Chapter 23 Blind News - PART THREE
lt;pgt;“Are you sure?”
lt;pgt;I almost want to smash my face against the wall, hit it again and again until my neurons start working
again. I stare at Darío. I can’t believe that he is actually blind, that after trying to regain what he lost
with the death of his late wife, he is now left in that state for the rest of his life.
lt;pgt;My heart and mind cannot believe it.
lt;pgt;I cannot give it up so easily.
lt;pgt;He cannot give up. I have seen and heard so many miracles. For example, being cured of cancer, a
fatal disease. Or diseases like HIV have twenty or thirty years of a healthy life without setbacks through
care. Losing your vision is not the same. I know it is not, but it is impossible for me not to consider
every option that manifests in my head.
lt;pgt;“I think you know the answer to that question very well.” He focuses his eyes on me, but I know he
can’t see me. I understand.
lt;pgt;I have been unable to move or peel myself away from the hard wood of the bedroom door. His arrival
has made my heart beat fast, and memories that have haunted me since the night we spent together
lt;pgt;“I’m sorry, really. I’m sorry, I don’t mean to offend you...”
lt;pgt;“You don’t,” he interrupts me, “and you never will. I know you don’t want to offend me, and this
situation, I assure you, Tatiana, is something I could never have considered as the beginning of our
lt;pgt;“Our marriage has never been like ordinary ones,” I gasp without measuring my words.lt;/pgt;
lt;pgt;“Don’t say that. I tried every way to give you a wedding, a ceremony, and a lunch with your family. I
tried to make you feel at home when you came here to the castle. I made you...”
lt;pgt;“I know everything you did.” I approach him, unsure, and place my hands on his shoulders. He tenses
instantly but gradually relaxes. When I see that my hands are no longer a bother or an agony, I give
myself the chance to continue. “I know what you did from the first moment, and I understand. I’ll be
completely honest with you: I don’t understand why even at this point you’re still saying that you and
I...” I stop abruptly.
lt;pgt;I don’t think this is the time to tell him what I think of our marriage, of our unconventional alliance. He
could have tried to give me a lovely ceremony and make me feel that the castle was my new home, but
the truth is that his emotional remoteness and his barrier of coldness have by all means prevented me
from getting close to him. It has prevented us from carrying out this alliance in a satisfactory way for
both of us, even when inside me, my heart beats so fast to have him close and when my hands tingle
with desire to caress his skin like that night at the lake. Had I known that our relationship could be so
simple without marriage, I would have stayed that way, as the woman at the lake, the one who brought
smiles to his face and could strike up a conversation with him without being looked at as if she were a
horrible person, a complete nuisance.
lt;pgt;“You left and didn’t tell me the truth; you told me you were going away on business. So I had to find out
from Donatella.” Listening to her talk on the phone by mistake, I felt so inferior and minimized to infinity.
“You didn’t have the confidence, just like when you saw me with my sister’s letter before you left. You
said the trust was important, but you don’t keep your word. You only employ it for your own benefit.”
lt;pgt;“You don’t know how much I regret making this decision and even more to hear you say that. Trust
applies to both parties.”
lt;pgt;“This isn’t a fucking contract! It’s a marriage!” I shriek so close to him. I find it embarrassing. I continue,
however, as I’ve been having this pain in my chest for days now that almost keeps me from breathing.lt;/pgt;
lt;pgt;“You say you don’t want to get over your... Arianna.” Donatella mentioned the deceased’s name to me
days ago. “I understand. I don’t want to take her place. However, the least I deserve from you is
respect and trust. For example, for you to tell me something as important as the fact that you’re going
to have surgery on your brain, it’s not to trim your hair!”
lt;pgt;“I know I did it wrong,” he acknowledges. At least he has the courtesy to lower his head and almost
lt;pgt;“You should have told me,” I sigh sadly. “You should have told me at the exact moment you decided to
do the surgery.”
lt;pgt;“You and I, Tatiana, we don’t have that closeness and that trust. I’ve known you for a few days. I
couldn’t... I couldn’t tell you that I was going to undergo that surgery.”
lt;pgt;His words stab into me like a sharp dagger. I feel my heart bleed inside, and my eyes let the tears
escape. It’s a horrible feeling, and it’s a half-truth what he blurted out because in my gut, I do trust him,
and I do believe he’s a good man. It’s just that life has mistreated him in an irrational and implausible
lt;pgt;“On the other hand, you could have gone away and left me in full care of your son, the most precious
thing a person can have, and you left him to me.” It’s silly, his earlier excuse. Not knowing me, not
trusting me. “But of course, we don’t have that kind of trust.”
