Wanderer, come closer, I must say some words, namely, that everything you do is for naught. Nothing matters, not one bit, and is not worth the slightest effort to pursue. Why do I say this? I speak from knowledge. I have been a pauper, a prince, a king, an artist, a priest,(more) a father, a gigolo, a builder, a general, a horseman, a farmer, a shopkeeper, a thief, a killer. But enough, you have the picture. I have lived the full circle of human experience and can speak with complete wisdom. None of it matters.
I would have rather been a cow in the field, or a tiny crab scouring the sands at the bottom of the sea. Theirs is a state of complete satisfaction. They have no spiritual pain. The agonies they feel are borne of an empty stomach or come only briefly with the final pang of death. These are the beasts. But man feels pain at its roots, or even deeper. The source is obscure.
None of it is worth the struggle. The agony is incomprehensible. When you love someone, why must it bring such pain? Only the dead know. Success brings dissatisfaction. Acquisition brings dissatisfaction. Accomplishment brings dissatisfaction. My children have forgotten my name. My subjects revolted. The ill gotten gains turned to ashes in my hands. The benedictions I said over my parishioners brought malaise and imperiled their souls.
When I was desperately poor, I did terrible things. When I was desperately rich, I did terrible things. The structures I erected stand as cenotaphs inside which the dead are stacked. When I was very old, I walked into the desert in the hope of dying.
Now, as I lay here in the sand, I thought I would tell you: everything you do is for naught.(less)
At what point did it all accumlate to being alone in an old car. When was the tipping point? What was it I said that has me parked behind the mexican joint we went on our first date trying to sleep. If we can't have the good days without(more) the bad then the good days lead to the bad. Right?
Was it on our first hike when we heard the mid day owl hoot above us? I said, "I care, but he gives a hoot." and, I remember, you didn't laugh. You didn't even smirk, but gave me a plain, "OK." Then walked a few steps ahead of me for the rest of the hike. five miles. Alone but within earshot for saying the wrong thing. A bad joke.
Was it the way I held you in bed when you were trying to sleep? Was it not tight enough? or warm enough? Was I not as passionate as Keats or Byron or Kerouac? Your lips were always more lovely when you slept. I would stay up and stare until I fell asleep.
Or was it something else entirely. Was it something I didn't do? Was it someone I couldn't be? Everything you do was so special to me, but I was always falling short in your eyes. The last thing you said to me was "You never showed me anything new." You stepped out of my car. Walked towards the road where you had another car waiting for you. Even then I noticed the back of your cable knit sweater would bounce when you walked and I loved it. I noticed you lit a cigarette with a match and I loved it. I couldn't see who was driving but i noticed that he was driving. Not you. It's never you. (less)
"From now on," the voice whispers in his head, "everything you do will be permanent."
"Bullshit," Seven says, and laughs.
So he goes wild.
He gives Yoosung a box of Honey Buddha chips in exchange for a kiss, offers to find Zen a good role at the cost(more) of one date.
Small costs add up, and even though his heart is already so full of love, it can always get fatter.
After all, in the end, it'll be wiped clean, anyways.
She's bright and positive, smile innocent enough to wipe the dirt and pain from the years of hell the RFA members have been through. Seven is, of course, smitten before he's even met her this time.
"You're totally my type," he tells her over the phone once, looking down at Yoosung sleeping in his lap.
Of course, good things come to an end. Seven knows this best.
"After today," he says suddenly, drunk off his feet as he clings to Jumin and rubs his fingers over Yoosung's knuckles, "this will all be a lie."
"What?" Jaehee asks, sounding tired. "You-" he says, pointing, "should have kept the cafe. You-" he turns to Yoosung, then Zen, and Jumin. "Should have become a vet. Call your fucking family. They miss you. Jumin, for the love of God, please remember who Elizabeth is. Not Rika. Just a cat."
He passes out after that.
The next day, he wakes up with an aching migraine and a sick feeling, one he's never had before.
"What is this?" he groans.
"Shut up," she whispers, and he opens his eyes to see her and Yoosung staring at him. "Seven, it's real. This is permanent." She sighs. "I promise. It'll stay like this forever."
He sighs, but before he knows it, he lets out a sob instead.(less)