Sunday, 31 July 2011

...Joe - Chapter 2

Chapter 2
 I’m waiting for the fuzz to clear. For that bright white light to show me the way I’m going is the right one.


I wake up with the sun in my eyes and a funny taste in my mouth. I reach around until I find the alarm clock that rests by my bed and stare at the neon lights that gaze back at me, 12.20; somehow it feels so much later than that. I roll over to find Jonie perched on the windowsill, smoking, she must have felt me watching her because she turns towards me quickly, enough to give a normal person whiplash. 

“Morning Joe” she says softly, almost chillingly. 

The Jonie that sits before me now is almost a shadow of the girl she was the night before, like a living nightmare. The whole of last night feels like a living nightmare. I run a hand through my too long hair and decide that today is a good day to get a haircut. Unable to find my voice I wave a friendly “hello” back and gesture for a cup of tea. She nods back at me, but before I have time to swing my legs out of the bed her words hit me, like verbal diarrhoea.

“Joe I’m really sorry about last night, I just, she is, and I mean it’s….” Jonie splutters, unable to find any other words she stares at me and I stare back, trying to comprehend the Jonie that’s staring at me and failing badly. I shrug my shoulders and tell her to forget it, my words coming out more like Kermit the frog then Joe the err, Joe. 

She stares at me and I stare back, unsure what to do. A situation like this is new to me, to us, in fact. Jonie has never apologised for anything and it’s a given that she doesn’t need to. It’s just an understood fact. Except when we were 6 and she ripped the head off my G.I. Joe man, then she had to apologise, it was necessary then, it’s not necessary now. 

“Jonie, don’t worry, you know how it is, it’s ok” I say, trying my best to reassure her but not believing a word. 

“I know Joe, but it’s like being in a really long, dark tunnel and not seeing a way out”, with that she turns away from me back towards the window, back towards her memories and I turn towards mine. My head swamped with memories of Anna and those eyes, those perfect blue eyes. They burn through my memory, through my own eyes and I can’t stand it anymore, I need her too much. I rest my head in my hands and wish for the memories to erase themselves, drift from my mind and into another’s – just like she did. 

I stand up and head towards the door, her eyes still swimming in my head; I glance back at Jonie and feel my stomach flip. I don’t understand why I feel like this towards her; after all she’s just Jonie, nothing more, even if she’s all I wished for in a woman. I put these thoughts from my head and concentrate on breakfast and finding food in my bare kitchen. 

I come back up and Jonie’s sitting in a towel, already showered – have I been downstairs for that long? It amuses me that I’ve been so caught up in my own thoughts that time seems to run from me. I hand a cup of tea to her and a slice of toast, she mumbles a thanks. We eat in silence. I keep glancing out of the corner of my eye hoping to catch a glimpse of the old Jonie, but I can’t see her. When did we get this old? It never used to be like this, it used to be fun, and we used to have fun. The silence between us rips through me and I can’t stand it – I have to fill it, God what happened to me? I used to be able to sit through silence and not feel the urge to surrender to it, but this feels like an overwhelming barrier threatening to consume me. 
“Can you drive me to Alexs'? I need to pick up the rest of my stuff”
“Yea, let me just get cleaned up” I say, thankful that Jonie broke the barrier first. 

I get up and make my way to the bathroom, wondering if it’s a good time to shower. I think it is and before I know it I’m standing under the hot water and I feel happy. The water beats its soothing pattern onto my skin and I let go, I release all the shit of yester-night and I’m just happy to be able to have a hot shower. I close my eyes and let the water rinse over me, but there they are, those beautiful blue eyes and they pierce through my own with enough venom to knock a snake out. I open my eyes but I can still see her with me, standing next to me, her hands running over my body, sliding down my chest and reaching for me. I shake my head, knowing that this is just a daydream and I need to force myself back to reality. I dry myself off and look in the mirror – man I seriously need a haircut, I didn’t realize it had gotten so long. I make a mental note to ask Jonie when she’s in a better mood. I go back into my room and find Jonie engrossed on the phone and I mouth “Are you ok?”

She rolls her eyes and mouths back “not now”.

I shrug my shoulders and dive into the back of my wardrobe and pull out a t-shirt that I hadn’t seen in years. Vintage. I shake it out and put it on and finish getting dressed.
I glance back at Jonie and nod my head towards the door, she nods back and we head out.
We drive in silence to Alexs', a sound I’m getting too familiar with. I can see that Jonie’s panicking, she has that look in her eyes and she’s wringed her hands so tight that their void of blood.

