Chapter 4 : Never Alone
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I’m timeworn edges and faded things. I’m all your ugly expectations and those small moments when you think I might really be human. I’m slipping, down something, going further from you, from this space. I don’t even know what we look like together any more, we’re all mashed up inside one another’s’ cares and worries, those fears that are like pain and pleasure.
We’re boxed in one another’s needs and hopes, I’ve filled up every available space you allow me, and still… It’s not enough. I don’t have any more room left; you don’t leave me any more room. Close me in, hold me close and tell me how brave I must be. I appreciate your sincerity, and the way you’re killing me with your sympathy.
I’ve always felt ragged though: ragged at the edges like a photograph you’ve thumbed far too often, your sweat has faded the image and I don’t even remember why this picture mattered. What was this moment, such an important snippet of life that you felt compelled to capture it forever? Another frame we’re all stuck inside of, ghosts and imprints awakened again and again. A record, caught in a groove, playing the same thing over and over and over. That’s me, in this frame, soft and dying at the edges. Stare at me, smile at me and forget why any of its important.
I’m old, was born old with old eyes and old expectations about the way people are. Right now I can’t recall ever being happy, every being careless and stupid and young. It’s like I’ve got your years and my years and the years everyone’s spent waiting for me, for those chosen things I’m supposed to do. All a horrible jumble-tumble of years, oh god… Drowning in your years, sinking down into them and I can’t remember that I’m still a nothing, a kid nothing and all of you… I can’t do this, please. Please don’t ask me to do this.
I need a saving, just a small one; a token that you can give and expect nothing back. If you’d just hold my hand, or kiss my mouth, or eve sigh in my ear, because those things remind me that I want more. I want to swallow you up when you look at me like that, and I want to fall into your eyes and melt into your skin and forget myself. If you just smile at me, it’s enough because I then I can remember how to imagine what happens next. I can almost feel something, and it pricks at me. Pins and needles but at least that is feeling something, instead of nothing. Instead of this empty…
Look at my hands. They don’t belong to a sixteen year old, because they’re banged up, hurt and ugly. I bite my nails, you tell me not to, like a mother and I think I fall in love with you a little more, because you’re not chiding me, you just care. But yeah, they kid’s hands too, and I didn’t do anything Ginny… I didn’t do a damn thing but just stand there, I stood there and watched and held onto my wand like maybe that would make a difference. He still died, he still fell. Someone really older might have done – anything, I don’t know. Something.
No, don’t. Don’t touch me; come on, not like this; not when I’m no good and just a big lump. I’m nothing for you, you’re sweet and bright, strong and like flames in a fireplace, you always make me feel so safe, like I’m home. Yeah, when I look at you I think maybe I’m home.
But you shouldn’t be the only one who understands how come they can’t see the way you do? I’m not meat and I’m not some damn fool prediction and I’m not a wonder, not strong or anything… I’m just timeworn, worn out and pushed out from anything normal and trapped in everything they want from me. Everything he wanted from me. And I’m afraid, Ginny. Afraid that what you want will be too much, that you’ll want to be nice and you’ll want to love me and stuff, but it will only be like the rest of them. Another box with no lid, another crooked photograph that just goes on and on doing the same thing, day after day. All mindless, no will of its own.
I have will, you know. I want things too, try and work for stuff like everyone else. I’ve tried…hard. For him, and – and for you. I try hard for you Ginny, try hard for love and for not loving and… Everything.
Please. Can we sit here a little longer though? Can we just be here, and I’ll let you hold my hand and our knees will touch and I won’t say anything, not out loud. Maybe that doesn’t matter though, maybe you hear me anyway. It feels that way, like maybe you’ve always heard me Ginny.
I’m sorry too, you know. Sorry we can’t always be like this, because right now this might be a good place. It’s just me and it’s just you and the things we haven’t said, and the things we might say, someday. You don’t seem to care, so maybe I don’t have to either. Life can be like that sometimes, right? Not caring, and being okay. Holding hands.
I might be able to do this though, survive this if you stay; with you here, I’m not alone. Broken, worn thin, lost and trapped… Yeah, all those things. But not alone. Never alone.
Hello All. I hope you've enjoyed this write. The goal of the challenge was to take one word assigned to me -timeworn - and do a stream of consciousness free-write with it, creating a 500+ word one-shot. I was surprised when I realized I was writing with Harry, but I'm very pleased wit the results. The scene is in HBP, perhaps the same night of, or a day after Dumbledore's death and it's just an exploration of what he must have been feeling and thinking at the time. I hope you enjoyed this. If so, be a dear, and leave a review...