These are two parts of one person after a pretty awful romantic situation. PLEASE COMMENT -- criticism is especially appreciated.
We sit on the hood of the car, staring into space. I look at her sadly as she smokes her cigarette, and the black eye you gave her stands out in my vision. She bruises so easily... but how could you do this to her? I know you didn't mean to, but what you did to us is wrong. How can you use us like this, then put us away like a king puts away his latest concubine, never coming to her bed again?
A tear slips down her cheek, but I brush it away.
"Sophie, how long can this go on?"
I have no real answer for her.
"As long as we let it, dear."
I run my hand through our newly boy-short hair. She looks down, and I close my eyes. I have failed at my job. It's a tall order: to protect her, to guide her -- her childlike outlook, her rapidly changing self, her erratic emotions -- through the pitfalls of life.
She's told me before what it's like at the bottom. She says it's like swimming under cold, deep water. Slow, surreally suffocating. Swirling, inky darkness without a shred of light. Time slowed nearly to a stop. Difficult to move through the crushing pressure, difficult to see through the gloom. Painful, aching, numbing cold draining away your will.
And it's alone. Very, very alone.
She flicks her cigarette to the ground and grinds it out, barefooted. She doesn't flinch, but fidgets with her keys and turns to get in the driver's seat.
"No." I say. "I'll drive."