[#50] The mum who is heartbroken (V-01)

[#50] La maman qui a mal au cœur (V-01)

Cy Jung — [e-criture] [#50] The mum who is heartbroken (V-01)

Every month, Cy Jung offers you a short story in “e-writing”, a fiction text coming from a “pretext” borrowed from the everyday life and that could start that way… or not. One of her reader, LMC, has proposed to translate one of her short stories in English to give English-speakers access to her work. What a good idea ! What a wonderful gift !
Cy Jung warmly thanks LMC for this translation. If you would also like to translate the short stories of Cy Jung in the language of your choice, you contact her here (preferably in French).

Petit rappel liminaire

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[The pretext] The Health Magazine gives a report about young children born with a cardiac malformation. Ali, 4 years old, has already been operated several times. Recently, he has shorter breath and he is complaining about pain in his chest. His mum explains that he gets tired quickly, that he becomes all white.
— When I see him like this, I’m heartbroken !

[The short story]
On the tatami mat, the kids are struggling. It has been more than ten minutes already that they run in all directions, ten abs exercises, five push ups and ten flexions every time sensei claps her hands. It is not so much the effort or the tedious characteristic of the exercise that is exhausting them ; it is more the general atmosphere and this uselessly severe way of talking their teacher is using as soon as one drags their feet.
— Lily ! Did you forget to wake up this morning ? Lower.
Lily frowns. She starts to be really fed up with the bad mood of sensei Eunice and, at school, everybody is complaining about teacher Camille. Lily has yet no doubts about the efficiency of the square W. algorithm [*]. From the day after her dream, she noticed that they both had changed in their way to be unpleasant, as if they were aware that the pain was vain and were looking for a way to break the deadlock. Probably only time is missing for the love dialogue to come back. Is Lily having illusions ? She usually has good intuition. She talked about it with her friend Chimamanda who is taking an IT workshop with Camille during lunch time.
— Yes, at the beginning, suddenly she was sad, without energy, like when she came back from her long-term sick leave. Now, since the day before yesterday, you are right : it is not the same ; she gets annoyed quickly and loses her temper for nothing. We have not yet opened our mouth and she is already shouting at us. She usually doesn’t get angry like that. Does she have problems ?
Lily never told Chimamanda about Eunice and Camille, it is too intimate.
— I think she has family problems.
— So have I ! And so do you ! We don’t yell at everybody for all that !
The conclusion comes back to Lily’s awareness while she starts a new set of abs-push ups-flexions.
— It’s weak ! It’s weak ! protests Eunice. Are you judokas or cherubs ?
Enough ! Lily stops in the middle of her sequence and sits down cross-legged, the hands on the thighs, head high. Eunice notices it only when everybody leave again running. She gets closer.
— Can I know what is happening ?
—  I’m on strike.
— On strike ?
— Yes, sensei, on strike. I am fed up with you talking to us badly.
Eunice stands up straight. One by one, her pupils have stopped. They are watching her with a disapproving look and form a front that impresses their teacher.
— Am I talking to you badly ?
The nod is general, then, one sits, another… all the others. The silence envelops the tatami mat. Eunice observes these kids that she is giving a hard time without even being aware, all this because she is sad to death, convinced that she is letting the woman of her life go without being able to react. The silent kids stare at her. Their look is breaking through her. Tears appear in her eyes. A flux. Her helplessness is at its height. Eunice cries, standing in the middle of these kids that ignore the reality of things but know that the moment is serious. The tears of their sensei do not bother them. The important thing is that it flows.
From the office where he is working on the computer, Freddy feels that the atmosphere has changed. He raises his eyes from the screen and looks on the tatami mat side through the window. He does not see that Eunice is crying. He only notices the kids sat in a posture of kind resistance. He goes out of the office, worried, and comes closer to the tatami mat ; Eunice’s tears meet him where everyone’s humanity emerges, at the deepest in the flesh. He ignores what is going on. He knows that the kids are not in danger. They are allies. Freddy takes his sandals off and gets to Eunice. He takes her in his arms. She lets herself be rocked.
Lily nods to her friends. Without moving the slightest breath of air, they stand up one by one and go back to the changing rooms. They have done their part. The adults will do the rest, if they can. The end of the course is not until another half an hour. They all have their schoolbag. They set up to do their homework. Anyone who would enter this changing room at this moment would wonder who these so well-behaved kids are, who know how to hit adults to consciousness, make their pain explode and leave tip-toe by the time that things calm down. They are simply judokas, Eunice’s students and Lily’s friends. It is probably this that makes the difference.
The door of the changing room opens. Eunice appears in the doorway. They turn their head toward her, attentive to what she will say.
— I would like to apologize for all these difficult weeks that I made you spend. I realize today that it is unbearable, for you as for me. When you have a problem and you don’t take responsibility for it, because you are a coward most of the time, because you are scared to do worse than you already did, it makes everybody’s life a misery. You have convinced me to act ; I am grateful.
“Act” ? The verb runs right through Lily. The attention of the kids doubles.
— Freddy is waiting for you on the tatami mat to finish the course, except if you prefer to stay here to do your homework.
