You asked had I considered your proposal. Yes, I had...

Welcome to the latest Summer Soap — a daily fictional serial run over 12 parts. Called 12 Letters From Home, this story was written by Luisa Geisler, a Brazilian living in Cork city, and was chosen from work submitted by students of the MA in Creative Writing Programme at UCC. In this ninth episode, Connor has something on his mind... and it’s food for thought
You asked had I considered your proposal. Yes, I had...

LETTER 9

Dear Connor,

I thought you knew. I thought you had done the math, maybe you checked the guests’ emails. I manage them, but you have access to them.

Maybe you saw Steve’s e-mail and thought there was something suspicious there. Maybe you thought that the fact Steve signed the email with “I miss you” was weird. Too many exclamation points. Is it exclamation points or exclamation marks? I don’t know. And that was why you got home with your stern look and said: “We need to talk.”

Maybe that was why.

I thought you had been fired, like we feared. However, I know you well enough to know that I’d need to squeeze that information out of you again. Yes, I’d need to use the zit metaphor again. So it was either way more or way less urgent than you being fired. Because you would try to buy time. I told you all about how I hate when you do this in one of the earlier letters, so I’m not repeating myself.

You walked in, like I said.

You looked stern, like I said.

You looked exhausted, like I feel I don’t need to say, because both of us look exhausted most of the time.

“We need to talk,” you said. Izzy was jumping all around you, welcoming you home. In Portuguese, when a dog is jumping around a person cheerfully we say that it’s ‘doing a party’. Not throwing a party. The ‘party’ seems to work as the dog’s movement. Like a dog plays dead. So it’s playing a party?

Anyways. I got distracted with the only cheerful being in the home.

“Are you hungry?” I asked. I was hungry and wanted an excuse to eat. I’m eating for two, as they say, and I love to eat. So I’m loving food for two.

“No, seriously,” you were scratching Izzy’s tummy. “We need to talk.”

“And I’m also serious,” I watched you take your shoes off. “We can talk and eat.”

You smiled for a second and I caught it. Ha, gotcha. Like when I make a joke while we are arguing, like when I make a mistake in English, and you laugh. I knew I had my ‘Get Out of Jail Pass’. So whatever it was, we weren’t that screwed. We went into the kitchen and sat down by the table. You watched me and I watched you watch me.

I knew we were okay.

“I’m making a sandwich,” I said. “Would you like some?”

“I’m not hungry.”

I made a sandwich with lunch leftovers and some salad that our previous guest had
abandoned here. One of the advantages of running an AirBnb is that guests buy some food for themselves, but can rarely finish everything. So free lettuce and tomato, some mayo and leftover chicken. Brilliant.

I sat in front of you and started eating. You looked at my sandwich.

“Can I try?” you said.

“I can make you one.”

“I just want to try.”

I gave you a half, because it’s one of the rules I learned. We smiled again. You will say you’re not that hungry, that you don’t need a drink, then you will “try” my food and my drinks. Is that an Irish thing? Or is that a Connor thing? Either way, you said:

“Have you thought about the proposal thing?”

That’s what you called it. The proposal thing. The thing. The visa thing. The saving money thing. The swearing in front of a priest that you will love me forever thing. That thing.

And I guess I have, haven’t I? Look at all those letters. This letter is not a reason, it’s just an actual answer.

Yes, I have,

Júlia

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