Daniellas eyes, p.1
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       Daniella's Eyes, p.1

           Shane Mole
Daniella's Eyes

  Daniella's Eyes

  By Shane Mole

  Copyright 2016 Shane Mole

  Kryptonite. In the comics, it can lay low the most powerful man on Earth; and Dean was just a normal human man.

  Dean walked. He walked a lot. It was not simply that he was without a car or license; sometimes he just yearned to step out from his hermitage of an apartment and experience the world in his own limited way. Never the same distance, nor the same route; simply a wander.

  On this night, however, he stumbled across a late night diner. More accurately, the lights from the diner caught the corner of his eye and changed his trajectory. He was not at all hungry. He did not feel like a coffee. He merely followed his feet to the hazy, blue/red neon in the distance. There was an anomalous purpose to his steps that night. On every previous jaunt, his footfalls were like slow jazz, not the rhythm and blues he was feeling in the air at that moment. The pace and the tempo pleased him. It was a dance-march with a sassy cadence. The lights of the diner began to loom large. He had arrived.

  He did not remember opening the door, nor entering the diner; all he knew at that moment in time was her. Her nametag read 'DANIELLA', and she was just there. Inexplicable fear prevented him from looking at her face immediately. He turned his attention to her feet; two dainty little miracles in sensible shoes, which were attached to impossibly beautiful ankles (apparently that was a thing), followed by calves so sexy that he felt like it was 1912 and a glimpse of one calf would send a man reeling. Her figure, even though concealed by a blue skirt and white apron, was clearly something to be reckoned with. Just curvy enough to not be pretentious. He moved up to her slender, pale neck, like fresh milk in the morning, a strawberry ponytail peeking out futively from the left side. Then there was that face: Lips, not to thin to be angry, nor too thick to be pouty and the kind of pink which only exists in Hanna-Barbera cartoons. Her nose was firmly in the middle of the Goldilocks zone too. Daniella's eyes....

  The little boy giggles on the pristine lawn of his backyard as Green Lantern pummels Sinestro with a boxing glove made of light and will. Sinestro flies across the yard, his head slamming into the base of an oak tree; the climbing tree which the boy scaled incrementally higher almost every day. He was at the point now where he could go no higher without extreme risk of injury. What once were sturdy branches were now tenuous twigs, whose leaves quivered in terror with every beat of the boy's heart. There was ecstasy in those leaves.

  Gram handed him a Granny Smith apple for about the hundredth time, because the one thing that she was sure about her grandson was that he was quite fond of them. What she did not know was, that even though he liked how they tasted, and how they were just juicier than other apples, and had that edginess that other apples lacked, his very favourite thing about them was that they reminded him of his Gram; a fiercely bright woman who, though she was not well known as being a particularly warm person by the average acquaintance, loved her family with tenacious passion and made no attempt to hide it. The boy treasured those Granny Smith apples and savoured every single bite, every single time.

  “Why are there so many songs about rainbows?” Kermit sang on his log in a swamp. The first time the boy went to the cinema, he asked to see The Muppet Movie. He loved that frog. But it was not until he heard his song that he felt actually connected to him. Every word of that song moved him, even as a little boy, and by the end, his mother had to comfort him, because his tears seemed to suggest that he was sad. He did not know how to explain to his mother that the song meant something inside. He watched the rest of the movie, and he laughed, and enjoyed the other songs, but what stayed with him was a lonely frog in a swamp singing about love and dreams.

  It was the last day of school. From now on, everything would be different. It would still be school, but a bigger, more important, more adult version of school. He had a very real sense of leaving childhood behind. To get home, it was not very far at all, he had to walk across the football field. About halfway across, he looked back at where he had been for all these years and just sat down. He looked down in reverie and his eyes fell immediately upon a four-leaf clover. He reached out his hand to pluck it, but stopped as his fingers lightly brushed it. For such a brief moment, he felt the delicacy of life and pulled his hand away. He resolved to just appreciate it and leave it be. To keep it was to kill it.

  She was an Orion slave girl, so they said. He was old enough to realize that the colour of her skin was make-up, but young enough to deny it. “What's this?” He asked his Dad.

  “Star Trek,” he replied.

  “It's cool.”

  “Yeah.” Dad seemed pleased by his son's approval. The boy was glad to know that it worked both ways between them. It became their thing after that. Once a week, Star Trek time. Father/son time. Spock was the young man's favourite (wasn't he everyone's?)

