“You're in my bed” he whispered in her ear, hovering over her. She gave him a sleepy smile and felt his lips press into her cheek.
“I couldn't sleep in mine..why are you home so late?” She turned over between his arms and gazed at him curiously.
“Went with Thomas somewhere. He's leaving tomorrow.” He nuzzled her neck, placing a chaste kiss under her jaw, which earned him a soft groan. “Were you okay without me?”
“I’m never okay without you..” She pulled him down on top of her and placed her mouth on his, smiling against it. “Were you?”
He kissed her soft lips sparingly, and her grip tightened on his shoulders. She was putty in his hands, reduced to a squirming mess under him. He chose to kiss everywhere on her face but where she needed him most.
“Sam..” she moaned softly, stopping him with her hands holding his face. “Answer me.”
He sighed and out his face in the crook of her neck. “I was terrified.Getting back to you was the only thing that mattered.”
He rolled on his side and pulled her close to him, his free hand trailing lazy circles on her lower back. “Don't ever leave me, Zee. It would..”
He swallowed and buried his face in her hair. She could feel his heart rate increase against her chest. He was imagining it and it was not a pretty sight.
“It would destroy me..”
The sound of the repeated rhythm of the brush against the floor drew her out of her thoughts. She was on her knees on the front porch, scrubbing away. Memories of him presented themselves like a PowerPoint presentation to the projector screen that was her mind.
It wasn't until she tasted a salty tear on her lips that she realized she was crying. One week. It had been a whole week since she left and it was taking a toll on her. She felt the pines of the brush hurt her fingers and she scrubbed harder, welcoming the pain.
Anything, to make her feel. Her heart was hardening after days of crying and wishing for a different turnout. She had finally accepted that her life is a mess. A mess she wanted to get away from. But how do you separate yourself from that which keeps you breathing?
“What do you think you're doing?” Jade opened the sliding doors and regarded her friend's position on the floor. “Zelah, get up.”
“I need this..it's helping.” Her voice sounded foreign in her ears. After crying nonstop for three days, it took its toll on her vocal chords.
“How? When was the last time you held a brush?” She bent to take it out of her hands and Zelah snapped.
“No!” Her shout startled Jade, who stopped trying to touch her. “Please. It hurts me, Jade. I need it to hurt. Please let me do this..”
“You're asking me..to let you hurt hurt yourself? Something must have damaged your brain before you came here. Give it to me.” She held out her hand but Zelah ignored her and went back to what she was doing.
“I need this. I need this to heal. I don't want to fight over a brush but I will, if I have to” she said, quietly and continued scrubbing the floor.
Jade watched her alternate between moving the brush over the tiles and wiping her face with her arm as the tears came. Something had reduced her friend to the shell in front of her but she wasn't sure what.
Zelah only spoke when it was absolutely necessary. For the past week, when she wasn't holed up in her room, she was at work. She did everything robotically, leaving her limbs to move of their own accord.
YOU ARE READING
"Zelah, it happened. That doesn't make you any less of a person. I let you push me away from you all those years ago because it was still fresh and I didn't want to make it worse." She turned away from him and stared at herself in the mirror. Her ha...