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    Novak carried an umbrella with her everywhere for nine years. And when he asked her why, she told him, "Ever since my dad died, sometimes it feels like the sky is falling." That was six months ago, and he still catches himself checking for cracks between the clouds when it rains.



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vii.

    He likes to remember her eyes. The left was blue and the right was brown, like two people in one, and faded, like old photographs. But then he remembers that old photographs are the only things she exists in now, and his office will get so small that he needs to go outside to breathe.



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vi.

    He wanted to be gentle, even if he couldn't think of a way how. But things were already ruined between them, and he knew that long before he ever sat her down in his parlor. "If you have to hate me, I want you to," he said. Her face was deadened by the weight of her pain. "As long as you feel anything for me, I want you to." She shook her head. And she kept shaking it when he followed her, his bare feet in her footsteps all the way to the foyer. As she turned the knob, he begged her. Please Novak, talk to me. But all she said was, "I just hope you're fucking happy," and the door slammed so hard that he couldn't hear the sound of everything breaking.



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v.

    It was the dead of night in November when she called. She called and asked him to rescue her and her bloody arms before her brother saw. "Look," he told her in the car, after. "You can't do this, okay?" He wanted to look at her, but he knew she was crying. And he knew it wasn't because of the penicillin shot. Her chin was at her knees. "I just want to be worth more than what I'm drowning in." "Novak. You are." "Not to you, I'm not," she snapped, and it was quiet for the next twenty miles.



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iv.

    She was the first one to say it. "I love you, too," he whispered in the dark, breathless, as the shirt dipped off of her skin. It was something, being in love with a girl that's so vast and mysterious, like the cosmos. But it was only that: something. It wouldn't matter in a couple of months, when he'd be the one who said it first. "We need a break." And when the glow of her starry smile fell, he was left in the darkness of a galaxy with no way home.



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iii.

    She took him to her father's grave in April, down by the waterfront where she had convinced him to throw lit matches in the river during their third date, so she would know he'd be a little safer that night. "My mother buried him herself. She died with the soil still under her fingernails." The headstone had grooves in it, from where the edge of the shore skimmed it. "She loved him," said Novak, "but she held on too tight." He nodded, and when the wind whispered between them, she put her head on his shoulder. And he realized that, maybe it was better to hold on too tight, before it was gone. Before it was just waste at a river bottom.



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ii.

    He grabbed her hand off of the cold grass. "When was the last time you wished on a star?" The rings on her fingers rippled as she made a fist. Her head turned when he tried to kiss her, and a wing of red hair swept her cheek. "I don't." He knew he shouldn't wonder, because everything she said was so goddamned tragic that he would never be able to stop thinking about it – but he asked why anyways. And she told him that she'd always be a million years too late. "Those stars are dead," she said. "Just like my dreams."



-


i.

    For weeks he tried. He tried to say, "I know you're afraid" during breaks. "You don't want to get involved with me, Collin," she told him every time. And it was almost convincing, until one day he saw her fingers trembling under the faucet. "Oh." He leaned against the counter, beside her. "But maybe I do." It took nearly seven hours – after their shift, under her umbrella and a spring downpour. But she said her Saturday afternoon was suddenly free, and he spent the rest of the night remembering how her jeans fell over her boots, how the denim dragged in puddles and she didn't even mind.
because I guess I didn't hold on tight enough.

But once my nails broke, I knew we were finished.
I didn't have anything else to hold on with, and neither did you. That I think we both knew.

God.
I'm so sorry, I really am.




Please.
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:icontheycallmeloud:
TheyCallMeLoud Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2013
I am so tempted to favorite everything you write. I'm not even kidding. Love your style.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2013   Writer
I wouldn't mind that at all. :heart: Thank you.
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:iconlawlessness45:
Lawlessness45 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
    "And when the glow of her starry smile fell, he was left in the darkness of a galaxy with no way home." God, that line is beautiful. Excellent work.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2013   Writer
Thank you so much. :heart:
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:iconlawlessness45:
Lawlessness45 Featured By Owner Aug 4, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
You are welcome dear! :)
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:iconautumn-spirit:
autumn-spirit Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2013
so gorgeous!
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Mar 14, 2013   Writer
Thank you!
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:iconautumnlit:
autumnlit Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2012
This was absolutely amazingly written. Fantastic job!
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012   Writer
Thank you very much. <3
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:iconautumnlit:
autumnlit Featured By Owner Jul 22, 2012
You're welcome ^^
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:icontheartistofwords:
TheArtistOfWords Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
This story almost made me cry. And this is from someone who didn't cry at Titanic, Marley and Me, Bridge to Terribythia(?), West Side Story, and nearly ever sad drama ever made. It takes a LOT to make me cry. And I love it. I really, really love this.

