What are you afraid of?
For a second I looked around, unsure if he was talking to me. His eyes as blue as the sea stared at me, smiling, welcoming. He wore a polo shirt and his body musk was a scent of old spice mixed with jin. He looked like he had been drinking. I wanted to ignore him, I gave him a wry smile and tried to look the other way. Quite a handsome fella I thought, I noticed he didn’t have a ring on his finger too. I was a little intrigued but I did not come here to fall in love. I came here to drink. That is what a bar was meant for.
His scent was invading my space and I turned to see that he had moved closer to me. I was beginning to get irritated with him and his probing. He ignored the line that was formed across my forehead and asked again, “what are you afraid of?”. This handsome stranger sounded like he really wanted to know. I could see his interest in the way he leaned into me like he was moving in for a kiss. I could smell the jin and a faint of bar nuts on his breathe. If I didn’t answer the question, he wouldn’t leave me be. I cranked my head from side to side because that was what I did when I wanted to think about something as intimate as this question. I moved uncomfortably on my seat. I wanted to to answer but I realized, I did not know.
What was I afraid of? I asked myself. I have always believed that fear meant loosing my composure. It meant being faced with the darkness i constantly leave the light on to try to avoid. It was seeing my world stop and not in a good way. Right now, I was afraid of answering his question. I probed my shoulders up and shrugged in a callous manner making it seem like fear was a casual feeling.
he wasn’t buying it, his eyes grew intense and he had a sympathetic smile on his lips. He knew I did not want to answer because I was not ready to open up to a total stranger. He carefully placed his right hand over the hand I kept on the bar table and said, ” you may never see me again. you don’t even know my name. I am asking you to free yourself, fear is not luxury. It is a burden, tell me and free yourself.”
I looked into his eyes and said ” I get anxious, I get worried and I get confused. Life spins on its hedges. In a moment I am here and the next, I am nowhere. My biggest fear, my greatest fear is having a biggest fear at all. For it had no use, I had no use for it. Still, I am afraid of everything and I am afraid of nothing.
He looked and me for a second, like he was trying to absorb my response. Then he burst out in a bubbly laughter. It sounded like champagne being popped and my God it was infectious. “me too” he said, “me too”
He got up and left me sitting there dazzled. somehow I knew his name was John and I was going to see him again.