I saw her again last night. Her visits have gotten more and more infrequent as time passes. Before this past night it had been 6 days, 13 hours, and 42 minutes since our last encounter.
I was drunk. I spend most of my time in an alcohol-induced stupor these days. A fist smashed my door several times, yanking me from my whiskey nirvana.
After a brief but brutal fight with gravity and the floor, I managed to navigate my way to the knocking sound. But I was cautious.
It could have been another one of my "friends" claiming they were there to help me. I'm too smart for them.
All they want to do is strip away my life-preserving elixir, the one thing getting me through every morning and every night.
My mud brown orbs peep through the eye-hole and meet a pair of Caribbean blue eyes. Her eyes.
It's hard for me to recollect what happened next but I remember flinging open the door with such force it's a mystery the hinges didn't come undone.
Then she's in my arms, bringing me warmth greater than Hell but everything in this moment is so perfect that I know we must be in a place even higher than Heaven.
Strawberries. That's what her hair smells like. I had almost forgotten. Immediately I curse my memory and fight back tears of frustration.
But before I have the chance to cry, she leans in and whispers, "I miss you, darling" and I melt into a sweet, steaming pile of yearning. Our eyes meld into a navy black mess.
I hate my own eyes for dirtying the beauty of this union.
That old, tangled knot in my chest returns. It slowly expands and I know it's going to explode soon so I go for the only cure I know. My lips seek the warmth of her lips.
Instead they meet a finger, stiff and icy.
She shakes her head, wearing the same kind of smile a mother does when her three year old son asks for the meaning behind "you'll be a big brother soon".
The rest of the night was a blur of love. Hours dripped into hours. At some point the alcohol and strawberries took their toll.
She didn't visit my dreams that night and when I awoke to the light of the morning she was gone. The knot in my chest unwound and sunk back into its bottomless void.
I poured myself a glass of whiskey and stared out at the blindingly bright sun. Though it stung, it helped bring back a bit of glowing comfort.
I finished my drink and grabbed my car keys. For once I actually had a destination in mind. The drive was uneventful.
The sun hid behind a shield of clouds and did not return for the rest of the day. On the way there I stopped at a farmer's market and picked up a bouquet of forget-me-nots.
They had been her favorite flowers.
I placed the forget-me-nots on the cold stone and stared at nothing for three hours in somber silence.
Then I drove home, opened a new bottle of Jack Daniels, and drank myself into another coma. As I drifted into death I promised to spend tomorrow the same way. And the day after that.
And the day after that. And that was how my life would be spent from now. I don't need anything or anyone other than my alcohol and the occasional visit from her.
Maybe if I take one more shot than I did the night before I can see her again. And maybe next time she won't leave once the sun rises.
And maybe we'll be together forever, like those two stupidly innocent children promised each other underneath the thousand year old oak tree in that field of gold forever ago. Maybe.