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Dinner with friends, and you are there. I don't know where you came from, but you are there. Someone has mistakenly invited us both to the same social function and I can palpably taste this air turning colder and solid through inches of distance as your discomfort erupts when you see me here, swaddled in coats and waiting. You do not want me to be.

You say nothing, eat nothing, and leave far too soon with no excuse.

(I can't even bring back my memories of our time together because they have been so brutally destroyed by everything that then came after, and the painful way that you fill this room with unwelcome.)

Friendly stories exchanged over chocolate, and the warmth of the best friends I have ever known is what I will take from this dinner instead of your look and distaste. I see the sparkle in her face, watch the light dance across little hairs of his cheek and smell the life pulse all around me, and I feel good.

I let you walk away.

Trying not to hate you as I sit back to feel how all this love feels so much better.

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