It's amazing, and I can't praise you enough on it. It's very, very good.
Reply
:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2012   Writer
I didn't cry during any of those movies, either. But I absolutely lose it when the dog dies in I Am Legend.

And thank you, as well, for such kind words. :)
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:iconcontradictory55:
Contradictory55 Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012  Student Writer
It's heart-breaking. I honestly can't say anything more than that. Thank you for sharing such a sad story.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012   Writer
Thank you for reading. And you're welcome, as well.
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:iconcontradictory55:
Contradictory55 Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2012  Student Writer
=)
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:iconintricately-ordinary:
intricately-ordinary Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Wow, this is one of the most beautiful things I've ever read.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012   Writer
You're too kind. <3
Reply
:iconconcora:
Concora Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2012   Writer
Your stunning work has been featured in my journal! :love:
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2012   Writer
Yay! :la: Wow, thank you so much, I appreciate that!
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:iconconcora:
Concora Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2012   Writer
You're welcome! c:
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:iconxosoul:
xoSoul Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I'd just like to say that all your writing is stunning.... It all hold so much emotion and power, it grips my heart with the first sentence and won't let go until the last word.
Reply
:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2012   Writer
Thank you very, very much. It means a lot to me that you like my work that much.
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:iconxosoul:
xoSoul Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You're very welcome... I can't wait to see more of your amazing words.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012   Writer
I can't wait to write them, either.
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:iconmacadamiannutjob:
Macadamiannutjob Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012
I love you're style of writing, it's minimalist wording cuts straight to the point and makes the story more bold and emotional.
Very nice :)
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012   Writer
Thanks. <3 I do like this style a lot, haha.
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:iconnotensmsk:
NotenSMSK Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Now this is an impressive piece. It conveys emotions through both the storyline, the expressions and the style of writing. The procession of separate para's really works and the beginning was just beautiful. The ending however felt slightly incomplete but hey, thats me.

A wonderful piece :)
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012   Writer
The ending was actually the beginning, so I understand why it would.

And thank you.
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:iconnotensmsk:
NotenSMSK Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
You are welcome :)
Reply
:iconpsychoticmonkey33:
psychoticmonkey33 Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012
this is amazing. just like all of yur other works. you amaze me.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012   Writer
I'm so glad. :heart:
Reply
:iconqueebi:
Queebi Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012
This is an amazingly beautiful piece.

The style of this, the short paragraphs and the events written against chronological order, all help bring this piece together, as if adding to theme of the story, to the pain and the fleetingness of it all. Again, I commend you on being able to convey so much story and emotion with very little paragraphs and words.

I can't really describe to you how this made me feel, dude, but the pain gushed from your words and lit up my heart in a way that made me pretty vulnerable. Heh. I say that as a good thing, as any writer should be proud of making their reader feel that intensely. I'm really glad I know you and can see these stories of yours. This one struck me very deeply.
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:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012   Writer
People used to tell me that writing a sad story backwards didn't always mean it would have a happy ending. And I think they're right.

And believe me, it pained me to write this. As I kind of explained in the description.
Reply
:iconshawtymanex42:
shawtymanex42 Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012
Dude, once again, I am both speechless, on the verge of tears and.... dear god, I love this. The atmosphere was so blurred, like dark and light, it was so pretty and I felt all the pain in the characters, truly wonderful. And the sentences you write, holy fuck, the sentences you right, never fail to take my breath away and I have to read them over and over, their that darn good. This is amazing, I look forward to everything you write :heart:
Reply
:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012   Writer
Thank so very much! This was one of the more personal ones I did, and it's good to see people liked the turn out.
Reply
:iconshawtymanex42:
shawtymanex42 Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012
No problem! I loved it! :heart:
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:iconvenry:
Venry Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2012  Student General Artist
this was beautiful, and it hurt :heart:
Reply
:iconcolbalt-rain:
colbalt-rain Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012   Writer
Don't worry. It hurt to write, too.
Reply
:iconvenry:
Venry Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2012  Student General Artist
:heart:
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