At Timothy's apartment, we sat down on his couch and began to kiss.
So, are we going to look at each others' souls?
‘Yeah, I said we would. I was waiting for you to tell me how.'
Okay, well, close your eyes and clear your mind.
I closed my eyes and allowed my thoughts to flow away.
What d'you see?
‘Nothing, surprisingly (!)'
Oh, of course, you're not psychic. Okay then, try to ... expand your mind in my general direction.
‘Expand my mind?'
Yeah. Imagine you're sort of pushing outwards, but in your head.
I tried to follow these strange instructions and found myself feeling as if I was flowing across some open plain, but without physically changing position.
Now, can you see anything?
‘Um, yeah. I can sort of see.... memories?'
I saw a mental picture of myself standing in the dress I had worn to the Phase-Change ceremony, and then dancing with Felix.
‘I can see stuff from today.'
Good, that's what I'm thinking about. Keep expanding your mind otherwise you'll go back into your own.
‘I'm in yours? Wow.'
What can you feel?
‘A sort of warm tenderness, like what you'd feel if you maybe saw a baby lamb or were stroking a cat you'd owned for a long time. I think it's your love for me...'
That's right. Well done.
‘Wow. It feels so... wonderful, so... gratifying.'
We're always able to feel each others' emotions across this link, but you can feel it so much more strongly when you're in the other's mind.
‘It's nice. Calming. I feel really content.'
I know. I can feel that from your mind.
‘So, is this your soul?'
No, you have to push out a bit further.
I pushed out as far as I felt I could go, floating past memories of things that had happened before today, Timothy meeting me for example. It was strange to see myself through someone else's eyes. To Timothy, I looked fragile and delicate; vulnerable. I, however, had always considered myself capable and fairly strong.
Now, can you see an orb?
An orb? Yes, I could. ‘Is it pulsating with light?'
The sphere emanated a mixture of feelings and colours as it vibrated. It was mostly a sort of green and gold colour with the occasional streak of dark red, icy blue and sometimes, pitch black. The green and gold light seemed to be linked to calmness and contentment, but there were also feelings of goodness and purity. The dark red was anger and malice, and this, along with the blue and black, emanated darkness and malice. The iciness of the blue was a piercing fear rather than coldness - the coldness came from the black which seemed to lack as much warmth as it did brightness.
Somewhere behind me, I could feel a slight sense of unease, tension.
‘What are you afraid of Timothy?'
I'm actually letting you see my soul... I'm so frightened...
‘Of what? I won't hurt you.'
It's the most vulnerable part of me. You could scar it if you wanted; leave a permanent mark on my life. And I'm also scared you'll hate me for what you see there.
‘I won't hurt you, and I could never hate you, you know.'
I noticed a new colour in the orb. It seemed to be a warm orange and pink light that sent out a rush of love every so often. It was by far the most beautiful colour in the sphere, though all of the lights mingled and swirled around each other to create a beautiful ball of energy.
‘It's spectacular, Timothy. And heart-stopping. I feel so small, but I also feel a deep respect. It's taken my breath away. So beautiful...'
Could you go back to your mind now, Tani? I need a moment.
‘Oh, of course. How do I do that?'
Well, all of this time it should have felt like you were pushing forward. If you just stop pushing and let go, your thoughts should rush back into your mind.
I stopped expanding my thoughts and felt them withdrawing into my mind. I opened my eyes, quite dizzied by what I'd seen and the amount of concentration it had taken for me to bridge the space between our minds.
I opened my eyes and saw that Timothy had stopped kissing me and was gently resting his head on my shoulder. I felt a damp patch through my dress and realised he'd been crying. I stroked his back.
‘It's okay. Thank you for letting me see.'
That's okay, Tani. You are, after all, going to let me see yours. Unless, you'd rather not.
‘Why wouldn't I? If you trust me enough to see yours, then of course I'd let you see mine.'
