Nostalgia – part 1

The following is not a story about first love and first kisses, but a story about people who have the talent to leave visible traces in our lives with a very little effort… It’s a story about why I’ve always had a weakness for green eyes, men in army uniforms, Freddie Mercury’s music and Damian Damianov’s poetry.

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I was born and raised in a small town in South Bulgaria, near the border with Greece, where most of the time if you didn’t know what you did, the rest of the town for sure knew. My parents were/ and still are/ respected and well known by everyone, citizens and it was a “must” that I had to follow their example. I was a good girl, most of the time, even when the hidden, wild-rebel ideas inside of me collided with real life, provoking me, I always made the effort to remain a good daughter.

I was almost 17 years old when I first fell in love. Toma and his family had just moved to town in the house opposite ours; it was a hot, summer night in July when I first saw him from my window, shirtless and sun-tanned, with cute, disheveled, light-brown, wet hair. I don’t know how you’ve all accepted the first signs of love and if you still remember these moments, but back then, I was sure that the glow in my heart  lighted the whole neighborhood, and I sure still remember the awfully, strong presence of the hundreds butterflies battling fiercely in my stomach and my knees made out of jelly. The two sets of curtains and the ten meters pavement between us were not meant to be an obstacle for a very long time. Few days later I found out that Toma was the new centre forward player of the football team in our town and last year student just like me.

My dad and my brother were involved in all the activities related to the football team/dad was a part of the administration and my brother was a junior player/  and on weekends I used to go with them to the stadium and play tennis on the courts next to the football field. The day when I saw Toma again I couldn’t play, rain poured down suddenly. I ran to the stadium to leave my tennis bag with my dad and to tell him that I will go to Mimi’s house/ Mimi- my high-school girlfriend/.  As I was leaving the stadium, there he was, standing by the gates, neglecting the drops of rain, and the idea of passing by him made me feel nauseous, but I confidently walked towards him, only to see him blocking the doorway with his hand. Needn’t to say that being young and inexperienced was the worse that could happen to a girl in love. He gloated over my confusion for a moment and then spoke:

‘How would you like if you and I see a movie tonight, after training here? That of course if you’re not busy staring at your naked neighbors!’
Not only he was a witness to a moment of weakness that I had, but there was this terrible feeling that I was made out of the most transparent nylon and he saw everything that I tried to hide. My reaction was to push his hand and to tell him to stay away, but he didn’t seem to be bothered and shouted after me:
‘7 pm. I’ll be waiting at the cinema, every night from now on, until you come.’
I didn’t go on the first night and on the second either, but I sent my brother to spy for me and tell me if he really waited; and when my brother came back, twice, with a positive answer, on the third night I went to meet him.

A week after, Toma asked me to be his girlfriend and I said “yes” without a hesitation. I didn’t have an idea what that meant, but it felt really great and the butterflies in my stomach were no longer intruders, but tiny sparkles that kept me happy. September came and school started, we walked together every morning, he held my books, kept a chair next to him at lunch break, called me “gorgeous” in the hallways of the school, demonstrating shamelessly his part as a boyfriend and at the football games on Sunday, every time he scored a goal, he shouted:’ That’s for you, baby!’ Everything was beautiful at that time and I was happy, even the fact that my parents didn’t like him very much didn’t disturb me. There was one little cloud that sometimes kept me worried and awake, we were together for nearly five months and he hadn’t kissed me yet. He always had his hands on me, hugging me, like he never wanted us to be apart, but his kisses were brief, on the cheeks or the forehead, like I was his sister. In movies people in love had passionate kisses and I couldn’t stop wondering why I didn’t have one yet?

All this made me suspicious, a little sad at times. It was like having a bar of a delicious chocolate, but never to taste, only to look at and dream about, and I was way too proud to dare and make the first move. The shadows of my unanswered questions made me listen and look around and soon I saw that not everything was made out of honey and rose petals. The goals at the games that were supposedly only for me, were apparently for half of the girls on that stadium/ some of them close girlfriends/ and the magical walks back home after every game were magical only because I didn’t know that Toma dedicated the rest of his nights to other girls, different each time and from the rumors, the dedication included more than brotherly kisses and hugs. But being only 16, I was allowed to be late out only on Fridays and Saturdays when my girlfriends and I went to a disco club and at midnight, I had to be at home, in bed. Toma rarely came to that club on the days I was there, his excuse was that he needed a rest for the Sunday game and silly me, never thought that it was all a big, fat lie. Innocence, a virtue that could easily lead you to a broken heart and I had a soul full with it.

