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You wouldn't believe me if I told you

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Please Note: This is a fictional reincarnation story inspired by actual events.

“Hey guys, I’ve got to run. I need to catch up to that brunette over there, in the blue top. She’s in my history class,” Seth said to his friends.

“Oh oh! The tiger’s on the prowl, again,” Ned teased.

“Go get her, tiger,” Mike chimed in.

“Enough, guys. I’ll see you later,” Seth countered, and jogged slowly off towards the departing classmate.

“Hi!” Seth said as he startled the young lady by suddenly appearing at her side. “I’m Seth Kreyasich. We are in the same history class. Sorry if I surprised you.”

“Hi! That’s okay. What’s up?” she asked.

“Actually, when I saw you walk by, I thought it might be a good time for us to get acquainted. Do you recognize me at all?”

The petite brunette stared at Seth for a long moment. “You do seem vaguely familiar, for some reason. My name is Raluca Westgate. Everyone calls me Rallu.”

“I must admit that I have never heard those names before,” Seth said.

“They are Romanian. I was named after a Romanian princess.”

“Sweet! If you have some free time, can I buy you a coffee, or whatever your vice is, and we can get acquainted?” Seth asked.

“I actually do not have much time right now,” Rallu responded, “so I will pass on the coffee, but I can stop and chat for a few minutes, if you like. I’m still trying to place you.”

“In the lecture hall, you sit down front, along with a girl with red hair, right?”

“That’s correct.”

“I sit with a bunch of guys about twenty rows behind you, so I have an opportunity to see a lot of you but you probably never picked me out of the crowd.”

“Sounds logical.”

“If you’re in a hurry, I won’t keep you, but can I squeeze in one last request? If you don’t have a date already, could I take you to the dance at Rightstone Hall on Friday evening?”

Raluca smiled at the persistent, tall and handsome young man in front of her. “I am still trying to figure out why you look familiar, but I will accept your invitation to the dance.”

“Fabulous!” Seth declared, and zipped his cell phone out of his pocket. “I know you are in a hurry, so if you give me your number, I will track you down later, okay?”

Raluca supplied her telephone number and was soon on her way.

*****

Seth pulled his Mustang up to the curb, and quickly circled the vehicle to open the door for Rallu. They had enjoyed a marvelous evening at the dance and followed it up with a midnight snack at the local pizza parlor, a popular student hangout.

“I’d invite you in, Seth, but I do not want to give you the wrong impression,” Rallu said on the doorstep to her parents’ house. “I hope you understand what I am getting at?”

“I guess I’ve got a pretty good idea,” Seth replied.

“I assure you that I had a wonderful time this evening,” Rallu continued. “I am not a prude, but I am definitely not a tramp. My first dates do not come with fringe benefits, for anyone. Benefits have to be earned over time. A goodnight kiss is acceptable, though,” she said, and stepped close to her handsome date.

The passionate embrace that ensued caught Rallu by surprise, and took her breath away. “I’d better go inside, Zach,” she said and turned towards the door.

“Who is Zach?” Seth asked, making little effort to conceal his indignation. “Your old boyfriend?”

“Oh, Seth, I am so sorry. I don’t know how that slipped out. Please forgive me. Zach is someone from my past, but no, not a boyfriend. Please believe me.”

“Dare I ask who?”

Rallu smiled up into Seth’s handsome face. “You wouldn’t believe me if I told you. Trust me.”

“Try me,” Seth countered.

“Seth, you probably would not understand, even if I did tell you. Please let it go. Changing the subject, do you like to walk outdoors and enjoy the treasures bestowed upon us by Mother Nature?”

“I must admit that I seldom walk for the pleasure of walking. Is that an invitation?”

“Definitely! As you are well aware, we can keep quite busy with our school work, but I try to reserve Sunday afternoons for communing a little with Mother Nature. Have you ever been to MacDunnah Park?”

“No, but I’ve heard of it.”

“How about we make our second date a relaxing stroll through MacDunnah Park on Sunday afternoon?”

After they concluded their plans for Sunday, Rallu pulled Seth’s head down closer to her level and instigated another passionate embrace. “Goodnight,” she said, careful not to repeat her earlier error.

Inside her living room, Rallu plopped herself down on the sofa. The house was silent, as her parents had gone to Atlanta for the weekend to visit her older sister. Why in the world did I call Seth, Zach, after a passionate embrace, she thought to herself. That doesn’t make any sense. Then it struck her like a clap of thunder. “Oh, My Lord!” she shouted out loud. “Could it really be possible? I can’t believe it! I can’t believe it! I can’t believe it! That’s why I recognized Seth, but could not figure out why. I never remembered him from the University at all. I remembered him from the past. I’ve got to go to bed.”

*****

Rallu escorted Seth around MacDunnah Park, in the small southern city of Anywhere, for an hour or so on Sunday afternoon, pointing out some of her favorite sites to him. She felt that Seth was relaxed and truly enjoying himself outdoors in the fresh air and sunshine. Both of them had managed to keep the conversation casual, and almost exclusively avoided anything related to the University grind that they were escaping from on this beautiful afternoon. They had commenced their walk holding hands as they strolled around, but that quickly advanced to outstretched arms cupped around each other.