lt;pgt;I walk away and feel like maybe I’ve been a little cruel. But, right now, that man in front of me, staring
blankly, still looking straight at me, shoulders slumped, and mind dislocated, deserves to be cared for
and understood, to receive positivity and good care. Support from his family. Support from me.
lt;pgt;“It’s not the same, and you know it.” He reaches into his pants pocket; it’s a gesture he makes
repeatedly. I wonder if he’s resisting touching me or if he’s trying to stop any kind of touching or rubbing
lt;pgt;However, his kisses before he went to the city for surgery told me something else. They gave me to
understand that he really wants me. Although his mind wants to avoid it, his heart feels something for
me. That gives me sad and false hopes in a world where I have not asked to be offered a marriage with
a stranger who turned out to be someone important to me.
lt;pgt;Why false? Because I know that he loved his late wife, the mother of his child. He told me so himself:
he’s still not over her, and he’s not interested in getting her out of his heart either. I don’t know how I
can live with that.
lt;pgt;“No, Darío, it’s not like that. I don’t know. I don’t understand what you want me to know. For me, for
Tatiana, it doesn’t make sense that you don’t trust me as a wife, as a person, and not enough to tell me
that you have a high probability of dying in surgery, but that you trust me with the care of your son for
more than a week.”
lt;pgt;“I knew you wouldn’t be alone. I left you with Donatella. She knows Dante perhaps more than I do. She
is a woman. She’s the one who took care of us as children when we were little. I knew you’d be fine
lt;pgt;“What if something happened to you? Did you even think about that?”
lt;pgt;My hands are nervous, uncomfortable. I feel like grabbing him by the collar of his shirt and shaking him
until he understands what I mean until he understands how false and empty his words sound. His logic
is not at all understandable.
lt;pgt;How could he have made love to me and say he still doesn’t trust me? What kind of world is it that I
came to live in? One where people can have unbridled sex and the next day completely ignore each
lt;pgt;This is not what I wanted to be when I was someone’s wife. It’s not what I wished and dreamed of
lt;pgt;This is what I meant when I told Teresa the day before I got married that I didn’t want to marry Darío. I
remember me with my baggage, eager to get away, preparing to go far away, while thinking that I could
have a future with Lucian.
lt;pgt;Now I realize how deluded I was. This is what she, my sister, concluded when she told me that not
everything in life was made of roses. She has more of a head for these things than I do. She knows
more about relationships, more about life. Her advice is now starting to make sense. Just because I
slept with Darío doesn’t mean he trusts me. Even when I gave him my virginity, I gave myself to him,
body and soul, one night in front of the lake, with the stars as witnesses. He promised me infinity and
lt;pgt;“I wanted to stay positive and think I was going to come out ahead.” He rolls his shoulders up,
lt;pgt;“Good for you!” I roar.
lt;pgt;“Don’t act like that, don’t! I don’t need this right now. I’m... I’m not good with words and with... feelings.”
He runs his hand through his hair. Then, exasperated, he runs them down his face and shakes them,
frantic. “I don’t know how to apologize anymore, and I don’t know what to say to you, so you don’t
make this bigger than it is. I’m here, at home. This should be enough.”
lt;pgt;“But it’s not,” I admit out loud. It’s more for me than it is for Darío. “It’s not enough. It’s not enough for
lt;pgt;“What does that mean, Tatiana? What do you mean by that?” He steps closer.
lt;pgt;I don’t know how he does it, but he stands in front of me and fumbles for my hands. I stand still, not
knowing if I should leave before I fall into his silky, cheating voice, in that tone that only lets me recreate
forbidden moments, where we were not two strangers, but a woman and a man destined to meet under
the gaze of the moon.lt;/pgt;
lt;pgt;“I don’t know.”
lt;pgt;“And who does? Tell me who knows so I can ask them. Dawson, perhaps? Your sister? Should I ask
Donatella? Or would you rather...?”
lt;pgt;I launch myself and kiss him with the intention of making him as uncomfortable as he makes me, but as
our lips touch, a caress creeps up my face. His hands grip my jaw, and his mouth takes control of the
lt;pgt;He takes absolute control.lt;/pgt;