Cancer: I can't

I don't know what to do. I mean, what I said about the drugs. I really wouldn't feel comfortable knowing that someone else was running the business. It would end up like every other drug business in the area. But I know Gemme doesn't want me to go. She doesn't need to say it.

But I can't run something like that out of her house. I can't have her place ending up like the apartment. When she asks for a hug, I feel kinda bad that she feels the need to ask permission for something like that.

They're coming a little easier now, the hugs. Just a little. I mean, I'm not about to start hugging her randomly, but y'know. In fact, I'm not even sure if I can trust my temper not to snap when I'm touched without warning. I'm not what you would call a tactile person. But still, any improvement is good with me. Just ask any teacher I'm supposed to have at school.

So anyways, we hug for a bit and I get awkward after like thirty seconds, but I can tell she doesn't want to let go of me, so I let her hold on a bit longer than I'm comfortable with, before breaking the contact. I smile and go back to sitting by my bag, though I don't know what else I can do. I've organised it and reorganised it, done my hair, hidden my knife. Whatever. I sit by it anyways.

"I'm sorry," Gemme says as I look back up at her.

"What for?" I ask, confused.

"I... you didn't hear me, did you?" she replies. I frown and shake my head, wondering what it was I hadn't heard. "Oh. Good... I guess."

"What didn't I hear?" my frown doesn't lift, and the confusion doesn't leave my tone.

"Please, don't leave me," she mutters, blushing. I don't say anything for a moment, wondering what I'm supposed to say back to that. I know I said I wanted patience, and to learn how to love and be loved... but it all just seems like too much, now. I don't know if I can really cope with it. That just makes me sound like a nut case, doesn't it?

"What, like right now, or long term?" I ask hoping for the former and expecting the latter.

"Both." Ah. I look away, embarrassed. I mumble a "sorry" but I don't know if it was loud enough to be heard. What does it matter? She can hear thoughts or whatever anyways. "For what?" guess she heard, then. I lean back against the sofa, concentrating on keeping my breaths steady, the feeling of the carpet on my bare feet, the dull tiredness left over from the coke.

"I can't. I can't do it and I know I said I was looking for patience and all the rest, but I can't," I say in a rush, unable to meet her eyes. "But I don't want to make you hurt either, and when I think about it, surely the truth is better, y'know like me telling you now, rather than me lying and you finding out later on. Right?"

"Right," she nods. And then the stupidest thing happens. I get the urge to cry. I haven't cried since mom died. At least, not while I was sober, anyways. I slam a fist down on my thigh with a loud curse and stare at the skin stretched over my knuckles as it turns white. "Why on earth did you do that!?" Gemme cries at my reaction. I flex my fingers, clenching and unclenching my fist. My cigarettes tap my wrist and I grab them out of the air, glad that nothing else has moved without me asking it to. I take one out and light it, trying to regain the ability to speak evenly.

"I'm so confused!" I half shout, covering half my face with one hand as I stare at the floor.

"About what?" what is she? An idiot? The whole being dropped on the head theory comes back to mind.

"Everything!" I wave my other hand around, creating a trail of smoke through the air that drifts away freely. I wish I could do that, just drift away freely without a care or worry in the world. But that's the thing, isn't it? I have cares and worries now. Cares and worries that I didn't have five days ago. I wonder vaguely if Gemme is hearing any of this going on in my head.  

"Everything. Right, well. Sorry." I can't help but notice a hint of resentment in her voice, and I know I'm not being fair. Sorry, Gemme. But I can't make those words come out of my mouth. I fill my lungs with smoke and blink back a tear that threatens to well up. I can't cry! That's ridiculous. Crap. Crap. I sigh, knowing I should elaborate.

"I just... It's confusing. I've not really had the most love filled childhood. I never really knew much about kindness, even back then. Sure my mom would buy me some chocolate or whatever, but it's not like I remember that much. So I'm just not used to it. Things like the drug den, that seem insane and the choice to live in one, to any normal person would be like an act of masochism. But for me, it's a place where everything is just... normal. No one really cares about anyone else, and that's what I'm used to.

"Yet I knew you like two days and you tell me you're in love with me, and you don't want me to leave, but I have no idea how to handle that. But then there's the part where I really don't want to hurt you, which means I clearly do care at least a bit, because I don't think I'd be all that upset if even Rayn got hurt, and he's my best mate. I'm just confusing myself talking about it, I'm gonna shut up." I stop talking and take another drag on my smoke, not looking up. I can't.

The End

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