A new series from regular contributor Jack Cain.
Header image by Jack Cain.
The days of the week series are split into three teasers. They are all from a chapter in the book I'm writing which will be called 'Gaslighting'. The words in this are moments from my real life. Read part one HERE.
Rohan had just pulled into my driveway. He comes walking up the stairs, I’m smoking my cigarette and I look more than dishevelled from the night before and it’s not okay because it's Wednesday. None of us should be having big Tuesdays.
"You deserve better than the Citarum river," he says.
"What's that?" I mutter back.
"It's the most polluted river in the world, and your girlfriend is the human equivalent," he snipes.
"That's a bit harsh, where is it anyway?"
"Cool, I just think I should consider myself lucky." My eyes were distracted by an ant.
"What's lucky about her?" Rohan scoffs.
"Well I mean, she can be pretty shit but I know she loves me. And in Japan they had these two hyenas and they tried to make them mate for four years and they never would, I knew her for only a few days and we fell for each other."
"Yeah but you aren't a hyena either, why didn't they mate?"
"Oh, because they were both male. Same sex couples aren't really a thing in the jungle apparently."
"Yes they are, are you okay?" he asks.
"You’re coming down hey, mate?"
A gloaming of disappointment drowns his features.
"Something like that. I’ve just been reading notes from my phone, saved messages and things like that."
"What does the one your reading say?"
“We need a little cottage somewhere cute. Or a cabin in the woods. And we'd have a little puppy, drink lots of tea, have many naps and stay nice and wrapped up. That would make me feel better.”
"Go to another, what’s it say?" he looks at me, in the eyes.
“Do I hate you? No. Do I wish I never met you? Of course not. Am I sorry? Yes.”
"That’s sad mate. What’s it even about, do you want some water? That cigarette isn’t going to make your mouth feel very good."
"I don’t know, I have this theory, you know like a stupid thing I apply to stuff like ‘If they love you, they've watched you sleep’. It’s a line I wrote; I guess it isn’t a theory.
I asked her what I do when I'm asleep. And she didn’t know how to answer." I start crying.
You're in the house
And I am here in the car
'Cause I just need a quiet place
Where I can scream
How I love you. - Mitski
Rohan ducks off to the kitchen, I run to the edge of the balcony and vomit everywhere. Not because I was hung over, it was because I love you, and I miss you. It’s Easter, and I’m sadder than usual.
When I was little, like most children, my parents at Easter time would hide eggs throughout the house. Some eggs were under the fridge; I remember I grabbed my hockey stick every Easter just incase I had to manoeuvre one of those shiny fuckers into my tiny hands.
Some eggs were in trees, under rocks, under the car, in my bed somewhere, or just sitting in the fridge and one year there just weren't any.
I was about eight when my parents, or more specifically my mum, stopped doing Easter egg hunts for me and my sisters. I remember I came out and there was one big Humpty Dumpty egg filled with Smarties on the bench. It had my name on it.
There was one each for my sisters too.
So when I say sorry and why I keep writing about you and to you it's because I don't want you to have just one big egg, I want to scatter apologies and words that I hope reach you, I guess if you want to read them. You'll have to hunt.
Being in love is like being wrapped in bubble wrap and all we want to do is pop our way out and make as much noise as possible when we do.