Present Perfect

The form of a verb that suggests that an action has been completed
Sometimes it takes a walk down memory lane to be reminded of how far you’ve come.  For me it was a walk to a diner for brunch, with my beau of seven years at my side.  I was standing to his left because he’d suggested that I move inward and away from the curb.  “A man should be closest to danger”. His words not mine.
Struggling to see clearly, I squinted at the couple approaching us from the opposite direction. I’d chosen to wear sunglasses in lieu of prescription ones, diva that I am.  The face of the male became clearer as he drew closer.  Instinctively, I furrowed my brow. It was him.  The “him” I spent the years between 17 and 20 with, the him I said “yes” to when he’d asked for my hand in marriage. But more importantly, it was the him who already had a fiancé when he asked. Oh. That. Him.
“Well hey stranger” he shouted. His voice a bit too glee filled for my liking. I rolled my eyes.  Not because I am still bitter – I have long since gotten past that season in my life.  I just didn’t have an interest in pretending this brand of causal encounter is more meaningful than it actually is.  I gave him a closed mouth smile and waved.
“I’m loving the natural look.” He continued.  Then I saw him look up at my new him – the one whose instinct it was/is to keep me from harm.
Do I bother to introduce them? My past and my present?
“How you doing big man?” said the Ex. I was almost offended, why in the world are you speaking to him? He never did know when to quit while he was ahead.
“Hey” Beau replied as he discreetly took my hand into his.  He drew me forward and led me into the diner promptly ending any further discussion.
“A man should be closest to danger” I heard his words again, grinning at the sheer irony of it all.  My past in all its hurt and heartbreak literally met my present, the gate-keeper of harm’s way.  That walk down Harrison Ave, by way of memory lane, introduced me to what they call a full circle moment.
Present Perfect.
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