She watched him from the dark corner of the room. Saw him toss back another shot, the seventh or eighth one that night. She wondered what had driven him here, what demons had taken hold of him and sent him to this dark, dingy little backstreet bar. The coastal town wasn't known for being the best of places, it was the end of the interstate. Everything and everyone got dumped into this little town sooner or later. Including her. She lived for it though, this was her home, she knew the streets like the back of her hand, knew everyone in them. He was new though. Something she hadn't expected. She couldn't place it but a feeling of empathy and compassion surged through her when she saw him. She wondered what he was hiding, what he was scared of, what had broken his heart; for she could see it, glistening in his eyes, heard it in his speech, saw it in his movements. He was alone. She slowly approached the bar and slid onto the stool next to him. He looked at her quizzically.
Hey. What are you doing here, beautiful?
Getting a drink
He chuckled Obviously. I mean what brings you to a place like this. Girl like you shouldn't be in such a seedy place.
I live here
You live here? Here? At the bar?
She giggled No. Here. This town. Its mine. I know everyone and everything that goes on in this little town.
Ah. So you know why I'm here then, eh?
No. But I can guess.
Why don't you take a shot at it, love?
What if I don't want to?
What if I want you to?
What if I want you to tell me?
He smiled wryly. Thought you were gonna say that.
So? I've got all night...
He sighed. Where to begin?
At the beginning.
What do you know about being alone? What do you know about having your whole world cave under and no one being there to help you get out of the darkness? I know so many people, but...even still...I'm my only friend.
She laid a hand over his. He reached for another shot glass. She took it away from him.
What? He asked accusingly.
This won't help anything.
Helps calm me down.
Let me help.
How can you? What can you do to pull me out of hell? You know, I already have a gun...all I need is the money for a bullet. What's there's to stop me?
I don't know. But I can do something. I can listen.
Is there anyone that ever listens? Anyone that ever cares? What's one more broken heart in a sea of so many?
I'll care. If you'll let me.
He smiled and reached out to cup her cheek You're the first person to ever tell me that.
I know what its like to be there, where depression is the only ghost that haunts you. Where broken hearts are as common as promises. From one broken person to another....let me tell you...there's hope. You just have to know where to look
Maybe sometimes you don't have to look. Maybe sometimes it comes up and sits down beside you, the only bright spot in the blackness, like an angel suddenly appearing to pull you from hell. Do you still want me to tell you?
You have to ask that? I offered to listen. I'm not going to offer if I didn't want you to.
Fine then. I guess it started about eleven years ago...I was nine....