I took me one year to realize that I didn´t want to be divorced from her. As I was about to sign the divorce papers, my glance moved from the signature field to my lawyer sitting across the table.
“So many marriages end in a divorce”, he said, picking dirt out from under his nails. He wasn´t really paying attention to me signing the papers. I had hired him, because he was known to be a shark, but right now his attitude made me want to throw up right here on his extremely polished glass table.
“You know, so many people should reconsider their marriage proposals”, he added, still looking at his finger nails. “They should only get married to their soul mates.” He laughed. “Well, but most people don´t recognize their soul mates. Last week, I divorced a couple that´s surely going to get married again. But what can I say? I can´t deny them the second chance, now can I?”
I dropped the pen and looked at him.
“So you´re saying that you divorced them so that they can get married again so that you can divorce them again?”
For a second, he looked puzzled. Then he just shrugged his shoulders and stared at his now perfectly clean nails.
“If they want to get divorced, who am I to stop them?”
“So you say that you are sure of the fact that they were meant for each other, but nonetheless you agreed to disrupt their legal connection?”
“Whatever are you talking about? It´s not like they begged me to reunite them. I´m a divorce lawyer. People come here to get a divorce. I divorce them. I help them settle things. If they want to, I make their partners bleed. If they want to, I´ll get the condo, the house, the ranch and all the cars for them. I´ll get money out of it. And if they just want a plain divorce, like yours, then that´s what they´ll get”, he said, looking at me annoyed. “Now, I don´t want to rush you but you do pay me by the hour and I don´t really like to exploit people.” He grinned.
It was kind of late as I arrived at her house, which used to be my house, too. It looked the same. I always thought that should any of us leave, the house would look different. But it didn´t.
I was nervous. We hadn´t seen each other in a long time. Not since she had demanded a divorce. It made me edgy to think about the last fight we had. It was so pointless. But still we fought. With passion. We always did. It was something that kept us together. To fight passionately and then to make up. It´s not like we fought a lot. But when we did, it was a big bang.
We met as children. She was the most beautiful girl I had ever seen, even back then. Our story is one of a kind and most people melt away when she sits down on my lap and tells them how the two of us met. I fell in love with her in second grade. She was new at our school and as class representative it was my duty to show her around campus. She had this long hair that the wind blew in different directions and she had troubles taming it. But whenever she managed to do so, she smiled at me and even back then this smile warmed my insides. She knew Spiderman, read comics, played soccer and she loved to watch science-fiction movies and I was in love with her.
She sat next to me for four years and we became best friends. And even though my father explained to me that this tingling feeling inside was love, I remained silent about my feelings toward her. A year later, she moved away and even though we wrote many postcards for a while, at some point we lost touch. Her father was in the army and they moved a lot. I didn´t know how to contact her and after a while I stopped trying.
We met again at college. I saw her on campus and it was like no time had passed at all. I called her name and she turned to look at me and that bright smile came to her face.
“Hey Spidy”, she said, calling back memories of our joint childhood. “Long time no see.”
And then she hugged me and I took her now so changed but yet still the same smell in and I simply couldn´t let go of her. I took me another six months to tell her how I felt about her and luckily, she felt the same for me.
We lived through so much together and after five years, I asked her to marry me. I was nervous, walking up and down the hallway of our little apartment, waiting for her to came back home from her lunch with friends. I knew she didn´t know I was about to ask her to marry me, because the revelation that I simply couldn´t let go of her anymore had just hit me the very morning. I called my work to say I´m sick and instead went ring hunting all day. I had found that little ring I know she had dreamed about for ages and seeing that it all went so smoothly, I was even more flustered.
That night, as I lay in bed and listened to her steady breathing, I was the luckiest man on earth. Now, standing in front of her door, I wondered where that feeling had gone.
I hesitated to knock at her door. The lights were still on and I could hear music through the door, so I knew she was at home. The warm light drew me closer like a moth to a lamp and I just wanted to go inside, to hold her for a while and then to live the life I knew was right for us. But there was the door and it was literally standing in my way. Still, I couldn´t get myself to ring the doorbell.
I tried to calm down my breathing, closed my eyes to re-find myself; to refocus. Why was I so nervous? I knew what I wanted. Enlightenment had hit me as I was about to sign the papers. Not that I hadn´t known before, but I was most certain that very moment.
So I drew a picture from the inside pocket of my blazer and looked at it for a while. Then I rang the doorbell.
“Just a second”, her voice called from inside the house. The music was turned down and she lit the light in the hallway. Then she opened the door.
I held up the picture and then my glance let go of the floor boards I had stared at. I looked her in the eyes.
“I didn´t sign the papers”, I said. “I didn´t want to. I fell in love with this little girl. I have loved her all her life. And if she wants to, I will love her all my life.”
She shifter her weight from one foot to the other, bending her head a little, her hair gliding over her shoulder. Then she reached for the picture and looked at it. A smile lit her face and my nervousness faded.
“I didn´t sign the papers, either”, she said. Time passed as we stood there, taking in the reuniting moment that the both of us had been waiting for. Soul mates since second grade. And ever since.