January 5, 2014
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I don't know what it is, but I'm getting dizzy at his touch. I hold onto him without really knowing why I need an anchor, breathe in the fabric of his shirt without realizing how close I am to him, how I feel his each and every heartbeat against my cheek, how my head is a hair's breadth from his mouth, his lips.

When I pull back, he's gazing at me quizzically. Maybe he's enticed by my proximity, and he's confused now that I'm backing off. Maybe he's repulsed, and wondering why I felt the animal need to touch him, to feel him. His light hair hangs over his curious brown eyes, not quite obscuring them but leaving enough to the imagination.

“Ev, I-”

His hands grab at empty air, and his tongue falls limp, desperate for the right words.

“Greg, I'm sorry.”

“But- Ev-”

I turn, then, and suddenly, the doorknob that's always stuck in its rusty vengeance rotates smoothly in my fingers. I twist it and pass through. It aches, though. My whole body is as heavy as lead as I trudge down the hall, away from him. I can't bear it; I've caught myself in a corner where either choice I make will burn like fire. Stay and endure the long, painful hours of his touch without loving him? Or leave, and let the whole of my life with him crumble into ruins?

“I'm sorry.” I feel it; it's so tangible I taste its bitterness in the back of my mouth each time I try to swallow away the guilt. “I'm sorry.” Sorry for what? Sorry for every night we intertwined our bodies 'neath the light veil of the sheets? Sorry for all the times he smiled and teased me, calling me darling and touching his lips to my neck? Sorry for every time he tossed flowers or leaves or grass or snow into my hair then painstakingly made sure I was untouched, unblemished by his games?

Sorry that I loved him?

At the thought, my throat tightens and tears threaten to spill forth and stain my face. In some ways, I must admit, I am sorry for it. I'm sorry that I gave my whole heart to him to cherish then woke up one morning and realized how empty I felt. I'm sorry for every little argument we sparked that never truly got put out. I'm sorry I let him charm me; I'm sorry I let him win me over and then left him empty-handed when the lights finally went out.

Though I hate to admit it, I am sorry I loved him.

“It's for your own good, Greg,” I murmur aloud, fingering gingerly at the pendant around my neck. “I love you,” it says, in looping script engraved into a tiny golden heart. I undo the clasp that attaches it to my neck and let it fall to the ground where I stand.

“I love you.”

It's all just a memory now, just a gold pendant lying on the pavement outside our apartment, begging to be forgotten.

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haley101 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jan. 11, 2014 at 7:08 pm
this is so bittersweet, and yet so real and true. i wish I could've written this!  
zadiekatie23 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jun. 1, 2014 at 2:08 am
Thanks! I'm glad you liked it!
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