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 Jun 2018
Hannah Marr
"Hey, Aaron,
are you okay?"

                                                         ­                                              "I'm fine.
                                                           ­                                                Why?"

"I've been thinking,
and it occurred to me
that what most
suffering people
don't understand,
is that when they are asked
'Are you okay?'
that is someone trying to help."

                                                         ­                                         "What most
                                                            ­                        un-suffering people
                                                          ­                              don't understand,
                                                     ­                                                     Terry,
                                                        ­                                           is that most
                                                            ­                 suffering people cannot
                                                          ­                    convince themselves to
                                                              ­                                    ask for help
                                                            ­                        or let anyone know.
                                                           ­                    They only know to say
                                                             ­                                          'I'm fine.'
                                                          ­                                                          ...
   ­                                                                 ­                                          It is a
                                                                ­                 terribly private thing,
                                                                ­                                     suffering."

"Un-suffering people
can't understand, really.
What it is like, I mean.
What is needed,
what should be done.
I think that is the problem.
Or one problem.
They don't know how
to help,
or ask if they even can."

                                                          ­                            "That does present
                                                         ­                                              an issue."

"And the suffering
don't talk about it,
and so most un-suffering
don't even know."

                                                         ­                                           "You're not
                                                             ­                                            wrong."

"Aaron, I'm going
out on a limb,
and I'll come out and ask it."

                                                           ­                                                      "..."

"Is there a way I can help you?"

                                                          ­                                                         "...
                                                            ­                                 ...I don't know.
                                                           ­                            I don't know if it's
                                                            ­                                   even possible
                                                        ­                                 to help me now."

"There has to be a way.
Nothing is irredeemable,
not even the most
twisted of souls."

                                                        ­                                                  "I don't
                                                           ­                                  entirely agree."

"You wouldn't.
You are one who
believes he's irredeemable.
I can't believe that, Aaron.
Or what was the point
of saving your life?"

                                                         ­                            "There wasn't one."

"Are you saying that
I risked myself
for nothing?
My efforts
were pointless?
Is that what you're saying,

                                                ­                                          "Well, no, but—"

I refuse to believe
that you are beyond healing.
If I believed that...
Let's just say
it wouldn't be pretty
and I'd be nearly as miserable
as you are during your bad days."

                                                         ­                                                        "..."

"Do you understand me?"

                                                           ­                                                "...yes."

I'm not giving up on you,
no matter how much you
try and make me.
In return,
you better not give up on me."

                                                           ­                                             "I won't.
                                                          ­                                       I'll try not to
                                                              ­                          give up on myself
                                                          ­                                                  either.
       ­                                                                 ­          There's always hope,
                                                           ­                                                right?"

"There you go.
You're starting to get it."

                                                           ­                                             "Terry..."


­                                                                 ­                                     "Thanks."

No problem."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr

                                                               ­                                         "Terry!
                                                                    ­                      Are you alright?
                                                        ­                      Did the truck hit you?"

"Yeah, m'fine.
Just... fell.
Got knocked on the head.
I'll be okay."

                                                         ­                                "You're bleeding.
                                                       ­                                       Here, sit still."

Do you hear it?"

                                                           ­                                     "Hear what?"

"The music..."

                                                      ­                       "Hold it together, Terry.
                                                          ­          An ambulance is on its way."


                                              ­                                                   "Yes, Terry?"

"Would you sing for me?"

                                                           ­                                                        "...
                                                                ­          You know I can't do that."

"Why ever not?
You used to...
all the time..."

                                                       ­                                      "Stay with me!
                                                             ­                           Don't fall asleep!"

"Was it the death?
In the forest?

Dear Uncle Jim, this garden ground
That now you smoke your pipe around
Has seen immortal actions done
And valiant battles lost and won.

Is that how it goes?"

                                                         ­             "It's a nursery rhyme, Terry.
                                                          ­                 I'm sure you got it right."

"What's it called?
I can't remember the rest."

                                                         ­                 "Historical Associations
                                                   ­                                                   I believe."

"Sing it for me?
I don't know the rest."

                                                         ­                                             "Oh, well,
                                                           ­                                            let's see...

                                                         ...and valiant battles lost and won.

                                                           Here we had best on tip-toe tread,
                                                                ­While I for safety march ahead,
                                                            For this is that enchanted ground
                                                   Where all who loiter slumber sound...

                                                      ­                                                       Sorry.
                                                          ­                                     I can't finish."

"Yeah, I get it.
Thanks, Aaron."

