It was the same as the other nights; I’d wandered into the dense fog at the foot of the valley. I could smell the tea plantation which surrounds me. He was late. The stranger I waited for in my dreams. There were no sounds, and if I didn’t know I was dreaming I would be quite frightened especially with the low visibility of the night.
Someone touched my shoulder. I turned around, startled out of my thoughts. It was him. I smiled and relaxed. “Will you tell me your name tonight?”
“No, my Princess, I can not.” He tilted my face up so I could look at him better. He is a few inches taller than me, thin, almost boyish but what surprises me is his strength not apparent at first glance because of his slender frame.
“But I’m not a Princess. I’m just a normal average girl.” I laughed. I was really too old for dreams of Princes and Princesses. I mean girls grow out of this when they are 12-13 years old, the latest I’m sure. “Are you a Prince?” I asked, somewhat curious. I could play along with this theme if he wants. We had been meeting for a few nights in dreams, with a few stolen kisses and soft words of love. I felt safe and I trust him.
I could see a few chest hairs peeking out from the open V of his shirt, and I wanted to hold him close and run my fingers through them.
“No. I’m not. I have neither wealth nor kingdom to offer you. I have nothing but my love.” He sighed heavily, a slight frown marring his perfect bronze face. He has thick black brows like the ancient warriors of days past, and a long Mediterranean noise. His jaw is square and can look quite stubborn. “I love you so much. But I’m afraid you’ll leave if I reveal my identity to you.”
“Why?” This time it was my turn to be puzzled.
“Because you don’t love me. You want a comfortable life and a suitable husband.” His tone started to change. It became darker, filled with rage and pent up anger. I backed up a few steps.
Was this my love? What happened? His face was twisting into a mask of hatred and I hardly recognized him. But his words sounded familiar and I knew I would know who he is if I woke up.
I was silent but he continued on, completely ignoring me by this time.
“I love you. I gave you all of my heart which was my every thing and it was all I have to give. But you rejected me.” His eyes narrowed at me in anger.
For some reason I replied with a rebuttal my subconscious dredged up. In my heart I knew it was true.
“I didn’t reject you because you are poor. I loved you knowing from day one that you’re poor. I rejected you because you want me to live a life that I can’t live. You want me to change totally for you. How can I change my entire being for one person? Who will I be then, if not myself?”
“I see. You will not be changing for me. You’ll be doing this for God’s favor. Only for his favor. Not for me.” He raged on. “You are living a life of sin and I do know want to see you in Hell’s fire.” Then he added. “Even if you are not mine.”