Thursday, March 8, 2018

I fell in love with a homeless guy... and then this happened.

The Book
The homeless guy had nothing. Nothing to be proud of. No real education, no ex-wife, no kids, no fucked up career, no shelter, no dog, no nothing. He was clearly useless. No one even looked at him as they passed him in the street. He was used to it. It even looked like he wanted it that way. To be invisible. Unseen but still alive. For some reason he never seemed to try hard at anything.
I had been keeping an eye on him for months now. I wanted to be sure he was a nobody and that he would not be missed...
I was the one who gave him the Book.
The pages are only 2 x 3 inches big. It's about 1 inch thick and the writing is big. It carries about 5 sentences on a page and the left side is always blank. The pages are very thin. It resembles a bible in many ways but it's not a bible. It's the Book.
I don't know when the homeless guy opened it but I saw him reading it the week after. It had him. The Book does that to you at first. You eat its words and you can't put it down. Remarkably the pages don't run out after you get to the middle and the book just keeps giving and giving. Good advice after another and they all come true. Even the really wild ones like:
“Go stand in front of the Crescent hotel tomorrow morning at 7 am. Hold out your hand when the man in the gray hat walks by. Let him see your eyes.”
The guy tried it for fun and ended up with a room with a view at the hotel. He got a full year's stay just by holding his hand out. He could order anything from room service and he got the clothes to match his residence. A lady comes in every day to clean his suite and every Friday he gets a ride to any movie theater or classic theater as well as the tickets to the show. He can live like the rich man who gave him the key to his room.
Weeks flew by and he lived without fear of getting mugged or feeling bored. He read the Book every now and then but it never seemed to move on. Some times he only got poems or randomly written thoughts to read, and sometimes he got weather news or reminders to take brisk morning walks. The pages turned but every day the book opened from the middle. The stories the book told were often fun and entertaining. He even met a woman, an actress, in a restaurant one Friday night. She seemed wonderful and real. A small town girl with the whole world as her play ground. He felt that She could do anything if she just had a sponsor. She was talented and beautiful, not a dime in a dozen kind beautiful, but a Goddess, in his opinion. He loved the way her cheek bones shaped her face like a heart when she laughed. He felt bad that he couldn't help her out financially. He didn't get money out of his little book, it just led him to places and meet ups with the right people at the right time. After a night together with the woman he now loved, the book started to give him hints about movie roles and theater plays that were coming up. The woman went to the castings he told her to go to and she ended up getting 3 roles from which to choose from. She was so excited she couldn't hold it in anymore. She told my homeless guy that she had a feeling about him from the first time they met, no actually just before he came to her view, that something Great is about to happen and that she should follow her intuition without fail. The woman fell deeply in love with the man in just a few days after they had met.
Weeks rolled by, life was easy and safe, success after success followed the man when ever he did exactly what and the book wanted. But one night as he was reading his little book of magic, it changed its tone. He was sitting by the window late one night, his girlfriend was already in bed and as he turned the page slowly, like he had turned it hundreds of times already, he saw writing on the page that shocked him deeply. It warned the man about reading to the end. His body stiffened up like he had just been electrocuted, his palms got sweaty and he felt nauseous. He looked around the room quickly. Everything was just like it had been a moment ago. Nothing had changed but he felt like the temperature in the room had dropped to freezing. He yelled out to his girlfriend and there was a small hint of panic in his voice. He got no answer so he yelled again, but was not able to stand up from his comfortable seat. He felt like he was nailed to it. His girlfriend came to the door and asked:
  • "Honey, are you alright? You sounded worried..."
  • "I'm OK babe. I just wanted to hear your voice." He lied as well as he could, but he was clearly sweating and out of breath.
  • "OK hon' but are you coming to bed soon? I'm almost asleep already and you know I sleep really deeply when I'm with you..." She gave him a smiling nod to follow her to the bedroom and floated back to their bed. She hadn't felt anything weird. She was simply living her fantasy life.
He got up, closed the book fearing that it might give him a clear warning to not do something. He just decided to trust that everything was alright and that nothing bad would happen tonight. He hadn't been this afraid in years. Never on the street had anything this dramatic hit him in the face. He had been a nobody, safe from the cruel world. But now, with so much to lose, he felt fear and weakness. He didn't wan't to leave the love of his life, he didn't want to show her his true form... a homeless nobody with nothing to his name. If he had been alone and if he hadn't found her, he could just throw the book in the channel, he could just go back to where he had always been, but not now. He had to see this through. It was something he had never done before, sacrifice himself for someone else. Plan after plan to get HER out of this mess as gently as possible coursed his mind as he lied awake that night.
