“Winter is coming!” She was much too perky with her pronouncement. Wearing that obnoxious Christmas sweater, LCD lights twinkling out a holiday message of good cheer, I wanted to smash her face with that stupid snow globe she was shaking and trying to make me take.
“This is no surprise to me,” I kept my hands tucked into my jacket pockets. “Days become weeks; weeks, months. Seasons change, it happens.”
“One day that heart of yours will grow three sizes,” she put the globe back into its packing, tucking it away in the shopping bag on the chair next to her. “This is my favorite season.”
I hate the cold. The only part of winter that I like is wearing boots and thick sweaters. Snow is too wet and, well, cold. There is nothing the least bit redeemable about being cold.
The holidays suck. People being nice to you for only four weeks out of the year is the height of hypocrisy. If they aren’t being nice, they’re trying to tear your arm off to get at that last PS3 at Wal-Mart. Good will toward men, my ass.
She was still talking, but I was ignoring her. It was like that tinny Christmas music that is always in the background. You hear it, but you don’t pay attention.
“… leaving Thursday for mom and dad’s.” She finally stopped yammering and was just staring at me. “Were you listening? I said I was going to mom and dad’s this week. When are you heading out?”
Picking up my coffee cup, I drank the last of the hot, creamy latte before standing up to leave. “I won’t make it this year, I’m staying in the city.”
Her lips thinned out to almost nothing. Chewing on her tongue to keep the words she wanted to say in her mouth, her eyes darkened, then finally looked up at me.
“You can’t keep punishing us,” her voice deceptively calm. “We can only say we’re sorry so many times. What is it that you want?”
Buttoning my jacket, I wrapped my scarf around my neck and tugged on my gloves.
“I want to be left alone. I want to be numb… comfortably numb.”
I heard the bell above the door chiming as I left the cafe.