twenty-eight | the dream before death

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december 9th

X A V I E R

WITH THE COZY CHRISTMAS JUMPER MY MOTHER ONCE BOUGHT ME and gray sweatpants preserving warmth during the freezing nights in New York, I tip-toed to Lily-Rose's chamber. The gnawing feeling of needing to talk someone was eating my intestines, therefore I couldn't keep myself back anymore. I didn't want to go to sleep after my talk with Autumn and dream about how I'd pick her up at the club, give her a ride back to her apartment, lay her in bed before kissing her forehead and watching her as she dozed off. Every time I heard her voice I was willing to put on impulsive actions which were carefully planned out by the bad side of me. So far I had been able to resist them, but after our little talk on the phone I already was looking for flights to Dallas. I was already thinking about where I would sit in the airplane and what coffee I was going to drink at the airport.

My soft knocks on the door to see if Lily-Rose was asleep resulted in her appearing in a pink satin robe behind the door. She yawned and frowned her brows at me.

"Nice sweater you got there," she chuckled.

"Horrendous, don't remind me of it," I said. "I'm sorry, but- you know what, never mind. It's not important."

"You're telling me that Xavier Montgomery knocking on my door in the middle of the night isn't important?" she asked as she shook her head. "What's wrong, something with your health?"

"No, I'm feeling okay." I sighed and tried to get my mind straight. "Can I come in, perhaps?"

Lily-Rose cleared the way for me and closed the door, so I sat down on the chair across her bed and wanted to push a hand through my hair, only to realize that I didn't have any hair on my head anymore. A bald man with world's ugliest jumper was like the nightmare before Christmas. She sat down on the bed cross-legged and pulled her blonde hair out of the messy ponytail. Without make-up she looked much better than with, all of her natural features were exposed and the dim light of the table lamp enhanced them.

"Bill Abbyfield is a nice man, isn't he? My creative editor has sent me a couple of examples of what the front cover of the magazine could look like. I told him that the font-"

She groaned and looked at me with an uninterested expression on her face.

"Be fucking honest," she said, "embrace your feelings. It's nothing to be ashamed of and I'm a woman after all, I can handle it."

I stood up out of the chair and walked over to the window. Rooftops of buildings were covered in snow which gave me the view of looking over clouds. Thousands of people were asleep and yet here I was – not being able to sleep because of a woman who was stuck in my head.

"I hate myself," I said.

"Same," Lily-Rose responded.

"Who would understand if I told anyone this story? Why did you shut Autumn out? Because I love her. There, I said it. I love her. I fucking love her so much that I sometimes hear her voice, think I see her standing somewhere, imagine myself holding her as if she's an unreachable celebrity crush of mine."

It wasn't relieving to say it, instead it made me angry. Angry that I couldn't fight myself, hold myself back from loving someone who I didn't deserve. I knew that it must've looked so easy for others, because if I loved her so much, why wouldn't I just go to fucking Dallas and be with her? I made a promise to myself that I would never get back at her, because I've watched her, seen her, listened to her and came to the conclusion that she didn't deserve all that pain when I would leave this world. I thought that promise would be much harder on her than on me, because I never realized how much I loved her. She was enjoying her life without me, she was going out and being drunk – having such a jolly time with her friends and then there I was. A cancerous depression on legs.

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