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Invading Spaces: the Warrior Way

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This piece may NOT be freely reprinted. Please contact the author [see below] for re-print rights.


The Red Rose (Part 2)



"It’s me Mel"


"Come on in!"


"What happened between you and Antonio? He just walked out of the house without saying goodbye."


"Mel, is there something wrong with him?"


"Did you figure it out too? I’ve told him a million times not to do it, but he still does, he won’t listen to me, he won’t tell me why, and he gets really angry when I bring it up, just like he walked out today."


"Where does he get the powder from?"


"I don’t know some guy."


We just sat there thinking.


"We better go outside, hey are you coming to the party tonight Mel?"




"Could you pick up Gina, Antonio and I were supposed to pick her up, but I want to be alone with him."


"Yea sure."


"We’ll come by around ten or so, thanks a lot."


"Sure thing."


I came out of the room, said thanks to Gina and left. I walked home.  I was excited yet so sad about Antonio. I didn’t know what to do or say to him.  I thought of a plan. I got home around 5:30. I ate something and took a shower. Went to my room and picked out the dress with green gloves and high heels. I put on my makeup, wore my dress, and fixed my hair, it looked great! I wrote a note to my parents telling them I’ll be sleeping at Gina’s house. I put the note on the table, lit a cigarette and sat in silence. I was waiting and thinking. It was five to eight and the doorbell rang. I knew it was Antonio so I gathered my stuff and opened the door. There he was, standing in the darkness staring into my eyes without saying a word. I kissed him on the cheek and asked if he was ok.  He waited a while before responding.


"I’m better now. You look lovely Cindy, you captured my eyes."


He’d never complimented me like that before.


We sat in the car and took off. We sat in silence for a while, I was night dreaming again when I realized something, I realized that…


"So Cindy, what are you gonna do when you graduate?"


"Well, first thing I want to do is move out, maybe with a roommate."


"Would you except me as a… oh shit, we just passed the house, alright I see a parking spot."


"It seems pretty crowded," I said.


We parked and walked inside. It was crowded with people, as he greeted his friends, I stood in the middle of unfamiliar faces, it was dark but finally I spotted Steve.


"Hey Cindy, how’ve you been?"


"I’ve been fine, how about you? We don’t see you around anymore."


He put his arm around me and walked to the bar, talking.  Antonio saw us and walked towards us and pushed himself right in between Steve and I, one hand on my shoulder, one hand on Steve’s.


"What’s up buddy?"


Surely he didn’t like Steve getting close to me I thought.

"Oh, just keeping busy you know…"


It’s strange, Antonio never acted that way before.


"Would you excuse us Cindy" said Antonio.


They walked away. I couldn’t hear them, but it looked like they were arguing about something. They exchanged something and Antonio left. I got myself a drink, I knew what was to come. Everybody was drunk and wasted so I decided to smoke some myself.


I took a joint from someone and headed to the bathroom to touch up my makeup. I stood looking at myself in the mirror. I lit the joint and touched up my red lipstick.  Just as I finished, there was a knock on the door.  My eyes were pretty obvious red and Antonio surely noticed.


"What are you doing?" he said


"Nothing, why?"


"Your eyes are red!"


“Yea, I’m real tired"


"Come on Cindy… I don’t get fooled so easily"


"Neither do I!" I said, forced the door open and walked away.


That was it, I never saw him again from that night on. I didn’t hear from him, I never saw him at school or anywhere else.  That night Steve took me home and a couple of weeks later, I heard from him that Antonio’s father had died and he had gone back home to Los Angeles to go to the funeral.  I wondered why he never told me or never came to say goodbye, or even call or send a letter.


It was summer when I graduated. My parents were expecting me to go to college, and they were very mad when I told them that I"m not going, but there was nothing they could do. It was my life and I was still confused.


I spent the rest of my summer days going to the beach with Gina. I exercised a lot and was in great shape. I met a lot of people, guys and girls, but none of them were like Antonio. I missed him a lot and wondered if he ever thought about me.

