Untitled III

Untitled III

 

 
It was a time to relax, to sit back and enjoy the movie that she had suggested they watch. It was what they called a family movie, based on the life of a man who was famous for a play that she herself had the privilege of seeing when she was in her early teens.

She remembered the story from her childhood and what the play was about. But she didn't remember if she, as a member of the audience, had clapped so that Tinker Bell would live. Perhaps she did clap along with the rest of the audience for it seemed the thing to do. And it was a part of the play. After all, if no one had clapped, Tinker Bell couldn't very well get up and fly about again, could she? Now that she was an adult, she realised that she knew better - she really did know better - and she would have clapped wholeheartedly, perhaps even urging others to do so, for she wanted Peter Pan's little friend to live; she wanted the children to believe in fairies. She wanted the children to believe in the power of their imagination.

The movie was well-acted and entertaining. It hadn't been a waste of their time. They remembered all too well the times when they had the best of intentions but found out too late that the movie they had chosen to watch wasn't very good, after all, no matter what the critics said nor what the popular opinion was.

Time passed and the movie would soon end. They were both quiet as they watched the play itself being re-enacted in the living-room where the main characters lived. Then Peter Pan (played by an actress who seemed familiar to her although she couldn't quite place her) spoke the following lines:

"When the first baby laughed for the first time, the laugh broke into a thousand pieces and they all went skipping about, and that was the beginning of fairies. And now when every new baby is born its first laugh becomes a fairy. So there ought to be one fairy for every boy or girl."

(Sir James M. Barrie's Peter Pan)

She was not prepared for the sudden heaving of her chest. It was as if her heart had broken wide open and the tears flowed internally. Someone was weeping - or mourning - within. And there was nothing she could do about it. Her eyes were wet with tears but she was quiet throughout. Due to their seating positions, her body was slightly behind his so she felt a little more secure, unafraid to shed the few tears that escaped. Neither one of them spoke, their eyes watching the television screen the whole time. And her tears soon dried.

Neither she nor her husband moved. She didn't know what his reaction was, whether he reacted to the words at all. And just because part of the dialogue had affected her didn't mean they had a similar affect on him as well. She was careful - as she felt she had to be careful - not to give in to the powerful emotion that suddenly overwhelmed her.

She wasn't prepared for the impact of those words. Wasn't there something about fairies? Yes, and there was something about a baby as well. A baby ... yes. And "every boy or girl." And a baby's laugh.

And so she cried openly, but not too much. Not so that she could be heard. Only her heart absorbed the realisation and the true impact of it all. And it has stayed there since that afternoon when they sat down to watch "Finding Neverland" together.

 

 

 

 

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