It was one December Saturday, a week before my birthday, when Toma and his friends came to the disco club, but things had been slightly cold between us for the past couple of weeks and he flirted with other girls openly, in front of me. We used to stay on a table away from the dancing floor, in the corner with dim lights. Not only the table had velvet sofas to sit on around, but it was big enough to fit all of us girls and the music there wasn’t that loud. Toma danced with a different girl with the change of every song and I felt miserable, sitting at the very deep end of the sofa, where no one could see my sadness. Few of my class-mates came to ask me to dance but I politely declined. My girlfriends tried to make me smile, but I told them that I needed a break, so at some point I was left all alone on the table. Five or six soldiers sat on the table next to ours that night. They were from the army base two kilometers out of town and you could often see them in the club or in the coffee shops on weekends. Most of them were at least five years older than us and we didn’t avoid them, but simply kept a distance. Many times we danced together or exchanged trivial greetings, but that was it.

I didn’t notice that something was up on their table at first, but when four of them came one after another to offer me a drink or a dance I woke up from the sad thoughts and patiently waited for the next one of them to come. Ten minutes after his friend left with my “No”, he sat next to me, which caught my attention immediately, none of his friends did, and said:

‘Hi, my name is Borislav. How are you tonight?’
‘Before you ask, the answers is “no”, so don’t waste your time!’
‘Hmm, and how would you know what I am about to ask you?’
‘I assume the same as your soldier friends who stopped by before you! Not that difficult to guess!’
‘Well …’, I didn’t let him to finish the sentence, I moved towards him and looked him straight in the eyes.
‘So what did you bet?’
His hands reached the camouflaged cap on his head, almost ashamed and he laughed.
‘Pretty and smart! I like it!’
‘That doesn’t answer my question, what did you bet?’
He leaned on the sofa next to me, lifted his hands behind his head as in surrendering and said:
‘The first to have a dance or a drink with you, gets the car that we all share, exclusively, for a month.’

A little satisfaction about being right that there was something going on cheered me up, but I wasn’t through with the questions yet.
‘Why me?’
‘We’ve been watching you for the past two hours, at least five of them, poor boys, left your sight with a disappointment on the face, we wanted to see if you were saying “no” in general or you just can’t dance. The prettiest girl in the club  should be on the dancing floor, not here alone!’
‘If I was that pretty as you say, I would’ve been dancing with the one that I like.’
He came closer to me and whispered: ‘Is he the one with No 9 labeled on his shirt?’
‘How did you know?’, I jumped surprised that I was so obvious to strangers.
“There are holes on his back, which I’m sure will be a perfect match to the size and the shape of your eyes. But anyway, what is so special about him?’
‘He is my boyfriend.’, I said with a hint of doubt about the statement that I just made.
‘Is this what you do when he behaves like an ass? Isolating yourself from all the fun around? You might as well stick a note on your chest ” I’m about to commit a suicide in the name of love!”
‘Oh, yeah! And what does a smart you suggest that I should do?’
‘Dance, look happy, even if it hurts like hell inside of you, show him that you don’t give a damn.’

‘Ha! You want that car really bad, don’t you?’
‘And that, but mostly I want to dance with you!’
‘Next Saturday, with the car that you will win tonight, you will drive me and my girlfriend to Smolyan/ town 20 km away from my town/ to see a movie that they won’t show in our cinema and you can have the next dance right now!’
‘Only if I can bring a friend along.’
‘Deal!’
‘Then, let us dance!’
And for a first time Freddie Mercury and “Too much love will kill you” had the most wonderful sound. Borislav held me in his arms like a man who had just found the woman of his life and there was a triumph and a spice in the rhythm of the music, in the camouflage colors of his uniform and in the way his green eyes shined…

TO BE CONTINUED …

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© 2012  Broken Sparkles

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Memories * The End*

*All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons is purely coincidental.*

Alex and Bella meet – last part

Isabella slept during the whole flight to New York, after the night with insomnia and memories, the minute she got on the seat she couldn’t hold her eyes opened. She woke up to hear the announcement that due to the bad weather conditions, the plane will not land on JFK, but on New Jersey’s international Newark airport. The pilot and the crew were apologizing for the inconvenience and assuring the passengers they will be well taken care off. As she was waiting for her luggage, she dialed the publishing house to let them know about the delay.

In the same time, Alex waiting near her for his suitcase, being on New Jersey’s airport for the same reason Bella was, he heard her saying: –“Hello! Can I please speak to Mr. Joey Amaba?”. That name immediately pricked up his ears, his body and mind stood alerted, waiting for the rest of the conversation, he listened to Bella carefully.
–“Oh, he is not in! Can you please let him know, my name is Isabella Valor, I was supposed to arrive in New York today, but there is a delay because of the weather and I am in New Jersey now, but as soon as I arrive I will call again. Thank you very much!”

Bella was a bit annoyed with the flight situation, with not being able to find Mr. Amaba and as she was thinking about it, two policemen and a man showing her a badge with FBI sign on it came close to her and she heard the man saying:
–“Miss, my name is agent Alex Castillo and I am with the Federal bureau of investigation, could you please follow us?”
–“I don’t understand!- Bella said in surprise, wondering what was going on, why the police would come to her and why this man would look so angry with her? She didn’t even know him. In fact she didn’t know anybody here, but she followed them silently.

