Wide shot opens. It's the side of a highway with dead grass and empty fields of brown and tan. Suddenly a girl enters frame from the right, she seems to be trudging, dragging something, and as she steps in a bit more, we see that she has a leash-like cuff around her wrist. She's got a chain attached to the cuff, and her arm is straightened, but she's lazily and begrudglingly dragging whatever is chained behind her. She seems frustrated, and gives it a big tug, suddenly this corpse-like man stumbles into frame. He is dragging his feet, seems to be unable to give much energy into this walk, but he follows her, letting a grunt out here and there. We watch them drag across the screen at a medium struggling pace, and they exit frame.
CUT TO LIBRARY
The same woman is standing at the counter, checking people's books out for them. She has a very blank, far away look on her face. The zombie-like monster is still chained to her wrist, but it's a reasonably long chain. He has found himself a chair in the corner about 2 meters or so away from her. A man with glasses comes up to the counter with several books. She starts ringing them out with a scanner gun.
Woman: Do you have your library card?
(he gets out his card and hands it to her)
(cont) Hey, what's that?
(points to the corpse. Corpse weakly looks up at him and very quietly groans)
Woman: Oh that? That's just my relationship.
Man: Huh. I think my sister had one of those for a while. But he was never, quite so...
(he motions over his own face in reference to the burned crispiness of the corpse, CUT TO the corpse and we get a better look at him with tattered clothes, close to being burnt to a crisp, maybe missing lips, his teeth look pretty broken up)
Woman: Yeah, well, every one is different.
Man: Did you do that to him?
Woman: I guess so. Well -- I don't know. I'm not really sure anymore. But I'm the one who got stuck dragging him around.... at least until he finally dies.
Man: How long will that take?
Woman: (frustrated) I don't know, is there anything else I can help you with? Just take your books.
I've been listening to Echosmith radio on Pandora. It's been the soundtrack to my runs in the morning, my drives home late at night, the background to my writing in the middle of the night with a whiskey on the rocks next to my laptop. It consists of Bon Iver, Vance Joy, Head and the Heart, and of course accompanied by my past loves of Lumineers, Monsters and Men, Taylor Swift (1989 not her other stuff).
I run in the morning, during June Gloom where the air is foggy and the mist sits in my lungs while I huff and puff and let the tears run down my face. I wear sunglasses, a hat, and a hoodie so no one can see my face. They don't know that I'm a mess, they're probably just looking at my dog bounding ahead of me at full speed, keeping me motivated.
Bobby has no idea in his joyful gallop that he's leading along dead weight. I run because it's the only way to find release before I have to start my day. I have to let go of seeing you in my dreams and kissing your face, hearing you tell me you love me, make love to me, then later on yell at me about how awful I am over an imagined phone, night after night, and waking up with the same bed covers that trick me into thinking you might be underneath them when I wake up. But you're gone. You were never there.
It's been a long time for you, to others as well. They think it's certainly been long enough to stop missing you. But they don't see you in their dreams. They don't hold you one night and get to spend hours laughing and being so happy with you, only to wake up to you being gone. They also don't spend the next night begging and pleading with you not to leave me like I left you. I wake up and you're gone again, but I'm trying so very hard to keep it together until I can finally get home and away from the world again that evening.
Each hour that goes by, my brain panics about all the other things I need to do that day before I can run. Ok, it's 10am you ran this off this morning, you're fine, you're with the baby and you're going to give it all the cuddling and kisses and forget about everything. Crap, she's asleep now. Well, maybe just mess around on facebook. Is her mom coming home soon? Maybe you could get lost in your thoughts and just cry a little bit before she gets back. I wonder what he's up to right now. Is he thinking about me? Is he thinking about how much he hates me? Is he hoping he never hears from me again? I checked his Twitter last week, I can't check it again until I get really desperate. I bet one of these days he'll block me on Twitter just like he blocked me on everything else. I don't think I'll be able to move that day. Ok, here we go, search his name in the search bar, and the panic will settle in as we wait to see if he blocked me. Prepare for an incredible amount of tears. This is literally the only way we have left to connect to each other. Everything else on the planet including skype is blocked. Ok, he's still following me on Twitter. Maybe he silently keeps track of what I'm up to. Maybe he misses me too. No, if he missed me he'd talk to me. No maybe that's not true, maybe he's just still hurting but he's more angry than he is hurting. Should I be angry too? I think I'm still 70/30 sad to angry ratio. Alright, well he hasn't been up to much but this joke was funny, I wish I could favorite it.
