The Yellow of You

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Short story I wrote in college: the assignment was to write about our death from someone else’s perspective. Morbid, right? But I always tend to enjoy any excuse to be emo and dramatic:)

The Yellow of You

“I love you more than all the eyelashes in the world.” You were so random sometimes.

“You’re never out of new ones, are you?” I brushed your bangs away from your eyes, but they soon fell back into place.

“You should try it, it’s very satisfying.”

“Alright. I love you more than all the freckles in the world.” I’m not very original, you were the poet. But hey, I thought it was cute.

“Weak.”

“Oh c’mon, everyone knows there’s more freckles than eyelashes in the world.”

“Are you kidding me? There are millions of people who don’t have one single freckle.”

“Yeah but then there are other people covered in them.”

“But it doesn’t matter because everyone has eyelashes.”

“That is false. Besides, have you ever counted your eyelashes? Not that many.”

“Have you ever counted your freckles? You have way more eyelashes.”

You were probably right, but I thought I was fighting a fair fight. “Are you forgetting about the ones on my butt?”

“No, those are my favorite.”

You smiled that smile where the creases of your mouth formed fake dimples. I loved those. You always said your body tried so hard to produce something you had always wanted. I told you one day that they weren’t that special, that in Chemistry, we learned they were actually a dominant trait. You didn’t care. You got pissed, ranting about how you would have a boring recessive gene.

I probably would’ve come up with something better than freckles if I would have known. I would’ve done a lot of things. But we finally rolled out of bed and said goodbye. I only pecked your lips, thinking how late I already was for work. But you understood. You didn’t like it when I messed up your vanilla lip gloss anyway.

What college student still wears vanilla lip gloss? You’d punch me and say “This college student.”

You waved out of your window as I sped down the highway and the next time I’d see you wouldn’t be in fake dimples and sticky kisses. I only ever saw fragments of your favorite yellow dress caught in some of the glass and metal.

They said I didn’t need to identify the body, that they used your teeth or something. How CSI right? All they really mean is that the body’s too messed up and they don’t want me going psycho. As if seeing you would’ve made it harder than it already was. As if I already didn’t have a picture in my head of what you looked like. I had seen blood, it was hard to miss. So what would’ve been the difference? But I guess I’m just saying that. I probably would have gone psycho. Trying to piece you back together or something. I mean, for God’s sake, I didn’t even believe them when they said you were dead. I wanted to play fucking doctor, grab some Toys R US stethoscope from my younger brother and find your heartbeat.

I kept on thinking about time and how it all matters. The cliché, what if I would have been with her for five more minutes? Then you would’ve been on the highway five minutes later, and then there’d be no wreck. Or you’d be stuck in traffic because of a wreck killing somebody else’s girlfriend. But seriously, what if I would’ve kissed you goodbye one more time? A long, 30-second kiss. Taking off all of your Bath and Body Works “Cake Icing.” Would that have made a difference?

Someone had taken your shoes and placed them neatly by a police car.

“Young man, I think it’s time you head home,” some officer gripped my shoulder. I could feel his wedding band through my shirt and I wanted so badly to be standing in front of you in a white dress instead of you covered up with a white sheet.

I was hugging the yellow flats I bought you that year I worked at Journey’s for minimum wage. You told me that was the stupidest job ever for a “white male college junior.” You told me to go apply at a bank, and I finally did.

“Did you hear me, son?”

I glanced at the 52 card pickup of “Monty the Mazda.” You always had to name your cars. And then I headed home to curl up in bed, surrounded by everything you had ever left at my apartment.

Eventually, I took the shoes off my desk and put them in the box in my closet with all of our pictures. You forgot to take the sticker off the left one, I did that for you. It was dirty and faded, $24.99 Size 7. Later, I took the sticker out of the trash and smoothed it back on the bottom of the heel. One of the corners refused to stick, curling up, no matter how many times I laid it flat. I kissed it over and over for hours, tears soaking into every inch of yellow.

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One response »

  1. I’m glad it’s just a story … but now I keep trying to think “what yellow dress was her favorite that year?” but I never saw you enough to know … that would be really sad.

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