And when you think about it, really, really think about it, you realise you have no idea what any of it means.

There was never any actual explanation for what's between you and him. One of those things that just happened. An incidental nothingness that's gone on for, what, ten years now? Almost eleven?

You wonder how many people know, and how many know you don't.

He's perfect, lying there, in the Levis he's been wearing for a month. Worn at the knees, cuffs dirty and unraveling, cigarette burned, stained with something red. Pizza sauce, or he's been going at his arm with a knife again. Years ago he swore he would stop, after you caught him pressing a Swiss Army blade into his forearm. When he saw how hysterical blades and blood and scars made you, long-sleeves all the time. He never takes his shirt off in front of you anymore. Not even during sex.

You don't really want him to.

You've gone through all the cabinets in his apartment and it surprisingly have found no alcohol. Going to start cutting down, he'd said, but you hadn't believed him. No one had, himself included, most likely. He said he wasn't addicted, but god, fuck that, someone that snorted as much coke as he did and considered fourteen vodka shots a warm-up was something along those lines.

But he's the golden child. Wonder boy.

You met by accident, in a very cliche' romantic-comedy way. It was raining, and you were outside a New York club, trying to hail a cab. Drunk half out of your mind (it's easy to miss sixteen sometimes), 4 am, completely drenched, not even able to stand up. Collapsing ungracefully, you decided concrete made for a very nice mattress, and passed out.

You didn't wake up until he tripped over you.

Writers never look where they're going. Trapped in their own heads, there isn't a real world, or if there is, it's altered significantly to fit the slightest whimsy. After pulling you up and walking you down Central Park for ice cream (you had a chocolate cone, he had vanilla in a cup with strawberry sauce), everything changed.

That walk is the only pure memory you have of him. The only one you tell people about.

He didn't mind when people called him the hellion, the little wild child. Hollywood treatment is rare for a novelist, but he's brilliant, the biggest fucking movie star. He doesn't ask for the attention, but it nevertheless feeds the dark part of him, the part that's everything you want though it's bad for the health. And then there's the way he looks at you, holds your eyes until his gaze is crawling over your bones. Overwhelming and fucking magnificent.

Tahiti, France, Germany. Thailand. Hawaii. You went everywhere with him, a little fucking groupie, tagging along with a virgin heartbeat and puppy dog eyes, too-eager. Too much. Not enough. It became easier when you realised he's insane.

Playing god in motel rooms. Jumping out windows. Assaulting the press. You, sometimes, if it was heroin. ("It just makes me feel like I exist somewhere else.") Trying to find himself in Jack Daniels bottles and black eyes and needles and unloaded guns and sex, so much sex.

He's never been anyone because he can't choose.

Last year was the hardest. He took off in the middle of the night, no warning, nothing. For three weeks, no one knew where he was, until a photographer found him sleeping on a park bench. He dyed his hair black. Dirty strands would pass over Cherokee cheekbones and you'd push them away with a finger while he did the same to you.

"I'm okay. Really. Trust me."

The next morning he tried to drown himself in the swimming pool.

"You shouldn't regret what you can't change," his friends say. Fuck that, you regret everything. Choices. Sometimes, though, when he smiles and kisses the inside of your thigh, you want to do it all over again. And again.

You can't breathe if he leaves, but you can't breathe until he leaves.

It's sex. It's addiction. It's drama. It's love. It's nothing. It's everything.

There was never any "we," but you still leave him. You like to think it's him that crawls back during those telephone conversations: "I need you. I need you with me. Please. Please come back."

But it's you. You'll always go back to him. Choices. Regret. Doesn't matter. He's beautiful.

He's everything.

You've never told him you love him. He's never said he loves you. It's not real if you don't say it. It is anyway.

He's pulling you to him, resting in the crook of your arm, staring you down with those dark eyes. His hair's back to brown. You gather strands in your hand and hold his body to yours.

"You're here. You're back. Please stay. Just. . ."

Yeah, you're back. You should leave.

His lips, rough and full, brush under your chin. "Please?"

His upper lip is between your teeth. Beautiful.

He slides his hands up your back and presses his face to your heart. "Stay."

Choices. Regret. Sex. Addiction. Love. Doesn't matter. He's everything.

He's nothing.

The only thing you can think to say is: "Always."


~A/N: This was one of those "had to write it or I'll explode" type pieces. But it seems more like an outline of a relationship than a relationship, know what I mean? It's just like there's more behind this, somewhere in my head. So. . .continue? Write a longer story based off this? Or should be shoved into the dark recesses of my hardrive? Comments are the butter on the bread. :)