Jack entered Rose’s home, obviously in a pretty bad mood. He was swearing and constantly hitting left palm with right fist, like was his habit when excited or angry at something. He went straight to Rose’s bedroom. Getting up from the living room window sill, Rose followed him.

‘For God’s sake, why are you so angry? And what happened to your h…?’

‘There’s no fuckin’ God. There’s only me. Get it? You better get it, you stupid b… what are these roses doing here?’

‘Oh these? Peter came.’

‘You dumb bitch!’ Jack slapped Rose with his good hand, kicked the roses, and trampled on them. Rose fell on the bed face down. Jack turned her over and started to give her another smack.

‘Please Jack! Don’t hit me. Please… It hurts…,’ pled Rose and tried to shield her face from another hit.

‘How many times,’ yelled Jack, ‘do I have to fuckin’ hammer this simple thing through your thick head!’ and again slapped Rose across her face real hard. ‘Keep that wimp away from us or get the fuck…,’ bellowed Jack twisting Rose’s arm and raising his wounded hand for yet another smack.

‘It’s my birthday today, Jack,’ said Rose and started to cry. Jack could see the look of absolute helplessness in her pleading face; pleading to stop hitting her. This was when Jack could be seen melting. Something in Rose’s beseeching face seemed to appeal to the dormant sensitivity in Jack. It must also have been the fact that it was Rose’s birthday.

He took Rose in his lap, ‘Rose… Rose, my beautiful! I… I didn’t mean to do that. You know that, don’t you? It’s like I can’t help hurting you back when you hurt me. I have to get back.’

Rose started crying like a child now with tears rolling down her rosy cheeks. They knew no bound… like some dam had been taken off them. This unseen facet of Jack’s personality seemed to have touched her deeply. She manages to speak among spasmodic sobs ‘I… love… love you… Jack. I love you.’

‘Sorry, Rose. I’m sorry, beautiful. I just so forgot it was…’ Jack hugged her even tighter, like a child in his lap.

‘I’d…I’d…di…’ Rose couldn’t get the words out.

She was weeping violently now and shaking with heaving spasmodic sobs convulsed out of her. Her nose was running and her face feverish with overcharge of emotions. She wasn’t saying anything because she physically couldn’t get the words out. But she wanted to tell Jack how deeply she loved him. That she would die if he were to leave her now.

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