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04 November 2009 @ 12:25 am
"i'll go back if you ask me"  
When I told her that I don't love her, it's what I thought she wanted to hear. Our conversation had followed a predictable arc leading to detail-less stories of past relationships, faceless nameless collections of pronouns and epiphanies. I told her about feeling moored to a house in which I don't sleep anymore in the middle of the desert with all the world's oceans calling my name. She spoke of recently deleted texts from him, the boy who wriggled his way free of her expectations by telling her he loved her and nothing more. When I told her I don't love her, it was the truth.

She rested her chin in the heel of her hand. I followed her eyes to a scene of no particular interest.

"Yeah, I know," she said, "And that's why this isn't gonna happen."

She leaned into me as I walked her back to my apartment. I felt the heat of alcohol rising off her skin and in her breath. Her arm locked in mine, the weight of her body pulled in haphazard directions. I'd offered her my bed since I usually sleep on my couch anyway.

"I don't care if you sleep in the bed with me," she said.

I wondered what our sudden tugs-of-war looked like to each stranger we passed.

She eased into me, and my body instinctively curled around hers, creating pockets and filling voids. She pulled my arm across her and held it to her chest. Earlier she told me how the last him was just a pattern into which she fell, collapsing parts of herself to fit.

"What wasn't working?" I said.

"It was nice to sleep next to him, hold hands with him. I don't know. Have you ever been in a relationship where the sex was really bad?"

"No. Most of them were built on great sex, but that's usually not enough to sustain a relationship." It was a joke meant to peak her interest. The look of minor disappointment on her face, I imagined, was the same she gave him when evaded her with his proclamations of love.

In my bed with the palm of my hand pressed against her heart, I told her softly that I knew what she meant about having someone to sleep next to, but she was already asleep.