My breath freezes in my chest. All the noises and lights fade into the rush of blood in my ears. He’s not supposed to be here. He’s not supposed to be here with her. “Alex?” I whisper. That’s all I can manage. He turns around lazily with his hand resting underneath her shirt and just looks at me. I can smell the alcohol from where I am and I think that’s what does it. Everything goes numb as I watch him roll his eyes at me. He slurs my name over and over and it sounds angrier the more he says it. It makes me flinch but I don’t think he notices. The girl beside him, already half inside him, notices. She leers at me and it occurs to me that she knows. She knows that he was moaning my name yesterday. She knows that half of my closet is filled with his clothes. She knows that he is supposed to be mine.
“What are you doing, Alex?” it comes out as a whisper again.
“What does it look like?” he waves a hand in front of the girl and she winks. I don’t say anything, I’m not sure what I’m supposed to say anyway. “She’s better than you. She’s better in every way,” he says again. The words tumble out of drunken lips but that doesn’t mean they are any less true. I’ve been waiting on him to decide that he wanted someone else. It’s a miracle we made it this long in the first place. “You aren’t good enough anymore. Go home,” he throws at me one last time before he turns around. I stand there for a second longer to make sure that he isn’t going to turn around and this was supposed to be a twisted sort of prank. He doesn’t turn around so I do. I turn around and walk out with his words rattling around inside my head. They change from his voice to my parents’ voices, back to his and then finally mine. You’re not good enough You’re not good enough I’ve never been good enough I shove it away, the way I’ve done it before until it is barely a mumble at the back of my mind. I go home and methodically, robotically, I put all of his things in a bag. I take his t-shirts out of the drawers and fold them into the bag. I drop his deodorant and toothbrush in there too. I pack and pack until all that’s left are the bare bones of me. Who am I without him? I shake my head as I look around the apartment. My apartment. It was never his. I was never his. I simply wanted to be. He was a mess and hurting and he needed me. We were friends but I wanted to be more. I thought loving him would be enough. I should have known nothing I do is ever enough. I sigh and flop into my bed. These feelings, these thoughts, they’re nothing new. They almost provide comfort with how familiar they are. Almost. I pull the comforter up over my head and make a promise in the dark to not let them consume me again.