by Arooj Muhammad

To sob is to give away any pretence of self defence, to feel the hurricane that is pain.  As if the soul could bleed an ocean through the eyes: that was the enormity of his sobbing.

I fell to the ground, shattering sobs escaping my lips, my body trembling as I put my head in my hands. My life fell apart and nobody was there; nobody was there to help me. Tears streamed down my cheeks and the aching pain in my heart made my chest unbearably heavy. I couldn’t keep doing this; my body felt so weak and drained. I leaned my head against the wall, the moon illuminating my tear streaked cheeks, a throbbing ache in my head being the only thing that hadn’t abandoned me. It felt as if with every wracking sob, my energy was being drained. I wish I didn’t care. I wish I could turn all these emotions off. I wish things could go back to the way they once were. I wish she was still here. I felt myself surrender to the pain, allowing all the pent up emotions out hysterically. I accepted the agony, the suffering and this is how I cope.  So I let it all out, all the emotion in one loud shout.

There was something in that shout, a pain behind it. I watched. I watched his broken eyes. Then it hit me, that’s when I knew. The anger was nothing but a shield for pain, like a cornered soldier randomly throwing out grenades, scared for his life, lonely, desperate. He breathed in real slowly. What if nothing blew up? What if there were no consequences? Wouldn’t he have to calm down? Wouldn’t the shield clatter to the ground and let the pain tumble out?

Slowly, walking up to him I wrapped my arms around him. Trying to encase him in my warmth, but when I softly pulled his hands from around his waist, that’s when I saw it. A dagger. Embedded deep into his side. Scarlett blood dripped from his side, the once white t-shirt now a deep red. The blood didn’t gush in a constant flow, but in time with the beating of his heart. At first it came thick and strong, flowing through my fingers as they clasped the ripped flesh. I felt the blood move over my hand, the thick fluid no warmer or cooler than my  own skin. After a few moments more, the blood was still leaving his rapidly paling flesh, but the pulses were slower, weaker.

The rain poured down, almost as if the sky itself was grieving too. The blood had spread into his rain-damp t-shirt, the bright red quickly darkening, taking on a brownish hue. Those moments I spent pleading with him to look at me, to stay with me, feeling the very fluid of his life drain away over my cold hands, I felt nothing at all. Time itself had become irrelevant; the seconds could have been hours, the hours mere seconds.

In that suspended moment, she was the eye of her own storm; but for that moment of perfect calm and mental clarity, she paid over and over in the years to come. Every quiet moment was spent watching Harry die again, playing the “what if?” game until she too surrendered her mind to the night. “See you soon Harry”, she whispered in her dying breath. Her body was in agony, but she was finally at peace. She was at last reunited with her lover. She smiled for the first time in what felt like forever before letting the dark abyss like arms of death consume her whole.