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A heavy heart and a few sorrowful songs on repeat has led me to the river. The Detroit Riverfront.
They've built it up nicely down here. The perfect mile-long stroll for couples on a summer day. Or, for a lovesick woman who just wants to be alone. The clouds have even covered the sun in honor of my heartache, made for a more melancholy forecast.
I park, sit, and stare out of my windshield at all the happy couples, holding hands, laughing, smiling. That used to be us. Just two short weeks ago, that was Abram and I. This used to be one of our favorite places to spend a Sunday afternoon.
I have driven him to another woman. The reality of the gray door with the gold, horseshoe-shaped knocker that I've grown so fond of, being opened by some strange, beautiful woman, hits me. Hits me hard. The tears that haven't already abandoned my ducts in the earlier flood rush to the white of my eyes, prepare for their fall.
I can't believe this.
My sweet, sweet Abram. The one who held my face tenderly and said he was falling for me, just a few weeks ago. The one who said he could see forever in my eyes. The one who, after every night of unequivocally passionate love-making, wakes up to me, pulls me close to his warmth, nuzzles his face in my cloud of hair, and whispers that this is exactly what he wants to do tomorrow morning. And the morning after that. And the next after that until he has reached his final waking morning.
That same Abram just had a woman open his door and greet me, with a smile, ample cleavage, and no knowledge of who the fuck I was.
I grab my camera, visions of Abram and that woman doing all sorts of ungodly things stampeding through my head, each pound another nail in the coffin of my belief in love. I have got to clear my mind.
A long stroll along the riverwalk proves beneficial. I take a few shots of the kids playing in the newly-added fountains in the GM Plaza. A few shots of passers-by blasting old school music from their speedboats. And a few couples, quietly enjoying their afternoon, the intimate gazes and interlocking of fingers reminding me of what I'm missing. Strumming my pain.
My phone rings about ten times. All Abram. I don't answer.
Now he wants to talk. Hmph. Now he can call. Too late. There is nothing I want to hear from him right now. Nothing.
But persistence pays off, I guess. After about the twentieth call from his cell number, I pick up.
"What do you want, Abram." I don't hide my disgust at all.
"Oh, hello, Ata?" He stumbles as if he wasn't expecting me to answer. "Baby, we need to talk. That, what you saw back there... it's not what you think."
"You've had all these hours and you couldn't come up with anything more original than 'it's not what you think', Abram? Come on now."
"It's the truth, Ata. That was just business, I swear."
"Couldn't tell you the last time I had my 'business' guest's cleavage answering my door, Abram. Must be a really sweet deal. You've been avoiding me, being rude on the phone, not answering half my calls, all because you thought I was with my ex when you heard him in the background on the phone. But I get to your house and this heifer is answering your door with her breasts hanging all out? Forgive me if I'm not buying your bull."
"I'm not saying I was right, Ata. I've been pulling back a little, yes. But that Jaylen incident... that threw me a little. Made me realize that I have feelings invested in you, Ata. I'm not trying to get hurt. Not trying to be played. Being honest, that scared me a little. A lot."
Why do men always used the 'I don't want to get hurt' excuse for everything they do. I don't want you to hurt me baby, that's why I was with her. I can't let you hurt me, that's why I didn't call.
What. The. Fuck. Ever.
"Save it, Abram. All you had to do was talk to me. But not right now. Right now, I'm about to go. I'm downtown by myself, and that's what I want to do. Be by myself. So, bye."
"Ata ... don't hang up. I love you, Ata. I swear I do. And I had this really elaborate plan I was going to do, and it was going to be face to face when I told you, but I feel like I need to say it now. I love you. This past week has made me realize it even more. I don't even want to think of me being without you."
I try to stop them, but the tears spring up without my consent. Well up in my eyes and blur my vision of the beautiful day. My feet stop moving and all I can do is stand there. I've wanted to hear this from him for so long. So long. But like this? He waits until he has to get back in my good graces and pulls the 'I love you' trump card.
"Abram, I've got to go. Good bye." I curse my betraying voice for cracking as I speak.
"Don't hang up after I just spilled my heart to you, Ata. Don't do that. You don't want to hang up. You want to work this out. So just tell me where you're at downtown and I'll come there."
The tears congregate more, but I refuse to let them drop. It wasn't supposed to be like this. It just wasn't.
"I'll talk to you later, Abram." I say, hanging up as he starts to plead his case once again.
Business? That's the best he could come up with? No way.