I considered modeling. Everyone who wanted to be a model never knew if they would make it or not. Just like others, I didn’t either, but I was hoping I would, so I took a chance. I got a portfolio an agent, and waited. I waited a couple of weeks before I got a call from my agent telling me that Brook’s Fashion wanted me to model their clothes for them. The money was good. I went and the photographer really liked me, saying I had what it takes.  Soon after, I started getting more phone calls, more jobs, and was making good money. I made it into magazines and got interviews. By then I had collected enough money to move out to Los Angeles. I had a goodbye party, and Gina took me to the airport. It was a short trip to LA and I started thinking about life and what I’m going to do with it. I decided to continue my studies and came up with a lot of plans. The airplane landed. I got my luggage and a taxi that took me to my hotel.  All I wanted to do was relax. Took a shower, laid down and soon fell asleep. Morning came and I woke up. I called my parents to let them know I was alright.


"Hi mom, how are things at home?"


"Everything’s fine Cindy."


"How’s dad? Give him my love."


"I will sweetie."


"Alright mom, I’ll call you later, love you."


"Oh Cindy wait, I almost forgot, you got a letter yesterday"


"I did? From whom?"


"It says, Antonio."


I froze, in a shock, I wasn’t sure how I felt in that moment.


"Mom what does the letter say?"


"He says he’s fine, he’s in LA and he’s sorry that he didn’t let you know when he left."


"Is that it?"


"Yes, and there’s a telephone number and he says, Call me."


"Thanks mom"


I wrote down the number and hung up. There I was, sitting on the bed staring at the number. I picked up the phone, hesitating to call; I dialled the number but hung up. Staring at the number, I wondered why it had taken him so long to write me a letter. I was still shocked and perhaps too happy to feel anything.  Thousands of thoughts were going through my mind. I wanted a drink so I went downstairs to the bar and asked a man there to buy me a drink since I wasn’t twenty one yet. I sat there with the man, his lips were moving but I couldn’t hear his words. I didn’t know if it was love I was feeling. I wanted to scream but I couldn’t, I wanted to talk, but I couldn’t, I was paralyzed.


I gave him the money for the drink but he wouldn’t take it, I thanked him and headed upstairs. It was around 6 pm. I got dressed and wore my green dress with my high heels. I decided to go to the disco downstairs at the hotel. As I was putting on my make-up, the phone rang. The receptionist said there’s someone waiting for me downstairs. I didn’t know what to think, I was nervous, I didn’t think it was who I thought it was. I fixed my hair, got ready and walked out the door. My hands were sweaty, I was nervous.  The elevator door opened, I looked up and there he was… the unknown figure, with a single red rose, without any thorns. We looked at each other for a moment… I felt a sudden shock travel through my body, tears rolled down my face and once again, his presence was pulling me towards him. He took me into his arms, I felt his heart beat, I felt his warmth, his comfort. We were tied to each other and couldn’t let go. We didn’t say a word. He looked into my eyes, and I into his. I couldn’t say a word.


"I’ve missed you so much beautiful" were the first words out of his mouth.


"Why didn’t you ever tell me how you felt?" he said.


"Why didn’t you? And why didn’t you tell me before you left?"


"I couldn’t, you wouldn’t understand"


"Did you even try?"


"I love you" he said.


All I could do was hold him as tight as I could, I couldn’t talk, didn’t want to talk. We walked to the room. We lay down on the bed as he looked me in the eyes. I was overflowing with emotion… he got on top of me and all I could do was hold him. His heart beats were vibrating inside my entire body. It was beautiful… me and him together, sharing our feelings. He felt me like he had never felt before. I was appreciating the beauty of the moment, I cherished it in my heart. In that moment, I wondered when we stopped if things would ever be the same. I was afraid of him disappearing again. I wondered what he wanted out of life. I was scared of letting him go so I held him as hard as I could. I had lost myself.


"Love me…"


Was all I could say…. He felt me all over, he felt my body with his warm hands that drew me like a magnet. Hours and hours went by, and it all felt like a minute. I had to let go, I had to face life as it was.


"I love you" he said once more. I wondered why, how much and to what extent.


"I loved you ever since I met you Cindy.  Love comes around only once, and now that I have found love, I don’t ever want to let go of it, to let go of you!"


I loved him… I loved him so much I thought I hated him.


I got hypnotized by the look of his eyes. He held me tight, as I did him. I hated him for disappearing on me. I fell asleep in his arms, feeling safe and secure, but wondered if he would be there when I woke up.


When I woke up, he was there! He told me he inherited his father’s money, more than I could ever imagine. And he spoiled me. He spoiled me bad, and gave me all I ever wanted… A life with him.


The End


Carolena Sabah welcomes any comments or questions.