I immersed myself into the dark intensity of my opponent’s eyes. I could read concentration in her determined look. She knew victory would be hers. I shared this knowledge. I was ready to fight and show her the extent of my progress.
She was so beautiful. I could have told her. It would have felt so sweet in her ear to hear the breath of such a simple, and yet delightful, sentence. Despite the unsettling easiness there would have been in this minor gesture, I was not brave enough. Perhaps someday I would. Perhaps I never would. Life would decide. Be that as it may.
I pulled the chair and sat. We were facing each other in this supreme instant, as the game was about to begin.
I was looking at her. Staring at her. She was thinking. Her first move would be decisive. She was aware of it. She knew that day after day, I was progressively getting closer to her. She knew I would certainly end up by her side at the top of the mountain to take off. I would then unfold my wings to go and climb other mountains. My journey would be long and perilous, sometimes tiresome. However she would always remain in my heart.
The relationship between a master and their student is unequaled. It is unwavering. This tiny thread binding me to her would never break. Her memory would subsist within me for the whole of eternity, whether it be in lightness or darkness. She would guide my feet on a thoughtful path.
She had given meaning to my miserable existence. I was not poor, and my daily life was relatively confortable. Yet there was something missing. If I looked normal in appearance, I was all dry inside. I was nothing but a hollow shell. I was thirsty for more but remained unsatisfied. I roamed in my own life with a scarred soul.
Wandering haphazardly into an obscure alley, I finally came across her. I had immediately been captivated by the beauty of her features, her fine face, the color of her eyes, the blackness of her hair… I was mesmerized. Her name was Alysse.
She saw nothing in my dull eyes. My irises had a lifeless sheen in which she could detect no spark. Only some shades of grey standed out.
There was no intensity within me. Only a worrying quietness ruled, enforcing its law.
When she had asked me to follow her, I did not hesitate. I saw in her the call of a destiny which I had been waiting for too long. She had shown me to a place I had never been. It was all lit up, shining with a diversity of colors, like a painting full of toys. We had finally sat down at a table, face to face. She had explained the rules to me and we had started moving the pieces on the board.
The passion burning inside of her had suddenly taken over my body and a flame had kindled in my heart. It was only ashes but it had changed to heat up the dead guts of that shadow I had become. In that ordinary evening, I had started coming back to life. I had come out of that lonely hell. Thanks to such an original woman, my life was in my hands for the first time.
It was sweet to the touch, just like the caress of the air on my fingers, which tingled with a brand new heat. My future suddenly had a totally different flavor.
The game had lasted until late. I did not manage to get the full extent of its possibilities, as it was far too vast. Each piece had its place, its functions, its own identity. They shaped an indivisible body, as did both opponents’ minds. During a game, they were one. The student and master’s thoughts intertwined, each offering a piece of itself to the other. One advised, gave itself. The other listened, followed, erased differences.
We were two unique individuals. Our fusion was only more intense. She had given meaning to my life, I had offered her a partner. Thus we moved forward, each day, bound by friendship.
Perhaps the day would come that I would confess. Only god knew. I cast that thought aside. She haunted my regrets but I did not have the will to fight. I needed to find refuge in Alysse’s heartwarming flame. Her determination was marvelous. I still had so much to learn from her.
The pawn next to her king moved two squares forward. She chose an offensive strategy. Why struggle against sombre revelations. I only needed to counter her move. The countdown had started. For an hour, we would read together the story of the world.
With a shred of luck, the small pieces we were on the chessboard would meet.
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