He stopped his motorbike a few steps from the cemetery. All through his ride, he replayed the whole conversation with Stacy in his mind. This was it. She was no longer his girlfriend.
Lawrence walked up to one of the graves with a tombstone written Faith on it, next to another written Brian. Every month he came to the same spot and spent an hour there, pouring his heart out to them. He’d lost them to a fatal accident two years ago and no amount of time had allowed him to forget about them. For the most part, Lawrence had healed from the ordeal but still had some pain from losing them.
The two graves were always kept clean. An indication that he was getting his money’s worth from paying Mutuku, one of the caretakers at the cemetery gardens, to daily attend to them.
He sat on one side of Brian’s cemented grave block and thought for a while. What to say and how to begin. He would have sentimental monologues and when he left, he’d feel much lighter and happier.
He really needed to feel both today.
‘You know, I’m two days early. I couldn’t wait to come on the fourteenth. I had to be here today.’ His first line made him emotional, thinking about his love life and what it currently was. His throat swelled, tears trying to escape his eyes but he couldn’t let them. He was a macho man, and crying was not a way of expressing himself.
He always felt that being at the graveyard talking to his guardian angels gave him peace. He looked at the engraved words on the tombstones. He had crammed every detail in his mind and could write them down blindfolded.
‘I know we’d have gone out for drinks today Brian. I know I’d go home feeling happier and glad that I made the decision to cut Stacy loose. You of all people would understand.’ He forced a smile as he said that. He was looking at his tombstone as if talking directly to Brian.
He then turned to Faith’s and continued talking, ‘You would have caused a hell of a storm right now Faith after hearing about the break-up. You always were overprotective of me. I know you so well.’
He looked at a distance and saw a well-dressed lady placing a bouquet of red roses on a grave. He studied her closely. Her body language and all, until she kissed her palm and blew a kiss to the tombstone. She dried her tears with a handkerchief and walked away.
‘I always forget to bring flowers with me.’ He paused, then continued, ‘I should probably bring some gin and wine and pour it, ama?’ He smiled to himself as if finding that inside joke funny.
‘Can I be honest with you? The problem is I still feel like I made a wrong decision with Stacy. That maybe I was the one to fight for her and probably I gave up too soon. Then sometimes I feel it was the right decision, you know?’
This was therapeutic for him. ‘You guys are my guardian angels. I know you guide me.’ He stood up and stretched a bit. He walked towards Faith’s tombstone wanting to touch it then tripped on something, almost falling down.
At that moment Lawrence woke up from his dream. The moment had seemed so real, he almost felt as if it’d actually happened. But it was just a dream.
He instantly thought about Stacy, how he’d broken up with her. How he later rode off to his favourite joint for drinks, getting so wasted he couldn’t ride back and had to take a cab back home. When he got there, he passed out.
One thing was for sure, he couldn’t live like this. Life had to move on. It was time to start forgetting Stacy however hard it seemed, he’d learn it.
NEXT: No Valentine’s | 12