                                                        ­                                                         "..."

"You have a nice voice."

                                                        ­                     "The ambulance is here.
                                                          I­'ll come meet you in the hospital."


Historical Associations is by Robert Louis Stevenson
 May 2018
Hannah Marr
"Aaron, I have met
someone at the college.
Her name
is Naomi."

                                                        ­                                                       "Oh?
                                                            ­                            What is she like?"

"Her hair is white
like ash, the same
grey as her eyes,
she is only nineteen.
She is an undergrad in

                                                 ­                               "Astronomy? Really?"

And she is a poet, too."

                                                          ­                "How did you meet her?"

"I ran into her in the library
while I was researching
for an essay.
She was surrounded by books,
stacks and stacks of them,
her hair like
a white curtain
'round her face."

                                                         ­                                         "And next?"

"I walked past,
allowing her to remain focused
but she looked up at me
and pinned me with her gaze
and asked me my name."

                                                         ­                           "And you told her?"

Then she asked me
if I would be interested
in helping her find
the history of a certain
You won't believe which one."

                                                          ­                                            "Tell me."

He's a hero, but
his name is translated as destroyer,
and he carries a sickle-shaped sword.
The legend said he was placed in the sky
as a constellation after he died."

                                                     "What does this have to do with me?"

"The legend reminded me of you.
So much hardship,
so much blood,
but alive in the end."

                                                                  "Unlike most heroes of myth."

"My point exactly."

                                                             "I might be interested in meeting
                                                                              this 'Naomi' character."

"I'll set something up."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
"Aaron, you never told me
what happened that night
since I saved you."

                                                          ­                                                     "No.
                                                            ­                     I never have, have I?"

"You were covered
in blood, and there were
so many bodies.
Will you tell me?"

                                                           ­                                          "I'd rather
                                                          ­                                                     not."

"I can't help
if I don't know."

                                                         ­                                   "I can handle it.
                                                             ­  There is no need to burden you,
                                                            ­           you don't need to help me."

"But I want to help.
I'm your friend.
It is no burden."

                                                                             "You won't believe me."

"Try me."

                                                                                             "It was a spirit,
                                                                                  called to life through


                                                                     "I was kidnapped that night.
                                                                                               Off the street,
                                                                               on my way home from
                                                                                                      a concert.
                                                                                  I had elected to walk,
                                                                              which was my mistake.
                                                                                                  I was taken,
                                                                           along with seven others."

"There were only
two other bodies, though."

                                                                                                        "I know.
                                                                        The spirit took the others."

"What do you mean
when you say spirit?"

                                                                                           "I mean spirit.
                                                                                             Demon, ghost,
                                                                                                I don't know.
                                                                                          It wasn't human,
                                                                     and it had no physical form,
                                                                   but it was called by the blood
                                                                                     of innocent people,
                                                                                and it wreaked havoc.
                                                                   The only thing that stopped it
                                                                                    from taking me too,
                                                             was the fact that you showed up.
                                                                                                          It fled."

"How could it take the others,
if it had no physical form?
Why would it leave you,
just because I came?
I don't understand
how this could be possible."

                                                                              "You don't believe me."

"I'm not sure
what I believe.
I always thought
the police were wrong
when they said it was a mass ******
by a serial killer.
It didn't seem right."

                                                                                     "Because it wasn't."

"Did you tell the police this?"

                                                                            "They didn't believe me.
                                                     Said that the trauma caused my mind
                                                  to come up with a fantastic explanation
                                                  for the pain and fear I had experienced.
                                                                            They didn't believe me."

"I think I would believe you
if I could believe
that this 'spirit' left
because of me,
but I'm not so sure."

                                                                                                      "I'm sure.
                                                                             It had to have been you.
                                                                                 What else was there?"

Thank you for telling me."

                                                                      "I'm not sure you can help."

"We'll see about that."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
                                                                ­                                       "Terry!"

"Whoa, Aaron.
Calm down a bit, yeah?"

                                                         ­                                   "Calm down?
                                                          ­                                           Seriously?
                                                      ­                In case you haven't noticed,
                                                        ­                    you're in a hospital bed.
                                                            ­    I think that is reason to worry."

"I'm fine."

                                                         ­                                  "No, you're not.
                                                            ­                I know why you're here.
                                                           ­                         The doctors told me
                                                                ­                       when they called."


                                                ­                          "Do you have anything to
                                                              ­                          say for yourself?"


