in the semi-dark

They are all-limbs, sweaty and clammy and sprawling, one smaller than the other but his equal in scruffiness. They share a room, giggling from one big boy bed to the next. As it creeps by in the semi-dark the universe whispers over my shoulder.

You made those people.

I suppose now might be the time for me to reflect on how frightened I am for them—of strangers in parking lots and thwarted love and drunk drivers and unchewed carrot and poisonous spiders stowing away in Costa Rican bananas. But I can’t be bothered.

Not that a fear of carrots is unfounded. It’s not quite that I can’t be bothered. It’s more that being bothered is futile, beyond mindful chopping. The thing that happens at 3 AM never being the thing you fear.

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I back out of the room cursing the humidity for how it makes my feet stick to the wood, each step punctuating the quiet with the evidence of cuddle’s escape. Ben shifts and I freeze. He sighs. Evan breathes and despite the dark I know his hair sticks to his forehead.

Good God. Did they ever not exist?