Complete (Incomplete)(3)By: Lindy Zart
“I never said I did.”
Scott’s head lifts and an eyebrow follows. “You don’t have to say it. I mean, look at you; drooling over a magazine article. The guy’s a jerk. It’s not like he calls or visits or appears to care about you in any way. He doesn’t even send a postcard. Not once has he come to visit you since he went away to California. Also, he’s a dick.”
“As opposed to just being a jerk,” I interject dryly.%
His mouth opens and he scowls at me. “The guy punched me in the face and I never did anything to him, other than try to protect you from being hurt by him. And you got hurt anyway. What’s your deal?”
“I'm glad our breakup and the ensuing heartache was all about you and your pretty face getting messed up.”
“That isn't what I meant. I'm just trying to help.”
“I'd rather you didn't.”
Scott scowls. “I don't understand why you still care so much about someone who has given you no reason to.”
“I broke up with him,” I state, feeling the need, even now, to defend Grayson. He would have stayed for me. We might still be together had I not pushed him away—only I did.
“I broke up with him. I hurt him first.”
Scott rolls his eyes. “Whatever. Still doesn’t make sense. Why not get over it and move on?”
I cross my arms so I don’t grab the magazine and run. I have moved on, but I am not over him. I don’t have a good answer as to why I cannot do so. I could say it’s because I still love Grayson. I could say it’s because I miss him, long for him, compare every guy I date to him and none of them measure up. But it isn't any of that.
It is because every song he writes is for me. It is because, yes, there is sorrow in his eyes, all the time. It is because I am the Lily he loves and misses the most; I am the Lily tattooed above his heart in the perfect shade of my eyes. It is because we are tethered to one another, no matter the time, the distance, the pain or regrets or mistakes, or even the silence, between us. I don’t understand it, especially when we have both moved on, at least in the ways most noticeable, and live our separate lives, but I know we are not right for any other human being and we never will be. So we hurt—because the only person that can make us happy is not with us.
That sadness in Grayson’s eyes—it is a reflection of the sorrow staring back at me each time I look in the mirror.
“We were best friends once,” is all I say to Scott.
“Whatever. I’m here because Cindy and I are getting married and I wanted to tell Mom and Dad. You know, important things.”
“Really?” I whisper.
Scott grins, nodding. “Yeah. Really. Pretty awesome, huh?”
I grab his hands. “So this means…you won’t be at Mom and Dad’s mooching all the time?”
Scott pulls his hands away. “Like you aren’t doing the same.”
“Hey, I just steal the mail.”
“Where are Mom and Dad anyway?”
“I think they're grocery shopping.”
“They took vacation days from work to grocery shop together?”
“It's the little things. I have to get back to work. Congratulations on your upcoming wedding. I'll send Cindy a sympathy card. And you missed some juice.” I point to the table and floor, my shoes squeaking as I walk through unseen spots of liquid, magazine tucked carefully to my side.
The August sun forces me to squint as I head to the white Ford Taurus, its fiery presence heating up the red scrub top and black pants I wear for my work uniform. I am not required to wear scrubs every day, but seeing as how I never really know what I will be doing as the workday goes, it is easier to have them on should I need them.
As I open the car door, my eyes unconsciously fall to the white house with green trim across the street. Chin on hand; I watch it for a moment as a collage of memories seep through me: sunshine, chocolate, warmth, completeness, desire, loss, devastation, and most importantly, love. A smile, small but undeniable, tugs at my mouth. The years with Grayson as my friend were truly the best, no matter the current situation. I am sad about the way things ended between us, but I can also look back at our friendship and smile too.