It's not at all like repaying favours, Tani. I'm going to enter the deepest part of your mind, see the most private things in your mind. You won't be able to hide or shy away, because I'll be in your thoughts. Don't try to pretend you're not a little scared.
Thinking about it, I realised I was quite nervous. Could I really reveal my soul to Timothy? And then I realised I was being ridiculous. If I hadn't been completely sure of my love for him, I wouldn't have looked at his. And being completely in love with him meant I was brave and willing enough to show him my true self. How else could I be absolutely certain that he loved me for me, and not just because he felt duty-bound to love me?
‘I'm scared, of course I am. But, I love you Timothy, and I want you to know that and I want you to love me for who I am inside. So, please, go ahead and look.'
I closed my eyes as I braced myself for the upcoming experience, not quite sure what to expect.
Oh, Tani, darling, you've put walls up. I'm just going to ease them down, all right? Don't try to resist me otherwise I won't be able to get past them.
‘Wait!' I squeaked as I felt a gentle mental pressure on invisible fences as they were psuhed down. The pressure stopped. The fences went up again.
Are you okay? We don't have to do this if you don't want to.
‘No, no, it's not that. I just wanted to know if any of it was going to... hurt.'
Not hurt as such, no. But it'll be scary. You might, at times, feel violated and terrifyingly vulnerable, but everything's going to be fine. I'm not going to probe you, just going to have a look. One look. If you feel too scared at any point, you just tell me and I'll stop. I promise. Okay?
I took a deep breath. ‘Okay.'
‘Ah, there we are, the walls are going down already. Now, just relax.' I sat perfectly still as the walls slid away and I allowed Timothy to enter my mind.
I felt a foreign presence in my mind. It felt like it was curious, but was being cautious. It also felt warm: appreciative and grateful. There was an underlying sense of admiration and respect too. I realised ‘it' was Timothy's thoughts.
‘I love you,' I thought to him.
I love you too.
The presence seemed to glide deeper into my mind where part of me was still fairly nervous. Gentle mental forces were trying to delicately push away my worries but ths made me feel more scared. My heart rate accelerated as Timothy tried to access the most vulnerable part of me.
Tani, I don't have to do this, you know.
‘N-no, I want you to. It's just a bit ... daunting.'
Of course. Would you like me to send you some relaxing mental images?
‘Oh, um, yes please. If it's not too difficult.'
No, it should be fine.
I suddenly saw mental pictures of flowers, ranging from purple foxglove to yellow daffodils to red tulips. With each came a rush of calm and tenderness. I felt greatly soothed by the montage which Timothy even managed to accompany with some classical music. He was amazing at sending his thoughts and I wondered at his ability to concentrate on so many things at once.
‘Ah, well, I've had lots of practice of thinking while hearing others' thoughts, so that helps,' Timothy thought, responding to my awe.
‘Still... You're incredible.'
Thanks, Tani. I can see your soul now, by the way. It's beautiful.
My mind was suddenly filled with Timothy's incredulity and admiration.
The pictures of flowers were suddenly replaced by something similar to what I'd seen in Timothy's mind, but the orb I saw now lacked the menacing black and angry red energy of his soul. There was some of that icy, fearful blue, but the dominant colours were the calm and pure green and gold positive energy and the warm orange and pink.
Wow. Who could believe this amount of innocence and goodness was possible? Your soul is so untainted... Neither streaked nor ravaged by the evils of the world we live in. You're far too good for me, Tani...
‘I don't believe that. You've turned my world around and only a supremely fantastic guy like you could do that. I am fiercely grateful for you and feel proud to be your rose-dove. You're like the greatest birthday present in the world, but even better than first anticipated.'
I felt Timothy's mind slip away from mine but I could still feel hie emotions as they bridged the gap of the open plains. ‘You're far too kind, Tani. I don't deserve such praise.'
‘Of course you do, Timothy, and I'm the one giving it, so I'll say whether it's appropriate or not.'
Thank you. I, too, am brilliantly blessed to be in a relationship with you.