The beast of Bitterness knocked on my hidden backdoor first thing this morning. He knew the secret knock and knew I would be too sleepy to be thinking straight not to. I was inquisitive but opened the door tentatively.
I was surprised to see him standing there, but not really. His brother Resentment stopped by last night for drinks and had hinted I was now on his radar. I just had not believed I would have been that important to someone like him to bother with a visit. But here was Bitterness,standing in front of me. He stood with confidence and this disarming cheeky grin. It was so beguiling in the sunlight.
“It’s going to be the perfect day, come outside and play?” He urge to me with in a deep sexy voice while locking his dark eyes on mine.
My internal warning bells sound, but I hesitate, ignoring. I would like to say my shilly-shallying is due to lack of caffeine and not being able to think straight at this ungodly hour. I would like to say, but I cannot.
I am tempted. I am tempted to join him, and I am liking his smile that is just for me. Despite my usual cautious self, I find I am being gently courted by this handsome devil and more, I am liking the idea to letting go of my control.
‘What would we play?’ I curiously ask.
His dark eyes go darker and his grin widens to show his sharp rotted teeth. How did I miss that before? It is as if in an instant, all light has dropped out of his eyes. Nothing reflects in them they just absorb.
He is showing me his true self and his intentions for me. He thinks I will be convinced seeing the darkness and pain. I quickly away in shame.
It was then that I spied the trophy black heart inside his front breast pocket. He proudly wears it on display as a boutonniere. The front of his shirt is stained with the lost hope and despair of his former opponent and he wears it with pride. It advertises that he rarely loses.
I think he must of said something but I couldn’t be sure for certain. The spell I’d been under is now broken, I’m not sure of anything anymore. I am too focused on that stain and what it represents. I remember his reputation and more importantly I remember mine. This all is a ruse to trick me in to believing it is a stage of growth. He was here to give me the gift of bitterness, while I gave him my hope. I don’t want that. My hope is precious. It is all mine for now.
He asks again, ‘Do you want to play?’
But now I see the game. It’s an inappropriate game of emotionally destructive croquet.
Mom always lectured, ‘It’s all about the company you keep.’ She’s right. Don’t tell her.
I will keep my own company, and my own heart. I will keep my hope even if it is a lonely hope. Lonely but without bitterness.
I politely decline.
Bitterness gives me a genuine smile and a wave goodbye.
He may pay visit again one day, and I might play, for I am only human. But for now, I will hold my hope for a little while longer. Protecting it and my heart as my only treasures.