Mar 31
zazu's picture

the friends who stay

    Max turns to leave, lifting his face up towards the endless sky, which somehow seems to be a reflection of his own dull, grey eyes, and letting the raindrops beat down on it. He feels the rain as it drenches his skin, his baggy T-shirt beginning to cling to him as he slowly becomes soaked through. His hand's clench and unclench as he waits to cross the street, eyeing the pedestrians beside him with the sort of loathing that stares you right in the face. 
  Presley stands behind Max at the crosswalk, his sneakers beginning to fill up with water at the expense of the holes cut in the toes. He eyes Max nervously, and then suddenly grabs him by the shoulders, pulling Max around to face him. Max flinches and takes a step back, but Presley stands his ground. "Just...why did you do it?" He asks, his voice cutting through the pitter-patter of the rain with a genuine calmness, that he's somehow always able to maintain. You have to when you have a best friend like Max. "I don't know." Max shrugs, pushing his wet hair off of his forehead, "probably 'cause at some point, I realized that none of this was worth it." He looks up at the sky again with anger in his eyes and then over to Presley. "Except you..." he amends, "'cause you always follow me no matter where I go..." he sighs and kicks aimlessly at the ground, spraying water into the street. "Why do you do that anyway?" he asks. Presley pauses, considering... "I don't know...maybe 'cause you let me?" There's a silence in which the two exchange a sort of side smile. "So why did you stop caring?" Presley asks finally. "Why did you do what you did?" "Because it doesn't matter!" Max snaps back. "Everyone just thinks I'm going to blow up the world in the end or something...and who knows maybe I will." "They don't know you!" Presley protests. "I'm the only one who really knows you, remember?" The two lock eyes remembering their history together. "I'm running away," Max says at last, but this isn't really a surprise to either of them. "...because when the world turns its back on us we turn our back on the world." Presley finishes the sentence with an easy grin, just like old times. "You coming?" Max asks, but he doesn't wait for an answer as the red light switches to green and he begins to run past all of the pedestrians and out into the street. This is all routine by now. He continues to run, his sneakers slapping through murky puddles, past all of the shiny new storefronts with shiny, new people inside that he will never care to know. Before Max met Presley he had always found himself searching for someone who wouldn't just fade away when all the shine was out, someone who stayed through all the grit and grime of it all and wouldn't just slip away if it started to rain.
     "Right behind you!" Presley calls out, his answers always the same, the way his promises are. "I'll be here for you buddy," he had said when the two had first met...and what do you know? He was the first person who actually was.