23. Chapter 22.
Jade cried when she left the hotel room. She kissed me on the lips, which was weird but whatever. Harry stands in the door between the living room and the bedroom. “How was that?” He asks “Good, yeah. She um asked me to do the thing for Theo” “The thing?” “The eulogy” “Do you want to?” “I want to make Theo proud” Harry just nods. “I am going to the store, do you want anything?” I shake my head. I really don’t want to take advantage of Harry’s generosity. He has already done so much. He just takes his keys and leaves. I take my seat back on the bed and try to write something for tomorrow. After ripping out and scrunching dozens of drafts I decide to give it a rest. Writing was never something I forced. I kind of just came and went. Now that I have a deadline and a topic I find myself struggling. And everything I write just doesn’t seem good enough for Theo. There seems to be no words to describe her and to say goodbye. Harry comes back and slams the door. I think he is drunk again. When I come out of the room his hands are full with bags of food. “Sorry Vera, I had to close it with my foot” he shrugs. I take the bags from his left hand and set them in the kitchen. I want to say something smart about how much food he bought for the two of us but I decide against it. I still want to push him away. “How’s the eulogy coming?” “It’s not.” I start putting the food away. Harry turns the radio on Frank Sinatra’s five more minutes comes through the speakers. I find myself humming along as the last of the food is put away. Unsure of what to do next I decide to make Harry a home cocked meal. It wont be much because I can’t really cook but I hope he likes poached chicken and beans. I throw together a quick brownie while the chicken cooks. “Something smells good” Harry smiles. His hair is wet and falling on his face. He has had a shower. Jesus he looks good. Quickly he runs the towel through his hair to dry it. “Brownie” I mumble. I head to the bedroom. Harry grabs my arm and stands me in front of him. “What is the matter Vera? This isn’t you,” he pleads. “I don’t want to talk about it” I bite my cheek to hold in the tears that threaten to spill over. Harry puts his forehead on mine. He closes his eyes and breathes in. “I still love you,” he whispers. My heart almost shatters. “I know” Harry’s hand drops and I go to the room and pull out the notebook. I get lost in writing. At first I write about Harry, which turns into a play by play of my nightmare. Which eventually turns into a half decent start to Theo’s eulogy. Shit dinner. I run to the kitchen and my heart stops. Harry is setting the table. He has beautifully decorated our plates with food and the brownie is on a cooling rack on the bench. The best part is he has done all the cooking dishes unless he just put them in the bin. “Harry” I whisper. He just smiles and pulls out a seat for me. “Thankfully one of us has a brain, or else we would be eating burnt food” I comment. “You have a beautiful mind,” Harry whispers. Why is he so sweet? Is he trying to make this harder? I don’t want to sit in silence anymore. After Harry’s earlier sober confession I had made the mistake of looking him in the eyes. This is not the same Harry I have come to know. This one still looks the same physically but at the same time he looks so different. So gone almost. I know that look I used to see it on my mother. Harry is broken. I broke him. I don’t want to give him the wrong idea but I owe him a lot. And he is the closest friend I have ever had. He knows more about me than anyone. I still feel like I don’t know him. The real him. The free him. “So do you have any other friends or just me?” I will try to heavily friend zone him as much as I can from now on so he doesn’t think I am trying anything else. I don’t want to hurt him anymore. He laughs; a real laugh and I find myself smiling hugely. “Sadly no, just you” he smiles. “Aw come on” I push “Yeah there is a group of us back in London.” “Have you talked since you got put away?” I wonder what type of friends they are. “Yes” he nods. “They know I never hurt anyone” Good so they are the right type of friends. “What do you guys do, as like a group?” “Every Sunday we go out for dinner. They guys listen to the game while the girls talk about whatever girls talk about over wine” He smiles at the fond memories. “Sometime we would go to the drive in, or bowling.” “That sounds like fun” I smile. “Yeah it was” “And it will be again, once the trial is over you can go home and be normal again. Free just like you deserve” I wonder when the trial starts. I hope it is soon. Harry nods a takes a large mouthful of beer. “I um started the eulogy” “Really? Can I hear it?” “Its not finished” “Okay, do you want brownie now or later?” “I think both” I smile. Harry laughs and clears the plates. “Leave the dishes for me” I say “You cooked I’ll do them” ---------- Harry is snoring lightly in the bed. He argued that it was my night but I told him to take it because I need the living room light to finish writing Theo’s eulogy. My eyelids feel heavy. No Vera, no sleeping. They shut or a little bit. I can’t open them but my mind is still awake, for now. The dark envelops me again and I am forced back to the basement. The dream is the same as the last only this time music is playing and a dark shadow is dancing around the room. Theo’s body is not on the table surrounded by blood. This time she is in the open freezer. There is blood everywhere but she lies in it with no nose or mouth just blinking. ------- I am hot and sticky as I sit up on the couch. I was only asleep for a few minutes. Before my mind catches up with my feet I am already getting into the bed next to Harry. “Vera?” he questions. Yes Jesus it me, it’s always me. “I can’t sleep,” I whisper facing away from him. Harry brings me closer and wraps his body around mine. “You will come with me tomorrow right?” I ask “They couldn’t keep me away” I have a dreamless sleep.