The End, In Three Parts

I.

She was always the first one to notice.

“You’re bleeding again!” she’d yelp as she dug through her backpack for a Band-Aid. No matter how many times I drew blood, I never learned to carry them around with me. When she was there, I never had to.

She learned to solve a Rubik’s cube somehow. I was too impatient to figure it out on my own, so she taught me too. “It’ll give you something to do with your hands,” she said. “So you won’t destroy your fingers.”

My history teacher took it away because I wasn’t paying attention. She handed me a Band-Aid, marched up to the teacher, and got it back. “You need this,” she whispered as she slid it across my desk. I spent the rest of class quietly spinning the faces of the cube under the table. I didn’t need the Band-Aid, but it was nice to have it, anyway.

I thought, “this is what it’s like to have somebody you can count on.”

II.

She slept three nights at my house during the Great Ice Storm of 2008.

The days we spent together were full of jokes and musicals and molasses cookies. Then at some point after dark, unexpectedly, she’d slip. Her face would suddenly be devoid of emotion, her voice high-pitched and soft. She’d curl herself up into a ball at the foot of the bed and just lie there, unmoving, until whatever it was had passed.

“Is there something I can do?” I asked once, helplessly, desperate to fix her somehow.

She was quiet for a moment, and I heard her breath hitch before she spoke. “No. There isn’t.”

When she was like this, she never looked at me. She responded to questions sometimes, if I was lucky. But she wouldn’t turn around. I didn’t get to see her face.

I was there, but that wasn’t enough. I turned out the lights and tried to sleep while she kept drowning two feet away.

III.

She made me a card for our high school graduation.

“Don’t forget about me, okay?” it read. “I’m nothing without you.”

I didn’t make her a card. I didn’t even say thank you. I was never good at that sort of thing, and I figured she knew how I felt already. She was my best friend. She’d always be my best friend. Isn’t that how it works?

I took her for granted. I forgot.

And she wasn’t nothing. She was somethingΒ more.

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41 comments

  1. Wow. You definitely deserve to be freshly pressed for this one. I felt this as I read it…that’s what make me love reading so much. Great writing and congrats!

  2. Reblogged this on donnataney9 and commented:
    This, I cannot, for the life of me, I’ll be honest, get thru reading this without breaking down. Its as if there’s no end to the tears. Its just so …from the heart.

      1. U r so welcome. U r a wonderful writer. Ur words just flow, with really deep meaning. Debating on letting my 13yo dgt read a couple, for some…..insight, comfort that shes NOT alone….Im game for just about anything!! πŸ™‚

      2. Hi Gwen. After 2 wks of tech diff. (U have no idea) I forget how to find u. Dont know if u remember me, but my dgt. and I really respect ur literary skills, and havent been able to follow if uve added anything new. Shes attending a partial program which she seems to be ‘enjoying’ if thats the word to use. But, I hope ur doing well.

  3. Reminds me so much of me a few years ago… You write feelings instead of words, yet your lines are so clean and simple. Beautiful job!

    1. I checked it out. Seems like we went through something kind of similar. Platonic bestie breakups are the worst kind of breakups, I think. It’s like losing your childhood all over again.

  4. I miss my best friend everyday! She’s in my life but never really there, I reach out and she moves slightly forward before backing away again. I forgive her every time because we’ve been through this before and we barely spoke for three years.

    Your piece was beautifully written and got me thinking…thank you! πŸ™‚

  5. Its such a beautiful memory to remember. Many a times we all like to dive into our past and search through the pandora box. We come across such memories and its simply makes us feel wonderful. :p

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