"If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. Romans 14:8," I thought. My name is Victoria Anne Marie and I just woke up to a brand new morning in my London townhouse on what is destined to be the last day of my life. In fact, today is New Years Day, a time for wishes and new things. It was the last morning I never knew I'd have and it wasn't a morning that stood different from any of the others I've experienced. I still walked around the house in velvet black pajamas and wore last night's wifebeater with a fresh bowl of multi-grain cereal in my hand. My entangled and raptured brown hair fell over my face in natural and ordinary waves. My radio blasted The Transiberian Orchestra at full volume and still caused me to wiggle my hips in delight, gently to it's beat as I walked around my country-style townhouse that I carefully decorated myself.
I walked over to the red velvet floor to ceiling curtains and chewed my food quietly as I peered through it's crevice to stare the busy London street laying south of my second story living room. I sighed with deep resignation, I'm not dreaming anymore...but I'm still waking up. I still had my spoon in my hand when I pulled one of the heaving curtains aside to let the blinding sunlight in. The sun fell over me and jammed my eyes shut. They immediately ached and I let out a soft moan. I wrapped my arm around my face for shelter and shielded myself from it's blinding rays which I clearly fell into prematurely. I set my bowl on the pine hardwood floor that was already so clean that I could have eaten off of it if not for it's being so cold this morning beneath my bare feet. I shielded my face with my arm and pulled open the other curtain in a quick draw by using my other hand. I let my hand down slowly and carefully and faced the demanding sun which allowed my eyes to adjust to it's glory and widen enough to fully take in my view. I saw the tall and historic buildings which were beloved to me, the high end boutiques that I window-shopped and passed by on casual walks among bustling every day people who seemed to be going in every direction before disappearing into nowhere. They moved outside of the endless traffic like ants that filled up the sidewalk along intersection below me.
I picked up my red bowl of cereal carefully and took a seat on the plush seat that lined that picture window looking onto the raving intersection in Chelsea, London. My townhouse only stood a block away from the famous "King's Road" and looked over the infinite amount of shops and restaurants that surrounded it. I always grew up in small and quiet neighborhoods so I loved living in a place where I could find endless noise and pedestrians to fill my life where most people would find it bothersome.
I knew I wanted to live here for years before I even knew I'd have the chance to. I blame that day in America when I flipped through channels and I found a show following a the real estate story of a wealthy aristocratic woman who wanted a house in the same area I live in now. They showed her many houses, even one that was kinda kooky. It had a weathervain adhered to the top banister of the stairs and the current tenants hung street signs inside as a form of decoration. You wouldn't think so, but it's an odd house like that which drew me into dreaming of one for myself in this city.
My chance came over a year ago when I received a surprise inheritance from a distant relative I never met that left me four million of dollars. After paying my taxes, I packed up my things and immigrated here as a single and lonely American woman. I didn't even have to bother with the complications for normal immigrants in financing because I paid for the million pound home in an all cash deal. I think it was possibly the best day of my life. It's all history from there. I set up my own little silent film production company and we're currently in the works of setting up our first film after I've only lived here for exactly one year. And I'm still alone and single but that hasn't been a problem for me.
I turned and looked at him lying on the whiteleather couch in his white v-neck shirt and torn blue jeans. His bare and dirty feet hung far over the edge of my loveseat because he was far too tall to lay comfortably, yet somehow he fell asleep so easily. His normally unbrushed auburn hair fell over his snoring and wide mouthed face as he silently snored. I smiled at him. He opened his tired and icy blue eyes and looked directly at me. He was unbothered by the morning sunlight and returned my smile. He isn't there. He doesn't exist. He's a figment of my imagination and he's always here when I want most to bask in my personal loneliness. He's there because he cannot allow me to be alone.
I told him to come join me and he rose with a silent and heavy stretch. He was incomparably beautiful. My perfect idea of a man I'd want to spend my whole life with. A man who started showing up here ever since I moved in, like a ghost. I would walk through my house and in my peripheral vision he would stand in my kitchen, sit on it's counters, or bend over on the island with folded hands before him. Sometimes he stood outside of my house in the snow and watched me and waited to be invited into my living room. I would sing there at night and he'd show himself on the couch or stand in the foyer without saying a word.
Sometimes, I'd say out loud that I just want to be alone and resist his presence but he was always there, nonetheless. Other times,
I'd welcome him and make company of his appearance such as I did this morning. When he walked over to me with that soft breeze like he's doing now, I don't have a real name to address him with. I simply called him for what he is, 'Soulmate'. A perfected companion to occupy me from facing the very reality that left me alone. He sat down at the opposite end of the bench and watched as I leaned my head into the window as though in a lucid trance. I saw him smiling at me from the corner of my eye.
He said, "I missed you. What are you doing today?"
"I missed you, too. The usual. Work. Um, if you're staying today and want to go shopping or something, make sure you lock the door behind you when you go. The spare key is in the metal overhead just above the door."
He nodded, "What are you doing now?"
"I'm counting the red buses that go by." I turned away from the window and looked at him with a smile, "You know, when I was a teenager I would stay up until three a.m. and catch this British business channel. They had this segment where they'd talk about stocks and also count the red buses that go by behind them and I would count along like it was a fun game. It was my favorite part of the whole night when I stayed up for it. I always knew I wanted to do it when I came here, too." I felt at ease with him especially when he remained silent. I loved nothing more than to bring up at least one memory of my life in America when I was growing up to him, even if I was really only talking out loud to myself.
He said, "How many have you counted so far?"
He laughed. "Two for me. So far." I nodded.
"I have to get going." I said. I took my final bites if cereal hurriedly before I tilted my bowl back over my face without shame and gulped the milk loudly until it was emptied. I didn't care if a few small streams of it likely trickled down my chin and fell over my pajamas while I did it when I just wipe it off, anyway. I put the empty bowl on the seat and looked at him as he stared down at the street placidly. "I got five now," He said. I got up and with a snap away from the window, he looked at me and smiled widely. I matched his glance before I skipped away with the empty bowl and spoon in my hands along to the beat of the gothic opera music that blasted from the kitchen. "Who's going to Marry a woman who listens to music at full volume to start her mornings?" He said as I emerged from the kitchen. I laughed heartily without the fear of poking harmless fun at myself. I ran into my bedroom to get dressed and head to my office in Kensington. As I put on my black suit jacket over my black tank top,
I thought of the past thirty days that went by. They were the best days I ever lived of my whole life. The result of a mission I made in the beginning of this month of December to fulfill at least one dream from my 30 Day Bucket List every single day whether it were great or small. There were thirty things for the thirty days of December that I challenged myself to do from it. It was the perfect thing to do before today which became the day I was destined to die by the night's end. I just didn't know it was the end. But after this month, I wouldn't have done anything different. To better explain, allow me to take you back to December 1 and share with you the most memorable month of the last day of my life on Earth.