A/N: This might be the shortest piece I've ever written. Let me know what you think.
Baby cum angels fly around you
Reminding you we used to be three and not just two
And that's how the world began
And that's how the world will end...
- Third Planet, Modest Mouse
The sun circled the planet, and she was still. Utterly unmoving. She knew how irrational and unscientific those thoughts were—the universe was heliocentric, and in reality she was speeding along at several thousand miles an hour as she hurtled through space, a speck gravitationally glued to the surface of the planet.
That was how she felt—glued. Stuck, firmly rooted into the dirty sheets, fused to the mattress. Her mouth was glued shut, her thoughts were all stuck together in her mind, indistinguishable from the grief pulsing through her. There was no line between thought and feeling anymore, no categorization of emotion, no rational separation of thought from action from feeling from being. They were all one, stuck together and caught in her throat like she was choking and couldn't catch her breath.
He hovered in the doorway like a ghost, silent and barely visible in the darkness. She kept all the lights off—she didn't want to see what was left. The waning late evening light lit him from the back, peeking in through the living room windows. Her blinds were drawn so the light could not touch her. It would burn her. It would burn her alive right now.
He dropped his coat on the chair just inside her bedroom door and it slid down onto the ground, ignored. His eyes were on her, fixed and worried. She could tell even in the darkness, even without being able to assess his distinct facial expressions, that he was so. She could see it in his shoulders, in the way he stood as he undid his tie, also flinging it onto the chair and also not paying attention as it struggled to cling to the arm, then fell onto the floor with the jacket.
She closed her eyes, swollen and tender, and ignored his words. When he crawled into the bed next to her she flinched, unable to be touched. Her skin was on fire, her insides were shredded, she was disintegrating. She would fall apart like wet paper under his touch, sloppy pieces flung off the rapidly spinning planet into the ether. She would quietly cease to be. She would love to quietly cease to be, the way it did. So silently, with no warning, ceasing to be. Floating into the ether, transitioning from existence to non-existence without a word. To simply stop.
He was functioning so much better than she was. He was using the glue to put himself back together, to bathe and dress and knot his tie and go to work. He was speaking and breathing. She could not be sure she would even be doing the latter without a constant reminder from her central nervous system. Nothing worked. Nothing functioned.
He had not died inside. He had not felt the death of a being within him. A part of him had not been ripped out and discarded. He had not felt the actual life leave his body, slip through his fingers, soak into his skin and be washed and scrubbed but never truly come clean. She could never be clean now. Never. It was a permanent stain.
That was all it was, all it had been reduced to, was a stain. He scrubbed the bathroom floor all night but she could not use it. She occasionally dragged herself into the guest bathroom, but kept the door to theirs closed. She could hear it behind the door, pounding and rattling the knob and sobbing in the dark. It was crying to be let out. Crying for its mother.
He rubbed small circles onto her back, saying something she could not hear. Everything that was lost in her head was too loud. The stillness on the monitor, the empty echo within her, was deafening. His static words were nothing in comparison to the incomprehensible silence of the sonogram.
He kicked his shoes off the end of the bed and curled up like that, still in his pressed shirt and slacks, and wrapped his arm around her. She allowed it, because it might have been the only thing keeping her from escaping the atmosphere entirely. It might be the only gravity she had left.