Sunday's story/ "MARRIED BUT I LOVE HER!"

2023-07-02 09:29:00, Kulturë Agim Xhafka

Sunday's story/ "MARRIED BUT I LOVE HER!"
When I was told that my cousin Annie was involved with a married man I was instantly shocked. But for a few seconds, I dismissed it as news. I thought it was fiction, as it happens so many times today that we refer to someone as a lover, a work friend, or give someone an epithet if we saw him in line at the bank with a woman next to him.

Moreover, it didn't bother me that Eni is a pretty girl. Beautiful, wise, educated, full of culture and dignity. She can make love to any of the boys in town. Who knows how many dreams they immerse him in every night. There was no need to stay with a married man. Anyway, I was driven by curiosity, so I asked Berti, my friend who gave me the news:

- Hey, who is this man, huh?

- Tom of the seabass, - he told me.

It occurred to me. He is the businessman who first established the cultivation of sea bass in the bay. It caused a stir in those years because it was a big investment and it worked well. Tom became so rich that he left the coast. He went there to work and manage, but he lived with his wife and two grown sons in a villa in the hills of Tirana. His family radiated beauty and charm from afar. I was thinking about these when I thought of their portraits. Especially my wife. It was a star that fell from the sky, my wife often said. I was having a problem with many unknowns, this flagrant rumor that Eni was in a relationship with Tom! I couldn't swallow it, but it irritated me as soon as I thought about it. I didn't wait any longer, I took Eni to the cell.

- Shall we have a coffee with my cousin?

-Whenever you want.

She has always not hesitated to talk to me. We are years apart, I am as close as her father, but we have become closer because she has often cried about my problems, or asked for my opinion. I have been frank, I have approved it, but also often opposed it. In the end, it turned out that I did not put it in vain. This has increased our confidence.

In the afternoon, when he got off work, we went to "Vjollca". The bar is not called that, but one of our cousins ??worked there as a bartender and we gave her this name. How long did we sit, I asked directly:

- Are you in a relationship with Tom, chick?
He was not surprised. Smile.
- I kissed him, he told me.
- I mean, do you love her?
- Eh, I do. I die for it.
- Why not him?

He sat staring at me and continued.

- You heard it too. It's not a rumor. It is a great truth. I love Tom very much. Yes, hard, hard. How much heaven we used to say when we were little. I even love him more than myself. It seems like a paradox expressed by me. You are surprised that you live with that early traditional morality. Pandeh that moral is still in force. Maybe he still lives in some places, but for us women, a different code applies. That of villainy.

Remember when I wandered around for so long after I graduated from law school? I didn't want alms, I wasn't even a whore. I wanted a job. My job was to feed and help the parents who are barely breathing with those alms pensions. But wherever I knocked, they saw my breasts and when I was about to run away, they touched my buttocks. No one saw me as an employee of that office when I submitted my CV. Some daredevils even almost bit me. The drooling glances threw me from the door like slanderous ropes. In the midst of this mass coddling, in the midst of this lustful nephew at the Ministry of Justice, when I ran out of fear of some brutal rape, I bumped into Tom on the stairs. With such force that we would both almost roll over. But thanks to his physique and the iron railing where we leaned, he and I stopped. We were stamped, I almost on his chest and he including all my shoulders.

I have finished my law degree and I am looking for a job. After these words, he said, come work for me, I just received a law firm license today. He didn't see a CV or a certificate, but straight to the office. He left my files on the table and added, you take everything. That's how I was promoted to manager. I didn't know where the donkey was tied for organization, but I consulted with some colleagues and step by step I went only for the better.

We were joined by three other jurists, and the job is over. Tom occasionally visited us. He took a look at the balance sheets and for two years he distributed the profit to us as a bonus. Nothing for myself. May the fish save me, you say. Then I left the collateral offices when I wanted a home loan. I was touched, it was not a small gesture. It moved me and I found myself in a huge debt of gratitude. The time I really fell in love with it was when I had a car accident. I lay down for six months. I broke my leg and three ribs. Not only did he not replace me, but every month he paid my salary to my account as if I showed up to work every day. If we are not human in case of disasters, we are called human in vain, you say.

So a gentleman, generous, noble, eloquent and correct man. I don't remember him being upset or angry. Always smiling. As soon as I saw him, I felt so safe with this man that I began to envy his wife. Why shouldn't Tom be my husband, I wondered. That's how I wanted my future husband to be. I used to take him on the cell and meet him at a restaurant or somewhere in a bar around Tirana, supposedly to talk to him about the business of the studio, but in fact I had a feeling that I had to meet him because he brought me joy, made my day full of rays . It was like a cure for depression, or a strong happiness booster. Day after day I drowned in his goodness. My subconscious was pushing me towards immoral actions. As if I went to a motel with him, or dreamed that I was with him in a bed. In the end, I didn't remember sex with him, but I could see his laughter non-stop. His eyes were like the sun. From what to

Tom I loved his kindness more. One afternoon I dared to go as far as a kiss. I closed my eyes, brought my lips to his, but I felt myself kiss him on the cheek. The good one didn't move. I'm confused from the beer I drank, I told him, blushing. I saw that he did not want to get into wrong relationships. He was married, every moment he appeared as such, he never hid it.

This time he passed as confusion, so I admired him more. Tom is like water, I told myself. Put it in a bottle of oil, shake it as much as you want, it doesn't mix with the oil. Stay apart. With clear boundaries.
In short, dear cousin, Tom is an angel to me. This word suits him like a suit.

Eni didn't speak further because suddenly a tall guy with dirty black hair and dark blue eyes like the Ionian Sea came to our table.

- Meet Gimi, my cousin, he introduced me.
Chuni held out his hand.
- Besmiri, - I heard his name.
- My lover, - Eni continued.
I looked at him puzzled.
- I'm waiting outside because I parked wrong, he said.
Eni got up, hugged me.
- Besmir, your boyfriend? - I asked him.
- Yes.
- What about Tom?
- Tom, I told you, he is my angel.
-And with the angel you fell in love, but you can't make love with the angel, she laughed and walked away with quick steps towards the car that was waiting for her at the door.

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