She had broken today. Everything in her had broken: her heart, her faith, her sanity. She'd entered the once picturesque apartment to see a set of charred spoons lying on the coffee table. Her handbag had dropped to the floor with a thud as she'd approached. Strewn across the floor was a mess of magazines, couch pillows and everything else she'd attempted to tidy that morning before she left. Her breath came in steady waves, but her heart threatened to revolt entirely. Heat began to rise behind her ears as she grabbed the spoons. The set of spoons. The distinctive trace of barely-gone flames still marred the convex side.
But she was bothered by the pair, only the pair. Clenching the ruined silverware in white-knuckled fists, she glided to the bedroom. The door wide open, she'd seen him lying prostrate, unconscious from the dope being pumped through his body. Then, she'd seen her. A wild tangle of blond hair glowed warmly in the late afternoon sun, but there was no beauty on her. Any beauty she'd once possessed had been marred by the drug-addled whites of her eyes. She laid still, staring at the ceiling, eyes open but unseeing.
Kalei had stumbled against the doorframe, completely cognizant of what had happened shortly before her entering. A knife sunk deep into her heart as she chanced one last glance at him. At him. Her everything--and nothing. She traced the curve of his neck with stinging eyes. The neck she longed to touch but suddenly knew she never could again. He wasn't hers and he never was.
The knife in her heart twisted, turning to ice. She quickly followed. She ducked away from the muggy warmth of the bedroom and found herself grabbing the nearest item, a cheap glass vase he'd given her as an apology gift. She tried not to think about the fact that he never filled it with flowers as she flung it against the far wall. It exploded into a spray of glittering silver shards as something shifted within her.
She'd gathered items from the bathroom, whatever she could think to grab in a blind fury. Her possessions disappeared into her handbag whilst his flew around the small room like snow in a snow globe. She'd nearly finished cleaning her own drawer when she spotted a rarely used stick or ruby red lipstick. Climbing onto the counter, she began scribbling a message on the mirror.
"Don't"--snap. The lipstick buckled and splintered silently, marring the side of her hand with its ruby shade.
And she came back to herself. She was going to write something along the lines of don't try and find me. But she realized she didn't mean it. In saying not to find her, she knew he would. He would want what he couldn't have.
Slumping against the wall, she stared blankly at the single word. Don't. She had to mean it if she were to protect what remained of her heart. But she thought about living without him.
Was it worth the heartache, either way?
She figured, yes, yes it was.