I see your face turn into disgust, by which I mean I see the way your nose starts to crinkle and the way your eyes flinch and squint for a moment. Then your face smoothes out again and I know if I hadn’t been looking right then I would have missed it. The other two people around us missed it. I know they did, because that’s just the way the world works with you in it.
The conversation is sitting in its new lull and I see the way your face relaxes further; I can see the muscles in your face loosen, gladly welcoming the momentary silence. You could always appreciate the silence. At least when it wasn’t looming over your shoulders.
I don’t mean to study you, so I’m sorry that I might come off like I’m making a spectacle of you, I promise I don’t mean to be. This world is just a collection of different stories and you’ve been my favorite character. Even your flaws were written in such a way that they’re mostly just understandable. Hopefully I don’t seem too fanatic.
I bet I come off as fanatic.
Your fingers comb through your hair and I bet it’s a mix of anxiety and annoyance. That small smile still sits on your lips and I know it’s just to comfort the others so you don’t seem put-off. I know you are, though.
I like the way you play pretend to ease others.
Yet I still yearn to see what it’s like when the show’s over and the curtain closes. Does the darkness feel like home or does it just feel cold?
I won’t ask you that, though. Parts of you deserve to remain an enigma and I would never pry into your mind because I know you wouldn’t like that.
You once said how you think in riddles and I’ve noticed it slip out in the way you speak. Sometimes I wonder if your mind is a maze you can’t even get through, and all I want is to hold your hand while you stroll down the different paths. I could bring a flashlight.
The time to disperse is encroaching and I close my notebook. You know I like to take notes on the people around us for writing purposes, but you don’t know there are notes of you scattered throughout my messy scrawl. I wonder if you’d even be able to piece together the parts of you I’ve written down. Something in me doubts it.
Your legs uncross and we all slowly stand, reluctant to turn into ourselves and be alone with our overwhelming thoughts. My brain is never quiet and I see the dark already swirling in your eyes. The other two are almost awkward standing there together even though they’ve been married for some time now. I wonder what you think about it. I keep a tab open in the background to make notes about it later.
Something is cold in the air when your presence no longer sits in it and I get a shiver down my spine.
I swear I’m not fanatic — just unrequited.