“This picture is taken on the prom night,” she showed him; their smiling faces were staring back at him. In the picture, he was garbed in a dark blue blazer, and a pale purple shirt with the top buttons undone. Next to him, she was standing in her maroon dress and a pair of maroon shoes that she said was a gift from him, all made up. They looked happy.
After a while she put the picture down, showing him another one. “This one was taken on your birthday celebration, right before you went for interview into the army.” This time they were on a riverbed somewhere, their faces smeared with cream from a birthday cake. Her hair was tied into two ponytails whereas his was cut short. They looked happy.
And then she showed him another one, of him and her focusing on a laptop screen. She was wearing a yellow overcoat and a black headscarf whereas he was wearing a cream jacket. They both were huddled together, seeming to be cold. They seemed to be smiling secretly, and they looked happy.
Next, she showed another picture of them, with him in his white ceremonial uniform, holding a bouquet of flowers in his hand with her by his side, smiling into the camera. She was wearing a grey shirt and cream pants, with a black and white headscarf. They looked happy.
Finally, she showed him a picture of her graduation. He knew that because she was garbed in a dark maroon robe, holding a bouquet of flowers, with him making a funny face at the camera. He was smartly dressed in a dark green shirt and a pair of whitewashed black jeans. Again, they looked happy. Apparently, that was the last pictures of them together taken before the accident; before he lost his memory.
At this moment, she was staring at him expectantly, which made it even harder for him to shake his head no. No, he cannot remember. No, the pictures did not ring any bells. No, he didn’t want to try again. No, no no.
He was so tired of trying to remember. He was so tired of feeling helpless and lost because he could not remember, while expectations on him were mounting. For the time being, he has got a couple of month’s unpaid leave from work, until his recovery. What’s going to happen when he had to go back to work and he can’t function properly because he cannot remember? What then?
She wanted to say something, but he had to cut her off. He just could not take another story from her about them because it was pointless. She’s been coming for a visit every week. He was tired. He needed a break.
Hoping that he is not breaking her heart, he simply said “I’m tired,” and she stopped in her track. She seemed disappointed, but was determined at hiding it from the world, so she smiled.
“Okay, we’ll try again next week,” she said cheerfully, carefully arranging the photos back into the album.
“I can’t. Next week, I mean. I’ve got things to do,” he said quickly. He was meeting Laura. There was no way he’d tell her that.
“Oh, Ok. The week after that, then, if you don’t mind?” she suggested. He wanted to say no, but thought better of it.
“I’ll confirm with you later?”
She was thoughtful, but nodded anyway. “Ok, see you,”
She then went to say goodbye to his mother and left.
To be continued...