Song: “Say Something” by A Great Big World ft. Christina Aguilera
I woke up to banging upstairs and groaned as I sat up. My back cracked like I’d just sat on a box of tic tacs. That’s what happens when you sleep on a rock floor. I pulled my pant leg up to see my new tattoo and the banging intensified.
“Geez!” I cried, getting up.
I scrambled to the gate and fumbled with my revolver at the keyhole. I finally unlocked it and jogged up the stairs, in step with the banging outside.
I rushed through my room then to the living room and the knocking continued. Where was One? I glanced at my phone: 4:28 p.m.
Whoa. I really knocked out. What had I shot myself with?
The banging continued at the door and I rushed to the peephole. I gasped and almost passed out when I saw Two standing in the hallway. What was he doing here?
I looked down at my overalls and Converses. I was in the same outfit I’d been in yesterday.
“Coming!” I shouted, sprinting into my room. I changed into another outfit, checked myself in the mirror half a dozen times, then hurried to the door and opened it. He was standing there, looking as fly as always in a gray denim jacket, slim fit jeans, and black leather Steve Madden boots.
Handsome, boy, does he know it.
“Hey!” I said, trying not to sound out of breath. “What are you doing here?”
“I told you I was coming over,” he replied. “Remember?”
“Right,” I shut my eyes, racking my brain. “You did. You did. But I don’t need help with anything…what did you say you were gonna do again?”
He chuckled and shook his head at me. “Can I come in?”
“Uhhhhh…” I looked over my shoulder back inside the house. Thankfully One was so particular about keeping the house presentable so at least half of it was guest-friendly.
“Are you okay?” he asked me.
“Yeah!” I looked back at him. “Sure. Come in. Make yourself at home.”
He walked in and I shut the door behind him.
“You want anything?” I offered. “I’m no Rachael Ray, but I can microwave the heck out of leftover pizza.”
He chuckled. “No thanks.” Then he looked me up and down. “You sure you’re okay? It’s just me. We’ve been best friends like forever.”
“Yeah…” I tried not to roll my eyes. “You’ve made that very clear.”
“Well…” he started, taking a deep breath. “You know how your gun is always jamming?”
I scoffed. “Who doesn’t know?”
“I did some research on revolvers and how they work…and I decided to make you something.” He pulled his hand out of his pocket and held up a tiny silver cylinder the size of my fingernail and I held back a gasp. “It’s a…”
“Missing piece,” I finished, not believing what I was seeing. I didn’t know how I knew, but something deep inside me was screaming that this was what I thought it was. “That’s…that’s my missing piece.”
Two smiled from ear to ear. “Yeah.”
I stared at the piece in his fingers and everything else faded to gray around me. This was the piece that had been missing from my gun my entire life. With this, I would finally be able to shoot feelings without worrying that they’d fail me when I needed them most. I would finally be whole for once. I would finally be…not broken. And it was all coming from the person I’d always wanted, but could never have. My head was starting to hurt.
“Here, let me…” Two reached out and without thinking I handed him my revolver.
He walked over to the kitchen counter and disassembled it as I stood there, still dumbfounded at my beautiful dark twisted fantasy playing out before me.
I eventually walked over to him and watched as he worked diligently on my gun. He was so focused, like nothing else was more important than fixing his childhood friend.
“You’re really amazing, you know that?” I managed to say. “Eight is really lucky.”
“Thanks,” he said, not even looking up. “And I’m lucky to have her. Marriage has been amazing. You’re gonna love it.”
Well, I could’ve loved you, a thought blurted in my head.
Shut up, Me, I thought back.
All you had to do was be honest about your feelings.
We’re not doing this right now.
“Here ya go,” Two finally said, handing me the revolver.
“Thanks,” I took it and stared at it in disbelief. This was really about to happen. I rushed to my room, emptied all those negative feelings from last night then grabbed a handful of new feelings and loaded all six into the camber. Then I ran out, aimed at a wall, and fired 5 straight shots.
They all fired without a single jam. That never happened.
I looked at the barrel and tears welled up in my eyes.
“It works,” I whispered. I looked up at Two and couldn’t stop the laugh that came bubbling out. “Thank you! Thank you so much!”
“No problem,” Two shrugged.
“Why are you…why are you doing this?”
“Because you’re my friend,” he replied. “That’s what friends do for each other. And you deserve–”
“Don’t-don’t-just…don’t ruin it,” I stopped him from saying those dreaded words. “Thanks. I don’t know what to say.” I wanted to jump up and down and scream in excitement, but didn’t want to freak him out. Should I hug him? Would that be weird? “It’s so…I love…it! I love it! It’s so–”
Then the unthinkable happened. My finger was on the trigger and I accidentally fired the last feeling in the chamber straight into his chest.
He gasped and dropped to his knees, holding his hand over his heart.
My eyes went wide in horror as I watched him. I just shot him with a feeling. I just shot him with a feeling. This couldn’t be happening.
He looked up at me and grinned. The feeling was already affecting him.
Eight was gonna kill me.
I couldn’t let this happen. I reached into my pocket, snatched a handful of rejections, and loaded them all into the chamber.
“Four,” Two said, rising to his feet. “You–”
I aimed my revolver and shot six rejections into his chest. He flopped backwards and landed on the floor on his back, staring up at me with shock in his eyes. Just for good measure, I ran over to him, swiped his gun off his belt, and shot him with his own rejections and he flopped like a fish.
Everything slowed to a crawl and melted to eerie black. How had I done this?
He climbed to his feet, limped to the door, then stumbled out without a word.
I looked at the guns in my hands and made a decision. I tossed Two’s pistol to the side then my fingers moved like they were on fire as I disassembled my revolver. I took the missing piece, rushed across the room, and chucked it out the window. I would rather be broken without him than be whole with a piece of him–knowing I’d never have him.
I turned and ran into my room and sat on my bed, hugging my knees to my chest. Maybe this was a nightmare and I’d wake up. This couldn’t be real. Flaming hot tears raced down my cheeks and blurred my vision. So I wasn’t sure if the man in a hood now standing at my doorway was real or my imagination.
He walked up to me and I wiped my eyes as he held his hand out to me. He was holding my revolver–fully assembled again.
I looked up at his face, covered in a black mask and dark eyes that seemed to stare straight into my soul. He didn’t say a word, but we both knew what the message was.
I grabbed my revolver, snatched more rejections lying on my bed, then loaded them in the chamber. Then I rushed through the false door and ran down the stairs to my cell. I locked myself inside, sat in the middle, then aimed the barrel to my temple.
I shut my eyes, tears streaming uncontrollably, then took a deep breath.