The lady with blue shoes

On the street lay a woman, arms and legs spread out, like a huge letter X. There wasn't anything wrong with her, except for the fact that she was dead. It was easy to see that from the sickly position of her body. And who would have lied on the pavement like that without any reason. I walked closer and saw that the woman had died in a quite steady way. There was only a tiny stream of blood, like a puddle of strawberry jam. Her eyes were open and gazing to the sky. I tried to look at them, but they reminded me too much of the olives I had for breakfast and I started to feel mild nausea. No one else seemed to have noticed the woman's death. How odd.

I knelt down and dipped my finger to the blood. It was sticky, but not yet coagulated. So she must have died just a little while ago. What to do now? I wiped the blood off my finger to the woman's face and scratched my head. What an awkward situation. I decided to leave the body here. It wasn't my business, after all. I had never met this woman and hopefully I wouldn't until the doomsday.

Besides me stood two blue shoes. Wonderfully shaped beauties, mat-surfaced, blue shoes. The blue shade of the shoes was extraordinarily aristocratical deep shade of blue. It was the bluest blue I had ever seen. The shoes didn't exist there alone, no way. I lifted my eyes little by little over the lady's legs. She was tall. It took me at least 30 seconds to get my eyes to her face. She was looking at me, she didn't seem too interested in the body. And why would have she been? Bodies, doughy corpses like that are a bit disgusting. We looked at each other for a moment. I tried to examine her face to see if she was a relative of mine. Then I realised that I don't have sister, mother nor any other feminine relatives. So the lady was evidently an ordinary woman.

I apologize, please disregard my last words. One would commit a sin by calling her an ordinary woman. She had godly shoes that I would have liked to glance until the end of the world, but I dared not to let my eyes descend. We had a gaze-battle with the lady. She had a solid, neutral look in her almost black eyes. I cautiously stood up without getting my eyes off hers.

I nodded to greet her.

-You have blue shoes.

-I have blue shoes, repeated the lady in astoundingly childish way. Her voice was a like a lead weight.

-I like your blue shoes.

-I like my blue shoes, too.

This was kind of a silly game, we were playing little children of which the other had just got a new toy. Together the childred praised it. The lady was obviously smart, dead smart. I wanted to die right there.

-I have got black shoes, I stated trying to reach a defiant tone in my voice. The lady snorted.

-You don't know how to play.

What, I don't know how to play? Me? Are you talking to me?

-My name is... I started.

-I'm not interested in your name. What interests me is why have you fallen so madly in love with my footwear? Or actually, I'm not interested about that, I know the answer. What? You aren't? Of course you are. You are about to drool over my blue shoes. Haven't you ever seen blue shoes before? You have? You are lying. Blue shoes are approximately the rarest thing in the world besides the Noak's ark. Do you even know the Noak's ark?

To this I replied icily:

-I built the Noak's ark. Do you want to go to my place to see it? It's small and green with ultramarine spots.

-You aren't as stupid as I thought.

-I agree with that.

The lady started to walk away. I ran after her.

-Hey, where do you think you're going?

Her look was very surprised.

-To your place. To see the Noak's ark.

-How do you think you know where I live?

-You live two blocks to east from here.

-East. As hell. How did you know that?

-Because men like you always live two blocks to east from here. Men who have built the Noak's ark always live two blocks to east from here.

She was off to walk calmly to my home. I followed her a few steps behind. Her black hair fluttered all over and it could have made me fall dead to the pavement. But those shoes! They were heavenly. The lady with blue shoes was leading me to my own apartment. I would have let those shoes lead me to Sahara, Siberia, anywhere. How could a pair of blue shoes be so astonishing? They just had to be made of blue dragon's scales, which was designed to allure me. After we had come in, the lady would tear her skin apart revealing the harpy beneath it.

After we had come in, I helped the lady off her coat like some kind of gentleman and hung it to the rack.

-I apologize for the disordered state.

-I didn't come here to see disorder, nor did I come here to see order. I came here to see the Noak's ark.

She sat down in my dark green armchair and acted like home. She tapped her fingers about. I nodded and walked to the kitchen and rummaged in the cupboard for a bit. It wasn't there. I went to the bedroom. Oh, it was on the windowsill. How could it have got there? Carefully I picked it up and blew most of the dust away.

-Oh, said the lady taking it to her hands. -Nice. Somehow macabre, such as these sickening colors. But anyway, quite somewhat architectonically pleasing structure.

I nodded in agreement. It turned out very well.

-I never expected to meet the man who build the Noak's ark.

-I never expected to meet the lady with blue shoes.

She waved her shoes about and knocked them off. I bent down and picked one of them. I caressed its smooth surface. Blue shoe, oh little blue shoe beauty. I would have liked to buy the shoes, but I knew the lady wouldn't have ever sold them. Would Simson have sold his hair? I held the shoe in my hand like a little child, petting it, lulling it. After a moment I returned it to the lady. She put the shoes back to her feet. I inhaled deeply. She looked at me.

-You have seen everything. I have seen everything. So what if we don't prolong this event any further and I leave.

-Leave? You can't... You can't do that.

-Why couldn't I?

-Because... I love you.

Her harsh laughter frightened me.

-So they say, so do they all say, that's what they have always said. You know what's the truth? No one has ever loved me. Everyone has always loved my shoes. You aren't interested in who I am. You are only in love with my shoes.

-Please marry me, I pleaded desperately.

-Marry you? You are giving out a bad expression by proposing marriage to a woman because of her shoes. And at the first meeting, too. You should have nicely smiled at me at first. Next time you could have made an awkward approach. On the third time you might have kissed. On the fourth time you would have brought me twelve scarlet roses and knelt down before me. Then you would have stuttered sheepishly "Darling, would you marry me?"

-I would never say it like that.

-And I would never say yes to a question like that.

I looked her into the eyes. I didn't love her. It was true. How I wished I could have married those shoes.

-You should have said it earlier, said the lady. She dropped the shoes off her feet and walked barefoot to the door. She opened it and closed it. After that she was gone. The lady with blue shoes had walked out as quickly as she had first appeared. But the blue shoes lay on my floor. I picked them up carefully like precious relics. God, how beautiful they were. The air near them smelled different. I placed them above the fireplace, but they didn't quite fit on there. Then I put them to my bookshelf. They looked gross. In the end I couldn't think of where to put them and threw them out of the window. They floated down like fairies and stayed there. I knew I could never have kept them to myself.