She laid in bed beside me, with her back against me. In her front was the wall. Slowly, she spread out her fingers and rested her palm against it, as if trying to feel the coldness of the concrete.
I didn’t see it coming.
For a few seconds, she let her warmth pass from the center of her hand, to the tip of her fingers and then finally to the concrete. It looked to me that she wanted to leave a mark.
From behind her I stretched my arm to reach her hand and fit my fingers between hers.
“You belong here.” I wanted her to feel.
But just as soon as my finger touched her skin, she took her hand off the wall.
I was puzzled.
I reached my arm again, this time toward her face, to turn it to mine. I gently felt her left cheek on my palm. I caressed it. It felt warm… And wet.
Then she took my hand off her face, held it for a moment and sighed.
She didn’t say a word.
It seemed as if the coldness of the wall passed into her instead.
“It ends here.” She said in a voice more hoarse than when she had her worst cough.
It was the longest twenty-seven seconds I’ve counted.
“What… did you say?” I hoped I heard wrong.
With her thumb, she massaged my knuckles. It didn’t help calm my senses.
“It’s not the same anymore.” She said after she stopped massaging. This time, her voice dropped a few more pitches.
“You don’t love me anymore.” I said, supposedly in a question.
She let go of my hand and rolled to face me.
“I still do.”
“Then what are you telling me?”
She traced my face with her fingers. From my forehead, my brows, my eyelashes and eyelids, to my nose and lips.
“I don’t feel that you love me anymore.” She said. I watched her tears fall sideways to the pillow.
“But I do.”
“That’s what you say. But I, I feel like I’m nothing to you. It’s just so different now. I wish you didn’t change.”
“I thought you said you don’t want us to end. We were not going to fall apart.”
She didn’t say anything.
She rested her forehead against mine and hugged me gently.
“I love you.” I told her.
With her fingers, she closed my eyes. I held her close enough for her to feel my heart beating. I wanted her to be the last girl to ever make me feel my heart beat as loud as it can. I wanted her to be the last. We stayed like that for minutes until I finally fell asleep.
“Carlo! You’re gonna be late!” My sister woke me.
“I’m up.” I mumbled.
She babbled a lot before closing the door after her. I heard her, but wasn’t able to make anything out of it.
I opened my eyes. I was facing the wall. The wall was facing me.
So I was right. She really didn’t love me anymore. She just couldn’t tell me.
I spread my hand to reach the spot where she put hers. I wanted to feel her warmth again.
It’s been forty-three days.
She really did leave a mark.
She really did leave…