The mug is too hot between your palms, scorching them, leaving them red and raw and open like your heart, but you grit your teeth through it. Welcome it, even. It’s a distraction, as much so as the artsy music that plays a little too loudly over the speakers, the scent of vanilla and chai and too much perfume, the spots of coffee that have stained the table beneath your hands.
“This isn’t…” the voice pauses, that same voice that you’ve come to know better than your own. The voice you’ve read inflections into, that you’ve silenced with a press of lips. The voice that, until today, had carried something like love underneath it.
“This isn’t because I don’t care about you. You know that.”
I would’ve given you everything, you scream in your head, swallowing hard around the lump in your throat. Everything, anything. You would’ve tried.
Dark eyes are studying your face, as if there’s supposed to be something there, some cue for her to continue. That what she’s saying is accepted. Understood. Right.