Title: The Empty Net.
One day she is going to march up to his door and tell him what she thinks of him before entering instead of kissing him and running her hands in his hair and pretending like everything is so fucking perfect when in reality everything is going down in flames. It's easy to close her eyes with his arms around her and pretend he's someone else. It's harder to open her eyes and live with what she's been given, what she's done to herself, what she can't change.
Sometimes he forces her to talk. She doesn't want to talk, she tells him. I just want to be with you.
(Let me stay this way for a while.)
He looks at her carefully and she takes a deep breath and tells him that Logan's birthday was yesterday, and that there is a big party tomorrow, and she'll have to wear a dress and talk to people she hates.
He asks what color her dress is. She tells him it doesn't matter, because he'll never see it.
He wants to imagine what it would look like on her.
She gets out of bed, naked, and holds up a sheet to represent the dress. She makes it as realistic as possible, and tells him that this part would be red, and this part would be black, and that part –
You should wear blue, he says, you look so beautiful in blue.
Logan tells me I look beautiful in everything.
Logan lies, he says, and he doesn't mean to sound cold or mean. It's just the only way he knows she'll listen.
She's quiet, and he knows he's too serious for her now. He tells her to come back to bed and she does, and suddenly everything is forgotten.
(Let me stay this way forever.)
She wants to march up to his door and tell him how much she loves him and how much she wishes things could be different. She wants to tell him how she never stopped loving him and how Logan was forced on her and how if she had the choice, she wouldn't have looked in Logan's direction.
He runs his hands down her arms and her hair sticks up on its end and the words melt on her tongue and she can't breathe, and this is how she knows she loves him. She has chills with every touch.
Sometimes she wants him to tell him he loves her. Sometimes she wants him just to say it, whether or not he truly means it. Sometimes she wants to run away and forget everything.
And then he slips his hand through hers and she can't think about ever straying from this place next to him in bed because her body fits next to his so perfectly and it would be a shame to never experience that feeling again.
(I do not love you except because I love you.)
I love you, Jess, she whispers, right before the kiss, as soon as he opens his door.
He's silent as he reaches out to her and kisses her passionately, lightly pulling her into the room and backing her into the closed door.
They break apart for air.
Logan tells me he loves me, she says after a while.
Logan lies, he says, and she knows this is true.