy day and the night was no different at all. I like rainy days. The way the raindrops flow down the window of my little office give me peace. They calm me down. The smell that comes inside when I open the window refreshes my mind. What more regenerating than the smell of freshly wet dirt?
Today it was different. I could feel it in my bones that something was different. All day the rain fell and I was depressed. And agitated. Anticipating something that I did not know, until the phone rang.
“Hello, I thought you would like to know. Mary had a terrible accident and she is in the hospital. She asked to see you”.
That was Mary’s mother on the phone. Mary was a nice girl, we met in the local library a few weeks before. We found out that we both loved Gabriel Garcia Marquez and since then we met regularly. We did not really date, but we were not friends either. Mary with her big chocolate eyes was not very beautiful but she was interesting, funny, with a contagious laugh. And now Mary was in the hospital.
She was bad, really bad. I shudder when I think of her condition… I could understand now why her mother sounded so monotonous on the phone, so dead. She would not live till she was old with arthritis, four cats and cookies in the oven, as she wished. She would die young and in pain.
“Thank you for coming here. I asked my mom to call you. I… needed a friend” she apologized weakly.
“No it is fine, I had no plans” I can be an insensitive bastard sometimes, but nonetheless she smiled at me.
And so we sat there for countless hours and we talked about the Love in the time of Cholera, One hundred years of solitude and the latest recipe of cookies I found online. Silence fell after a while, it was late and I should get going, let her be with her family. I could not do it though. It was the last time I would see her, and I wanted it to last forever.
“Do you believe in the afterlife?” Her question came out of the blue. It should not surprise me, but it did.
“Well, I do” she said firmly. “I am not religious, I do not believe in God. But I believe if you wish really hard, you can go wherever you want. You can have a new life. I believe that you can go wherever you want”.
“Do you want to go to Macondo?” I winked my eye playfully at her.
“No. I want to become a star and float through the sky forever. Too boring to live a similar life for the second time. I would be dead there in the civil war under the instructions of Aureliano Buendia” she laughed a sad laugh. “But as a star I would live many more lives, and I would witness many marvelous things. And I would not die so easily”. The last part was barely a whisper, and I wish I could tell her something. But how do you comfort someone who is almost dead?
The next day she was gone. I did not go to her funeral, but I visited her grave. Her last words echoed through my mind for the last month. I could understand her now better than before. I wish I had really known her earlier, before she died.
AN: Inspired by writeworld.org prompt in tumblr: “I didn’t meet her till the day she died.”