He closed the door. He paced the room with hurried steps. He looked around to make sure no one else was there. He paused after a while and stood before her. She felt that he was scared. The look on his face told her so.

“You must think I am a horrible person.” He wanted to say more but he couldn’t think of anything else.

“I do.” She said calmly with disgust in her eyes. There was a great deal of anger and pain trapped in her chest just waiting to come out through her voice. Her nerves made her mouth stay shut. As her eyes became watery, he looked at her. There was a time when he could see so much love and inspiration in her eyes. Not today, today her eyes were empty.  He put his hand on her cheek. A drop of tear rolled down.

She screamed with rage, “Don’t you dare touch me you…” she couldn’t finish the sentence.

He wondered what the unfinished word was.

“I’m sorry..It was never my intention to hurt anybody. It just happened. I don’t know what to say”

She looked at him as she put her trembling hands on her forehead and whispered, “Really dad? Really? You don’t know what to say? It just happened? Really?”

“Don’t you think I feel bad? Don’t you think I’m ashamed? Don’t you think I wish I could turn back time?”

She raised her eyebrows with disbelief, “Oh my god! Dad! YOU feel bad? What about Mom? What about me? Have you ever thought about us? Is anything ever about anyone else other than you? How could you do this to Mom?

He looked at the closed window in his office and sighed, “I’m sorry…I know you hate me now. I know your Mother will hate me too once she finds out. But you have to believe me. I never meant to hurt our family…  But you have to understand… No one can know about this now…”

She looked defeated as she lowered her head and covered her face with her hands.

He looked at the closed window of his office again and got lost in his thoughts.

He met her at a charity event 4 years ago. There was an instant spark between them. Her smile, her dress, and the way she spoke; everything was perfect. He felt like he knew her forever.

“Why are you wasting her time?” she said.

“You’re judgmental.” he replied.

“You’re devious and crafty.”

He felt uncomfortable yet proud, “I’m not… wasting her time. She’s wonderful. She’s a great wife. She is an amazing mother to my children. She’s unforgettable and…Well, she’s great”

“I see…Men are conniving.”

“And women are not?”

She laughed carelessly as if she knew this is what he was going to say. The more time they spent together the more he became attracted to her.

He looked at the family photo on his table as he ruminated about the time he had spent with her.

They both had to work late that night. Around eight thirty his phone vibrated three times – “Hungry?”

He was….

“Do you feel bad for spending time with me tonight instead of her?” she asked him quietly.

He looked at her as if he was amused, “A man has to eat, right? And I assume the same goes for your kind.  Now if God plays a cruel trick with a man forcing him to share a meal with Aphrodite herself, would you blame the man for being unable to say no? Besides.. She’s with the kids. But I did do my duties of a husband on a Valentine ’s Day. I did send her flowers.”

“Charming, but I hope you didn’t send her the same flowers you got me.” She smirked.

“You know, I have a feeling you’re gonna ruin my life.” He said laughing, expecting her to say something romantic.

“You’ll get over it.” she whispered.

He snapped out of it as he heard his daughter shout.

“You still think no one will find out about the real you? Unbelievable!” She stopped for a second, and then said “May be you are right. May be you will find a way to keep your place in the party. And maybe you will still retain most of your followers as well, and in their eyes you will still be the great leader. But I am afraid you have lost your family.”

He watched as she stormed out of his office. He closed the door. He paced the room with hurried steps. He looked around his office just to be sure he was alone. He paused after a while and sat on his chair. He still couldn’t believe this was happening. He looked at the window again. “Why is it always closed?” he thought.

He turned on the Television. He was neither listening nor watching. Images flashed by. But a few known faces on the 60 inch LED screen broke the thread of his thoughts.

“Ah. Experts… Panel discussions… You disgust me” He cogitated.

“… See I have a different opinion on the politicians and cheating question. Someone who loves to take risks and seeks out such thrills…certain personality traits, along with sexual desire. It’s a recipe for disaster for a public figure.”

He listened warily.

“They tend to have narcissistic personalities. I mean look at Eliot Spitzer! Mark Sanford? Gary Hart? Arnold Schwarzenegger? The list goes on! Some men get excited by flirting with danger. Seeing other examples apparently doesn’t stop people from doing it. See the problem is they think they are special, they think they can get away with anything.”

“I don’t buy the idea that power and narcissism are behind these cheating behaviors. Think about it, there’s no job security. One wrong word or vote and that’s it! You can get booted out of office.”

“They believe that they can control their fate and so they do it. It’s a very extreme form of risk taking though. They forget about the fishbowl existence, they are always being watched.”

“Enough!” he said out loud.

He changed the channel. It was his own add.

“….Some people, with no morals and ethics are so lost that they don’t even remember anymore what it really means to be a true family man.  I consider them a threat to our core values. We’ve got serious problems, and we need serious people at the office who will take our faith seriously and not play around with it, not play with our sentiment, emotion and values.  I will go door to door if I have to, but I’m going to fight for what is right. Together, we will show them what we stand for as a nation. I am a strong believer in family and I believe the president of our country should reflect the values of the average family man. I will uphold the honor of our nation against foreign adversaries the same way I would uphold the honor of my family.  If you choose me as your president I’ll make sure no one messes with our values, and with your support, I will make sure no one ever dares to mess with our nation…

My name is Bill Anthony Edwards, and I approve this message”.

He closed his eyes and started to count how many hours left till the election.

Community and Politics.


Panel discussion/expert statements are inspired from –

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One Response to Masked

  1. janeeshak says:

    I want to review this one!

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