The DEF of Love - Love Me or Leave Me

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Drunk on our kisses, we stagger out of the cab. Walking on air, we mount the stairs, totter into the bedroom and fall onto the bed.

Like a planet gone mad, the earth whirls around our fused bodies.

I wake up dazed. The room is dark. The sounds are hushed. I free myself from Milan’s arms, light up the bed-lamp and scan the clock. Panic-stricken, I clutch at Milan’s shoulder.

“What shall I do? It’s going on midnight!”

“So what, babe?” Milan is all smiles. “Give a ring home and tell them you’re staying with me overnight. I informed your father we’re in love and intend to get married. He took it reasonably well. I’d have told you at once but ...”

Suddenly stone-sober, I slap my lover’s face.

“You bastard! How could you? Spilling it out to my father without asking my permission!” I shriek, flying into a towering rage.

“Whom do you take me for?! Your bed-mat? You made me K.O. to prevent me from coming home on time, discredit me and put me under pressure to marry you! How can I explain where I am coming back from after midnight? All bruised and messed-up with it!” I sob, pounding Milan with my fists.

“Cool down, babe! Let me explain!” Heedless of my blows, Milan clasps me tight. Blinded with hate, I bash on his octopus-like arms.

“Let me go! You! You scheming gigolo!” With all the strength of my jaws, I plunge my teeth into his shoulder and a salty gush fills my mouth with nauseating insistence. I spit the bitter liquid into Milan’s face aware I shall never forget the taste of his blood and, pushing my knee hard into his crotch, I shoot out of bed.

Milan lies on the crumpled sheets. His wide-open eyes stare into the ceiling. Drops of blood, trickling down his shoulder, spin our love’s lost dreams.

I gather my clothes, put them on, call a taxi and make a bolt for the door, escaping from a life-long prison.

Driving home, I rack my brain for an acceptable excuse knowing there isn’t any, that I have never been in this kind of plight ready to fall on my knees, beg to be taken back and promise anything they ask me for.

“It’ll be ninety-five crowns, Miss,” the cabbie wakes me up from my brooding. Good Heavens! I haven’t got any money! I haven’t even got my key! I ask the man to wait and ring the door-bell preparing for the worst.

Her hair in curlers, her eyes stuck with sleep, Mary opens the door.

“Liebchen! Poor lamb! You’re in a state! Is your doctor back?”

“Later, Mary, please! Lend me some money and pay the cab. Did all hell break loose? Is father waiting for me in his study?”

" Liebchen, don’t you know? He went out with your mother. And your grandmother has her Opera night. Better hurry-up. She’ll be back any moment now. Oh Liebchen! Better not asking what you were up to, is it? You’ve blood smeared all over your face! Wash it off before anybody sees it. And, Liebchen, your doctor’s father wanted you on the phone. He seemed quite upset and insisted you’d call him back and ...”

“Mary, please! Go and pay the cab. I’m dead-tired. I’ll tell you all tomorrow.” I disappear in my room, pull off my clothes and fall onto the bed. I fall asleep before I can count to ten.

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