They took her in a room with a table and two chairs only. Like in the movies, she thought. Like I am the bad guy and they brought me for interrogation, great, her brain wouldn’t stop thinking and panic got to her. She heard agent Castillo asking the two policemen to leave them alone and then he asked her:
–“How do you know Joey Amaba?”
–“Joey Amaba is my publisher! I am about to publish a book and work for his publishing house. I’ve never seen him in person though, I’ve always communicated with his assistant.”
–“So you want to tell me that you have never seen this man here?”- said Alex and put a picture on the table.
Bella looked down and bad pain chocked her, with Charlie’s face in front of her, the emotions from the day she last saw him were not too late to come back. Hatred and disgust. How much someone needed to keep all the rage locked, she wondered.

–“This is not Joey Amaba!”- she looked Alex in the eyes with firmness and her voice couldn’t be any colder. The thoughts were running, chasing the ends of the bits that will become a puzzle once she figures out what was she doing here, why this man, for unknown reason furious with her, was showing her picture of Charlie and what has Joey Amaba to do with all this?
–“Don’t lie to me”-Alex snapped out at her, hitting the table. -“You just said you haven’t seen Mr. Amaba in person, right? How do you know that this is not him?Are you trying to cover this monster?”

He could kill her right now!Alex thought he would jump over the table and just squeeze her neck and she was sitting there, looking at him heartless.
–“This is not Joey Amaba!”- Bella said again, trying to not raise her voice, trying to keep calm. And then the tears came again, those nasty tears, with broken taste, that she remembers so well.
–“This is Charlie Damilo”-she continued quietly. -“We were supposed to get married, nearly two years ago and this is when I last saw him.”. She lifted her head and looked at Alex, who didn’t know how to react on her tears. He sat down exhausted, like all the torture this girl was feeling, accidentally moved into his body and listened to her story. Now he understood why they couldn’t find anything about Joey Amaba. First, he was in Europe and second, it wasn’t his real name. He apologized to Bella for his bad tone and explained to her who Joey Amaba was, all the things he has done and how lucky she was to get away from him. Bella was blaming herself for being so naive again and when agent Castillo asked her for help to catch Charlie, she agreed without second thoughts.

She went to New York on the next day and to the appointment Joey Amaba’s assistant arranged for her to meet with the publisher. She looked absolutely calm when Charlie appeared and made him feel nervous, because he expected her to be worried, instead the police arrived 5 minutes later and arrested him, the look on his face, betrayed and hurt, gave her a small payback.

~*~*~*~*~*~

The cold sun was trying to get to the curtains of the penthouse of hotel Claridge Paris. It was cold day in December, but today was looking bright outside. Bella felt lips on her neck and heard: –“Good morning birthday girl!”
She smiled and got close to Alex saying : –“Good morning baby! Let’s go and get my present!”
Alex laughed, she was so funny, his Bella was lovely early in the morning. A month ago he asked her what would she like for her birthday and she said that she would like him to kiss her under the Eiffel tower. He couldn’t believe he actually did this, brought her here only for a kiss, even though he would give her much more than a kiss when they go to the tower. Alex smiled thinking of the little blue box with engagement ring he had in his pocket, he kissed her again and said: –“Let’s go to get your present!”.

~*~*~*~*~*~

Bella never published her poems, but Alex offered her to stay in Pasadena. He introduced her to very dear friend of him working in the local newspaper and Bella is now a journalist there. Alex left the bureau and got a job as a coach in the junior football team in Pasadena high school. Charlie was sent back to Philippines, he is now in jail and it will be for many more years. Mr. and Mrs. Rico Valor went together with Alex’s parents on a trip to Puerto Rico, after Bella and Alex got together, and they so much loved the small country, that sold their hotel in Santa Pola and moved to Puerto Rico. Helena finally met in person her internet sweetheart and they are now married and have one of the best cooking TV- shows. Dina took part in a beauty contest, she didn’t win but the photographer of the contest is now her photographer and husband …

As for me … I’m here, smiling and living in a world surrounded most of the time by people like Charlie, but I have faith and I believe in all good things. I’m waiting for my “Alex” and my “happy end” with a kiss in Paris and I know, they are somewhere out, waiting for me too and until then … keep dreaming all of you that came here to read the story!