“Geez Jonie, calm the fuck down, it won’t be that bad” I say trying to lighten the mood. She shoots me a look that screams die and I back away, cowering behind my wheel. 

We finally get there after what seems like a century and Jonie jumps out before I even pull the handbrake up on Lola. I take a deep breath and allow Jonie that one slip up; she is after all going through something that’s destroying her. I watch her walk slowly up the stairs to her old front door, fumbling with the keys in her hand, she drops them more than once before she is finally able to open the door and go in. I watch the front door for a while, hoping to see Jonie emerge any second.

After 5 minutes I turn away, staring down the street, not looking at anything and trying my best not to think about her. I turn the radio on and let the noise take over me, gently tapping my fingers to the beat on the steering wheel. Lola doesn’t mind, I know she enjoys a gentle rhythm. The thought of that makes me smile. I stroke Lola’s bonnet clean of dust and promise her and myself that I will give her a proper clean inside and out. I close my eyes and rest my head against the headrest. Memories of Anna and I flood back to me, the first time we met, the first time we kissed, the first time we, well I, you know. You see you probably think I’m obsessed but it’s not like that. It’s not like I sneak into her house and sniff her underwear whilst wanking over the family portraits. No it’s deeper than that. She was my first. Ever. And it’s not like I haven’t had girls after her, I have and they in their own right were and are amazing, but Anna. Boy, she just blows my breath away. Everything about her makes me tingle all over; she has this power over me that I can’t control, no matter what. I guess, it means I love her. Geez, that makes it even worse and I know she knows it, that’s why she can do these things. 

Lola’s door swings open and Jonie dives in, startling me out of my thoughts. I look towards her and she’s gone completely red, shaking from head to toe. She’s crying again and I don’t know what to do, loads of thoughts are flying through my head, but before any one of them finds a way out of my mouth Jonie orders me to drive.
I start Lola up and warm her into 2nd; we’re halfway home before Jonie finally tells me what happened in there.
“She was wearing my Stone Roses t-shirt”
“What? Who was?”
“How the fuck do I know who she is Joe”
“Ok” I say trying my best to calculate what to say without riling Jonie up anymore. I take a deep breath and jump into the crazy unknown that’s become Jonie’s world.
“Right, but what exactly happened?”
She stares long and hard at me and I can feel tiny beads of sweat developing on my forehead. I hate it when she looks at me like that, it kills me. I try and concentrate on the road without her knowing how uncomfortable I’m feeling right now. She finally turns away and takes a deep breath. Here it comes. 

“I go into the house and she’s got Jimmy Hendrix blaring out of the speakers. So fucking predictable, I just knew you know, that she must have someone else there. So I try grab everything as quickly as possible you know, but I can’t find my fucking Stone Roses shirt and you know how much I love that shirt and it’s not in the fucking washing machine or the bloody dryer or you know in that pile of clothes we keep by the sofa, so you know I have to go into that fucking room where that fucking music’s coming out of and I push open the door and….and” Jonie trails off and I sneak a glance at her, scared to see what I might see. She takes in another deep breath and continues.
“There’s this fucking girl lying in my bed, in my Stone Roses t-shirt, letting my girlfriend”
She shoots me a look, telling me that I-need-to-shut-the-fuck-up-coz-its-not-helping and continues.
“Letting, letting, my girlfriend pleasure her. Fucking licking her out Joe! Right there in my bed, in my fucking t-shirt and they didn’t even stop when she saw me” at this point Jonie’s started to bawl, loud, hot sobs that rack her body. 

I can’t watch her go on like this. I pull the car over, ignoring the angry beeps of passersby and I wrap Jonie in a hug, pulling her close to my chest, stroking her hair and I give her a kiss on the forehead, letting my lips linger a little too long. I can feel her tears sinking into my t-shirt, soaking my chest; I pull her tighter towards me, letting my head rest against hers, I take in that familiar Jonie smell of cigarettes mixed with that cherry shampoo she uses and my heart skips a beat. Damn I can’t seem to shake this feeling. I pull her away from me and wipe the tears off her face with the cuff of my t-shirt.
“She smiled at me Joe; she looked right at me and smiled”
“Well, Jay, do you know who she is?”
Her face crumples and fresh tears well in her eyes.
“How the fuck would I know the whore’s she sleeping with Joe! It’s not like I keep tabs on all her sordid secrets.”  
“Jonie, I…”
“Oh just drive Joe, please, just take me home”
I go to speak but the words are lodged in my throat like a pill that just won’t go down. I push Lola into first and keep my eyes glued to the road, glad to look at anything but Jonie. We drive for what feels like hours before Jonie stops crying and says
“I wanna go to Craig’s”
I can’t help but smile; she knows exactly what to say and when to say it.
I make her low 5 me before I crank Lola up again and point her in the direction of Clapham and Craig the not-so loveable druggie and head towards a happy, happy ending for the both of us. Well at least for the next couple of hours it will be. I wink at Jonie and turn onto the main road, trying not to speed but I’m so friggin’ excited I can’t help myself.

