The unfaithful man

I had a dream last night of waiting to marrying a person I didn’t completely love. It was the night of the wedding and I sat among some of the guests, my friends, talking to them before the ceremonies began. Some seats ahead of me was my bride-to-be. She too was talking to some of her friends. She seemed really excited; much more than I was. Every once in a while she would erupt in laughter and so would all her friends, although I could barely make out their faces – they were all blurs. I suppose the dream agent does not pay much attention to sculpting the faces of the less important characters. Who was truly important came into the frame a little later.

I think I knew from the beginning that I loved someone else; that whom I truly wished to be with was not the one presently in a white gown, but she, who has now sauntered to my side, as gay as ever. In the dream, only her face I could see clearly – all the rest were part of the gouache setting. I spoke to her by a window on the top floor of my house. We were staring out at the guests scattered across the courtyard. She was asking me excitedly how I felt. I feigned a little joy. Could I tell her that it was her whom I truly liked? What then? Nothing would come of that, only disaster and hurt and shame and disdain. But as I stood beside her, I imagined for a moment that the both of us were guests, and we would talk about our own marriage while watching the bride and the groom meander through a crowd full of smiles. Then, she walked off to join the rest. The procession was about to begin.

I was back beside my bride. I wouldn’t dare look at her. There was such a regret welling up inside of me that when a friend came up to congratulate me, I could barely bring myself to smile. It was as if I wanted him to see the misery brewing inside me. And that was the last thing I remembered, the last emotion I felt.

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