                                              ­                                                     "Terry, you
                                                                ­                                   promised
                                                      ­              you would never do it again.
                                                          ­                     You promised, Terry.
                                                          ­                           You promised me."

"I know.
That promise
is how I got myself here.
It gave me enough will-power
to save myself."

                                                       ­                                "That wasn't what
                                                            ­             the promise was there for.
                                                            ­                            It was to stop you
                                                             ­               before this happened!"

I'm sorry, Aaron."

                                                        ­                                     "Words, Terry.
                                                          ­                          They're just words."

"I'm sorry, Aaron!
I don't know what else to say!"

                                                        "Y­ou could've been dead right now!
                                         You would have been gone for good, Terry!"

"I know!"

                                                       ­                                                  "Really?
                                                        ­                                               Do you?"

"I do.
I do know.
I also know
I'll never be able to
make it up to you."

                                                          ­                                                       "..."


                                                   ­                                                              "..."


                                                ­                                                "Sorry, Terry.
                                                          ­                    I shouldn't have yelled.
                                                         ­                     I was tired, and scared.
                                                         ­               More scared than I've been
                                                            ­                    since, well, last time.
                                                           ­   More scared, if I'm being honest,
                                                         because this time was despite me.
                                                    But you're the one in the hospital bed.
                                                            ­  You're the one who almost died.
                                                           ­                                                Sorry."

"No, don't apologize.
You have every right
to yell at me.
What I did was stupid—"

                                                       ­                                   "—not stupid!"

"Let me finish!
What I did was stupid
and ill-advised.
It was a moment of weakness—
Don't interrupt!
It was a moment of weakness
and it won't happen again
if I can help it."

                                                           ­                                            "Terry—"

"No, don't talk.
I'm the one who's sorry."

                                                        ­                                                         "..."

"I'm glad you're here, Aaron."

                                                        ­      "I came as soon as I got the call."

"It was lonely 'till you got here."

                                                         ­                 "Has no one else visited?"

"No one else knows.
There is no one else."

                                                         ­                                         "Oh, Terry."

"It's okay.
I'm fine with just you.
You're the one who's kept me alive this long,

                                                  ­                                                                 "...
                                                            ­                                      I should go.
                                                             ­                     I've been here longer
                                                          ­                           than I was allowed.
                                                        ­                  The doctor will get mad."

"You'll visit again?"

                                                        ­                                            "Of course.
                                                                ­                            Every day until
                                                           ­                          you're discharged."

"Thanks, Aaron."

                                                        ­              "There's no need for thanks.
                                                         ­                 We're friends, aren't we?"

Yes we are."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
"Aaron, I think I'm in love."

                                                         ­                                        "With who?"

"I saw her in the park.
Her hair, unbound.
Unbridled laughter
spilling from her lips
like a sweet cherry wine."

                                                         ­                "You haven't even spoken.
                                                         ­ How can you be in love with her?"

"You see, I'm in love with the way
she tilts her head just so in the sunlight
so a halo appears in her copper curls.
I'm in love with the way
she flashes a pearl-white smile
at even the smallest joke.
It isn't a sort of love
that compels me to be with her
you understand."

                                                   ­                                     "I'm not sure I do.
                                                             ­                                          Explain."

"It's like loving the stars
for their beauty.
You know they are there
even when you cannot see them
and they fill you with hope
even though you never
hope to touch them.
It is like that."

                                                         ­                  "I'm still not quite sure..."

"Aaron, I am in love
with her pure, unabashed
With how she is unspeakably,
undeniably human
in everything,
despite everything.
With the fact that
she can brighten the day
of even a stranger such as I
just with her laugh."

                                                        ­                     "What are you planning
                                                        ­                        do do about this 'love'
                                                          ­                     that you claim to feel?"

That is,
nothing to do with her.
Really, all I can do
is strive to emulate
the ease with which
she portrayed herself
so I can hope to bring
someone else the same joy."

                                                          ­                         "A noble aspiration."

"I'd like to think so.
I only wish she could know
that she has affected me this deeply.
I wish I knew even her name."

                                                         ­  "I'm sure that you are not the first,
                                                nor the last to feel this way towards her.
                                                            ­     Someone, even if it's not you,
                                                            ­                 will tell her eventually."

"I am sure of it.
I hope whoever it is makes her happy."

                                                        ­                                                   "Terry,
                                                         ­                                       do you think
                                                           ­                            there was a reason
                                                          ­                           you felt so strongly
                                                        ­                       about this, about her?"

I was...
having a bad day.
Everything was

                                                     ­                          "And she was a spark?
                                                          ­                         She gave you hope?"

