I saw you and in that moment I wanted to save you. Your eyes were the sad kind of grey and I promised myself I wouldn’t leave until I restored that spark I glimpsed when we shook hands and stuttered hello.
You told me you couldn’t be saved, and that heroes weren’t saved anyway and you walked away.
I stared after your retreating footsteps, watched your silhouette grow smaller and smaller. I whispered ‘Wait!’ but you didn’t hear me.
The next time I saw you your hair was red and you had a guitarist hanging on your arm like the latest handbag. I wondered if he hung on to your every word or if that was just me. I still wonder if he looked into your eyes long enough to see their changing colours, matching your alternating moods. You once said you thought of yourself as a blank canvas, unreadable by anyone. I told you I could read you like a book. I was right.
You were frightened of the rain, worried that drop by drop it would pile up and drown you like when your sister fell in the bath aged two and nobody heard her screams. I used to come over to your house every rainy day to check on you, check you were all right. Your eyes were wide with worry and fear and I promised myself with every drop that fell from the sky I would stay another second. I made sure I never left until the lines in your forehead transformed into a wide smile. More often than not I didn’t dare leave you until you’d succumbed to sleep, a lazy smile still on your face. I kissed your forehead in place of where the lines were, covered you with a blanket and crept out quietly. Every time I left, the sound of the door clicking shut behind me felt like a gunshot to my stomach.