starrymellie: (Default)
[personal profile] starrymellie
Title: soft, quiet
Word Count: 1117
Rating: PG
Summary: it hurts his heart, and god damn it, it it's still fucking snowing.
Fandom: original
Warnings: none.
Author's Notes: another one of my little drabbles. this one is more about love and loss; not loss as in death, but rather the pain of disconnection. i've been told by some friends that this story seems to them like a metaphor for the war we sometimes wage within our own heads, but the interpretation is up to you.


it's snowing. it's snowing fucking hard but it still manages to make everything soft and quiet, in that way that falling snow always does. my toes are numb in my boots but i bet his are even colder. i can feel his eyes on me from a few feet away, i would be able to feel that stare from a mile away, a hundred miles. it's the only warm thing i feel tonight, besides the mounting anxiety in my chest and the burning feeling i've got in my stomach from having one or five too many, again. my breaths are even and slow, slow and deep like i'm asleep, but my pulse is pumping in double time. it's making me sweat. it's way too cold for this shit, i think. too fucking cold.
 
i turn and look at him. he's shaking from the cold and probably whatever is in my chest is in his too, because it's spread up to my neck now and my throat feels hot and tight. he keeps staring, shaking violently yet quietly, but after a minute he scrunches up his eyes and nose in a pained expression. a gust of frigid wind buffets my back, but i think it goes right through him. his lower lip trembles and he looks like he's about to cry.
 
no. no. no.
 
i say his name. softly, quietly. soft. quiet...but it sounds so loud when it's just us and the falling snow and the slush seeping into our sneakers. it takes effort not to slur. my head feels almost as heavy as my chest. something is pounding it with a hammer from the inside.
 
he just looks at me. then he bursts into tears.
 
i watch my shaky breath ghost out in front of me before i even realize i was holding it in the first place. he closes the long space between us and steps in close, wraps both arms around my waist and squeezes, too tight. my hands are cold so i stick them down his collar, my freezing fingers melting into the warmth of his neck. he starts shaking harder, and i feel guilty. not guilty enough to move my hands, though. he's trembling so much and so fast, it reminds me of holding the pet hamster i had when i was in third grade. i remember feeling its little heart beat faster than i could count, its tiny lungs working air in and out so fast it felt as though it was always shivering. he feels like that. just like that. his sobs are loud and terrifying but all i can see is a helpless, harmless fucking rodent. 
 
soft, i think. quiet.
 
he's gripping my back so hard his hands feel like claws, like he's never going to release me. his heart is even faster than mine. i briefly wonder if it's possible for a teenager to have heart attack. his hair smells terrible. i don't realize i'm crying until my cheek feels wet against his greasy head. 
 
my sobs are not like his. they're quiet. they're soft. he's wailing so hard he's screaming, like he just witnessed someone murder his fucking family. i consider this and decide it's not a far off assumption to make.
 
i whisper his name again but it really is slurred this time. he cries harder. i didn't think it was possible. he's shuddering like if he lets go of me he'll just collapse. i rub my fingertips in small circles on the warm skin of his back, but i think i'm just making him colder. he shivers and jerks. i can't do anything right.
 
'mon, le's go, i murmur in his ear. 
 
he pulls back his head but doesn't let go of my waist. he looks guiltier than i feel, and i feel stupid because i don't know why. then he ducks his head and hugs me even tighter than before. i can hardly breathe.
 
i can't breathe. please lemme go, i say to him. 
 
he squeezes me tighter and i let out a gagging sound. when he hears it he lets up only slightly.
i feel like i'm going to vomit.
 
please leggo, i say. my voice is shaking and i feel dizzy all of a sudden. 
i won't run away, 'promise. please.
 
he's been reduced to whimpers and sniffles now, his violent sobs devoured by the snow blowing around us. soft, quiet snow. he gives me one last squeeze, sniffs loudly, and finally releases me. he doesn't step back, just lets his arms drop. my sides actually hurt where he was gripping me.
 
i wanna hate you. i wanna hate you but i can't, he says.
 
i love you, i blurt out. i don't know why i say it. it just feels right. he looks like he's going to cry again. it was a bad idea.
 
when his face contorts i lean forward and press a finger to his lips.
 
shhhhh, i trail off. i try to look him in the eyes but we're too close and my eyes can't focus right. he lets out a little sob but holds himself back.
 
s'alright, i say. it's gonna be okay.
 
he shakes his head but i shush him again. finally, he steps back a few paces. there are still tears streaming down his cheeks and he gives me a look that says you won. i'm not really sure what i won, because i wasn't fighting for anything. there's a long stretch of silence and the snow is still fucking falling. the shoulders of my jacket are so cold that white is building up on them.
 
i gotta take a leak, i finally say. 
 
he gives me the same defeated look.
 
come home w'me? i really gotta piss, no lie, i say. 
 
he blinks at me slowly and for a moment i'm sure he's going to say no. then he cracks a tiny wry smile and the tightness in my stomach and throat jumps all the way up into my mouth. i swallow the bile, hard. 
 
okay, he says softly. quietly.
 
i stumble forward and clumsily take his hand in mine. it takes me a minute to catch my balance; he's shorter than me. i don't want to fall into him and crush him. when i look at his face, his eyes look sad but calm in the yellow streetlight. 
 
i love you, i croak again. 
 
i hate that my voice is so shaky and raw but i really need to throw up. and piss. and he's really holding my hand again. 
 
he tilts his head and gives me a mixed look of hopefulness and pity.
 
i love you too, he says with his eyes.
 
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