• Vol. 08
  • Chapter 04


I recline in the black bucket chair. Its rexine material slithers uncomfortably against my skin. The smell of lavender hangs in the air, reminding me of lazy afternoons with you. The hairdresser arrives, adjusting her apron and tucking a stray strand of her auburn hair behind her ear. Without any introduction, even a perfunctory one, she picks up a brush and runs it through my hair. I can feel its pricks of carelessness, sharp, against the pink skin behind my ears. I want to tell her to go slow but keep quiet instead.

My phone beeps its characteristic temple-bell tune. A new message has arrived. The hairdresser pauses, as I reach clumsily for my phone that rests on the glass countertop in front of me. Even before I unlock the phone, my heart races with anticipation, hoping it is you. My heart flutters when I see your name splashed in bold relief, across the message that I am yet to open.

The hairdresser spritzes my hair with scented water and picks up a different brush this time. I do not know if it is the re-assurance of your message, after our first fight two hours ago or the soft blue bristles or the deftness of her strokes, I relax at once. The hairdresser picks up the scissors and begins chopping long locks of my hair. My fingers scramble to find their way to the right words of a short epistle, on the fluorescent keypad. Don’t mess this up, a nagging voice in my head says, you don’t want to lose her.

I jerk with the weight of the realisation that I missed you. ‘Please be still,’ the hairdresser commands, dabbing blood from the fresh nick on my neck with wispy white tissue. I inadvertently mutter an apology. It was my fault I got myself cut.

Time was running out. If I delayed, you would probably think I was not interested. I hear the cadence of the scissors working its way through my hair. My mind isn’t working clearly.



My words aren’t flowing freely. I look at the gibberish on the screen, my fingers have typed. They look like the musings of a toddler. Falling in love is excruciating. Falling in love is bliss.

After a while, the noise of the scissors cease, the brush no longer troubles my scalp and the hairdresser steps back to admire her handiwork. The words form clearly on my keypad. I luv u. I tarry no longer and press send right away.