Lucid Reads: Listening to the Rain

 

“Should I turn on some music?” she asked.

“I kinda just wanna listen to the rain,” he replied.

They lay in bed. The pale moonlight crept into the dark room, uninvited, through a break in the curtains. The fabric was separated just enough for the light peeking through to be annoying, but not enough to merit getting out of bed and drawing the two sides together. He was laying on his stomach, face resting in the crook of his arm, turned away from her. His legs were straight out. Uncomfortably straight. He rubbed his feet together slowly, but rhythmically; an idiosyncratic symptom of anxiety. Her right arm propped her up, her head titled, resting in her hand. Her left hand rested on his back, eager to give a comforting rub, but unsure this was the right tactic. She couldn’t see him as well as she wanted in the dark.

“It’s the best thing, you know?”

“Yeah, I know.”

A couple of moments of silence passed. A couple of eternities.

“What are you thinking?” she asked.

“...Thinking about how I had this girlfriend in high school. All of high school, really. We really liked each other, but it was high school, you know? Anyway, right before graduation and getting ready for college and stuff, I broke up with her. Didn’t think it was going to work with us going to different schools. She was sad, you know? You know how girls get sad. Well, anyway. The next time I saw her was a couple years later. We were both back at the school for something...some reunion thing. Anyway, we get to talking and she mentions how she was just so depressed after the break-up. Like, counseling, not eating, crying all the time. That whole thing. I never knew, you know? Never had a clue. Said she had never been abandoned before. She came from a good family and everything, you know? Said at the time, our break-up was the worst thing to ever happen to her. Said it ruined her life. It terrified me. To know I have that power. I never wanted to be that again, you know? The thing that ruins somebody’s life…and so I’m just sitting here thinking...thinking about how I don’t want to ruin your life...how I’ve already started.”

She began slowly, gently, caressing his back. Another pair of forevers.

“You’re good for me,” she said.

“Not good enough, clearly,” he said.

Her hand froze.

“Please don’t say that. It hurts me when you say things like that. You know it's not that. It’s more complicated. Way more. You know it’s not about that.”

“Sorry.”

She let out a sigh and rose from the bed. She walked to leave the room, and grabbed her work clothes from the closet. She stopped at the bedroom door.

“What are you doing tomorrow?”

“I’ll be here.”

“You know what time to meet me there, right?”

“Yes.”

It was quiet. She could almost make out his face by the light of the moon.

“Ok...should I turn on some music?” she asked.
“I kinda just wanna listen to the rain,” he said.