It doesn’t take us long to reach our destination, you can tell just by looking around you that it’s not exactly the greatest part of Clapham; most of the shops have shut and their windows boarded up and so many kids just hanging around, what for only God knows, but there they are and there they’ll always be I guess. But the unfortunate outcome of small children isn’t my concern right now.
I find a spot around the corner; I hate to leave Lola where I can’t see her but I don’t want anyone to think I’m associated with Craig. Jonie’s out of the car like a flash – I’m beginning to wonder if there’s some sort of competition I’m not in on and that I’m losing horribly. 

I clamber awkwardly out of Lola and give her a once over to check that all’s ok, and nothing dodgy looking is lingering around her and I lop after Jonie – who by now is a long way ahead of me. By the time I catch up to her she’s waiting patiently on the steps leading up to Craig’s door. She doesn’t want to go in first and that’s understandable – Craig always gives Jonie the once over and not on the sly. I’ve always felt uncomfortable around him and I’m a guy – God only knows how Jonie feels. We knock twice on the door, the staple greeting for those coming to buy and not smoke. A guy opens the door and looks at us through blood shot eyes so far in the back of his head he might as well turn around, it’ll probably feel more comfortable.

“Who the fuck are you?” he asks in a grizzly bear tone and I’m convinced that by the way he’s rocking backwards one blow would knock him over.
“I said who the fuck are you?”
“We’ve come to see Craig” Jonie pipes up in her I’ve-had-a-bad-day-don’t-fuck-with-me tone.
The guy laughs and staggers back a little and I can see Jonie getting angry.
“Just move out of the fucking way yeah” Jonie growls.
The guy stops laughing and he’s glaring his bloodshot eyes at Jonie, I grab her arm and pull her behind me, as if that’ll protect her from the crazy druggie.
“Look mate, we come here all the time and she’s not in a good mood yeah, so don’t listen to her yeah, just let us in, yeah mate.” 

I make to move past him but he blocks the doorway. I sigh and look him straight in his eyes. Fucking crack head. He looks from me to Jonie then back again and thankfully steps out the way, well just enough for us to squeeze past him. I get past him fine but Jonie has the unlucky pleasure of brushing up against him. Nice. He laughs and eyes her up as we make our way down the hall, littered with crack heads and junkies. The place is dark; it seems as if they don’t know how to pay their electric bill. Either that or if the lights were on then they’d be able to see what sordid condition they managed to get themselves in.

I open the door to Craig’s “den” and I swear it’s darker in here then it is in the hallway. Jonie squeezes past me and closes the door, it takes awhile but my eyes adjust to the dark and I can make out a dim light in the corner, which is emitting a muggy red sheen over the whole room – ties in with the crack smell I think. Through the dim of the light I can make out 3 figures sprawled on what looks like a makeshift bed and a dirty mattress. Why is it that dirt always shines bright in the worst conditions? I ponder this for a while whilst taking in my surroundings, until Jonie gives me a sharp kick on my shins. 

