ink stained

She rubbed her thumb lightly over her ink-stained fingertips and closed her eyes. For one last time, she shut out the memories, clenched her jaw, then, as she took in a deep breath, loosened it and gave in.

The first memories of them walking out of class together without a word, stepping on every second step while skipping down the stairs in sync and those secret half smiles that she feared that she had noticed alone came in flashes like a Charlie Chaplin movie

“Memory is only an orange-sunset shadow.”

She remembered the overwhelming sensation of warmth and belonging and wild dizziness when she realized that it was more that affection…

“And feelings are shadows without the sun”

She laughed softly, then choked down the lump in her throat as she thought about how she liked to watch him and the elegance in every move, perfection in every darned thing and how she had wondered how a clumsy human bumping into awkwardness, lost and tripping over logical thought could seem so absolutely flawless.

“But beauty lies in the eyes of those who refuse to see otherwise”

And then she had tripped and fallen down a rabbit hole. Alice tried some mushroom, our little human tried too hard. And he had slipped away, slowly, then all at once until expressions ceased to exist. She had watched petrified and he walked into the distance and wondered if she had imagined those imperceptible glances over his shoulder.

“And you were a flawless clockwork miracle”

Eventually, she decided she had. The glances were lost. So were the quiet conversations under the desk. Dead memories can’t feel, she told herself fervently as she reached out one last time… or was it twice… or thrice, perhaps; ego shook her and sighed to herself in the back seat.

“With your glass eyes too perfect”

She had stumbled along, fumbled about for Ariadne’s thread, wove it into a bracelet and a devastating sense of dread, agony and helplessness washed over her when she realized that, just maybe, it was all in her head. It was when she knew for sure that it didn’t matter. It was all in the past at any rate.

“And when amnesia dropped by, she told him, beseeching,”

But she remembered the blue. A blue bracelet of satin ribbon, a blue M&M, blue and his warm laughter from years ago, almost faded, almost lost into the void, echoing ever so slightly that she thought, maybe, it was all a finger-painted water-coloured canvas of her imagination. And she left it at that.

“But machines don’t have a favourite colour…”

Her tears smudged the faultless words on the parchment.

T. E. Pyrus

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