There didn’t seem to be a way out of the situation; the parameters had been set.
If he had taken a step beyond the expected, he would lose it all.
He had compromised on all grounds, but there was one that he couldn’t give in to.
He could not lie about his feelings. Technically, he could. But he wouldn’t. His whole life had one too many lies to permit another into this collection.
Controlled by a tyrant; manipulated by power and wealth, intimidated by endless threats. He had made every move based on what would best appease; he had lived a life based on expectations that weren’t his. But this time, he couldn’t. He had somewhere to go. He had things to accomplish.
He hadn’t slept for weeks. He had seen that face in his dreams, looking back at him. He had seen the look in the mirror – that look of ridicule; the stare of contempt that he had for himself. He had been coerced to leave her – because she ‘wasn’t right’ for him – or risk losing everything.
He was haunted by his thoughts; poisoned by his confusion.
He might once again taste the freshness of freedom and happiness when he walks away. Or maybe, he would fall into the abyss of darkness with a double-loss: she turns away from him in rejection, and he loses the trust of the almighty despot…
The conditions leave him in a trap, never to release him from their claws of misery.