“Joe, what the fuck are you looking at?”
“Nothing” I mumble back, trying desperately to adjust my eyes to the light.
Jonie shoots me a seething look and whispers “Is he dead?”
“What?” I whisper back, not trying to hide my shock.
“Is he dead?” she furiously mouths back.
“What! No.” I say still shocked at such a ridiculous question, but curiosity takes hold and I glance at Craig lying precariously on the floor and I go to kick him but Jonie stops me. Damn.
“What are you doing?” she whispers angrily at me.
“What? You thought he was dead” I say forgetting that we’re meant to be whispering.
“Well, I didn’t want you to kick him” she whispers back, visibly pissed.
“What you bitches want?” floats at us from the darkness and we both jump, startled by the sudden sound and movement. I turn in the direction that it came from and I see Craig propped up on his arms, supported by his bitches – I mean women.
“Well we’ve come for some weed” I say tentatively, disgraced by how small and pathetic my voice sounds. Man, I’m such a wimp.
I snap back to reality and hear Craig laughing; it rips through me like a knife – why does no one respect me?
“You want weed yeah?” he laughs again, “how much you looking for? A blue? A ben?”
I go to speak but Jonie jumps in before me.
“A ben” she says coolly. Damn I wish I was like her.
“Aite” he says slowly and in the darkness I can just make out the whites of his eyes and their rolling just as much as my head from the fumes in the room.
“Well? Don’t you want it?” he says angrily, pissed off that we’re taking up way too much of his time.
“It’s in the box” he points lazily to a small green, at least it looks green, box and I go to open it but he stops me.
“Not you, you” he points at Jonie and laughs, I swear he thinks I’m undercover police, he keeps giving me that look – why the fuck do we keep coming here? I run a nervous hand through my hair. Damn I need a haircut. That’s probably why Craig doesn’t like me.

Jonie takes out a small bag and holds it up so Craig sees exactly what she’s got and I hand over the money tentatively. I always think he’s going to cut me and I jump slightly at my own thoughts. He laughs at me and I feel like a right prick. We head back down the hall and past the crack heads and the junkies and the guy that gave us shit at the front door. He’s passed out in his own sick and I give him a good kick for luck and I have to use all the power within me not to run towards the door. I refuse to believe that I’m a pussy.

We’re out the door in no time and I can finally breathe. Jonie looks at me with a “what the fuck” look. I just shrug and lead the way down the stairs on our mission back to Lola, looking to my right and to my left; you never know who’s watching you.
I check Lola over and there doesn’t seem to be anything wrong with her so I climb in and wait for Jonie who’s trailing behind me, looking less like herself. I sigh and wonder if she’ll ever recover, but as soon as she gets in the car she has that look on her face, that greedy, weed look and I catch on to her excitement. Man we haven’t been this excited over a spliff since year 10. I catch her eye and we laugh. We both know that this is going to be a good evening.

We take the long way back home to avoid Alex. I don’t know why but it feels necessary. I’m skipping red lights just to get back home; I’m that eager. I can feel the weed burning a hole in my pocket and then I see her, standing on the corner of my road talking to that guy, fuck, what’s his name? Jack? Lucas? Wait no Stephen. That’s it, Stephen, the guy who she dumped me for at that party and then who dumped her, so she called me and of course I came running to save her.
I can’t fucking believe it, there she is, flipping that gorgeous mahogany hair of hers and laughing with him and oh my gosh she just touched his arm! WHAT THE FUCK! She used to be like that with me, she used to touch my arm like that and look at me like that and…
I turn round just in time to slam my foot on the brake before I run over a kid whose standing in the middle of the fucking road, clutching a bloody red football.
I’m shaking all over and my hands seem to be glued to the steering wheel.
“Fuck me; he came out of fucking nowhere!”
“No he fucking didn’t Joe! What the fuck were you looking at?”
Jonie swivel’s around in her seat looking around the street and then she stops and turns towards me slowly
“Oh my gosh Joe”
“Wait Jonie, it’s not like that”
“It’s not like WHAT Joe? You nearly ran over a fucking kid coz of her, of her Joe? You could have killed him! When will you finally get it into your fucking head that she’s no good for you! She’s a fucking crack whore and not worth a minute of your time, you, you, ah just forget it, I just, enough. I’m not gonna tell you again, this has been going on for way too long Joe. Way too long.”
“Let’s just go home, yeah Joe”
I finally peel my hands of the steering wheel and shift Lola into 1st and then 2nd and make the short journey home.

Friday, 29 July 2011


This is not just a stream of constant thought, it is a constant drum of anticipation. The hope to write something great, but somehow not being able to. It's the joy you feel as soon as you strike gold but that pit you fall into when you realise gold is merely zirconia or worse, polished rock. It is the joy I felt (everyday I saw you) when I first kissed your lips, when our bodies entangled together to make bliss. Ensuring our love was solidified with one action.
It is I love you, it is how do you want me, how can I change you, where are we going. WHERE ARE WE GOING?
It seemed like there was always a path we should have been walking on. That we as a unit should have been going, a destination, a set point that should be hit at certain times, certain dates.
First date - kiss, second date - kiss more, third date - third base, fourth date, fifth date, sixth date - meet the family, seventh date, eighth date - move in, ninth date, tenth date - I love you.