  He wanted to act. Specifically, he wanted to be an actor/writer/director, or one or any combination of those three things. After a couple of decent high school plays, he joined a theatre company. The first couple of times, he played a kind of shady character, not to be trusted. However, on his third go around, the company's director was looking for new material. This was his chance. He submitted a tragic romance which, to his incredible surprise and delight, was chosen to be the company's next production. Not only that, he was also chosen to play the major role and to help pick the leading lady. The decision became absurdly simple when a magical young woman, in a dress which wept a forest, delivered a Romeo monologue as if it were meant to always have been performed that way. He was sold on her talent, but did not fall in love with her until he saw her a few minutes later, outside twirling in the rain; her anachronistic, green dress in sychronous, ethereal undulation with her impossibly long, light brown hair. She would love him back for a moment, before becoming the beacon of perfection which she was always destined to be. He learned so much from her; mostly how to love unselfishly and how to lose without losing himself.

  Another bottle of Jameson Irish whiskey started singing in his head. He had been here many times before: Two hours before sunset, the blues wailing from the speakers, a Kerouac of butts in the ashtray and a blank page on Open Office Writer; the blinking cursor a snotty, judgmental accomplice. Time, once nothing more than a nagging companion, was gradually morphing into a stinky-eyed demon. He slammed down the lid of his laptop and swigged a healthy slug straight from the bottle. Was this all that was left? A flicker of light pinged off of the bottle of Jameson from an unkonwn source, implanting in his mind the idea of going for a stroll. After a good, long walk, he returned home, replenished, and wrote the first page of what would be his first novel.

  “Oh, that's what real love is?' He thought on that day. Not the day he met her, but the day the veil was lifted from the face of the world. The day he truly saw her. All of her. Although there was a heretofore unprecented glut of magic in the air when he first saw her, this was something much more profound. This was the Beatles song that was too Earth-shattering to be released. This was where the idea of God came from. This was the question for the answer 42. This was Green Lantern, an oak tree, a Granny Smith apple, The Rainbow Connection, a four-leaf clover, Star Trek, the tears of the forest, a bottle of Jameson, a Hulk tuck, The Lime Tree, St Patrick's Day in Dublin and the envy of the of the one who gets to not be left.

  Their son was four and loved superheroes. It was Dad's privilege to tuck him in at night, because Dad did it like a superhero. He tried it like The Flash (very fast), like Batman (pretend Batarangs), Spiderman (pretend webs) and others, but the boy's favourite was The Hulk tuck. It began with Dad grunting “Hulk tuck!” followed by smashing the bedding surrounding his so
n with imaginary giant green fists. The boy would giggle uncontrollably, and it was all that Dad could do to stay in character throughout the tucking process. When it was over, Dad would kiss his son and say “goodnight, buddy. I love you.”

  “I love you, daddy.” Those words always brought him within a hair's breadth of tears. At least.

  Their son started playing piano at a very young age and showed an immediate aptitude for the instrument. Within weeks of learning, he was playing simple songs with remarkable ability. Naturally, his parents encouraged this endeavour; not so much as to stop him from enjoying the music, but just enough to give him the chance to pursue it as far as he wanted to go. It turned out that there was no end to the young man's passion for the piano. By the time he was fourteen he had composed his first piece of music. It was only ninety seconds in duration, but his parents could not have been more pleased. They could hear his life in the notes, and pieces of their own lives. He called it 'The Lime Tree', because he wrote it while gazing out of his bedroom window at the tree which had been there his entire life. On the first page of the sheet music, he dedicated it to his parents.

  They never had the money for a real honeymoon. So, after their son left home and started playing in concert halls throughout the world, they decided to try and make up for it. Since both of their families had originally hailed from Ireland, they decided to take a tour of the Emerald Isle. As luck would have it, they even managed to spend St. Patrick's Day in Dublin. They didn't bother going out. They just stayed in their hotel drinking Jameson and listening to The Pogues. When the bottle was done and the night was winding down, they made love like they were twenty years younger. From then on, every year, no matter how they felt, they sucked it up for St. Patrick's Day and fucked like bunnies.

  He envied her. She didn't have to be the one left behind. It was so horrifically sudden. One day, she was there, watching TV, holding his hand, and then she was gone. Just left him while she slept. He was not angry. He could never think that about her that way. He was just jealous that she did not have to deal with the loss, and he did. They were always so equal in everything. They shared the responsibilities of parenting, paying the bills, cooking, cleaning. It just wasn't fair that he had to deal with losing her. After trying for an hour to wake her up, he finally accepted it, and let go of the jealousy. All he wanted now was one thing: He held her in his arms, looked into her eyes and remembered the moment he first saw them...

  ...Oh, Daniella's eyes – they were everything.

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