Veronica was on her way home to her family when she first met Vincent. She had a ring on her finger and a husband at home. He was now a businessman, having snatched up his young wife a number of years ago. He was now well off and able to provide stable financial support for his wife and their two daughters. The first to ravage his beautiful young wife, he was a number of years older than his teenage bride at the time. Had her husband been a man who insisted, he could’ve produced sons, but as a man who acquiesced, he filled his teenage bride with two daughters instead. Such is the case when beauty causes men to falter.
But now is later, and their lovely daughters are now lovely young women with daughters of their own. His once astonishing young wife is now merely amazing for her age. Her face is still beautiful, but proximity reveals wrinkles around the corners of her eyes and mouth. Her smile still lights her face. Her skin is soft, and her shape is smooth. When she takes off her clothes, in lingerie she could warm any man’s loins. But maybe her breasts sag a little, or may they don’t but her skin shows the colored patterns of age. Maybe her buttocks aren’t as firm as they once were, but remember that she’s had two children. Age wears on all of God’s creatures, no matter how blessed they once were. Of course, a man could still enjoy her body, even though a moist crotch would still give way to her now eternally dry passageway. Those gates are closed forever from youth.
But this story is not about Veronica. Our protagonist is Vincent, the one she met not long ago. Fate makes those things happen. Vincent was a war veteran, but not of the retired variety. Vincent was a child soldier during the War, and his enlistment records show he had been stationed on both fronts. War taught Vincent emotions. Some of these most men never experience, and some others experienced to depths unknown. He learned loss, of course, when his best friend didn’t make it through, and then nights of crying, wondering why, just why? The emptiness, the numbness, not being able to feel anything despite the knowledge that there are things to be felt, good or bad, they just wouldn’t register. And joy, much more the same than many think, the adrenaline rushes, accomplishment, survival of the most fit. Then the anger, the rage, “Hulk SMASH!” in not so many words. And the love, the feeling of euphoric orgasm of the soul. And he felt whatever residuals remained, the bitterness, the loneliness of experiences no longer shared, changed excitements, and everything that War does to man, without actually changing who he is.
But remember, Vincent is a war veteran. He’s been normalized for what he can, and is a child soldier no more. At the age of fourteen, the War is now behind him, at least chronologically speaking. For all effects, Vincent leads a normal 14-year-old life, with friends and joys and cares. He even met a beautiful girl just recently, named Ashley. She must be 13 or 14 as well, a friend through acquaintances. Ashley caught Vincent the first time they met with eyes like Venus fly traps. Such kind, welcoming eyes, poisoning their prey with a smile. Ashley had a beautifully structured face, with each part carefully calculated to entice. But something else was wrong with Ashley. Something Vincent couldn’t ever hope to overcome. Ashley was mute. It was on learning this that he left. “That’s life,” he said, and walked away, perhaps forever.
Now is when Vincent and Veronica resurface together, but don’t go thinking that was all a setup to create a love story for them. Because remember, Veronica is married. Had someone like Vincent arrived before, then maybe it could have set up another love story. But it is not to be. Fate was not so kind, at least not to ours. So let’s just forget it was even mentioned. What’s passed is past, and what’s past is passed. In fact, just to show it’s not their love story, when Veronica and Vincent met, there were no ‘sparks’ to describe, or ‘connections’ made. He simply looked at her, and she looked at him. Maybe one of them lowered their eyes, but surely nothing more. They were going to the same place, but alas to different destinations. Oh how fate punishes those who don’t deserve it. But this is how their relationship began.
Time passed, as it often does, and Veronica and Vincent started hanging out. He would go to her house, or less often she to his apartment. There they would sit and just talk about life, each nervous at first, hearts pounding to escape their chests and reveal themselves, at least until they adjusted into being friends. Two people sharing with each other, laughing at the same things, or feeling the same angers and frustrations. They began to hate each others’ enemies, and admire their friends. Moments of silence would allow for the return of heart-pounding nervousness, assuaged by broken silence and a return to laughter, sharing, hoping and dreaming. Until one day when it all stopped.
We all know that conversations with close companions can segue into shared interests, hobbies, and the like. So of course it was only natural for Vincent to progress their relationship to the next stage. And Veronica felt the sane. But this is where the rift began. It started small, with Vincent wanting to watch cartoons at her house. He was excited to share the characters and the stories that resonated with his own life and experiences. But Veronica didn’t understand. So she attempted to bridge the gap, sharing with Vincent all the gossip of the neighborhood, the husbands, wives and families nearby. But Vincent didn’t understand. Now here they had come all this way developing a comforting relationship, and they were already losing commonalities. Soon after, Veronica stopped calling. And Vincent lost his desire to do the same. Time had created irresolvable differences, and therein lies the parable.