I suppose."

                                                      ­                           "I'm glad of her, then.
                                                           ­ Perhaps you may meet her again,
                                                          ­                                       fate willing."

"Fate willing."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
What is it?"

                                                           ­                                             "Terry.
                                                                           I need you to pick me up.
                                                             ­                        I think I'm drunk."

Where are you?"

                                                          ­                                 "I'm not sure."

"That's so helpful.
How am I supposed to find you?"

                                                          ­                                                      "I...
    ­                                                                 ­                                            ..."

"Are you...

                                             ­                                   "Just come find me."

Tell me where to look."

                                                         ­                                     "That place.
                                                         ­                            You know where."

I'll be right over.
Don't throw up on me
when I get there."

                                                        ­                                                    "Heh,
      ­                                                                 ­                      I'll try not to."

"Stay on the phone.
What are you even doing
over there, after
what happened?"

                                                     ­                                    "It's all my fault,
                                                          ­                                          you know?
                                                           ­                        If it weren't for me...
                                                           ­                                                      ..."

"Don't go
silent on me, man.
And no,
it wasn't your fault.
You had nothing to do with it."

                                                           ­        "It should've been me, Terry.
                                                          ­                  It
would have been me
                                                              ­             if you hadn't saved me."

"And I would do it again."

                                                        ­                  "You still get nightmares
                                                      ­                                     from that night,
                                                          ­                                        don't you?"


                                                  ­                                     "You still there?"

"I'm here.
And yes,
I do still get nightmares.
About what I would have seen
if I hadn't gotten there in time."

                                                         ­                  "You should have saved
                                                           ­                           one of the others."

"You're drunk, Aaron.
We'll talk about this
at the apartment."

                                                    ­                                "I'm serious, Terry.
                                                          ­                      It shouldn't have been
                                                            ­                                                   me
           ­                                                                 ­             that you saved."

"I'm not talking about this
with you right now.
I stand by my decision."

                                                     ­                                                "Terry..."

Shut up.
How many times
have you saved me, Aaron?
All those times I've
wandered off,
with no one who would
bother looking for me?
All those times I
woke up screaming,
who was there for me?
I don't regret my choice.
Neither should you."

                                                          ­                                             "Sorry."

"What are you
apologizing for?
I understand."

                                                   ­                                          "Thank you."

"What are friends for?"

 May 2018
Hannah Marr

                                                               ­                               "It's midnight,
                                                       ­       and you're not in the apartment.
                                                      ­                 Where are you right now?"

"I'm lying on my back
in the forest
hoping to take root
so I don't have to
go to school tomorrow."

                                                    ­                           "You're the one paying
                                                          ­                   for your college tuition.
                                                        ­                                        It's your loss.
                                                           ­                                    But seriously,
                                                      ­                                          you can't just
                                                                ­                                      disappear
                 ­                                                        without warning like that.
                                                           ­   It nearly gave me a heart attack."

"You do care.
I wasn't sure."

                                                        ­                                      "How can you
                                                                ­                  even joke about that?
                                                           ­                           I was worried sick.
                                                           ­                              You're in a forest
                                                        ­                             for crying out loud.
                                                           ­  What if you get eaten by a bear?"

"Then I'll see you again
in the afterlife.
And I won't have
to finish college."

                                                     ­                   "I can't believe you, Terry.
                                                          ­                               Just come home."

if you insist."

                                                      ­                                                        "I do.
                                                             ­                                      I really do."


                                                  ­                                               "Please don't
                                                           ­                             scare me like that
                                                            ­                                               again."

"I won't.

 May 2018
Hannah Marr

                                                               ­                                            "Terry,
                                                                ­                     what are you doing
                                                           ­                               on the counter?"

"Eating cereal.

                                            ­                     "You don't even have any milk
                                                            ­                                    in your bowl.
                                                           ­                                       And it's five
                                                            ­                                in the morning,
                                                        ­                why are you even awake?"

"I could ask you
the same question."

                                                     ­                                            "I have a job,
                                                            ­                                       remember?
                ­                                                       That's why you have a roof
                                                            ­                               over your head.
                                                           ­                   Because I pay the rent."

"Would you like
some coffee?
I brewed it
a few hours ago
so it might be
a bit cold."

                                                         ­                          "How long have you
                                                             ­                                  been awake?"

"Since midnight."

                                                     ­                                 "What woke you?"

"...the dream."

                                                        ­                                                       "Oh.
                                                            ­                                 Sorry I asked."