I can't do this.
I back away, hands up, defeated. Burnt out, not wanting to show my hand, play my heart. Walk away.
I'm sorry.

Thursday, 21 July 2011



Unexpected distance
Two lovers drawn apart,
Forced between two different worlds
Breaking their poor hearts.
Unexpected suicides
Hanging from an edge,
Swinging from their boundaries
Of love and their sweet death.
Unexpected portions
Of love and pure deceit,
Two lovers reunited
By death,
Their great release.

Friday, 15 July 2011


So before all the long winded novel writing I used to write a lot of poetry. The ones I'm sharing with you (willingly) are "old", written a while ago but still very true. This week I'm giving you my favourite. I wrote this after my Grandad passed away, he was a big part of my life and I loved him to bits, I still do.

Final Curtain
No music shall accompany this orchestra of sorrow,
This dreaded dance of death
With a fear of no tomorrow.
No singing shall be heard,
The choir shall resign,
For in this life of merriment
This death will sure be mine.
The church it will be silent,
The visitors all in rows,
Awaiting the final curtain
On death,
The only show.

Sunday, 10 July 2011


So this is the first chapter of the infamous novel. It's a couple of weeks before the "deadline", but I already had it written so I thought why not?

The story is told through the main character Joe and it's about his life and how easy it is to get wrapped up in yourself and others etc. I'm also trying to explore the idea of infatuation and what happens when you take it just a step too far. This isn't a great description, I'm hoping the work will speak for itself. Remember this is only the 2nd draft! Enjoy.


I feel like I’m constantly holding my breath. As if the air around me is stagnant, and if I breathe it in, I’ll never be able to breathe again.


Chapter One

As she lay completely still in my arms, I wondered, is this it? Is this all there is? Am I not able to offer her anymore then a quick fuck underneath the stars in a strange man’s garden? Why me? Why this? I can feel myself getting angrier and angrier – but what’s the point, it always comes back to this, back to her, back to this sordid liaison. I can’t lie like this, not with her, not any longer.
“Anna” I whisper “Anna, wake up, it’s 3am, and I need to go.”
She doesn’t stir, so I brush her hair gently away from her face in a desperate attempt to wake her.
“Anna – fuck baby I can’t leave you here by yourself.”
“Go without me” she mumbles sleepily.
With desperation so strong it even makes me sick “You know I can’t do that”. But why can’t I – why can’t I leave her here?

She turns away from me and I know that once again I’m going to have to carry her – to play the hero, not that she’ll remember in the morning – she never remembers in the morning.

It’s a struggle but I manage to get her into my car. We had so many good times in this car, but I have no time to reminisce, she has that look on her face and I know that once she wakes up… I try not to think about it, I put my foot on the gas and head for home.
“Joe?” Anna’s awake and by the sound of it, she’s in a good mood.
“Yea hun?”
“Why the fuck haven’t you strapped me in?”
Are you serious, are you FUCKING SERIOUS? I try to mask the anger that’s rising in me, but my face is burning red and my palms are sweating.
“Well?” she says, with that look, I fucking hate that look.
“Sorry babe, I wasn’t thinking”, but I was thinking, so clearly, so very, very clearly.
“Well” Anna says slowly, “what if we had an accident and YOU ran into a car, and MY head went through the windscreen? How would you feel then?” She spits that last sentence out with so much malice that I can practically feel the upholstery melting and all I can do is wish. Wish that what she was saying would come true and I would be so grateful. Grateful that she would finally stop looking at me, stop looking at me for good. She’s waiting for an answer, I can tell, but there isn’t one I could give her that could make this situation any better. I try and concentrate on the road, but her eyes are staring at me, bulging, demanding an answer that I just can’t give. Eventually she turns towards the window, obviously pissed. I reach to turn the radio on, but just as quickly she turns it off. For the rest of the ride we drive in silence, a sound so familiar between the two of us. I pull up to her house slowly with the lights off, the same as always. 
I turn towards Anna trying my best to reconcile her mood, “Baby?” I reach out to touch her arm but she instinctively pulls it away from me as if she’s just been bitten.

Without saying a word she gets out and slams the door. Fuck, she knows not to do that, she knows how fragile Lola is, she was there when I, when we. I can’t think about it. 

