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Senses.. (21)

He stood in his usual spot smoking his third cigarette as he waited for her to drive into the parking lot. He contemplated their relationship, or lack of relationship as he saw it. He somehow survived the past 6 years without her, he was a man of 33, not a teenager, he should be able to control his feelings, he should be able to confront her and tell her that he won’t be her friend. It’s all or nothing.
And yet, he cannot risk her saying nothing. He did survive without her, but he would be lying if he said that his life was ok. After the Zaina incident he threw himself into his work, his research took 18 hours of his day every day, his research advisors even told him that he somehow managed to complete his thesis in record time. During that time he avoided the places that she frequented with her friends, he stayed away from their favorite restaurants and cafes for fear of seeing her, maybe with someone else, until two years after their break up he heard that she went back home for good. After completing his PhD he decided that he cannot go home yet, he cannot face his mother’s questions about his marriage plans so he stayed for 3 more years working at an international consultancy firm in London until six months ago when his father called him and told him that he was getting old and he needs his son to support him.
Seeing her on his first day of work was like a sign from God. A sign telling him that they’ve stayed away from each other for too long. It was finally time for him to be home, with her.
He lit his fourth cigarette as he watched her driving into the parking lot. He was mesmerized even by the simple movement of her hands over the steering wheel. He sighed as she stepped out of her car and walked towards the entrance.
As she was walking, she stopped and turned towards him, shading her eyes with her hand against the sun and started to walk to where he was.
"Good morning" she said smiling,
he smiled back, putting his hand on his heart "Good morning"
"Hehehe of course galbek bey3awrek, mn il9eb7 you're smoking like a chimney"
"La this is my first one"
"La? and the other three on the floor just happen to be right under your feet?"
"Uff, 9edteeny" he said discarding his fourth cigarette, "yallah ta3aly it's too hot here" she nodded and headed towards the entrance with him walking closely behind her.
She spent the rest of the day thinking of him, maybe it was time for her to forget playing games and just admit to herself that he's always been the love of her life. Yes he betrayed her, but people make mistakes, maybe him working here meant that their relationship was meant to be?
"Yes Noufa?"
"I think I still love him."
That afternoon he reached home late as usual, his mother was sitting in the living room waiting for him,
"Yumma wayed te2a5art ilyoum?"
"Kan 3endi she'3el wallah" he said leaning down and kissing her head, and sitting next to her,
"Fahad yumma lain meta chethy bettem la mara wala 3yal?" she said as she poured his tea,
"Radaina 3ala halsalfa?"
"Ee ana maly salfa '3airha, ma barta7 ila lama achoof mertek yamek o 3yalek 7awalaik. Ya3ny mafy wala bnaya 3ajbetek? Wala 7ata fe ildawam?"
He smiled thinking of her, of the way she walked gracefully in front of him this morning, of how she counted his cigarettes, and of how she took care of him when they were in London,
"Fahad? Dana galatly 3an wa7da ma3ak fe ilshe'3el, o tara ana a3arf ahalha, khosh nas, yumma tara itha tabeeha ana al7een akalem ahalha"
He knew Dana must have mentioned Nouf and just as he was about to start the usual monologue about interfering in his life, he decided that maybe it was time to face his demons, yes he made a mistake, but that was a long time ago, maybe, just maybe she might consider being with him if he showed her that he's ready to commit and that he wants to be with her for the rest of their lives.
"Kalmeehum yumma, ana abeeha."