I have thought long and hard about whether I should let you see these works. They are very private, and honest to my feelings for you. I worry that they will frighten you away, or make you screw your adorable nose up in disgust. But, I couldn't just sit back and quietly watch anymore. I had to tell you in my own extreme and eccentric way that I think that I love you. You know now.

I have tried to let you know before, with the sign and the letter. Too subtle. Too corny. Drowned out by my competition. Competition that I fear will end up winning anyway. Because I know that intimate love is a mutual state, and while it is one sided, it is nothing more than infatuation. Maybe it is childish. But that's just the way I am. I suppose I'll grow up eventually, but I deep down I know that I am scared of adulthood. I see it as the bitterly cold loneliness that my life will freeze into. I can already feel the chill, and now I find myself clambering for refuge in a warm loving relationship.

I often try to put myself in your shoes, so that I can guess at how you would react if I told you. I experiment with responses in my stories, trying to picture what you would do in a situation. But it's painfully difficult, because I really don't know you all that well. I just have impressions, formed from limited snapshots of your personality. I see how you squirm when I offend you or insult you. I see how your face lights up when I praise you or offer tokens of affection to you. I listen to your conversations with others with intense concentration. Even when you are silent, I listen to your silence, and discover even more about you.

I know what type of people interest you. I know that you don't like pizza, that you have a partiality to teddy bears and that you know that you must study hard to get what you want. I hear what people say (and don't say) about you behind your back. I know what I would say in reply if I weren't so shy. But to defend you would be to admit in public that I adore you, before you even knew. I am truly sorry for all the times I have said cruel or harsh things in front of you. They are just attempts to hide my true emotions from everyone, as I flounder in and out of conversation in my own way.

I hope that I don't stereotype you too much when I write about you. It's hard to be unbiased when your judgement is clouded by emotional needs and desires beyond rationalization. I try to put you in different lights, and see if I can stop loving you. Because that would be easier, surely. Easier just to forget, and bottle all my feelings up like I usually do. Oh, but it's not that simple. I tried to do it when you seemed to ignore the letter. But I couldn't. Or I wouldn't. Or both at once.

Yes, I am socially weak, but emotionally potent, as you will see in some of my stories. There are stories that I am about to tell you which I haven't told anyone, except perhaps for my brother. And some even that I haven't told him. Can you explain why I think I can confide in you? Even when I have no clear proof of your ability to keep a secret?

I know you don't see me as "hot", and that's because I'm not. I'm physically plain, and if that's ugly then so be it. I don't care too much for my appearance, as you probably notice. I really hate shaving. I had to teach myself how to do it with soap and water, because my father wasn't around to help or advise me. I hate it so much that I have to find a good reason before I'll do it. Lately that reason has been you, because I get the impression that the current female generation finds facial hair undesirable.

But does it really matter what's on the outside? Appearance does mean something, but it shouldn't. I know you don't want to be called "beautiful", because that is what you said to the cab driver when we went to the play together. The fact is that you are beautiful, although I still would've been attracted to you if you weren't. And while some may just say that as a device, you can be sure that I really do mean it.

Do you remember when I first met you? I do. It was our first formal dinner in O-week. I didn't remember your name afterwards, and I am sorry for that. But I remembered you, and have been intrigued ever since. The first thing I learned about you was your interest in Parker Lewis Can't Lose. I remember thinking briefly that you reminded me of Shelley. So that's what I called you in my mind... until the name "Dianne" finally stuck when we had that barbecue at the Waterworks Reserve. I remember returning, and separating from the group. And then you and the Club found me again, and we toured everyone's rooms. We stopped at yours and found the note: "How's your harem of men? I hear polygamy is fashionable these days." And we laughed, and you despaired (in a funny sort of way), and tried to find out who wrote it. If you remember, the harem respected the boundaries of Heaven- we waited at the threshold.

I put your name in print just then, didn't I? Plain, in the open, for everyone to read and say "ah ha!" I have tried to avoid it in the rest of the book. Not because I don't like it (on the contrary), but because I don't want to use your name in vain. I don't know if you really like the abbreviation "Di", but I do. However, I do think your full name is much better. I would say it to please you, if I knew that it would.

I have the same butterflies in my stomach now as when we sit together for meals, or when I tentatively knock on your door, or when I (finally) manage to dial those digits that connect me to you. I don't know how well I hide my feelings. Perhaps my silence is telling. Perhaps my avoidance of your eyes has betrayed my feelings. If they have, you have never told me. I would greet you happily all the time if I weren't so scared of how you'll react. This time, I've laid everything before you. I am still scared, but I am as prepared as I'll ever be for your reaction. Whatever it may be...

I shouldn't explain everything in the foreword, because some things are better left said in fiction. On that note, I'll stop talking to you directly. For now, at least. Please visit me when you've finished reading my poetry and prose. I will never be too busy to listen to you. Listening is what I do best.

With love from Kade

(Hobart, September 1994)

[Next chapter] [In French]

Exit: Make-Believe; Kasoft Typesetting; Archer

This work is a part of the Kasoft Typesetting storybook Make-Believe

Kasoft is a registered trademark of Kasoft Software, owned by Kade Hansson.

Copyright 1994,1996,1997 Kade "Archer" Hansson; e-mail: kasoft@kaserver5.org