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dancing with a ghost / two slow dancers

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sorrow became not a feeling but a fluid that ran through his veins. it would pour from a wound like liquid bronze, splattering into patterns on bathroom tile next to small tools - pins, scissors, needles. in the right light, it looked like blood, and perhaps to others that’s what it was. but every cut drained a nearly infinite source just a bit more. nobody would ever predict the immovable to have such scars. obviously from battles, gossip dictated. voices over imagined speakers declared wars that began and ended in his hands. nobody ever mentioned the casualties. it was only ever about the victory. always the victory.

how do you go back to living when you died but never stopped breathing?

you try to die for real.

even steel can be moved by the fires of an anvil, the fires of hell. it takes more work to shape, but when it is formed, it takes an equal amount of force to bend it again. little cuts wouldn’t do it. he couldn’t make them, though. late night calls would have polnareff over in seconds, locking up anything sharper than a pillow. they would cry, platinum and silver tarnished by their own tears. his arm would show at the removal of his coat an abstract painting of mended skin. pol would work healing creams into his wrists, trying to wash away the darkened lines, perfect cuts. almost a stand’s work. then jotaro wouldn’t speak for weeks. he wouldn’t go to school, not like he did much before. it was too hard, to make yourself live. and having to hear what everyone has to say made it worse. he never cared, until this. he had no idea how they even knew what happened.

on a thread of hope that he could try to be normal again, he went on a walk. his feet felt so heavy. every step piled on in challenge, until he collapsed in front of an arcade. he saw the title of a game he remembered kakyoin wanted to play on a poster. he screamed. flashes of light were in front of his closed eyes when he woke in the hospital. the room, empty, and on the first floor, was easy to leave. in the hospital gown, he stood in the dark courtyard beneath a half moon. the grass beneath him was frigid, sending chills from his spine to his head.

far away, a song played on a record player. it was old, classical. he could hear it, in his mind’s eye. a soft sway fell upon him, and on his back he could feel two hands wrap around to grasp his front. he cried.

never let me go.

but we’re the last ones out.

last ones out.