I open the door and the apartment is dark and musty cold--that antiseptic not-lived-in kind cold. "Shay." I fumble for the light switch, then hang my keys on the hook with practiced finality. Door locked, backpack dropped, and I'm in the living room. "Shay." Nothing.
There's piles of assorted belongings everywhere: books resting on crumpled sweaters--a belt and a plush toy--empty picture frames on dusty shoeboxes--glass jars full of colored oil. It forms a trail, sharp-cornered and lazy, to the bedroom at the back, and that's where I find you sleeping belly-down on the floor.
I should wake you up and make you dinner because I'm sure you forgot to fix yourself anything, but for a minute I lean on the doorjamb and look at you. Your shirt hiked up a little bit around your narrow waist to small to hold up all but the skinniest of skinny jeans. You're always been thin, almost dangerously so, without seeming to try. Your hair curls in tendrils all over your shoulders, down your back, across the floor.
I shift a little and the floor creaks, and you lift your head and blink bleary bloodshot eyes at me. "Hi."
"Hi." I curl up on the floor next to you. "I see you've been busy."
"I've been cleaning."
"Really?" I flick my eyes over the teetering piles of stuff that dot the floor.
"Well, I didn't finish."
I brush a stray lock of your bangs out of your eyes. "And why the sudden lapse into cleanliness?"
"It's winter," you reply quietly. "I need to get rid of things."
No association is unfounded with you, I've learned that much--but I don't push it. "Let's get dinner."