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invisible spades

by aisumi

notes: one-shot. second person and heavy with introspection. intended through the perspective of a male film major toward his romantically challenged first love and childhood friend, who is in a long term long distanced relationship. but, i suppose, freedom to interpretation! also, i sincerely hope my weird stylistic lack of uppercase (and other syntax errors) isn't too distracting. please let me know what you think!

you never actually realized the true tenacity of their ardor, or perhaps you did and you wished to ignore this truth; delicately filing it into the collection of the harrowing espies you've had the (mis)fortune of involuntarily spectating throughout the years; disregarding and discarding the significance of their enduring relationship: their distinct but mutual devotion, her restrained but genuine conviction, and his naive but everlasting adoration.

it only truly became evident when you set aside your hidden selfishness, the voice within your mind and heart that clamored for possession: you had met her first, you had loved her first, and she had loved you first.

these are not all truths, you recollect. i was the first to meet her, the first to love her, but i do not know if i am the first she's loved.

the sinister side of you—your parsimonious ego—chimes, i do not even know if she can love.

however sparingly ephemeral, her ability to feel (even in it's most elusive form) is only ostentatious with great observational skill, and this is a talent you've developed and mastered over the years.

(and only with great hesitance can you begin to acknowledge this, because her affinity to flee amplifies in proximity to sentiment)(it is an actuality that renders you ambivalent; for it becomes an advantage in securing your insecurity—maintains the fact that in her capriciousness, in turn, lies your stability—yet it does not evolve your stature.)

while your greatest confidence lies with the fact that above all, she needs you; your downfall begins with the acrid reality—she wants him.

in particular, you noticed this one late friday night, after (almost) everyone has fallen asleep and has more or less engaged in an unconscious haphazard mass cuddle on the floor of her living room. she has always had trouble sleeping, and while you did not share this strife, you would remain awake to enlighten (—bore—) her with your favorite indie films or anecdotal idealisms in order to slowly lull her into blissful slumber. these were pastimes you both enjoyed together. these are old habits that cannot be erased.

but later, you found, could be replaced.

"sorry about earlier." you hear her murmuring faintly, from a considerable distance. it took you a moment to realize that she was speaking to someone on her phone and not apologizing to the shadows of the night. you blink aimlessly into the darkness, senses augmented.

it's an insidious intrusion of something so deeply private, but you cannot help but eavesdrop.

while there is certainly no doubt toward her magnetized long term affection, she is known to be fickle about these sorts, and so her propensities are rarely often taken into consideration.

"i miss you so much..." it's always soft and so lovingly melancholy that it relentlessly stupefies you. for as long as you've known her, such tone has never been used on anyone; but exclusively for him.

envy does not manifest. you have long conditioned yourself against those detriments, following your early amatory cognizance; have learned to adapt and conform to her emotional incapacity, and happily so.

externally, none of it alters your relationship with her in the slightest. you are both of great importance to each other, this is a fact—moreso than anything—and it especially never has to be reinforced (although, it is done so almost thoughtlessly, numerous times).

it becomes an unspoken understanding, of mutual partiality. it is neither disregarded nor taken advantage of, the requitement is fully acknowledged but viewed better off as is (she loves you once, and you love her twice over, but she loves another a million times more than you ever thought possible).

there is no grief nor despondence because there is no real loss, if not for the bereavement of what could have or might have been.

only a keen eye with experienced affinity can see, for all your toleration, her own sort of gratitude comes in invisible spades.

you see: she shows up first to all your film screenings—and bears no mercy in her criticism toward your idealizations, she willingly sits with you through all your film assignments (where you both juxtapose your following conjectures), allows you to incorporate herself into your various creative processes (—she is your creative process—), she lends a comforting ear when you are releasing your frustration over familial vexations, she drags you—first and foremost—along to explore her new but fleeting habitual curiosities, you accompany each other to your families' socialite soirees, and she shares with you—and only you—exclusive facets of her various temperaments.

thus, you discern, from all these antecedent normalities: circumstances which should very well be the standard in such close comity, but in light of her distinctive disparity—you are one of her unique exceptions as well.

and with that you are more than content.

thank you for reading. 

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12 Reviews

Points: 431
Reviews: 12

Tue Jan 12, 2016 7:19 pm
janarose wrote a review...

I'm not the best at reviewing others' work, but I'm going to give it a go on this piece because I thoroughly enjoyed reading this. Aside from grammatical issues, which you warned about in your notes, there weren't any other technical errors I noticed. The piece was very heavily worded, but as an English buff, I enjoyed it. It's refreshing seeing someone make such good use of a good vocabulary! I never take the time to put so much thought into that aspect when I'm writing, but I'm glad you did, I feel like it just added more into this story. As for the story, it's very nicely written, I really enjoyed the use of second person because it just gives you some insight into what the character is feeling. I also just really enjoyed the way you described the feelings, so emotional but not in a typical way! Kudos to you!

User avatar
41 Reviews

Points: 2775
Reviews: 41

Wed Dec 30, 2015 4:28 am
hyperview wrote a review...

Yo, aisumi! Welcome to YWS!

All I can say about this piece is wow. You've got such strong vocabulary that I even had to search up some of the words you used. Not that this is bad, but it made the piece sound more poetic than like a short story, giving it its own unique sound. Well done!

Now, the use second person wasn't bad, per se, but I do feel you should've used first or third instead. You used second person to put the reader right into the shoes of the character, yes? But you've still created a main character (a male film student), so what's your reasoning for using second person if you could've had the same effect with first or third? I mean, you did a good job not making it jarring, but it just confused me as to why you were using it instead of other perspectives if you already created a character for the roll.

You also had plenty long sentences and very few short ones, and this becomes a problem since all these punctuation marks everywhere can tire out a reader. For example, your first paragraph doesn't have any fullstops whatsoever, so where do you expect your readers to rest? Right now, it all just looks like a jumble of sentences fused together, and this can lower the readability of the piece immensely (not to mention you've got a lot of complex words too, which makes it twice as hard). Switching some of your punctuation (especially all those semi-colons) for periods will allow readers to fully digest what you're trying to communicate and they'll end up running with the story rather than struggling to catch up.

Speaking of punctuation, I saw that you have many, many uses of dashes and semi-colons. Really, there are very few instances where you absolutely need to use dashes and semi-colons, and most of the sentences you used them in could've been done with periods or commas. Dashes and semi-colons are like f-bombs, you know? Using it too much can weaken its effect and make it more annoying than powerful. So be wary with how you're throwing those around. Punctuation can make or break a story, after all.

I've also got to point out the dialogue you used here:

"sorry about earlier." you hear her murmuring faintly

I'm assuming 'you hear her murmuring' is supposed to be a dialogue tag, which means it actually has to be tagged to the dialogue. :P To do this, you'll need to change that period into a comma, making it:

"Sorry about earlier," you hear her murmuring faintly

And lastly, I'll just comment on this:
she loves you once, and you love her twice over, but she loves another a million times more than you ever thought possible

I just thought the way you described this was so beautiful and ugh fangirling.

Anyway, I really did enjoy this piece. I thought it was extremely well done, and if you take some of the things I've stated above into consideration, I feel it could be better. Wonderful job on this, and I hope you keep posting things! Have a great day/night. c:

Who, being loved, is poor?
— Oscar Wilde