#flashfiction: Even Now

She was there for me. She has always been there for me, even when I wasn’t there for myself.

Even now.

I’ve never been good at talking. I’ve known that all along. I’m a good listener and bad talker. Bad talker, yeah, that’s something, isn’t it? At least I’m good at being bad at something.

So she talked when I was silent. And I listened, taking it all in. Dwelling in those stories, soothing myself in her voice as we sat on the couch, curled up in a soft embrace. I listened to her voice, to her heart, to her breaths. It was so intimate. Warm.

I have never been that close to someone before. I was alive. I was safe.

And she was there for me. I felt it. I listened, trying to be enough for her. Hoping to be enough for her. I’m not sure I was.

She talked and filled the void I created around me. Yeah, call me Black Hole.

I listened to those words. They kept me alive. Well, for a while.

Even now she’s here for me, but she’s not talking. This time she’s crying. I feel her tears tap-tap on my face, so gentle that they mask out the pain.

Even now she’s here for me, holding my hand. My blood-red, sticky hand.

I know she will always be there for me, even on the other side. I know that.

I’m a good listener, so I listen to her sobs until there’s nothing to listen to.

This story also appeared on Medium.