The other day, I sat next to him at a Chorale concert put on by the Arts College. He fell asleep within the first twenty minutes. No jittering legs, no whispers in my ear. Just silence from the seat next to mine. I looked over to see him curled up, arms crossed tight across his chest, wool coat still buttoned to the top. I wanted to wake him up, wanted to play back and forth in the dumb, annoying way that had become so normal. Instead, I watched the way his head nodded, hurt that he didn't even think to rest it on my shoulder. Things were different now. Got it.
The non-touching, non-flirting clause that we'd penciled into our brains felt bizarre, but was a stipulation of the friendship we'd both agreed needed boundaries. Feelings were one-sided. Well, they were one-and-a-half sided, which was something I was uncomfortable with from the beginning. Then again, the thought of my own feelings developing had never been a threat that had even entered my mind until I made the stupid decision to be myself, you know. The one that forced me to be honest. I hate myself for that. I hate honesty. Sometimes, I just wish I could be like "Lie to me!" and then everything would turn out the way it should. But that's not exactly the way it works. And why would we want that in the first place? Do we want to be loved and adored because it holds weight in a series of mundane activity, or do we want it all because we care about the other person? Do we care about every aspect of the other side, whether they drive us to insanity? Or, do we only care about them when we have control over the way they lie in our arms? I've yet to find a solid answer for that one. Which probably explains why I am still writing this series. Ha! Series. That makes this whole thing sound like you all actually care. Maybe you do, maybe you don't.
Spoiler alert: I do. I still care.