A disapproval whisper answers her.
— It is perfect. I will be away and fix my problems. I promise you that as long as I will not be able to talk to you in a correct manner, it will be Freddy or another teacher that will give the courses.
The frown is general. The son Martin, secretly back while his mum thinks he is at the school arts workshop, speaks.
— Sensei ! It is you or nobody.
— But if…
— We don’t care, Sensei, adds Lily. For today it is ok. For the next, you sort your things out as you want but you will be on the tatami mat with us, in a good shape.
Eunice does not protest even if the remark is irreverent. She likes this kid a lot, able to feel things with a force that is beyond belief. Would she be a witch, as some shamans pretend as soon as they talk about albinos ? Eunice does not care. It is simply time that she puts an end to this least glorious episode of her private life.
Her pupils join the tatami mat where Freddy is organizing a ball game, as he is not really an expert in teaching judo. Eunice is back up to her place. Lily would like to attend the next episode but of course, it is impossible. Impossible ? It would be ignoring the powers of her friends from the square W. algorithm ; she would just have to wait tonight to get to the bottom of the story. She smiles, delighted. It is the moment that the foam ball chooses to hit her right in the face. Could she not take the occasion to sink into a light coma which would directly put her in phase with Eunice’s actions ? Freddy has not deserved to be in charge of a cerebral commotion and the ball is not hard enough to objectively produce such an effect.
Lily moans. At the same time, Eunice leaves her place. The little girl does not see her. Her sensei has put a jogging suit on and hits the road with a powerful stride. She needs to empty her head at the risk of arriving at her destination in an indelicate sweating state. The only question is where to go exactly. She has ten minutes to choose a direction, with no guidance to resolve it. None, really ? Should we persist in defending a rational point of view and ignore the magic in all things to think so ? Eunice leaves her body to decide, convinced that what happened earlier in the dojo is not a coincidence ; that a force, an energy, a Spirit, an albino child, a Small Sheep – whatever the name you give it ! – will lead her where it has to. And luckily, she believes in it ! It allows her to let herself be when others would be submitted to their certainties, paralyzed by their Cartesian spirit, forced in their action by a stubborn refusal of what science and reason do not explain.
And Camille, where is she ? It is exactly the question to ask, or not, depending if we are talking about how the story unravels or about its relationship with triangulation algorithms. Better to focus on the story. At the moment when Eunice passes the street corner, she exists the school gate and goes in the other direction towards the underground. Does Eunice see her ? Her view of the gate is obscured by a removal van parked in the middle of the road. She does not slow down. She passes the van and arrives under the red, white and blue flag. She hesitates. To ring and ask the guard ? To wait ? To put on a sprint towards the underground in case Camille would be on her way ? One could wonder if her eye would not have detected something that her brain registered without her awareness because her hesitation does not last more than one second and she already runs to the end of the street. Unless a crow…
There is actually one that is watching from a street light. Its croak encourages Eunice to accelerate. She thanks the bird with a friendly gesture and then tenses her muscles, arms close to the body. The frequency of her strides increases. At the top of the scales that go down to the underground, Camille has stopped. She searches in her bag looking for her Navigo pass [**] and makes a packet of tissues fall on the floor. And then a pen. It rolls in the direction of the gutter. A foot stops it. A hand picks it up and recovers the tissues packet on the way. She extends to give back the lost objects to their owner. Camille smiles. She stands up.
— Thanks, I…
She looks up to the face of the person who just brought her help. She…
— Hello Camille…
Eunice pauses, because the sprint requires her to take a breath, because she also hopes for a sign, maybe, an encouragement. Better to forget about it.
— I wanted to apologize. I have been unfair with you, mean. I ignore what happened to me. I should not have treated you that way, even if you provoked that kiss. I don’t know if you can forgive me for this useless pain, this violence that I had against you. I would like you to do so because I love you. You could answer, that to love you it is not to treat you harshly ; you would be right. Today I am essentially sad about my own attitude. I wish it would be possible to get together again. I love you Camille. I’m sorry.
On the boulevard, a 91 [***] passes. The intensity of the moment blocks its back wheels to the point that the bellows stretches.
The bellows stretches ?
Choice 1 : Camille slaps Eunice, gets back her tissues packet and her pen, turns around and walk away.
Choice 2 : Camille is on her way to slap Eunice who stops her gesture with a beautiful jujitsu parry. They are facing, eyes in eyes.
Choice 3 : The 91 keeps the dilatation of its articulation to itself.
Would love only depend on the control of its bellows by a bus ?
The writer wants to ignore it. The reader knows.

Traduction, LMC@

Cy Jung, 28 février 2018®.

Version imprimable de cet article Version imprimable


[*Unknown concept in Cy Jung universe, NdT.

[**Transport card in Paris, NdT.

[***Bus number, NdT.

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Un texte libre de lecture sur un site Internet n’est pas un texte « libre de droits ». Cela signifie que l’on a celui de le lire mais pas celui de le reproduire sans l’autorisation expresse de son auteur. Les conditions légales d’utilisation des contenus du site de Cy Jung sont ici.

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