Skip to main content


One Million Things

She fell asleep on my couch, one tear-streaked cheek resting on a dingy yellow throw pillow - Kelly's one flirtation with brightening up my apartment. There were a million things I wanted to do with her, for her, or to her. After I pulled a thin blanket off my bed to cover her, used a corner of it to wipe away the streams that continued to run in her sleep, all I could do was grab the sheet off my bed, curl up in my recliner, and watch her.

I'd never taken advantage of a woman when she's lost someone close, and was not about to start with Leigh.

Suddenly, a twirl of blond hair poked its head up from the couch. Bloodshot blue eyes sought mine out desperately - tormented, despairing. I imagined I could glimpse the depths of Leigh's own personal hell in those blue eyes, and I wanted to bring her out of it. But there was no way I could. There might be a few moments out, but the time after would deliver her deeper in than anyone could go to save her.

Knowing all of this, I kicked the sheet off, and sat down on the top of the coffee table in front of where she now sat. I don't remember how, but her shaking hands ended up in mine.

"He's gone..." she said in a thick, hoarse voice I barely recognized.

I nodded. Yes, I knew. I was with her when the doctor delivered the news. Then I squeezed her hands. Her ring cut in. I ignored it.

"He's gone..."

She repeated it four or five more times, almost like she was convincing herself of it. Then she launched herself herself at me suddenly, sobbing, hefting punches, screaming at the top of her lungs. I knew my chest would be black and blue later, but that wasn't what mattered. At least there was something for her to aim at.

Five, ten, twenty minutes later, she was curled in a tight ball in my lap. Even though I had grabbed the blanket from the couch and wrapped us both in it, she shivered uncontrollably.

"Why him?" Her voice was at its highest at just above a whisper. "Why not you?"

I looked down at her in time to meet her shaky gaze. Before I could answer, she was kissing me. Kissing me like all she wanted was to be with me. And I was weak. I kissed her back, didn't stop her when she went beyond that. This was the woman I had been dreaming about for months, the reason I didn't date anymore. She was here, doing and letting me do everything I wanted. It was grief, I knew, but I'd waited months for her, convincing myself I could wait years. I'd spent months living on a near miss. Maybe this was my time.

My time...

Those two little words jarred me. Stopped me cold when everything else said go. "Leigh..."

Her head leveled, her gaze met mine. Slowly, she slunk back to the couch.

As she did, I wanted to stop her, take away the shame that now sagged her cheeks. My greatest desire in that moment was to make everything go away. Her grief. My stupidity. My desire to have what I couldn't. Even in that moment, blood coursing through my veins, I still wanted her.

But I had to stare the truth in the face. I could never have her.


  1. judged--got a weaker score in creativity because to me it wasn't that creative. Seen a lot from Jordan and Leigh before.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Metaphors: Candles

I've recently fallen in love with candles. Since coming home from the World Race , I've bought at least one a month. My favorite candles are the ones that come in glass jars - because when they burn out, I can clean the remaining wax out and put the jars to other uses. Right now,  that means they get cleaned out and packed away in anticipation of my move to Flagstaff. But as I was lighting one tonight (vanilla spice... Thanksgiving smells? Yes, please!), I saw a metaphor for writing flickering away in the flame licking at the wick and melting the wax. I suppose it could be a metaphor for life in general, but since the theme of this blog is writing... Well, you do the math.

Summer 2020 Reading Round Up

Welcome back! To all my lovely fellow American friends reading this today, I hope you had a lovely holiday weekend (and stayed safe in the process). I had plans to start outlines for the next draft of a work-in-progress over the weekend, but I spent the entire time sleeping and watching YouTube instead. And I have no regrets. If there's one thing I've (re)learned in the last year or two, it's that you need to listen to your body when it tells you to slow down. The work will still be there when your body is ready to handle it.  At least one that hasn't changed in all the chaos is my love of reading. Here's what I've been reading over the last few months!  What I was able to read this summer Here is the magical list of things I was able to finish reading over the course of the summer. I was busy with work projects for a lot of the time, so it's not as robust of a list as I would have liked to compile. All of the reading I finished was fiction, so I've br

[Five Minute Friday] Purpose

Fiber bars, strewn along the side of the road. There had to be at least a dozen of them, still in their wrappers and completely unopened. No box in sight. Really? That's about the reaction my younger sister and I had when we stumbled on them on our early morning run. Really? along with disgusted sighs about the wastefulness of it. These were the expensive ones, not a generic store brand that kind of tastes and kind of looks the same sometimes. So, when we weren't keeping an eye out for their box, we speculated about what had happened. And wondered how many more we were going to see before the end of our run. "Maybe they took one bite and thought they were gross," my sister said. "So they threw them out because they didn't want them anymore." I let out one of those disgusted sighs and nodded along with her theory. "Yeah, or they got in a huge fight, and threw them out in a fit of rage." "That's a possibility." And