Logan Hughes is studying to receive his bachelor of fine arts degree in Writing with a minor in Art History. He’s the Executive Editor for SCAN Magazine and former Features Editor for The Connector, and needs at least seven cups of coffee per day to stay awake.
It was you, right?
I’ll find you on the sofa. You’ll be there, white t-shirt and gin in hand, on the worn leather with your hand wrapped behind your head like eight months haven’t passed and you just got back from the office. You’ll be staring at the door when I walk in. You haven’t been here in a while and it’s good to see you again. I used to imagine coming home to this—when you went away, leaving me like garbage to rot in this apartment. While you were gone, I’d stand outside the door and press my face into the wood. Pray you were waiting on the other side. Sitting on the couch with your gin. You never were.
This is on you, I hope you realize. You left—what was I supposed to do? You’ll stare at me with eyes I used to recognize. Eyes that no longer hold any familiarity or warmth. There’s something in your tight brow, something I can’t read. Giving up on trying to read you saved my life. But when you went away, I wished for the blankness of your face to stare back at me from across the bedsheets.
You know me. You know how I like my tea in the morning and my back rubbed so I can fall asleep at night. How to make my pancakes and how much syrup I want poured on top. Where I like to go when I don’t want to talk, and how to make me feel okay again. And you know how I get when I drink, and it was so dark in the bar, babe, I thought he was you.
He looked just like you. Pushed his mousy brown hair back with the same hand, same fingers twisting the ends to make them curl. His lips glistened with gin and tonic water bubbles in neon light of the bar. Strange shadows, that made him seem gaunt and familiar at the same time, pulled me towards him across the room. You know I don’t go out, but what choice did I have? You left me here alone and I drank so much and needed someone to touch.
You’re everything, you know that. He was you, babe, I swear. He didn’t mean anything. He didn’t mean anything because he was you, right? You came home earlier than you said you would. Slipped into that rugged bar where we played trivia on Friday nights, before you left. You didn’t tell me because you wanted it to be a surprise, right? I thought so.
But now, seeing you on the couch with a sweating glass, I’m not sure. Don’t be mad, okay? He looked like you, just not as tall. But it was dark and I was on my back. Don’t look at me that way. I was thinking of you when I came.