Let me into your life and it will never be the same. I can create chaos in your life by merely sitting quietly in the room with you. I can read a book in the courtyard and somehow, someway, I will be destroying something.

This is a warning. You won't listen.

You will have romance and fluttering joy and strange adventures and you and I will dance on an empty schoolyard in the middle of the night. I won't like you that way, and chances are I won't realise that you like me that way, which is why we are dancing on this empty square with my arms around you and with the moonlight shining on us and with you warm and safe in my embrace.

Do you remember when I started working with you? How you didn't really give me any real thought untill we worked the late shift on desks divided only by a flimsy corkboard wall? We talked during the slow hours of the evening and went out for a friendly drink together and I complemented your dress or your hair or your earrings and then the next morning you woke up and you thought of me. Of how strange it was to see me without glasses when I took them off because I had a small headache and I could see you just fine anyways. How big my eyes looked, and how deep, with enourmous pupils in the little light from the little red candle on the table. You remember looking me in the eyes and realising you had never before seen how pretty my mouth really is, even if my teeth are a little uneven, or how straight but delicate my nose.

After that, we became fast friends, you looked to see where I was when you walked into work and made sure to time your lunch so we'd end up in the cafetaria. We talked and I warned you I wasn't a really nice person and you laughed and said I was always nice to you. I denied that, and you shook your head and punched me in the arm and said I was the nicest guy you'd ever met. And then we went to that party where the girl from finance, you know, the one that joined us for lunch the other day, suddenly started shouting at me, how I should mind my own business and how she wanted nothing to do with me anymore. I told you we'd been very good friends, I even helped her pick out a dress to wear on her first real date with this guy she had been following around for a while. I told you I turned out to be that guy and you laughed, again, and called me a heartbreaker and a tease and I agreed but during the night you kept looking at me and your eyes kept softly roaming my face. I noticed you looking but I just kept thinking I had something on my cheek or a showing nose-hair and you kept assuring me I looked fine, even great.

I always knew you were at risk.

Everytime you said how it was so romantic but such a waste to go skinny-dipping or out to a fancyfancy dinner or taking a stroll around the forest with a guy who wasn't your boyfriend. I knew you were waiting for me to ask why I couldn't be your boyfriend but I never would because if I had been able to pick up on those signs you would not have put them out there. But I felt I was not really being nice to you, and I knew that at some point we ran the risk of things going as they always do. You tried to tickle me one day and we tripped over the leg of the coffee-table and we landed on the couch in a massive pile, and you wiggled up so your eyes were level with mine and you leaned in for the kiss. I was genuinely surprised and peeled you off me.

We talked for hours after that. About how I preferred your friendship over a relationship, about thinking of you as a sister, about all the hints we'd both been dropping. And you got angry, as they always do, and shouted that I lead you on and that I should go through with what I promised you even though I never made any promises. And I would get angry with you because I was confused and unsure what is happening and feeling attacked for being a friend. You storm out and we don't speak for days. Then, we'll make up and a few weeks from now you will try to kiss me again, or have "a talk" again, and that will be the end of it. And you will feel ruined and stupid and embarrassed and not good enough. And your next guy will not hold up to the light so favourably because he will be there for you but not teach you how to waltz or take you to strange arthouse movies that scare you and then hug the scares away. And every now and then you'll think of me and get angry and hurt and confused all over again.

Me? I'll have a new friend at work and I worked the night-shift with him last Wednesday and his eyes are already lingering on the back of my neck that little bit longer than they need to, and he is already dreaming strange dreams that he should really be talking to his girlfriend about and not me. And I'll lose another friend in a few weeks and I'll be sad and angry and feeling betrayed and hurt and confused. I know I'll never understand why I keep warning people before they get in too deep, because they never listen. He won't. She didn't. You didn't.

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