I take my cue to leave from the oh-so ritualized curtain twitch her parents have perfected and crank up Lola, hearing her purr appreciatively - at least I can turn something on. I decide to take the long way home and I find myself going past our old hangouts, on the good side of the river as we; me and Anna, used to call it. I slow down when I reach Eddies and The Hole, each facing each other off on the corner and completely identical in look, but were two of the best places to get in if 1. You’re under age and 2. You’re under age. It’s not the greatest place in London but the drinks are cheap and the music’s good, as long as you don’t mind the sweatbox feel and the smell of 24hr musk. The Hole was the first place I took Anna, we were 16 and it was our first date. I can still remember how close our bodies were, the taste her lips left on mine, the way her breathe was so hot on my neck. 

My daydreams interrupted by an inpatient driver behind me, clearly pissed off at my 5mph driving. I wave him round me and he zooms past as if the devil himself were chasing him. I take one last look at The Hole and catch the eye of the bouncer, who by now is looking at me suspiciously.

By the time I get home the sun’s threatening to rise and all I can think about is my bed and how much I want to wrap myself in my duvet and sleep for an eternity. Everything aches. This night has been too long and it seems by the look of it it’s going to get a little longer. I check that Lola’s okay and head towards the shadowy figure sitting on my doorstep, fear rising swiftly in my throat. I quickly scan through all the possible midnight callers and finally realise who it is and breathe a sigh of relief; I wasn’t prepared for a midnight tussle.
“Jonie?” I say, already knowing the answer, but my misty mood needs confirmation.
“Joe?” she says slowly “Where the fuck have you been?”
“Jonie…I….umm, well” I say stumbling to find the right words that don’t include Anna, back garden and drunken sex.
“Oh God” Jonie says already knowing what I’ve been trying to hide; “You were with her weren’t you? For fuck sake Joe she’s playing you, she-“
Before she can finish I try to cut in, but Jonie’s too quick for me, tricks like that don’t get past her. She raises her hand to me and I can tell she’s carefully picking her words, you know, for maximum impact.
“Look Joe, she’s a fucking whore beast, for fuck sake she, no, you know what, I’m done talking” she wipes her hands in a signifying gesture and stands gesturing towards the door with her head – the only way Jonie can, that it’s now time to go in and crash. 

I laugh quietly to myself, whore beast – that’s a new one, Jonie must have been storing that one, waiting for the right time to use it. I watch Jonie struggling with the great mound of bags she has and forget that there must be a reason to why she’s here, again.  
“Jonie, what happened?” I say tentatively, picking up a few bags, trying to guess the heaviest.  
“Alex kicked me out, she says that she needs time to find herself” Jonie says mockingly, putting on a posh accent she continues “and how can one possibly find oneself whilst being, attached” spitting out the last word bluntly she turns away from me, trying to hide her face, but I can see fresh tears glistening in her already puffy eyes.
“Jo, I’m sorry, but you know that this, that she’s, not good for you” I say, trying my best to make my voice sound convincing, but I can’t stand this; I can’t stand seeing Jonie like this. In fact I’ve only seen Jonie like this once and that was in Year 9 when Lucy Mulgrave spread a vicious rumour that Jonie was a serial slag, since then she’s never let her emotions run away from her. Seeing her like this breaks my heart. 

Alex and Jonie have been “going out” for nearly 3 years now and she always pulls this on Jonie, every time something attractive comes along, Alex spits out this rehearsed speech like a well trained actor. Find herself my arse, she’s found herself alright and it took six different women to help her. 

“Joe, please” Jonie says nearly sobbing, as if somehow she’s in my head and has heard my stream of consciousness, “I just want to go to bed and forget about this, about this whole evening” with that she turns and faces the door, as if it will miraculously open, just by sheer willpower. 

I know this isn’t over, but for now I don’t push it. I slowly stand up behind her, my muscles aching for the warmth of my bed, and open the door, wondering where her keys have gone to, but by the looks of it she picked up everything but them. 
“Could you grab the rest of my bags” Jonie says, trying to stifle her rising hysteria.

I nod at her, she knows that it’s a given but I guess in the state she’s in, she needs to know that one thing in her life is a sure thing. I pick up the rest of her bags and give Lola the old once over to check that there’s no one dodgy hanging round and make my way up the stairs to my well deserved rest. 

By the time I reach my room Jonie’s already curled up on the good side of the bed, facing away from me and I realize that in this light, in this moment of time, she’s the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen. I feel my heart twinge and I wonder why, but I shake it off, it’s just me being sentimental I guess, at least I hope it is. I go up to the window and watch the sun poking its head out of the clouds and I slowly close the curtains on her sepia silhouette. Time for a cup of tea I think and make my way down to the kitchen.