"It's no biggie.
It's only a dream.
It can't hurt me.
So would you like that coffee?"

                                                       ­                                         "Yes, please."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
"Aaron! Aaron!
Listen to this!"

                                                        ­                              "Terry, it's two am.
                                                             ­                    Why are you awake?"

"I had two energy drinks
and ice cream
after dinner!

I'm too hyper to sleep."

                                                        ­                                 "Did you have to
                                                                ­                              wake me up?"

"I wanted to show
you something."

                                                    ­                                                     "What?"

"I... don't remember."

                                                     ­                                            "Go to sleep.
                                                          ­               Show me in the morning."


                                         ­                                                  "You don't need
                                                            ­                                       to sound so
                                                              ­                                       depressed
                                                       ­                                                about it."

"I think I'm
too tired to
sleep, tonight."

                                                      ­                                      "Listen to some
                                                            ­        music with your eyes closed.
                                                         ­                                 Count the things
                                                          ­             that made you smile today.
                                                          ­                        Do what you need to
                                                                         but at least let me sleep."

I'll try."

                                                          ­                           "Goodnight, Terry."

"G'night, Aaron."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
"You shouldn't smoke.
That stuff'll **** you.
You'll get cancer,
or something."

                                                    ­                                      "Shut up, Terry."

"Aaron, you're hands
are shaking.
At least
let me light it
for you."

                                                          ­                               "...thanks, Terry."


                                                 ­                                                                "..."

"Are you okay?"

                                                         ­                             "Why do you ask?"

"You haven't needed
a smoke this badly
since that happened."

                                                     ­                                                 "I'm fine."

"Do you really
believe that?"

                                                         ­                                             "If I say it
                                                              ­                                 enough times
                                                           ­                                                   I will
                                                            ­                                      eventually."

"You know
I'm here for you

                                                    ­                         "...yeah. Thanks, Terry."

"Don't mention it.
It's not a problem
when it's you."

 May 2018
Hannah Marr
"Hey, Aaron.                                                           ­                                     
If I die, I want                                                             ­                                 
to be buried in                                                               ­                             
a fluorescent pink suit."                                                           ­                 

                                                               ­                               "If you die?"

"Yeah. And
after the funeral and all                                                              ­              
cremate me                                                               ­                                   
and beat my carbon-ash                                                       ­                     
into a sword                                                            ­                                  
so my descendants                                                      ­                              
can avenge me."                                                             ­                           

                                                               ­                             "Avenge you?
                                                                ­                What happened to the
                                                                ­              fluorescent pink suite?"

"Burn the suite with me.      
And yeah, avenge. 
I ain't gonna die                                                              ­                            
unless I'm killed."                                                         ­                               

                                                               ­                                               "That
            ­                                                             is not how it works, Terry.
                                                          ­                      We all die eventually."

"Not me.                                                              ­                                          
I'm immortal."                                                       ­                                     

                                                               ­                            "Are you high?"

Too busy for that."        

                                                 ­                    "I can't believe you said that.
                                                           ­                             You of all people.
                                                         ­                          Too busy with what,
                                                           ­                                             exactly?"

"Vita, my friend."          

                                             ­                                                             "Li­fe?
                                                            ­                                            In Latin,
                                                                ­                         a dead language.
                                                       ­                                              The irony.
                                                          ­                        Am I supposed to be
                                                              ­                laughing or groaning?"

"Like I care.                                                            ­                                      
But seriously,                                                       ­                                       
remember the suit
and the cremation."                                                      ­                              

                                 ­                                                       "You planning on
                                                              ­                          goading someone
                                                         ­                              enough to **** you
                                                             ­                               anytime soon?"

"You never know.                                                            ­                          
Better safe than sorry."                                                          ­                    

                                           ­                                                         "If you die,
                                                            ­                                        that means
                                                           ­                                            you were
                                                            ­                                             not safe
                                                            ­                                   and definitely
                                                      ­                                                      sorry."

"W­hy do you think                        
I'll be sorry?                                                           ­                                   
It will probably be                                                               ­                     
a thousand years                                                            ­                            
from now."                                                            ­                                      

                         ­                                                                 ­   "Then why ask
                                                             ­                                       me to plan
                                                            ­                                   your funeral?
                                                        ­                                   I have a normal
                                                          ­                                             life span.
                                                           ­                                 I won't be alive
                                                           ­                                  when you die."

"Didn't you know?                                                            ­                        
You're immortal too."                                                            ­                  


— The End —