I am home. Home to sort recycling and turn back into a scullery maid. Off with the diamonds and the Lagavulin and the television that just plays whatever you want it to play and the man who agrees with absolutely everything you say because he had no stake in raising you and therefore is not worried about your manners or your emotional wellbeing or your fears and your dreams alike. Home to the one who worries about everything but who loves in a hard, visceral way, a permanent way, a beautiful way.
Home to a house without birthday cake or the fear that a mood might change or a word might trigger something buried deep underneath. Home where our monstrousness is right up front and we check each other regularly for attitudes and issues. Home is where I crawl back under the microscope, back in front of the two-way mirror, back to the future of the past. Home to relative safety from the demons.
My demon was very good. On his best behaviour but then at the last minute, this morning when his time was up he tried a half-hearted soft threat that I thought about and then didn't acknowledge. He did though.
This is harder than I thought, Neamhchiontach. Thank you for coming to spend my birthday with me. You are the best present a man could hope for.
I'm a world of trouble.
Not to me. I know how to keep you in line.
I paused there, not moving, thinking about his words and all of the incredible history between us that between Caleb and Cole made me who I am today. I let it slide. It serves no purpose now.
I'm sorry, Bridget. I just want to keep you here and if you won't-
You know something? I had a wonderful time with you. Thank you for sharing your birthday with me. I kissed his cheek and left him there. This event is too sacred to drag all the mud in behind it. Let's leave it clean.