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I don’t know what I hated more: myself, or the fact that my crying woke him up. It couldn’t be later than two in the morning, I had woken up from another nightmare and I found myself huddled in the same spot I always went to in times like these: the bathtub.

It was a bad habit I got myself into since childhood, but the coldness of the tub gave me a comfort most things couldn’t. I had been good about keeping my pain hidden from the rest of the world, but by night it came crawling back to me in the form of dreams and flashes of guilt.

The tears would come before I could stop them and I always found myself in this tub. He never knew, and I never told him. What was the point? I’m a girl stuck in reverse who can’t seem to let go of yesterday and take in the joys of tomorrow. My whole life was like a damaged tape, repeating itself when it shouldn’t and having a hard time moving forward. I always could repress my sobs, and I wondered if I was louder than I had thought or if maybe, just maybe...he knew this whole time.

His footsteps creaked against the wood and I didn’t have to look up to know he was at the door frame. The air buzzed with silence, and a moment crept by before he took a few more steps and was at my side. He stepped into the tub opposite of me, causing my smaller frame and his larger one to press together, our legs entwining.

He didn’t say anything, but his green eyes never left my face. I finally looked over and rubbed at my face, hoping he couldn’t see the tear stains on my cheeks or how red my eyes were in the dark. “Hey,” I whispered.

“Hey,” he whispered back. His voice was gentle, and it made me choke on a potential sob that I swallowed. We stared at each other for so long, I couldn’t tell if it were just the longest minutes of my life or if time really had ticked by.

“I’m sorry,” I choked out.

“For what?”

“If I woke you.”

In the darkness, I could see him frown. “Even if you had, it’s nothing to be sorry over.”

I looked away. “No, but I should be sorry for other things.”

“Like?”

“Nothing and everything. The way I am.” I shrug, feeling myself lightly shake. “Not telling you anything.”

He didn’t say anything, he just took my hands in his and brushed his thumbs over my knuckles. “You don’t have to tell me anything you don’t want.”

“I know...but this is something you deserved to know...” I looked up at him and a jolt of realization hit me. “You knew all along, haven’t you?”
He paused and he searched my face and eyes for nothing and everything at once. “...yes, I’ve been waiting for the right time to approach you.”

“But why?”

“I’ve been waiting for you to come to me. Whatever drives you in here is something I knew I couldn’t pry. I knew I could ask at any point, but I knew it wasn’t the right time. Hell, maybe even now isn’t. But I don’t like the idea of just leaving you in here any longer. I hope you don’t hate me for that.”

“I could never hate you. You know that.” Silence filled the air once more, though louder now that it buzzed with some odd anticipation. “I...really don’t know what to say other than there are a lot of things in my life that I’m not proud of. I had a sister, and I never got to say goodbye. We had a fight, and I was too stubborn to have talked to her myself. She passed away before I could say I was sorry, and I’ve never forgiven myself for that.”

“That’s not your fault, though.”

“Yes it is. Maybe not her death, but I could have turned around and done something. But I didn’t. There’s not a moment where I don’t see her face in my dreams, where I don’t feel a pain of guilt, where I don’t miss her. Even after all these years it’s like the pain never went away. And to make it worse, no one gets it. Everyone always pats me on the head and tells me it’ll be okay, and then tell me to be happy that I knew her like that would suddenly make all the pain go away. It got to the point where I couldn’t talk about it without people changing the subject in hopes it would make me feel better, but it only fueled the pain and guilt. People say time heals all wounds...but I’m still waiting.”

“And that’s okay.” His voice came out strong and jolted me out of my thoughts.

“What?”

“It's okay to feel that way.”

I stared at him and he smiled his crooked grin, a smile I fell in love with when we first met. I waited for him to continue, but he didn’t.

“What do you mean?”

“That’s one thing I hate about society, no one wants to deal with sadness. It’s taboo, like no one is allowed to feel anything other than happiness. It’s okay to feel sad, and it’s okay to feel this way. To be honest, I doubt you’ll ever fully heal, and that’s okay, too. When a plate breaks, saying sorry to it doesn’t make it go back to normal just like when a snake sheds its skin, it doesn’t go completely back to the way it was before. That’s why we have scars, it tells stories of a painful time for all of us where when we look at it, we cringe but in the end there’s nothing we can do about it. It happened. It’s not like you can erase it as much as everyone would like that, but it is okay to feel this way. I know it’s hard to not let it consume you, but the key isn’t to get better or happy by ignoring the problem, the key is understanding that you are not and never will be alone.”

