I could tell you some stories, kid. Kid, I could tell you some stories.

Remember that house you went to when you were sick? You wanted Heroin but I grabbed you by your neck and took you home and made you chicken soup. Remember that house where you slept on the floor shivering? You told me that house scared you. A couple years ago, some Satanists lived there. They used to kill dogs and cats around the neighborhood and put their body parts in mason jars. They would fill the jars with formaldehyde and hide them in the walls. During the summer the jars got so hot that they would explode and the tenants would find the shit leaking through their wall or ceiling.

You like my stories? I could tell you some more.

Remember that nice boy you met downtown? He took you in his arms and kissed you, held you tight. He was my friends boyfriend. He died a few weeks ago under a bridge, partly from hypothermia, the other half from alcohol poisoning. No one really cared because no one liked him that much. I wonder if anyone will care when we die. I know I’ll care if you die, would you care if I did?

I could tell you stories of summertime loves. I could tell you about the time we were skipping rocks into the river when we were ten, the sun shining in our eyes, our hearts full of a sober kind of happiness that doesn’t come around much later in life. Benny fell in the water and we all laughed. We tried to build a raft that summer, but gave up halfway through.

I could tell you some stories… Remember when you wanted to gauge your ears?

I knew a guy who gauged his ears so big that his ear ripped. He rolled his limp stretched ear up and duct taped it to the side of his head and it healed that way. It doesn’t look completely normal, just kind of like a deformed ear. Did I already tell you about that?

Have you seen the Butterflies? Every year they flock to Natural Bridges, hundreds and thousands of Monarch butterflies. Kid, you should see them all nestled in the trees, their wings flapping lightly like a little sunshine kiss waiting to greet you. When you’re looking up at them you can’t help but think that maybe life is beautiful, maybe just a little bit.

I could tell you some stories, sweetheart.

I went to Scotland and ran through the highlands and picked heather off the mounds of dead bodies buried there. I breathed in the sweet air and looked to the sky. The sky there felt so close like I was completely free to do whatever I wanted, free to think and feel however I wanted to feel. I laid in the sun with a Scottish boy from the very top of the highlands. I couldn’t understand everything he said, but he had vampire fangs and long black hair. Together we explored a castle, and the dungeon which had been turned into a wine cellar. I saw a big grey owl from Asia. It was beautiful, there were bunnies running around, and it was beautiful.

When you’re better I’ll take you there, darling. When you’re better I’ll take you there and show you this place.

I’ll show you Edinburgh, you’d love it. The city of the dead. It’s supposedly the most haunted city in Britain, did I tell you about it? I must have because it’s my favorite place I’ve ever been.

You wanted another story?

A long time ago when the Scottish and the English were fighting, the Scottish built a great big wall surrounding the city of Edinburgh. The wall took 47 years to build, and when the English came to invade they forgot to lock the gate. I read somewhere that the Scottish only won six battles against the English. One was because of a girl from Dalhousie. I stayed in Dalhousie Castle outside of Bonnyrigg. It was beautiful there, my heart will never leave that place.

Where have you left your heart, darling? I know where mine is, but where is yours?

Someday I will take you away from this place, this small town that’s overpopulated so it’s worse than a city. This town is full of nightmares and death. It holds nothing but dreams we’ve had since we were old enough to think, dreams that it will not let come true. Honey, some day I will set you free. Some day I will take you clear across this world. We will see lions and tigers; we’ll see koala bears and swim with those huge sea turtles and dolphins in Hawaii. We’ll drink cider in London and climb to the top of the Eiffel tower in Paris.

Close your eyes and dream of a place far from here. Dream of the sweet smell of roses in the afternoon and honey on your tongue, dream of adventures and the sweet people you will meet. Dream off your addictions and your sickness, because you only have one chance and that chance is right now. If you do this you will see all these things. If you do this you will see the world, you will have the life you’ve always wanted. I’ll sit here with you until you’re better, I’ll sit with you until you can walk out the door without me. Until then I’ll be here to whisper sweet nothings in your ear.

I could tell you some stories, kid. Kid, I could tell you some stories.

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