Ok, time to drive back to the Valley. There's a new episode of This American Life on Stitcher. I can't listen to his podcast because I would just cry the entire time, but maybe if I listen to this instead of High Pathetically, because he listens to it we'll be connected somehow. Maybe if he calls me ever again I can talk to him about this awesome thing that they're discussing this week. Ugh I wish I could talk to him about Serial. It was so effing good.
Alright, second job of the day is almost over. I can go home, I can drink some wine, watch Netflix, and then have a good cry if I want to, and no one will know. Maybe I'll write in my journal. Maybe I'll pray about some stuff.
Maybe I'll go on Tinder and see if someone else would give me some attention. Ugh, I'm just gonna go on another Tinder date and cry the whole way home again like I always do. I like flirting, but who gives a shit? It's not him. That last guy I couldn't stop thinking about what Will would think about this guy. Would he judge him? He'd think he was really annoying. I think this guy is really annoying. We would both laugh at about how annoying this guy is. I should just delete Tinder, it's a waste of time. I don't even want to have sex anymore. Everything feels like a chore.
God I'm glad I live alone so no one can see how pathetic I am. Drinking wine from the bottle and crying to my dog like some psycho. I should just marry my career and become celibate. How did I let this happen? Why wouldn't he just come with me? I wish he'd come visit. He'd probably hate it in LA anyway. If I heard a knock on the door right now and it was him, I think I'd burst into tears. We could go visit the best open mics and work our shitty jobs while I cooked us dinner and we snuggled with our dogs at night and talked about how someday when we're rich we'll have an extra room for an office and a finished basement. Then I'll start to get jobs on TV and he'll work the road and we'll trust each other and be happy in having puppies instead of children, and eat the best kinds of cheese at 1 in the morning in our underwear and talk about the universe. We'll get married in the middle of the woods and we'll go to Ireland and explore the world together.
This is all contingent if he'll ever even speak to me again. God, I'm a fucking psychopath. How pathetic am I? Maybe I should just start pretending he's dead. It'll be easier than remembering the part about how he just didn't want me anymore. This is all my fault. I was so fucking selfish. About everything. A whiny, selfish brat. Sure he had his problems too. I wish we could just call it off. ToMAYtoe, toMAHto, etc. Haven't we hurt each other pretty equally at this point? He probably doesn't even love me anymore. I guess that's my fault too. I was awful to deal with. But I'm different now. I know I'm different. I'm on my own and I've realized a lot about myself and other people. I'm more patient and understanding and less argumentative. I could be better. But there's no way he'd trust me again. Besides, he's dead, what the hell am I trying to prove?
...Meanwhile on repeat is Bon Iver "Skinny Love" and I cry myself to sleep while I think of new scenes for my script, and wonder if you'll ever speak to me again.
Come on skinny love just last the year
Pour a little salt, we were never here
My, my, my, my, my, my, my, my
Staring at the sink of blood and crushed veneer
Tell my love to wreck it all
Cut out all the ropes and let me fall
My, my, my, my, my, my, my, my
Right in this moment this order's tall
And I told you to be patient
And I told you to be fine
And I told you to be balanced
And I told you to be kind
In the morning I'll be with you
But it will be a different kind
I'll be holding all the tickets
And you'll be owning all the fines