Chapter Nine: Sucker-Punched Twice!
“If ye thinks ye be ready to sail a beauty, ye better be willin’ to sink with her, too.”
Still, in his state of meditation from his position on the chair next to his bed where Carmela lay sleeping, Almarón recalled some texts from friends. One in particular from Carmela captured his attention, and he let himself re-experience the moment he first read it, fearing slightly the raw emotions felt the night he lost Emily for good.
“There is one bright spot in your recent horrible turn of events: Emily left you before you married. No legal consequences. No papers to sign. No financial losses to burden your future. Your only injuries are mental and emotional this time—and too bad for you, my friend, because you will survive.
“Since I know you so well, I understand that you will have to endure sleeping alone for some indeterminate time... at least, until you feel you are ready to find the next girl of your daring dreams.
“I mean that only with your best interests in my heart, my friend.
“Love everlasting, or love conquered… the choice is yours. Choose wisely.
“Your friend for life, Carmela.”
Carmela had texted Almarón immediately after she first heard of the breakup between him and Emily. She had tone-crafted her words to keep him afloat at the time, knowing that if he got angry at her, he would be better off than letting himself wallow inside of whale-sized grief made of self-pity and regret. Her dripping tones of sarcasm and unexpressed resentment, believe it or not, were meant to uplift him from the demoralizing numbness she assumed (correctly) he was about to face.
Practically from the first free-minded moment he had after returning home, Carmela’s text helped him: he threw his cell phone across his apartment and broke it.
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