The happy duo entered the park’s central circle path for the umpteenth time. This area of MacDunnah Park was the consensual favorite and contained an abundance of benches to go along with the most beautiful flower gardens. Rallu spotted a secluded bench and steered Seth in that direction. “Let’s sit down for a little while, okay Zach?” She immediately cringed as she realized she had repeated her error from early Saturday morning on her front doorstep. “I am so, so, sorry about that Seth. I cannot believe that I did it again.”

“That’s okay,” Seth said as his frown morphed into a grin. “Pretty soon I will just start answering to Zach and you won’t have to worry what my name is anymore.”

“Yah, sure you will,” Rallu countered and dragged him towards the designated bench.

They sat on the bench, beside each other, in silence, for a few long minutes, each unsure what their next move should be. Rallu finally broke the loud silence. “I truly am sorry, Seth. Unfortunately, Zach just keeps slipping out of my mouth, unexpectedly.”

“I am not going to pressure you, Rallu, but I would love to receive an explanation as to why I remind you of this Zach fellow?”

“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.”

“Try me. What harm will it do?”

“You might take me for a nut-bag, and never speak to me again?”

“I promise that will never happen! Give me a little credit, here.”

Raluca did not reply. She reasoned that it was really much too soon to be revealing her secrets. Then, on the other hand, if she and Seth were going to have a relationship, he would have to be told eventually. Dump me now or dump me later, she reasoned. What the heck! He might as well dump me now as later, and I can save myself a lot of wasted time invested in him if I put it off until later. “What was that promise you just made?”

”I promise that I will never stop speaking to you because of anything you tell me about Zach.”

“If necessary, I will remind you of that promise, you know?”

“I am sure you will. Who is Zach?”

“Before we get to Zach,” Raluca said cautiously, “we need to leap over another hurdle first. What do you know about reincarnation?”

“Reincarnation? Not much! Some of the eastern religions believe that we come back again, somehow, in a different body. I read that the Dalai Lama is the reincarnation of the previous Dalai Lama, I think.”

“Excellent! There is hope for you yet! Reincarnation is not as popular here in the west, but there are still millions of believers on this side of the Atlantic. My mother and I are both believers. We have carried out our own investigations on the subject and gathered our personal knowledge about some of our previous incarnations.”

“Really?”

“Really. That’s where Zach came from. I’m not certain, but probably my most recent previous incarnation was on the fringes of London, England, back in the early 1800’s. Remember studying the Regency Era, when King George III was declared incompetent to continue his reign and was replaced by his son, the future King George IV as Prince Regent for a number of years?”

“Of course. It was an interesting era, to say the least.”

“I lived during those interesting times. My name back then was Emma, and Zachary was my husband. We had a son, first, called Richard, and later a sweet little daughter called Maria. We were very poor, and lived on Birkshire Lane when the children were young.”

“Okay, I can believe that, but why do you keep calling me Zach?”

“Are you sure you want to know the answer to that?”

“Of course! Why wouldn’t I?”

“Remember, you asked for it. You are the reincarnation of Zachery. When I look at you, I see Zachery. Your mannerisms remind me of Zachery. You are my beloved Zachery, delivered back to me in this lifetime.”

Seth stared at Raluca in silence, and then let out a deep sigh. “Does that mean we are destined to get married again?”

“Possibly, but not necessarily. Are you familiar with the tern, karma?”

“Vaguely, yes. It is the old eye for an eye notion, isn’t it?”

“Partially. Karma does not necessarily mean bad karma, but that element is certainly there. Sometimes souls incarnate with other souls to return favors from previous lifetimes. I call that good karma. One example might be where an adoring mother sacrificed the pleasures of a lifetime to care for a disabled child. In a later incarnation, the soul of the child who received all of this loving care may incarnate into a body where the caregiving is reversed, so to speak, not necessarily in a parent child situation, but possibly as a caregiver in a seniors home or hospital for the disabled. Just an example.”

“So,” Seth said curiously, “how does all of that affect us?”

“I don’t know. I only have a small amount of information concerning Emma and Zachery. Possibly, one of them became disabled in their later years and the other became a caregiver. Or, if you and I proceed to have a romantic relationship, then our karmic lessons may fall under the category of domestic compatibility. Only time will tell. One of us may even be here in Anywhere, here and now, to help the other pass some final exams, and after the reason we were brought together has been fulfilled, we may go our separate ways. There are lots of possibilities. Hopefully that makes some sense?”

“You certainly have left me with a lot to think about. Much of what you said seems logical. It is the whole notion of reincarnation that may take me a while to get used to.”

“I understand. I’ve been there. So, are you still going to talk to me tomorrow?” Raluca asked mischievously.

Seth flashed a wide grin and moved over close to Rallu, taking her sternly in his arms and they shared their first passionate embrace of the day.

© Doug Simpson 2014

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