‘UnBoxified’ – BRIEF SYNOPSIS
Two lead characters’ first-account of a, partly fictional/partly based on true events, story in which mystery, gritty reality, comedy, romance and science-fiction, are the vehicles for a journey where the meaning of life, death and everything important in between, are the destination.
It’ll make more sense if you read it in order, though. If you haven’t read it yet, you can find Chaptisode 1 here: | Chaptisode 1: ‘Bloody Hell’ >
I had been looking for him like crazy, and every time I thought I could almost see his face staring back at me, even if from a computer screen, I came crashing down. I don’t know how many hours I frantically spent scanning every single one of the contacts from all the leads I knew of and had found online. It was like he had vanished into thin air. No… it was like he had never existed at all in the first place.
I kept telling myself that he had never really been into the new digital stuff and so that was probably why he wasn’t registered in the one site every person on this planet seemed to be registered in, or in any other for that matter, but… to be honest with you… I couldn’t shake off this feeling… a bleakly sinking dread that, with the passing of days and the failures of a thousand searches, was just getting more and more painful…
If Ewan wasn’t to be found… there was a possibility that Ewan was Ewan no more. The mere start of a thought on his possible death made me sick to my stomach.
But I couldn’t shake this feeling off… a feeling sparked the night I dreamed of him a few months before and ten years after seeing him last. Ten years of not knowing of him, ten years of not wanting to remember him at all.
It’s funny how, especially in our teens, we sometimes think that we can’t live without someone and later on we find out that we actually can, pretty well so, I must add. Years pass by and we look back and we realize that our perception was distorted by an emptiness inside… an insecurity… a dependency of sorts… a begging for meaning… a cry for identity… our damn need to belong. But we carry on living, we forget completely, we may even forget forever and if we do remember, there’s no pain, there’s no longing, no urgency, no feeling… except perhaps for a sliver of amusement painted as a crooked grin.
Still, sometimes… well… let’s just say that sometimes we believe a particular situation was nothing important, only to find out, years later, that not only it mattered but that it was truly IT… the big crucial fork on our life’s road. Horrified you realize you didn’t carry on living like you were quite sure you did, but did in fact died just then, when you chose the motherfucking wrong turn. No longer alive, you hunger, like a zombie, for your very own soul.
Erasing Ewan Blackwood from my memory had not been difficult at all. I was quite sure he hated me so I entertained myself with his ringers instead; whether they looked alike him or it was just that I chose situations that made them an impossibility, just like it had happened with him and I, all the men that came after Ewan, once Logan allowed me to leave, were repetitions of the same pantomime. Only that I didn’t know that it was that what I was doing, twisted manoeuvrings of my psyche fooling me into becoming the unsuspecting puppet of a show resembling my love life.
Ok, I blew it at the time, but he can’t be dead. He just can’t. If only he had known. If only he knew…
I have to find him. I know that now, and I’m willing to put my pride aside so I can do just that.
As I go into my bedroom, I throw my briefcase and my last science paper on the bed but they both fall off the side and on the ground. No points this time. I reach under the bedside table to plug in my laptop. Battery is almost gone but I’m in and it’s charging.
I log into the damn social network site and type ‘Logan Doherty’.
The profile shows up first on the drop down menu from the search field.
I had already been scanning that profile a few times for clues…
Logan… my ex… Ewan’s friend and roommate back in the time.
I click on ‘Message’ and for a moment… I can’t breathe.
If Ewan hated me… I was sure Logan hated me even more.
You know what’s ironic? At the time I just did what I thought was the right thing to do. And yet, something that was meant to be good turned out to be disastrous for all involved. It just goes to show you that ‘bad’ or ‘good’ are frequently labelled as such just by perspective and… timing.
They collide and collapse, they collapse and collide… just like hearts do.
I go back to the search field and type ‘Betty Fullam’.
Between two evils, perhaps she was my best bet.
Oh, she hated me, too, all right. She’d had a crush on Ewan way before I appeared in the picture and boy she made it clear she didn’t like me one bit at the time. But that was because it was obvious to her, just like it was obvious to everyone else. Ewan and I seemed to have been made to illustrate that puke-inducing moment of love at first sight every movie is intent on selling us and so many romantic novels thrive on.
Look, I don’t believe in all that soul mate bullshit and often doubt there’s such thing as that kind of love; and yet this conviction doesn’t explain why I felt like I did for him, like I had never felt before and like I haven’t felt since, as cliche as it sounds. No, I’m not talking about passion or lust or infatuation. I know those very well. It was different. It was a recognition. I turned, we locked eyes for the first time and I knew. I knew I wasn’t just in one body. I knew I could taste, smell, see, hear, touch, feel and think in more than one flesh at a time in this lifetime. I saw me and he saw himself in me.
But I was with Logan, and I did the right thing. What a dumb-ass…
For a long time, especially after how Ewan reacted to my rejection, I did think that I had done the right thing, and, as I said… I have a knack for burying things deep and completely forget about them. Damn, I can even scratch off entire passages of my existence as if they never happened. Yes, it’s a gift.
“Come here…” – he said, as he made the attempt to hold me in his arms. It’d been months of desperately wanting to be together, since that very first moment we locked eyes, and months of fighting against it for Logan’s sake. I suppose he just couldn’t fight it anymore. Neither could I.
I looked at him and the cave he had made of his chest to shelter me in and I was terrified. I knew that, if I ever let him touch me, there was no way I could keep up the facade. Logan had told me several times by then that if I left him his life would end. I was trapped. I loved Logan, I really did. He was my best friend, I couldn’t hurt him.
I stepped back.
“I only hug my boyfriend”
It came out as ridiculous and spiteful as it sounds now.
And I could see it in Ewan’s eyes… the shock, the pain, the disbelief, the rage, the grief… the hate.
There was no point in denying what we both felt. Even Logan knew. Every time Ewan and I were in the same room we invariably ended up next to the other, as if pulled together by the same force magnets are; involuntarily but irrevocably. But I did, I negated the evidence, and I even added sarcasm to it. It was like he had imagined it all, that’s how I made him feel, and I was well aware of it. Soon after that night he left the house that Renzo, Logan and him shared.
I didn’t see him again, except for a brief moment at a concert when, as soon as he saw me, he left. Not before darting me a look with which he could have killed me right then and there if looks did that, though. So I resumed what I could do better than him. In my mind, it was like if we had never met, not once. Erased. I pulled that off for ten freakin’ years. Or at least I thought I had. The show had carried on and I had played along in puppet-mode, what I realized the morning after I had that dream.
In the dream, Ewan appeared before me walking on a tightrope. Underneath him there was a dark pit of which I could not see the end of. I called him. He looked at me… smiled… lifted his arms in the air and left himself fall into the pit. I screamed and woke up. That dream stirred Ewan’s memory in me and there was no way back now.
I could suppress him no longer, I could no longer negate him.
And what was worse… this niggling feeling that something was not right, confirmed by my lack of success at finding out anything about him all these months since I started my search, this… this was eating me alive.
Betty’s profile pops up.
Shit… I really have to do this…
I click on ‘Message’ and start typing.