The Comfort Of Silence

By Demeter

EMAIL: Demeter


'This is not about you!'

Those words were on the tip of my tongue just this morning, before Jim, very reluctantly, went to work. I know he's still worried about leaving me alone, worried about what I *could* do. Hey, Jim, what's the matter, do I have 'Suicidal' tattooed across my forehead?

Well, maybe, only visible to a Sentinel.

I can sympathize. Those mood swings are sometimes too much even for myself.

I know--

There's something between us that's so special not even Alex could touch it, a bond that defines our relationship very clearly - beautiful in theory. But I guess the Guides of Burton's Sentinels never had to worry about bills, or paying the rent, or a career of any kind.

And it doesn't help when Jim tells me not to worry because he earns enough - that's just not the point. I want to put in my share, be an equal, do my fucking job here. Right, if wishes were horses...

I've got to do something. For starters, I could clear the table and wash the dishes, but even imagining that seems too much of an effort. Can you imagine how I feel about applying for a job - any kind of job? Honestly, I could use the money. The way things are, I just don't know where to begin. I don't want to think about it either.

Probably, Jim will be back for lunch, checking if I'm still among the living, but until then, I could take a nap, maybe. That came up somewhere in my psych classes; the fact that depressive people sleep too much.

I could tell you why.

It's a great comfort to just pull that blanket over your head and hide from the world outside, ignoring for a while that it doesn't help you any to sleep the day away. I'm not really keen on using a razor once more; it was indeed painful. I still long for the warmth and the dark though - there wasn't any light at the end of a tunnel, or any animal spirit, as far as I can remember, only blessed silence.

Lying in bed in the middle of the day is what comes closest at the moment.

Just where do I go from here?

I can't turn off the thoughts. There was a time when I was dreaming about becoming rich and famous with the Sentinel story, and still protecting Jim's identity. Or, the more realistic version, getting my Ph.D. and a job, and still protecting Jim's identity. It's all out of reach now. I can't think of anything that'd 'make it better' - except for one thing.

What harm could come to you, if you break a contract, but you're not around for the consequences?

Blessed warmth, and dark, and silence is still a fantasy that calls to me--

But what about Jim, then?

He's made it very clear that he could work with Megan, however, he doesn't want to. Nothing wrong with her as a co-worker, 'but she's not my Guide. You are.'

I didn't tell him that I was mad at him for those words, for the responsibility he threw at me. You could say I asked for it, okay. I told the guy that he's my Holy Grail once, and meant it. Mean it, actually. I'm thinking in circles here.

There's my part, and then there's his.

When he told me, 'how could you', I had this vision of a ten-year-old Jim Ellison who had to realize that his Mom was gone and would never come back, the first in a long row of betrayals and abandonment. I'm not stupid. I realize that what we've come to mean to each other, can hardly be topped, by any other relationship anymore, which would be the greatest thing if it wasn't for real life.

If we could have just gone on like before, when it seemed like we were living in a soap bubble together, separated and protected from the rest of the world, no matter what - each day I realize a little more of what is lost.

No going back.

Well, who the fuck am I now?

It's moments like this when I have to reassure myself that the safety box I packed is still there. Yes, I wrote my name on a dotted line, and have kept my part of the bargain so far, but I really needed a backdoor. So there's this little package hidden under the mattress, which contains just enough Sominex to get me safely across the river Styx. I went to different pharmacies actually, so that nobody would suspect anything - and it's really just there for an emergency.

Not today, it's not that bad really. Just to know I could.

The traitor in me laughs at the image, but I finally fall asleep.

The End

May 6, 2005