The next morning he hadn't forgotten the fears he had felt last night but he did feel more secure about his decision to keep his girlfriend safe though all this. He got a hot shower, shaved his beard, had a light breakfast and went for a walk in the park. He took the book with him like he had always done before, found a good bench under an oak tree and opened the book. He read a few pages. Poems, thoughts and weather news again. Nothing that felt like a warning to finish the book. Had he dreamt it all? Sometimes in the beginning he had fallen asleep in the street while reading the book and woken up when he dropped it from his hands. He got worried then that he might lose it so he forced himself to only read it in the daytime.
Weeks passed and the book warned him now and then to not finish reading it. Often the message read:
“Something unthinkable will happen...”
The man started having nightmares, got stomach aches and he was afraid to read anymore than one page per week. He knew he had to read something, the book said so. But one morning he woke up and it looked like the book only had a few pages left on it.
“Oh my god.”
The man feared for his life and the life he thought he could have had with his actress. He thought about calling her to say goodbye but what would he say when she asked why he was leaving and where?
With trembling hands he opened the book that week and read a page every day. He thought it would be best to end this quickly. The book stayed with him, pages kept turning and it didn't end, but it kept talking about the end being “hard” and that “everything would change”.
The next week his girlfriend had her big opening night at the local theater. She was starring in a play about a homeless man finding a book that changed his life. Her opening words were:
“The homeless guy had nothing. Nothing to be proud of...”
He sat in the audience through it all and cried. He was so proud of her. Her curly red hair shone like a crown on around her face. Her voice carried across the theater floor and sounded to him like an angel singing. She had found her calling. She was living her dream life up there in the stage lights ans she clearly looked Free. Free form all agony and fear, free from betrail and hurt. He wanted her to have just That! He wanted her to keep flying higher and higher and never look back. He was now determined to do everything in his power to keep her up there. Away from poverty and sickness. Away from the life on the streets, that he feared was going to happen to him all over again. As he watched the play and saw many areas of it resemble his life in so many ways, he wondered if this beautiful actress had actually been keeping and eye on him for much longer that they had been together. Everything just fell so perfectly together. The story, the characters, the fear of losing ones mind and then ones life... He pushed these thoughts to the side and felt around his front pocket. The book was still there. He almost pulled it out to just have a glance of the next page, but just then she looked straight at him from the stage with open, loving eyes and she made that small, almost invisible nod, with her head that meant she loved him. She had taught him this little nod in the time they had been together and he felt like he was the luckiest man alive since it was a nod only he could read.
He pulled his empty hand out of his pocket and felt love for her with all his body and soul. For the first time in a long time he felt truly relaxed. He gave in to the feeling of just going with the flow and not worrying about the outcome. He loved his beautiful redhead and he would give his life for her if that would keep her safe from what ever bad was coming to him from reading the little book. And just then, in a blick of an eye, the book turned to stone in his pocket. Its pages could no longer turn and the stories would no longer be read. The man could not feel anything more than a heavy, smooth piece of stone in his pocket. It was over. He was free from the book and free to live however he wanted. His real life had now reached its clarity. He KNEW his calling. As the play ended and everybody left the theater, he waited at the side of the stage for his loved one, and as he stood there he felt a lightness in his heart. Like a lie had been wiped away for good. He felt forgiven and happy. The side door opened and there she was, smiling and happy. Eyes full of love and clarity.
  • "Did you like it, love?"
  • "Yes. It was different than what I had thought, but what it did to me was even better than what I could have ever imagined... this might sound strange, but Thank you, honey. Thank you for everything."
The man sure looked like he had just ran a marathon. Poor thing. He is so lovable and pure. He has never hurt anyone but he has carried the weight of the world on his shoulders for no good reason. It was my gift to him to let him see that and then choose for himself. We kissed like lovers who haven't seen each other for a long time. My beautiful homeless guy and I.
Miia Hämäläinen

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