THE END

"Les Amoureux du Sacre Coeur" by silxy on deviantart.com

© 2011  Broken Sparkles

Memories *5*

*All characters appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons is purely coincidental.*

Charlie Damilo – part 3

Charlie Damilo was a wild child, little devil with the face of an angel. The only person that could make him behave was his father, but he died when Charlie was 12 and the slightest chance to turn into a nice person disappeared together with Mr. Damilo’s remains, buried under the ground. Charlie’s mother didn’t grieve much about the loss of her husband, shortly after there would be a different man, different daddy nearly every day at their house in Marikina City, Philippines. Charlie would hear late at night his mother’s giggles and love moans and he hated her, he wanted to make her pay for not respecting, for not being faithful. And one day he did. He just killed her, stabbing her with a knife more than 20 times, with such content movements, not feeling guilt even for a second. He hid the body in the basement in the hole he excavated himself and on top he poured his last, innocent smile engraved in cement. He told the neighbors with his best sad face how his mother left him and ran away with her last lover. And that was it, he was 18 and free. Charlie sold the house, all the furniture and jewelry the family had and with the money went to Manila.

Charlie didn’t have problem to have any rich lady he wanted. Not only their bodies and hearts ready to obey and follow his rules, but and their money too. He didn’t care about any of them, after all they were like his mother – worth nothing. Four years he was living like a king, undisturbed for his actions. Until one day the husband of the woman he was with caught him with the jewelry he stole and in defense Charlie shoot him. It was clear he couldn’t stay there. He had to escape. Making a fake passport that would take him out of the country wasn’t easy, but it was possible when you pay the respectful amount of money. His new identity was under the name  Joey Amaba and with it Charlie went to America, to Los Angeles.

He loved the rich neighborhoods, the shops, the fame and the glory, everything there was made exactly for him and his taste. American women were easy to take advantage of, to lie to. He could live there forever and life would’ve been always interesting if it wasn’t the stupid Leanne that committed suicide because of him. When they said on the news about her, other women recognized the name and complained against him too and that was the end of living in America. At first he went to Morocco, but life there wasn’t the way he liked it. Spending a year in Russia, then in Romania, Charlie finally ended up in Spain.

Landing in Barcelona, not having much of a hope to be any nicer a place than the previous 2-3 countries, being in love with LA already and longing to somehow find way to go back, he was in an absolute strike of surprise with the sudden feelings of astonishment, with the unexpected flow of love that he sensed deep in his heart, when a stranger woman fainted in his hands. “Damn it! What the hell is this now? -his inside voice asked. Charlie was not troubled by the fainted woman, he could deal with it easily, he had many ladies laying lifeless in his hands. The problem was that all he wanted to do is protect her, love her, take care of her with tenderness, with passion, he wanted to make her feel like a princess, one and only important princess of his heart.

Isabella Rico Valor wasn’t even his type! Of course she was cute, but she wasn’t a woman he would choose to be with. Being with him only for two minutes and already ruling his mind, not a good sign, not at all. He could just leave her at the hospital and go, but no … He tried staying away from her, but it was hard. He fought the desire to ask her out all week and on the end he couldn’t resist. He even couldn’t keep his promise he won’t kiss her. It was her smile and her voice, the way she was talking a lot, but never stupid stuff. And then the kiss that totally disarmed him. Weakness in his legs,  his hands were no longer in control and the beast inside of him wanting to tear her apart, to make her cry, with all the love he could give her in bed and not only.

Everything was so new to him, the first flowers he ever gave a woman, the first presents he bought, the first “I love you” that he said, and the first time that he would be careful about being with other women, because of the money. Everything because of Isabella and everything out of his heart. When she told him she is pregnant Charlie couldn’t believe how he asked her to keep the baby and to marry him. And the strangest thing of all, he was actually happy about it.

The day Bella went to tell her parents about their wedding plans, he met that blond girl ready to give him anything just for a little attention and he was stupid enough to take her to Bella’s flat. And then Bella and her impulsive nature, the surprise to come back earlier. Why was his luck left him, Charlie wondered? Women that had felt lied by him never said “Out!” to him, never threw things after him, they were all begging him to not leave them. But she did. Not only she expelled him, but didn’t say a single word, to blame him, to ask him why or anything else, just to show feelings. The ignorance was burning him. And after that she disappeared, like she was never there. He found out in a month time that she lost the baby and went back to Santa Pola. Charlie couldn’t go there to find her, not with her parents around. He was pissed off, rage was eating him. No woman leaves him behind. Especially not the one he really loved and cared about.

For weeks his only thought was how to get to her. And on the end -brilliant idea! Her poems that she wrote because of him, tons of them, so nice and inspiring, she wanted them to be published. He knew she sent them to few publishing houses. So he went back to USA, but this time to New York. He made a publishing house under the name of Joey Amaba. He contacted her and said they loved her work, promised her great things and a challenge no one could resist, only so she could come to him. Bella had no idea about his little plan, about how much he waits for payback time to come. Today Isabella Rico Valor would be his again and this time forever …

to be continued

“Into the darkness” by Witch of Nature on deviantart.com

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© 2011  Broken Sparkles

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