It all started with the backseat of your car.
I was all too familiar with it back there. How we quickly masked the new car scent with the smell of sweat and cigarettes. Marlboro reds, with the hint of pot still lurking around your lips. Nothing good ever lasted with us, and that was one of those things. We’d park in the back of the McDonald’s parking lot. The same parking lot I used to get drunk and high in a year prior. The same parking lot where I broke up with the boy who I lost my virginity to because I was young and stupid and no one ever knows what they want when they’re in high school and they feel like they have the entire world in the palm of their hands. But that all seemed like a different life when I was in your arms and your windows were fogged.
See, you had this funny way of telling me you loved me and making me believe it. I ignored the nagging in my brain that begged me to, just this once, follow my head instead of my heart. But you called me beautiful and showed me how skillful your fingers were in the dark. You played my body like a harp, and I was addicted to the music ever since.
I just wish I would have paid attention to the warning signs from the start and then maybe I wouldn’t be in this mess. I wish I didn’t pretend to not see the caution tape that had weaved its way through your bones. Then maybe I wouldn’t have wasted so many of my drunken thoughts on you. Maybe my fingers wouldn’t have typed so many words around your name. Maybe I wouldn’t have splintered bones and patched up lungs and my heart wouldn’t have begged me to let it rest, just for a while.
Yet still, your music played on.
We didn’t have a novel romance. In fact, we had quite the opposite. There were no great triumphs and happy endings, just razor sharp words, and wounds that never found time to heal.
We were more like Romeo and Juliet – a love that was more tragedy and pain than actual love. A love that only thrived in quiet spaces behind locked doors when no one else was around to answer your call.
And I know you only ever wanted me in the dark, but for me that was something. Because at least you wanted me. Because this way I could at least justify why I couldn’t help but grow weak in the knees every time I saw that fucking smile of yours. And when you finally decided that my espresso brown eyes were too bitter for your taste buds and that my fingers no longer danced along your skin in ways that made you worship the devil hidden so deeply inside of me, I was left with scraped knees, bleeding hands, and a habit of smoking too many cigarettes out of my bedroom window at 4 AM.
And still, I wanted you.
See, for me, you were always that guilty pleasure I couldn’t kick. That thought that ran circles around my head when my fingers lost their way between my thighs in the dark. Loving you was pain and destruction, but it was the most transcendental thing I had ever done. Night after night it was as if you’d lasso the moon and I’d get lost in your milky way, light years away from emptiness. You were my escape into the stars and our infinities were boundless.
And though I had quickly become the girl you only texted at 3 AM when that empty spot next to you in bed started to swallow you whole, the second I felt your hands on my skin I was wrapped up in an old familiar tune that tricked me into thinking we could share the same galaxy. That maybe you meant it when you called me beautiful. That maybe you didn’t have to down a few shots of whiskey and snort a few lines in your basement to love me.
And sometimes I thought that maybe we all had to face a little bit of pain to make it out alive. That maybe the red marks your fingers left around my throat were out of love, and not resentment. I thought that maybe if I’d just stick around for a bit longer, you’d realize that my curves and dips and valleys were the exact landmarks you could find yourself getting lost in for the rest of your life. Like the electricity, I felt when your fingers touched my body was enough to overpower the spark you felt when her hands would grip you just the way you liked. Just how I had done myself, so many times before.
Or maybe I had just become addicted to the way it felt to lose myself in the too tight grip of your fingers around my wrists.
Loving you caused more damage than the supposed meteor that hit the earth so many years ago. Yet, somehow, for some reason, I always found myself in the backseat of your goddamn car.