I drank when I got home. I drank a lot. I wanted to obliterate what I’d learnt, the last day from my mind. I wish they’d never told me that I’d had kids. I wish they’d never gotten hold of Melissa. I wish I’d tried to stop them. She was right. I hadn’t moved a muscle, I just watched.
I deserved to be pushed away, but it didn’t mean I handled it any better. So there I was, sitting on the floor next to the piano because I couldn’t balance enough to sit on the stool anymore, a cigarette hanging loosely from between my lips, feeling like it was about to fall to the floor and burn me any second now, and a good few liquor bottles littered around the house.
At some point, the floor hit my head. It felt a lot like something was pinning me down to the floor, but when I looked around there wasn’t anything. Just a big empty room with a few instruments hanging around. There was no life in this house, no happiness. It looked how I wanted it to look and it sounded like I wanted it to sound, but it felt nothing like I remembered. Gabriel had always been around to laugh with me and fill the place with warmth. I could feel the place changing around me. The music room’s light blue became a cosy, warm shade of dark red, with wood panelling and a small fire place. When I looked around, all but the piano and viola were gone. There was now a comfy looking sofa in front of the glowing fireplace, at an angle to a modestly sized TV, and a desk on the far side of the room, littered in manuscript paper. My house had heard me mourning my previous life and changed to suit me now. I was too drunk and grateful to question it.
Eventually, I picked myself up off the floor and had a quick explore of my new house. There was one large bedroom now, and a smaller one for guests. Both had simple decor and big beds that looked like you could happily sink into them and not resurface from it for days. In the main bedroom, there was a chest of drawers, and the door had the same coat of arms the front door had when I first got here emblazoned across it. The kitchen had barely changed, merely resized itself to suit my much more humble house, as had the bathroom. There was no dining room, no library, nothing to suggest that there had ever been a single thought of a Georgian period lord in here, save the one portrait of him that was hung up in the hallway still. I looked up at it and groaned, sitting down on the floor before it.
“Oh Gabriel, look at the mess I’m in,” I buried my head in my hands, clenching at fistfuls of my hair, “what am I supposed to do? I have no idea how to keep myself from losing everything.”
He didn’t answer me. He never really did. I picked my sorry ass up and sat it down on the sofa with a fresh bottle of whiskey, flicking on the TV. I fiddled with the golden ring around my thumb, watching the light from the fireplace bounce off the emerald set into it, wondering what to do.
I had no ideas, so I did what I did best: I drank a stupid amount of alcohol, pulled a cushion under my head and curled up on the sofa, waiting for sleep to claim me.