Part one

‘Could you tell me of the different kinds? I have heard there are many.’

She stared back.

‘They have to be felt, to be understood. Their depth, colour, substance. Only then could you know, and if you are so lucky, you may not have to.

‘Well tell me what you can, so that I might be prepared.’

‘Nothing I say will change that.’

He was resolute. ‘Tell me.’

She didn’t answer for a while.

‘Sometimes, it comes suddenly. As though you were hit by a train. As though you were given a split-second to recognise and react, but instead stood firm, and were hence obliterated by force. You can imagine recovery here. Or lack of.’

He swallowed.

‘That’s not the worst though. There are hundreds of other flavours. Complex, dark, transformative, beautiful.’ She paused. ‘Sometimes it will be as though you were gifted a beautiful crystal necklace. Imagine one as fine as the one Ma wears.

You love it, somehow more than anything. You can’t bear to part with it. It fuses with your sense of self. Gives you energy, strength – it reminds you of love. It reminds you of how much you can love. Unconditionally.

Yet, you become addicted to this feeling, and its beauty. You fail to see that it is in fact, decaying. It begins to tighten, choking you. But you could never take it off.

A cut in your neck pours with blood, yet here, you are clouded with delusion of self-sacrifice. This is a slow death. Crippling, vampiric. It will leave you lifeless, it will hurt to breathe.’

She stared ahead dully.

Frank

His body creaked and groaned, alongside his vocals.

He was used to the dull, constant ache, at this point. Countless broken bones from poor life choices, will do that to you. He coughed once. Then proceeded to cough his lungs out. He mustered up phlegm and spat on the grey pavement. Black. Again, normal now. And that’s what years of drugs will do to you, kids.

It wasn’t really worth it, ay. Most of the muso cunts he’d known had OD’d on some drug or the other. He’d never been in his right mind to start, let alone keep, a proper girlfriend. He’d fucked tons of girls, don’t get me wrong. But after a while, they all started to look the same. Organic masses, that you could stick your cock in. Even keeping that up became harder over the years.

There was that one girl, though. Linda. Blonde messy hair, with black streaks and offensively bright red lipstick. She’d probably be the one, if any, that got away. She wanted ‘commitment.’

He kicked a rock. Was cooked nine outta ten days back then.

He checked his phone. The band was killing it at that time though, touring the country.

Checked his phone again. He was honest at the time, he’d said, ‘sorry love, we’re just not gonna happen. It’s definitely not you though.’

And she’d just cried, after that.

People are too fucking sensitive, in this life.