Gathering Lilacs

Blonde-dyed-black locks are plastered before my eyes as I lift one powdered-pale hand to knock lightly on the door. Rain streams from the sky, gathering on the smooth block before me - and it's cold, God it's cold. Just like one time when she and I went skinny-dipping at four in the morning on an early winter day. It was in the small lake that's located just past the beaten path of well-traveled roads; but, come to think of it, it's not quite that cold now. It was snowing, at that point, and we both stuck out our tongues to gather the light fluff of cotton that fell from the sky. Haven't done that in years.

But now I wait, in the wet of rain that splatters off her roof to soak my hair, and the dark coloring that I sprayed in there just this morning is washed out to stain my shirt. Black on black. I await her, hoping she will pay more attention to me in person that she does when I call. I'm sure she never really means to hang up on me, just forgets that she's talking to me. It's understandable; she's like that. Raven cloth clings to my arms, soaked through and through, and no matter how I try I can't make myself comfortable. It doesn't help that my split lip has cracked open again, drawing blood that reminds me of the gnawing hunger I have. Why is she keeping me waiting here, rather than appearing in her stiff-jeaned, bright colored glory to pay her ever-needed attentions to me, as she has so many times in the past?

Now she comes, cracking the door just enough to press her tanned-and-freckled face outward, stray strands of that vivid red hair curling about her face. Ah, no, tonight she's chosen to clad herself in too large, comfortable clothing, with an easy and congenial smile on her lips. She sees it's me, though, and that smile fades from her lips, replaced by the disturbed frown that so often graces her now, tugging her flaming brows together over wide green eyes.

I just smile.

She just whispers, "You're dead."

That's ridiculous, and I tell her as much. If I'm dead, how can I even be at her house? Then I offer another smile, pearly teeth blending into the lifeless paleness of my lips. An imploring hand is held out to her, but she recoils away. Unperturbed by this, I shrug, and shove that hand back into the pocket of my pants with a wet 'shlurp.'

Well, she doesn't seem to feel like inviting me in, so I take a squeaky step through the door. She's watching some old black and white movie on television, probably littered with sappy love stories and unrealistic rescues from the horror of real life. Yeah, like that ever happens. The greatest escape I've ever had was the tinkle of real laughter coming from her mouth; a sound that few have ever heard. She hasn't laughed much, recently. In fact, it looks like she's been crying, though it could be because some woman on her movie is holding the head of a dying man, and murmuring endearments to him. There's a bowl on the couch, and it looks like it was half dropped as she came to answer the door, several stray kernels scattered across the cushion, and very little, if any, popcorn left in the bowl. How long as she been sitting there, and if she was in such a hurry why was I left waiting for a while?

Finally I spin about to stare at her, and she's still stuck there, gaping at me. I don't think she's looked that way at me since the first time I showed up at her door. It wasn't raining then, though; it was a clear, crisp day in the early spring, and I'd even gone so far as to gather lilacs for her. Lilacs, of all things, and they fell limply over my fingers. Even then, those fingers were pale, but not quite the sticks of chalk they are now. And she didn't look so shocked, and frightened; no, it was more of a pleasant surprise that spread her eyes into almost perfectly round emerald spheres. I'm still smiling, though I can't even say why I am, anymore.

"Sorry to disappoint you," my voice must crack at least three times, in those four words, and from the look on her face, I wonder with a certain detachedness what must be gleaming in my eyes, and how much of their once soulful brown is swallowed up by the black of my pupils. I definitely don't feel myself. I feel feverish and dizzy, and a dim thought is all that comes to mind, 'Am I drunk?' No, this doesn't make sense at all, and I have tunnel vision narrowing to her.

Fade to black.