He squeezed my hands and gently brushed his fingers against my cheeks. I didn’t realize I had started crying. When I did, I began to cry harder. He gathered me in his arms and held me, not caring if I got his shirt wet or if I was loud or not. He felt warm and real and for the first time, I really didn’t feel alone with this.

He rubbed my back and brushed my hair with his fingers. When I calmed down, he helped me up and led me back to our room where he tucked me in our bed and kissed my forehead.

“Thank you,” I heard myself whisper. He looked at me with surprise and confusion written on his face.

“For what?”

“For nothing and everything.” I smiled up at him and he smiled back.

“I love you.”

“I love you, too.”

For the first time in years, I felt lighter. He crawled into bed with me and I immediately snuggled into his arms and closed my eyes. I felt tired, and I never felt as tired as I did right then. I was able to drift into pleasant dreams for the first time in a long while, where I didn’t see my sister’s face on everyone’s face I met nor did I feel the strong sense of missing her like I had. And for the first time in my entire life, I knew I could learn to love and forgive myself. If he could, then I knew I could as well.
Edit: put away for now due to it being published in a magazine. :) It'll be back up in a month.

W-what? What is this? A..Daily Deviation?? Really??? I've always dreamt about this but never actually thought I'd see the day. I've been having an awful week and this is the best birthday present a girl could ask for.

I'm really touched that all of you like this. I wrote this back in October after talking to one of my best friends about losing a friend back in September to a giant misunderstanding that I know probably will never be solved, a friend I considered my family and I guess still do. My friend consoled me with the pain, and he was the one to tell me that it's okay to be sad and if wounds don't heal. I wanted to capture the essence that is my best friend and all the amazing things he says and does in the form of a story. Whether you're in the man's shoes, the woman's, both or neither, I hope you can all relate and find peace within you all that things will get better and it's okay to hurt as long as you know you are not alone and never will be alone.

A special thank you to :iconofonesoul: and :iconirrevocablefate: for making this happen for me. I can't thank you both enough, you've turned my week around and have given me the best birthday present anyone could ask for. So....thank you. :heart:


--------

Thoughts inspired by a conversation with someone I really care about.

Featured here!

Daily Lit Recognition for October 28th, 2014Daily Lit Recognition for October 28th, 2014
We are proud to feature today's Daily Literature Recognition! 
You can show your support by :+favlove:ing this News Article. 
Please comment and :+fav: the features and congratulate the artists!
Poetry
Featured by TwilightPoetess

The Selkie by IlweranMirime
This short poem explores the lore of the Selkie
in a way that will make you reconsider everything.
Featured by: OoJitkaoO 

Welcome Mat by cerealnovels
A poem about the importance of having a home.It also
mentions the little lies in everyday life in a really interesting way.
Prose
Featured by: OfOneSoul

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Daily Deviation

Given 2014-12-23
Scar Tissue by FlashyFashionFraud is captures a powerful moment. ( Suggested by OfOneSoul and Featured by HugQueen )
:iconflowerpower71:
Beautiful. Simply beautiful, Girly.

You really do have a gift with words, my friend. I felt myself tearing up while reading this.

I'll be honest, judging by the title and when you mentioned about the Reader crying in the bathtub, I thought that this story would deal with self-harming but I am so so happy that you based it around emotional scarring instead.

I truly 100% agree with the guys speech about just because you say sorry, doesn't mean that the problem goes away. That is so true and I can relate to that, speaking from the "plates perspective, if you get what I mean.

