Don't go changin'
That's what you told me from the start …
- The Veronicas
“I don’t think you’d make a good mother, okay?” he shouted at her.
The last time they had the marriage talk his reason for not wanting to marry her was different. He said he didn’t want children to grow up fearing any god. Six months after that fight, she had professed herself a born-again atheist.
“How can you say that?” Dawn said. Her voice betrayed her, quivering her words.
“You’re too emotional.”
“Well, that’s rich,” thought Dawn, “coming from the man with no emotions. How the fuck would he know what is too emotional?” Those words didn’t come to her, though. Her head bowed as she stared at her hands. She was pulling on her fingers, alternating between them. Did she look insane?
“I am not too emotional! I’m the right amount of emotional.” As she said the words, she stopped believing them. Here she was crying over not getting married. He was right. Of course he was right. She must be crazy.
Dawn stood up and walked quietly up to her room. She locked the door behind her. There were no more tears and no fight left in her. She lay on her bed, hugging the body pillow that had replaced Mike in her bed after he had insisted on sleeping separately from her. Her thoughts had stopped. There was no noise in her head.
She lay there silent both inside and out as the sky darkened and her room became too dark to see in. She was afraid of the darkness but not tonight. Tonight the darkness was just there with her. Nothing lurked in the dark tonight.
She dreamt of a dark-haired man, breathing over her neck as she slept. In her dream, he had woken her and placed his finger on her lips before she could speak. Seeing her still in her clothes, he had pulled her covers back and taken off her clothing; starting with her shoes and working upwards. He placed the covers back over her and lay next to her, on top of her covers.
He placed his arm across her chest, around her shoulders, “I’ve always loved you,” he whispered. “You have to understand that. You have to know…because what comes next…well, you have to know. You just have to know.” He ran a long, soft finger down her face and traced her collar bone with it.
In her dream, she never spoke. He talked for what seemed an hour or more. He had whispered into her ear, his hot breath caressing it and dancing along her neck. He never once stopped touching or holding her. He smelled comforting. He traced a symbol on her forehead with his thumb as he spoke the last words of the dream, “I love you. I do love you. Please remember that.”
She didn’t remember her dream. Upon waking, she found herself undressed with her clothing on the floor of her already messy room. She must have undressed in her sleep. She must have been too hot. That must have been why she was so tired this morning – she couldn’t sleep well because of the heat.