I am dead. I understand this with clarity that can only be gained once the useless blood and muscle distractions have been shed. I exist as an entity, and expression of someone once living. But I am dead. I don’t know when I died. Time is a mere abstraction in this space, this grey space of endless possibility. But within me there is an image. Flashes of color in a room and a sense of resignation and a warm body writhing where my lap would have been. I remember her watching me. Or at least the sense of her watching me. Within this space my death is of no consequence. But yet something within me yearns for the knowledge of my demise. How did I lose my baggage? That lanky body that I loved and hated for 22 years of my sensory life. If I focused I can almost reach out and
“Wake up!” her voice oozed into my subconscious mind with the languid ease of water soaking into desert dry earth. I snapped awake, my eyes glaring around the room suspiciously, the sudden motion causing Trevor to jump of my lap and bark at me reproachfully. “You had that dream again didn’t you?” she demanded, blocking the light from the dim light bulb as she leaned in and examined my face. Dazed both from the dream and from the heavenly scent of her perfume I could only blink up at her and work my mouth trying to make words. Snapping upright to her unimpressive height of 5’2 she folded her arms at her chest and flicked her hair back, the rippling length glowing auburn gold in the soft light. “You need to go and talk to someone about that, it can’t be healthy.”
I sighed, preparing to launch into the same reply I had made the last 23 times she had made that same statement but then he walked in. Bradley. Beautiful Bradley, perfect Ken doll Bradley. Boyfriend Bradley. I smiled at him, the only betrayal of my true feelings the tightness in my chest and the small yelp that Trevor made from the lap he had just climbed back unto. “Hey, man” he said with his perfectly manly voice. “What do you need help with?” Desperately I tried to make eye contact with her, my eyes screaming at her to not say anything. But unfortunately humans haven’t yet started understanding body language and she turned to him, even the concern for me fading as her eyes lit up at the sight of Brad. She leaned in and sunk into his lips and they stood there, perfect and beautiful and I sat in my chair surrounded by fakes plants and some holiday decorations and holding a small mutt. The painting on the wall stared at me, accusing me as if it could read my thoughts and see my naked desire which in light of there kiss seemed like sacrilege. The moment lasted what seemed like an eternity. I shifted uncomfortably and the multi colored blanket my grandmother’s mother had hand-woven fell to the carpeted floor with a barely audible whisper of a thump. But even as quiet as it was the moment was broken.
“He dreams he is dead” she said, her voice still breathy with desire. “I don’t really understand it but I can tell cause he always jerks awake with this panicked look on his face. “ Bradley turn and looks at me and at that moment I know I am going to kill him. He looks at me with those same eyes. I hated those eyes as a child, that pity laced with disdain and self righteousness. Before he could open up his mouth and seal his sentence I quickly rose from the seat, upsetting Trevor for the second time.
“I am fine!” I demanded, my eyes flashing and my jaw clenched. The look of shock in her eyes showed that I had put more force that I had intended into my objection. Softening my voice I said “I don’t mean it like that, it’s just a weird thing I have. It’s not really a serious problem. It’s not like I’m killing people or something.” I choke out a laugh and look at them daring them to continue the discussion. An awkward silence ensues then Bradley joins me in the laughter and slaps my back and for a moment I love him for his kindness. The moment passes and again we are just people in a room and the feeling of death passes and I am alive.
“Let me go change and then I will be ready to go” I said my voice light and smooth, and I walked away from them each footstep echoing the beat of my heart.