All in all, thank you so much for writing this. This is so beautiful and easily one of my favorite pieces of yours. Wonderful job!
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
16 out of 16 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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:iconmollyofthemoon:
MollyoftheMoon Featured By Owner Jun 1, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
This is so beautiful. I Heart  it.
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Jun 1, 2015  Professional Writer
Thank you :)
Reply
:iconmollyofthemoon:
MollyoftheMoon Featured By Owner Jun 2, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome :D (Big Grin) 
Reply
:iconhopeburnsblue:
hopeburnsblue Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2015  Professional Writer
Such a sweet story with great messages ... congrats on the DD!
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2015  Professional Writer
Thank you :)
Reply
:iconwishfully-yours:
wishfully-yours Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
I didn’t realize I had started crying.
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2014  Professional Writer
:cuddle:
Reply
:iconthegalleryofeve:
TheGalleryOfEve Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Congratulations on your well-deserved DD!!! :iconflyingheartsplz::iconlainloveplz::iconflyingheartsplz: :clap::clap::clap:
I’m very happy for you!!! :iconloveloveplz: :tighthug:
Reply
:iconnepiix:
Nepiix Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014
Thank you for writing this beautiful story. I hope you keep on writing these. I teared up for the first time in over a year of reading these :)
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Writer
Thank you for reading, it means a lot :) 
Reply
:iconhopeful-beauty:
Hopeful-Beauty Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Student Traditional Artist
Very real, our emotions that guide us.  Or regrets that we battle with daily, but we have to and must remember, that we are human, and we only hurt ourselves by holding on to regret, or hate, or whatever the emotion might be.  I'm glad there was someone to comfort and guide you, but most of all, let you feel what you needed to - to get through it.  You are blessed.
Reply
:icontravisblack1997:
TravisBlack1997 Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Student Artist
Did you get the inspiration from the red hot chili peppers?
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Writer
not quite, but the song did inspire the title 
Reply
:icontravisblack1997:
TravisBlack1997 Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Student Artist
You a fan?
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Writer
RHCP? Yep! 
Reply
:icontravisblack1997:
TravisBlack1997 Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014  Student Artist
There's still hope for the world! :D
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014  Professional Writer
XD I'm guessing you're a fan
Reply
:icontravisblack1997:
TravisBlack1997 Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2014  Student Artist
Yup :P
Reply
:iconmidnighttiger8140:
MidnightTiger8140 Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Wonderfully written, and a beautiful message. Thank you for sharing this, and congratulations on a well-deserved DD. :)
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Writer
Thank you for reading :)
Reply
:iconxadrea:
Xadrea Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
You're so amazing Caledonia, you don't even know :heart: You're an amazing writer, artist, and photographer, you're going to go so far! All of your efforts and work is wonderful, this is going to be your year, you just wait:heart::kiss::heart::kiss::heart::kiss::heart::kiss::heart:
Reply
:iconmoonkestrel:
MoonKestrel Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I did not go to the bathtub, but the whole "I woke him up and shouldn't have" did happen a lot to me, and as I was reading this my eyes filled with tears and I wanted to share it with the person that was there for me and would whisper to me until I got through it. Beautiful writing and narration, and the topic is also very good. Thanks for writing this.
Reply
:iconfocusloser:
focusloser Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Student General Artist
You captured the essence of the concept better than I've ever seen. 
I'm also glad to have found someone (even if it's fictional) that agrees that time doesn't heal all wounds.
I've always considered "time heals all wounds" to mean "ignore it, and it will go away." It has driven me crazy since I can remember.
Reply
:iconlintu47:
Lintu47 Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Congrats on the DD! :dalove:
Have a nice day! :love: by CookiemagiK
Reply
:icondonotcrosskilliross:
DonotcrossKilliRoss Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2014  Student General Artist
this, this right here...hit me hard for some reason, its beyond me. i'm in class reading this and i'm about to start bawling my eyes out, thats how hard this hit me.

and this has me inspired to draw something cause honestly, this is beautiful.
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Writer
Awww girlie! ;A;

You should! I'm really honored I have inspired you, and I'm really happy that this has touched you in some way. :cuddle: Thank you for reading! 
Reply
:iconhankinstein:
hankinstein Featured By Owner Dec 17, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Great short story, and congrats on being featured! You deserved it. You're a very good writer.
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Dec 23, 2014  Professional Writer
Thank you :) It means a lot! 
Reply
:iconyattoz:
yattoz Featured By Owner Edited Nov 12, 2014
I like the way you write. I like it a lot. Some people ask why we should read if there is a movie so tell a story, and I would have answered with this. There is much more than simply a situation and a scene, it's much more like telling emotion with words, and that's hard enough to admit you do it with very well.

Plus, it is finally a quite simple phrasing. I'm not a native english speaker, and I'm very far from talking/reading English every day (in fact I'm just a French student, well), yet I could understand it perfectly well. And this is part of the style, and I think it renders marvelous here (sorry if my expressions are unclear..., well, it's marvelous).

(Just found this piece of art completely by chance, a night I was wandering here. I'm not familiar with DeviantArt...)
Reply
:icondailylitrecognition:
DailyLitRecognition Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2014

Your wonderful literary work has been chosen to be featured by DLR (Daily Literature Recognition) in a news article that can be found Here. Be sure to check out the other artists featured and show your support by :+fav:ing the News Article.

Keep writing and keep creating.
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2014  Professional Writer
Wow!! Thank you so much!! I'm honored! 
Reply
:iconbecauseimhiding:
becauseImhiding Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
this was a lovely story~
guess the person you had the conversation with's just as lovely
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2014  Professional Writer
Thank you :)

Trust me, he is. I don't know where I'd be without him.
Reply
:iconkliger99:
KLiger99 Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
A sad happy story.
Reply
:iconflashyfashionfraud:
FlashyFashionFraud Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2014  Professional Writer
Thanks!
Reply
:iconkliger99:
KLiger99 Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
Your welcome.
Reply
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