3.9 Enough


My peace back at home didn’t even last a week. She marched towards me across our backyard with no regards for property boundaries. That’s when I knew I was in deep trouble.

“You’ve been avoiding me!” yelled Nia, and in her rage she was the most beautiful sight I had ever seen.

There was a truth to her words. After Taurus and I arrived back home I think I slept for almost two days. We both did. After that, though, I hid away at home. I only left my room for meals. Every time she knocked on our door I said I was too tired for visitors. Here I was at last, cornered. I should have known it was unavoidable. Nia was like a force of nature.

“I didn’t want you to see me like this.” Less than the person that left.

“I am not blind, James,” spat Nia. “I would have seen you some day. And guess what? I wouldn’t have thought any less of you. But this is low.” She spoke through tears and gritted teeth. “I suppose you don’t want to date me then? Should I just back out of your life? Like how you were trying to back out of mine?”

“I… I don’t want to date you.” I bit my lip as her face hardened.

Deep breath. Say the rest, say it now.

“I want to marry you.”

Her eyes were frozen wide.

“I want to spend every day next to you. I love you so much…” I awkwardly reached into my pocket and held out my handkerchief to her. It was frayed and stained but in the center, the rouge still blossomed red. “You… you are the one that keeps me alive.”

Nia was openly sobbing now, her flushed face almost matching her hair. I tried to wipe her tears away- I had a handkerchief after all- but she grabbed my hand and held it tight.

“I wish you wouldn’t cry,” I said weakly instead.

“You are an idiot, James Altair.”

“An agreeable one?”


“Well at least there is that.”

“That’s not what I meant.” She laughed through her tears, like sunshine through rain. “I meant, yes, I’ll marry you.”


Some days in my life I will hate myself as my missing arm threatens to choke me. Some days I will crouch in the corner and shake and scream as the sounds overwhelm me. Some days I will look around me and see old ghosts in every shadow, and I will curse them and chase them through the haze of my memory.

But every day you will put your arms around me and bring me back to reality

and that will be enough.


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