Short Story

The Sixth and Last

Note: This entry was originally posted on 15 December 2012.

DESIREE AND HER boyfriend, Kris were sitting at the couch of their shared flat. They have been dating for a year and a half now and they’re just up for a casual talk.

“I love you,” Kris told her.

Desiree remained still as Kris kissed her in the cheek.

“How many were there before me?” Desiree suddenly asked out of the blue.

“What do you mean?”

She inched a little closer and rested her chin on her hands which was balanced on top of her knees. She answered, “Like… how many girls did you love before me?”

“Loved? Uhm… Five. I’ve loved five girls before you.”

Desiree looked down before asking another question, “What were their names?”

He nonchalantly replied, “Who, What, When, Where, and Why.”

She giggled a little at his response, “Can you share me some things about them?”

Kris sate more comfortably before he started to tell the story, “Who I loved was a girl I met when I was still new in the university. I wasn’t exactly close to her, but with a few interactions between us over the semester, I felt like I accidentally created my own fantasy world. And who she became in my head was probably far more than the reality. She was a third year, sorority girl, and I was just in my first year, and the few times we spent in the same class made me see her good heart and light spirit. But the bad news is she’s like that to every other guy. She turned me down easily; but I know that this cliché sorority may have felt something for this typical, awkward freshman.”

Desiree intently listened as he continued, “What I loved was a good friend of mine. After Who, I met her in college and she became more than a friend for me. We saw each other mature and changed. I saw her boyfriends come and go whilst she was also there during my break-ups with girls. Personality, humour, it was all there and it was almost perfect. The only thing that wasn’t perfect was our timing. We were never single at the same time, and what we had about each other was never enough for us to leave who we were with. This was the thing we had to face and accept and we need to leave what we had.”

He looked at her before he carried on, “When I love was my first high school girlfriend. The feeling of young love is impossible to replace or replicate because we could only that age once. High school is a time of innocence, discovery, and adventure. We shared these three elements together in things like first kiss, late night sneaking out, all of which now has become reminiscing love, preserved in time which neither of us can touch or hold forever, but we know it was there. Even though we were just kids, there’s no doubt that we…” He paused a little before he added, “We were in love.”

Kris was about to stop because he thought Desiree wasn’t interested but she insisted him to go on.

“Where I love was a girl I met in New York. I was just there for six-month training after graduation. Soon, a year had passed but I couldn’t leave her. Maybe it was because I found independence, new freedom that I thought I could never have. A new energy, with new experiences was in our relationship that reflected the city we were in. Like the Big Apple, our love never sleeps. That was before. When people ask me what city I love, I say New York: the city where I loved the most,” Kris spoke a little bit lower and more serious than usual.

“How about Why?” Desiree asked.

Kris bowed his head and looked to the ground whilst speaking, “Why I love was a friend of mine who passed away. After she was diagnosed, she told me that death was not what saddened her the most. Instead, it was that she felt as if she had never really fallen in love. She wouldn’t get to obtain those emotions: good or bad, of being hurt, and being helped. After she died, those words struck me the most. It taught me that one of the greatest gifts of being alive is to be able to give, receive or even lose love. I realized that there are so many people like her, who lose their lives before having those experiences. What a waste if we never strive to have those experiences. What a waste if we never strive to love in our lives. She made me understand why. Why waste this life, not loving.”

“I understand now,” Desiree said, taking another deep breath and soaking in everything her boyfriend just told her.

“You are the sixth,” Kris mumbled.

She looked at him straight face and demanded, “The sixth? Enlighten me.”

He started to explain, “You are none of them; because you are all of them. You are WHO I love. The girl on the pedestal, my fantasy, the girl before, I thought was just a make believe in my mind. But now I know it’s actually true. You are WHAT I love. The depth, the inside jokes, the best friend. You are WHEN I love. A new history is being started with you. We are young lovers who will soon grow up to our older selves, and someday I know, we will look back to this time. You are WHERE I love. I would go anywhere just to be with you. You are WHY I love.  Before you I never truly understand why I need to look for someone to be with. Now that we’ve found each other, you have given meaning to my past, present, and future. Desiree, you are the sixth and last.”

She smiled as Kris took her hand lovingly, whilst staring at her eyes.

“So how many were there before me?” he asked.

Desiree giggled and took a moment before responding, “Uhm… Five as well.”

“What were their names?” Kris wondered.

She replied chuckling, “Who, What, When, Where, Why.”

They both laughed and realized that they have truly found the love of their lives.



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