Monday, November 10, 2008

"Never Special," Pie, pt. 4, 398 words

I'm less afraid of crushing him than I am of never letting go; I've had time to get used to my strength, to gauge the full range, but no time to really get used to my fledgling crush on him. I know, I know that he's done horrible things, killed people and hurt them and threatened someone I love, but at the same time I just can't reconcile this as the same man. That was Nefarious, a mask that he wore but never fit him properly, not while we were still close. The man I knew, sat and ate pie with, who's sitting right next to me... That was Ned, though I didn't know his name then. This is Ned.

It's so hard for me to think of them as the same person. Impossible.

"I missed you, too," I say, and squeeze him a little tighter. "What... what happened?"

"Well," he says, "I blew up my work," and that just starts the torrent.

It's hard to listen to. Insane, like something out of a comic book or movie
and I've learned by now that it's never like out of the comics or movies. Europe and clones and Nazis and Argentina and, on the heels of my relief, I feel some other old feelings flooding back in. Hurt. Disappointment. Betrayal.

It's so easy to see, now. I don't know why I never realized it before, but the way he always acted around me... He'd stare at me, hang on my every word, constantly try to make me out to be something amazing... He loves me, loved me almost from the start. I'd loved him too, but never noticed his own feelings for me. Two ships passing in broad daylight...

And then he disappeared on me. Gone for just a month, at first, and then for half a year after that. A whole month he was gone, and he didn't even wait for me to get back to him – didn't even leave me his damn phone number so I could get back to him – before disappearing again, to another continent.

He hurt me, and now I find myself wanting to hurt him back. So I lash out, without even really thinking, at the first opening I find.

"Well, then I robbed a bank and you were there for that," he babbles on. I start to nod, and then speak.

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