This is something that just came to me while watching Lost In Translation (Awesome movie by the way). It might just be this or I might continue it for a while at which point I will be taking title suggestions.
I walked in knowing I would find him there weak, shattered. Drenched in his own tears and sweat he shivered from the cold air creeping through the open door. A sadder site I have never seen as him lying there holding himself trying to comfort a pain I gave up long ago. It’s been at least four years since I was in this same place and I was just as broken then as Mark is now. We take different paths but we all end up here sooner or later. Broken, weak, shattered and hopeless trying hard to hold on to the faith we need to make it through. It was a hard goddamn thing for me to walk away from that life and don’t think for a second I’m not tempted. Every single day I see someone that makes me think and makes me question this life but I stay strong.
Mark was there for me when I was torn into as many pieces as make up a man and, even though we fell out, I am here now. It’s not about repaying a debt you see, it’s about doing right by somebody regardless of the past. He and I have never been the best of friends, differences too many, similarities too few, but we were as close as can be. That is until five years ago when I found him to have been the one sleeping with my wife. I never knew it was him; I never fathomed the idea. How could I ever suspect the man that held me while I wept and assumed all my pain to have been the one responsible? For that reason alone I shouldn’t be here now. This crumpled wreck of a man had the effrontery to try and soothe away the havoc he had wreaked.
I’ve thought about it over the years and I thought that, once I found out it was him; he was trying to assuage his guilt. I have come to realize though, and it’s the reason I’m here now, that despite the fact that what he had done was wrong here was a man of character. He knew that I would find out it was him soon enough but he knew that right then I needed somebody and nobody but him would do. If he had done what most would think to be the right thing and told me he had slept with Sarah it would have killed me and he knew that. Here was a man that loved me enough to lie to my face because he knew I couldn’t take the truth, at least not yet. He helped put me back together and when I was strong again he came to and, knowing it would be the end, told me the truth. I never thought I could respect a man for something like that and I never thought I would be here now but life’s a funny thing.
I walked in and closed the door behind me. Looking up to see me I can see the fresh tears welling in his eyes as I crossed the room to him. I bend down and at first he recoils from and he fights as I hold him.
“Leave me alone James. Just leave me alone. I’m fine, I can handle it.”
His struggling grows stronger and I tighten my grip around him and rub his head.
“Hey don’t give me that crap Mark. I know you’re strong but you can’t take this and you know it.”
“Fuck you James I can…” His breath hitches as he tries to hold back the tears I can already feel wetting my cheek. “…More…than you…think. I…can…” And with that last word he stops fighting me, stops fighting the tears, holds me and lets it all out.
“Oh god I can’t, I can’t do it anymore. I can’t fucking take it”
I’m tired now. More of this to follow. Maybe.