Romina

March 19th, 2003

Per 4

Requiem

            The passion and quintessence of life that had once shone vibrant in his eyes were almost completely drained away now, replaced by a dull, comatose obscurity that stared forward at an indefinite point like a puppet.  The serration of his throat reflected the loud exigency of breathing; little spots of blood spouted from his mouth with each exhale.  The bullet wound had punctured straight through his right chest and the impact had blown away most of the muscle mass there whilst destroying his right lung.

            He felt so heavy in my arms.. A sick sensation of dread washed over me as I realized how quickly from this moment he would be dead.  I squeezed his hand tightly and pressed my face against his.  I didn't care that the blood was soaking into my clothes, or that the stench of innards had stuck in my nostrils.  He was so close to dying..

            For the past few moments my mind was numb- a strained, mental clamor but no coherent thoughts could possibly be comprehended.  The love of my life, the reason I awoke every morning, to whose name my heart continuously beats to, whom I would sacrifice everything for the sake of a moment of his contentment.. was dying in my arms and there was nothing nothing NOTHING I could do.

            Tears burned at my eyes, streaming unnoticed down my cheeks as my jaw clenched.  He still stared forward, up into the sky with his empty eyes.  His face seemed spurious; he didn't look like the same person.  But he was…  He was and there was nothing to undo the damage..

            "Trey, Trey," I whispered his name softly, the syllable rolling across my tongue naturally from many years' practice.  My voice quavered.  I pressed my palm against his destroyed chest in a last, hopeless effort to stop the blood flow.  This was foolish, of course, my hand was scanty as the thick, warm crimson liquid trickled and meandered between each finger.

            It had brought another ill effect- I could now feel each of his abating heartbeats through the weak pulses of blood.  Each beat became more and more capricious and spread out, and my heart held still in fear, afraid that his next heartbeat would not come..

            I tilted my head, my forehead grazing across his.  I don't know what I was thinking.  I don't know if I was saying anything, or if I was breathing, or if I was still crying, or anything.  It was all a blur, spinning around the one clear memory- his eyes, his dull and lifeless and empty eyes, for one moment reviving emotion and brimming with

                                                                                                [painful longing]

                                                                                                fear, for one iota of a second his eyes rolled to look back into mine and our eyes met..

            I froze.  I didn't know what to do and too quickly the extant light in his eyes faded, and his body relaxed.  The blood stopped pulsing against my hand.  Everything in my entire world came to a halt.

            I felt my body shake and tremor.  I felt my jaw clench and my throat tighten, my body dubious to whether I should scream or cry.  I had no control.

            My mind blanked out.  I have no idea what I did, only that a few minutes later someone had pulled me from his body and I awoke in my bed, cleansed and clothed in a nightgown.  Later I found out it had been the police that had brought me home, but it didn't matter.  I didn't care.  It wouldn't have made a difference if I just knelt by Trey's cadaver forever.

            There were several people in the neighborhood that attempted to relieve my pain by traducing Trey for being a drug dealer.  That if he had a less dangerous occupation, then he wouldn't have died…

            It didn't matter.  My life since that day had revolved around being crestfallen, and no one's words could make me feel worse.

            My life is empty.

            My life is meaningless.

            I barely left the house until Trey's funeral came along.  I remained silent, though.  I didn't cry.  The priest, who was old and corpulent and spoke tediously, obviously never met Trey before in his life.  It sickened me.

            It was when I had stepped forward for my own eulogy that no intensity of myopia could save me.  I saw Trey's face in the open casket, eyes shut and mouth slightly ajar.  They had fixed him up into a nice suit and repaired his chest so that no injury was shown.

            But seeing his face immediately brought back the memory of that one moment, right before he died, when he had looked at me.. and I did nothing.. The apogee, the apex of all my regret: that in his last moment, I stupidly sat there dumbfounded…

            I could never cry hard enough.