She robbed me with apparently no sense of irony. She was enraged and barely coherent. I had been rumbled again. She went through my pockets looking for anything she might have missed. She found a couple of condoms in my jacket. She held them up and laughed.
“Just in case Johnny? Or do you always go prepared?”
She tossed them at me with a gesture that suggested both amusement and contempt. She loved a grand gesture did Jane and she had the dramatic flair tae pull them off. She was a bonny lassie, but she would insist oan talking.
“Yer easy tae get along wi Johnny. Yer a good laugh and yer no bad in the sack, but yer lacking something.”
Here we go, I thought, the commitment lecture – it had to come one day. It always does. Still, I couldn’t help gazing at her near naked body and thinking that a man could lose himself in a woman like that, so why can’t I?
“Yer a coward Johnny. Yer afraid of commitment and yer afraid of love because yer afraid of rejection. Ye take nae risks ‘cause yer a cowardly fucker.”
I was smiling now. I didn’t mean to and it could only wind her up, but the whole scene had a familiar pattern to it. I had recognised the symptoms and I knew it was coming, but like a fool I had to turn up for the final scene. I was almost glad I did though, she was magnificent in her rage. She was a very beautiful woman of strong character. If I were ever to fall in love it would be with a someone like her. I wish I could tell her these things, but tae what purpose? I just lay there on the bed smiling like a muppet.
“You’re pointless Johnny. You’re a record wi nae groove, a fuckin’ bike wi nae wheels. You have a’ the charm and grace in the world Johnny, but ye huv nae soul.”
I groaned in psychic pain. Not that old chestnut. There’s no such thing as a soul. Even Buddha had tae admit that, sort of. The soul is a concept – an abstract – a fuckin’ falsehood. Why do they always pull that soul shite on me? If she meant I had no conscience – that I could bear. It wiznae true, but I could bear it. This soul malarkey though just got oan ma tits. I had soul – even Buddha said I had soul – whatever that means.
“There’s nae need for this Janie, we’re friends after all.”
“I dinnae want tae be one o’ your ‘friends’ Johnny. I’m no some wee whore fi the scheme who’ll let you pick her up or let her doon as ye fuckin’ well please. I deserve mair than that!”
“What’s the money for Jane?”
“I’ve been yer whore and now I want paid!”
“Did I make ye feel that?”
“Aye Johnny – ye did.”
There was so much anger and anguish in her face that it silenced me dead. She loved me. She really did love me, and in that moment, I knew I loved her. It was too late though. Too much had already been said and too much had already been done. How could she ever trust me again? How could I? She would be better off without me, who needs a man with no fuckin’ soul anyway?