"A Study In Red"
The first thing after he left, I'd shower. It was the place I could be alone, and safe. I know how to circumscribe my own space, how to create lasting lines in the sand, stave off the erasing waves, construct boundaries, and be alone and okay. We were just stuck in this cycle of breaking each other up and breaking each other in. He would sneak like a thief casing the joint, my heart. My parts. He didn't have to sneak like that, he knows where the keys are. I only gave them to him a dozen times. But he likes the stealth, and to creep. To tiptoe softly so as not to be obvious.
The days I was alone, I kept myself alone. There were days I couldn't take any more isolation, and days I wanted me all for myself. I am the quiet girl with the boyfriend who treats me like a yo-yo. Come here, go away. Sneak, sneak.
He always used the shower first (to take all the hot water I suppose) and he was singing that song, something cutesy and teeny-boppy that wasn't like him at all. It was jarring.
Clutching the skeet up to my chest, I sat and listened to him sing. I felt like one of those dummies they used to blow up fake towns when they were testing nuclear bombs in Nevada. Only the explosion seemed to be happening from the inside out. You know. The Hills Have Eyes.
I couldn't wait for him to leave. I wanted the isolation back, the heat of my own shower, the stream on my back, washing me and the memory of the night before away.
When he finally left, grunting a goodbye, leaving a puddle of piss in the toilet, I swore it would be the last time.
The last time until next time.