Darius sat idly scrolling through his Facebook page, a rare break from his work of studying culture. As he scrolled through his pages, a message notification popped up. He tapped the red circle with a white number 1 and a split second later, a friend invite from an Allison Jones loaded on the screen. The profile featured a picture of her the way he remembered her looking; an older picture from a time shortly before they met. He stared at the screen for a minute and wasn’t sure what to do. Darius was surrounded by a beautifully opulent home. A small mansion really. A very intricate and well-appointed old-fashioned fireplace with a large hearth and a mantle above it filled the center of the wall behind him. The wall above the mantle and the rest of that room was covered in artifacts, part of his collection of rare tokens from different cultures and countries. Memories from Darius’s career that he had gathered over the years. Darius stopped scrolling and stared at the screen, then took a slow, deep breath. He looked around the room at all the things he had accumulated and the house he had built since he divorced from Allison. He thought about their history and about the turbulent feelings and emotions that had broiled between them. Darius knew and appreciated that Allison had respected his request to remain away for two years, and until now, given an extra year beyond the restraining order. She hadn't bothered him until now. Before he accepted the invite, he checked out her Facebook page. Darius was somewhat surprised as he scrolled, finding her page full of positive life affirmations, sayings, motivational things and positive messages. The things that he saw were something very different from the tone he was used to from Allison and their previous relationship. Darius cyber-stalked her for a bit, viewing the occasional photo of an event. Scrolling back to shortly after their divorce, he saw photos of some wild parties and things a little more demented. The further back Darius scrolled on Allison’s Facebook page, the darker the images and content seemed, but it also made him appreciate all-the-more how the images gave an insight into his ex-wife’s state of mind. It really seemed to show that her outlook progressed into something more positive and hopeful. He considered that maybe in the last three years or so, she had grown up.
Darius thought about his next course of action. He thought long and hard.
“It can't hurt.” he decided. “She doesn't even know where I live, so it can't hurt to accept her friend request… It’s just a friend request.”
Darius directed his pointer, and he clicked accept, then breathed a heavy sigh, letting his mind wander to the past.
He was about to go distract himself with something, maybe going to the kitchen and making a sandwich. Even though he lived in an opulent home, he still enjoyed a good peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Before Darius could get out of his chair, he heard a ding, a tone from his computer. It was a message from Allison.
It simply said "hi."
Darius stared at the screen not knowing what to do. Somehow that one word was loaded with so much potential and so much uncertainty. All he could do after several minutes of staring at that simple word was type in his response.
He typed "hi" and hit send.
Almost immediately, another message came through from Allison that said, “How are you?”
After a minute or two of thinking, Darius decided to go with something as non-threateningly neutral as “I’m doing fine, how are you?”
Again, very quickly the response came back “I’ve been doing well too. I was just thinking of you, I don’t know why but I was just thinking of you and thought I would just say hi”.
Darius thought for a little bit and played through some of the intense emotional interactions that they had during their relationship in his mind. He understood what it was like to have remorse and it was something that he always hoped for from her. Some sort of apology or remorse for the way their relationship ended and how she treated him during the relationship. In all honesty though, he had seen and dated people since their divorce and his subsequent success. He never felt the same passion that he had for her. He thought about what he should say, if he should put up a front, if he should somehow try to rub his success in her face. He decided in the end to just be honest.
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