A Magical Roleplaying Experience 

Welcome Back! It's time for our 20th Start of Term!

 #28474  by Radu Georgescu
His feet felt so heavy beneath him that he almost expected them to break the ground beneath him. The sound of blood rushing through his body was pounding in his ears. He was preparing himself for what was to come: the anger, the sadness, the disappointment; all the emotions he was sure Manuela had felt since he left. The thought of it kept him up at night until he managed to drown his guilt in enough cheap vodka.

As she spoke, he opened his mouth to regurgitate his rehearsed explanatory apology.

"I..." he started as the weight of the words she had spoken hit him like a ton of bricks.

She was not yelling or crying. She was not expressing any of the emotions he had expected. He did not have an answer. He was not well but, in his own way, he had accepted it. It could be worse. It had been worse, once. He considered himself somewhat lucky considering...

"I wasn't supposed to live."

He finished his thought out loud as he sunk against the wooden railing.
 #28529  by Manuela Balan
Unnerved by his cryptic answer, she fought the urge to pound her fists against his chest until he offered something more substantial. How rich to claim to know better of his fate than the God housed behind him! A God who praised the sanctity of life above all.

"What does that mean?" She challenged impatiently as her fist clenched at her sides.
 #28540  by Radu Georgescu
He noticed her clenched fists and sucked in a short breath. So she was upset, and now she was showing it.

"Nothing," he brushed off her question as he brushed past her and started walking way from the church. He had not come here to offer her some explanation. It was better she just thought of him as a pathetic, emotionally incompetent man than a pathetic, emotionally incompetent murderer.
 #28563  by Manuela Balan
"Stop being such a coward!" She yelled unable to contain her resentment.

They had been given an opportunity to get closure and he was simply going to dismiss her? It is as she helplessly sat on the church's steps that a troop of parishioners left the holy building.
 #28586  by Radu Georgescu
Radu stopped in his tracks and waited for the small throng of people to pass.

It hurt to hear her call him a coward. He knew she was right; he knew he was a coward. Still, hearing it form her hurt more than he expected. Maybe it hurt more because he knew he couldn't do what she was asking. He could not lie to her anymore, but he she couldn't know the truth. So he was stuck saying nothing at all; stuck being a coward.

"Just drop it. Please," he pleaded.

He knew better than this. He knew better than to keep engaging with someone who wanted something from you that you could not give.
 #28818  by Manuela Balan
"Drop what?" She retaliated, blaming him for every ill-defined detail of their relationship. She rose to her feet and approached him. "Drop what, Radu?" She repeated as her index pressed against his chest.

"I thought we were going to get married, start a family." Her palm pressed against the expanse of her stomach. A child would have likely come from their union by now. "Is that what you want me to let go? Because I've tried," through her acrimonious questions her voice wavered. "I can't seem to understand why you left. I thought we wanted the same things."
 #28948  by Radu Georgescu
Radu stood still as stone as she rightfully berated him. He would let her do more than just jab him with a finger if it would make things better.

"I don't," he mumbled, biting back the urge to take his words back and tell her the truth. He was usually better at lying, but he usually was not lying to someone he cared about as much as he cared about Manuela. And this time he had actually really wanted those things and even believed he was going to get them.

He hated hurting her but she was better off without him; better off not knowing who he really was. He was worthless. Pathetic. He was not someone that deserved the kind of life they had imagined they would have together.
 #29048  by Manuela Balan
At first, she had misidentified his aura of mystery as timidity, but slowly as he had started to reveal himself she had seen through the cracks. He wasn't timid, he was hiding. A cynical soul would have called it lying through omission, but Manuela had been willing to wait, trusting that he would share his secrets when he felt that he could trust her.

Her shoulders slumped. He wasn't hiding anymore. He was lying.

She shook her head. "I can overlook many mistakes and many character flaws, but I'm glad I didn't marry a dishonest man." Through tears, she gave him one last look.

Seeking solitude or perhaps because she was finally ready to mourn him she walked towards the cemetery behind the church.
 #29878  by Radu Georgescu
I'm glad I didn't marry a dishonest man

Then this was all for the best. So much of who he was had been built on lies and omissions - dishonesty.

He silently battled his demons while she began to walk away. For the last year, the only person his demon could hurt was himself. Now that he was here, though, it was a different story. They, and he, were hurting the one person left that he loved; the one person that meant the most to him.

"Good. Good!" he yelled as he stormed after her, "Because that is what I am. I'm a fraud."

He was emotional. He was clearly angry. He was taking out his anger on himself on her.
 #30218  by Manuela Balan
Manuela flinched under his tormented tone. She had never been privy to his anger, though she had suspected it might someday emerge.

"How?" She matched his tone. "You are not a Floral Designer?" Her hands flew towards the sky. "You have yet another wife in hiding?" She spat as her anger got the best of her.
 #30649  by Radu Georgescu
Radu was momentarily rendered speechless. Another wife? Did she honestly think that he had lied about that? He was well aware that his actions had not been the best way to cope with the news that Doina was not dead, but even someone as emotionally clueless as himself could have seen that he had been genuinely surprised and disheveled by it.

"What is that supposed to mean?!" he roared back. Of course he had a fairly good idea of what she meant by it.

"She was dead! I saw her body! I saw her blood all over our home! Vanya told me she was dead! So no, no you won't turn that around on me. She was dead to me and it was because of me. ME!"

He slammed his fist into his chest on the final 'me'.
 #30872  by Manuela Balan
"Because of you?" The startled woman interrogated feeling as though she had almost married a complete stranger.

There had been a life before her. A life of shadows and gloom, a life she had surmised from the lines on his face and the heaviness of his silences. Yet she had focused on their life together. On their happiness and their plans for the future. It seemed as though romanticism and naivité had prevented her from seeing how much her future husband's past had been haunting them.
 #32040  by Radu Georgescu
"Da," Radu replied, barely more than a whisper. He had lived with this guilt for twenty years. Knowing she was not dead did not make it better. Thinking on it now, he often got so angry at himself for believing the lie. He had been so easy to fool and manipulate. Doina was no doubt better off in her new life than she ever was or could have been with him.

He stole a quick glance at Manuela before averting his eyes toward one of the many headstones. She was better off without him too, even if she did not realize it.
 #32044  by Manuela Balan
Surrounded by tombstones, haunted by a relationship she had refused to mourn, the blonde fell silent. All of the insults, all of the questions she had for him were settling in a grave of their own. Perhaps he had been right to leave.

Looking at a tombstone on which she could easily imagine their names being engraved, she spoke. "I loved you," she grieved the notion that their love should have been enough. "I love you," she corrected, convinced that the man she had known was still somewhere within the confines of the broken man standing next to her. "I thought that you had left me for selfish reasons, that you had discarded me without consideration." Feeling herself crumple, she wrapped her arms around her delicate frame. Though he voice remained steady, she felt a tear roll down her cheek. "But I realize I was wrong. You left because you wanted to protect me," she nodded as the belief started to settle. This selfless gesture seemed more in line with the man she loved. "You decided to protect me, instead of trusting me."

The tip of her fingers dug into the flesh covering her ribcage. "Marriage cannot exist without trust," she whispered finally willing to accept their fate.
 #33349  by Radu Georgescu
"No," Radu breathed and took a small step toward toward her, stopping as he thought better of it. He listened as she finished. He wanted to disagree with her, to argue that she was wrong about him. He couldn't. He knew that she was right. He did not trust that she would still love him once she found out who he really was so he had decided to protect her from the truth by leaving.

"I can't change what I am, and you don't want to know what what I've done. Who I am."