Disclaimer: I do not own Rent.

A/N: Thanks to those who give feedback! You're my inspiration!

Chalk Drawings on Memories of Who You Used To Be

It wasn't much more than a moment of lapse, a moment of weakness, a moment of vulnerability. You want to look into the eyes of the person who you're supposed to trust the most, into the person who's supposed to love you forever, no matter what, and you can't, no, won't, let that disappointment shine in her eyes.

So you stand there, alone on the doorstep of the rundown lower middle class home, your past surrounding and haunting you like a deafening burden. If you turn your head left you can practically see a much less haunted version of yourself, running through sprinklers in your jeans and favorite teeshirt, your younger brother laughing, his head tilted back, blonde hair falling out of his eyes, happy, amused by the sight.

To your right you can see yourself laying in the grass with Amy Stanley, her cute brown ringlets in her face as she hugs her knees to her chest. You're admiring her through blades of grass and slowly creeping your hand out to touch hers.

Behind you the more innocent memory of yourself is kneeling on the concrete with your older sister, drawing chalk versions of your own self-images. She's creating this fantastic world with the soft drawing substance, mixing colors and blending. She's an artist, you know, at heart, and you were and are often enamored with her talents. You like/liked watching her work, create, love. That day, that summer day - she was seventeen and you were eleven- you remember her telling you about Bill Stevens, the boy she thought she was falling in love with. You didn't understand it then, didn't even want to fathom it, even- but later Bill would change her life, make her the happiest person you'd ever seen, ever. She and Bill would become your idols, your model for the best relationship. She and Bill? They're what you thought of what you met April, who you wanted to be like when you fell for the fiery girl with the distinguishing spark.

And this all seems like slow motion around you, stifling you with memories and thoughts and oh shit, you didn't want to do this. You didn't want to be here, didn't want to turn these memories sour, turn them into things she needed to mourn for. Things that she dragged up when trying to remember her innocent little boy playing in the sprinklers with his brother, receiving his first kiss by the perfect girl-next-door, talking with his sister about the boy who'd make her the happiest person alive.

She doesn't need to mourn for you, cry for you and those days when your eyes were glazed with innocence and sheltered from the world.

So you stand there, finger to the doorbell, knowing that you should tell her, need to tell her, want to tell her. But the thought of her broken heart and tears make your shiver and suddenly you can't do it, because fuck - you can't do that to the only woman who ever loved you so thoroughly and honestly. You can't tell her that- and oh God, it hurts to even think about it - that you've been poisoning your blood with faux happiness and that the love of your life had slit her wrists in your bathroom (oh God, just remembering Mark, covered in blood, sobbing helpless tears). You can't tell her that the blood- the life in your veins- was dirty, rotten, spoiled. That it was nothing but a death sentence now, an expiration date on your life.

And now, now you can't even stand anymore because your chest hurts so bad from dry sobbing and you can't breathe- so you crumble to the floor like a dilapidated old wall and gather your knees to your chest, hoping she doesn't come out and find you there.

You sit there with your memories and your old dreams and you try and remember the days when this house brought you so much comfort and not suffocation in what used to be. You sit there and cry because you can't tell her, you won't tell her.

And the seconds turn into minutes and the minutes turn into hours and suddenly darkness has fallen and your sobs have reduced to shuddered breaths and you try and motivate yourself to go back home to the loft, tail tucked between your legs, avoiding Mark's sad eyes.

But then there's the jingle of keys and a soft gasp and you look up and there she is, looking shocked and a bit frightened at the sight this broken man folded into a ball on her doorstep. And you start crying again, at her look of concern, and she reaches for you, gathering you in her arms, whispering soothing words and questions.

"I'm so sorry Mom," You say, and although she doesn't know what you're sorry about, not yet, anyway - you have a feeling sorry is not going to be enough.