“C’mon babe, let’s watch another show,” Melanne Collie said, swathed in an unwashed, grey hoodie, and face painted with runny mascara. “Or we can take another nap.” She had felt Jack’s phone vibrate through the sofa cushions.
Jack could no longer remember how long they’d been a couple for. Even the memory of their first meeting was foggy. But Mel had moved into Jack’s small apartment almost immediately, decorating it to her taste–with dust, a dish-filled sink, and closed curtains. “Hang on, Mel,” he said.
He pulled out his phone and read the message: “Hey buddy, haven’t seen you in a while. How’ve you been?” His thumbs hovered over the phone’s screen.
“Look at me, babe.” Mel lifted Jack’s chin with her fingertips. “We’re fine with just the two of us.” Her eyes were dark enough for him to get lost in.
Jack had loved the sense of invincibility that Mel’s anesthetic kisses had given him in the beginning, how they made it feel like nothing in the world mattered. But her touch had changed–her hugs made his limbs heavy, and her pillow talk consisted of snickering that kept him up at night. The invincibility had given way to joyless apathy.
“Jack, you know that no one knows you like I do,” she said uneasily. That was true, Jack thought, and perhaps it was only that familiarity that was keeping them together. But it was exhausting to miss missing things. Maybe this was the right time to break things off, even if Mel tried stopping him again like she’d already done so many times before.
Jack began to type out an honest answer.
Sam Lesek aimlessly wanders the ravines of Toronto, Canada. Her writing has appeared in different anthologies and magazines of speculative fiction. Most recently, she has had stories published by Martian Magazine and Wyngraf. She enjoys long walks in the cold and old horror movies. Find her on Twitter @SamLesek