Authors: megyal and lesinnocents
Summary: Dear Patrick...
Disclaimer: 100% Disclaimed.
“Whatcha doin’?” Pete murmured raspily, his eyes still half-shut with morning’s early bliss, when your body’s still heavy and pleasantly sated from the long night before. He grinned up at Patrick sleepily and stretched, the backs of his wrists knocking against the headboard.
“Nothing,” Patrick said, smiling to himself so that his eyes crinkled at the corners as he tore out the pages carefully along the seam and folded them into precise corners.
Looking up at that smile, with Patrick’s skin glowing in the fresh sunlight, sealing away his secrets into an envelope addressed to Pete Wentz, courtesy of heart and soul, he couldn’t imagine a better way of waking.
“I love you,” he said softly, and felt that panicked, exhilarating flurry in his chest anew when Patrick looked down into his eyes, like he was seeing him and falling for him all over again each time he set eyes on him. This is what it must feel like, he thought to himself, to truly be in love. “I love you,” he said again, just because he thought if he didn’t the words might just squeal out of his skin anyways.
Patrick laughed, smiling uncontrollably now, and sank down to kiss him, his lips warm and soft as his limbs slithered around Pete’s and settled in comfortably. “I love you too,” he whispered, back, slipping the envelope beneath Pete’s pillow.
My dear Patrick,
I hope you know I always dream of you. I think I dreamt of you before I even met you.
For most of my life, whenever I did manage to get enough sleep to make it to the REM cycle, all I got were nightmares that made me wake up with my heart racing, afraid to go back to sleep. I saw monstrous things chasing me through burned-out cities, the sky cracking and shattering down to earth, my friends dying alongside me… and all the while I just had to keep running. I saw death coming for me as I hid beneath my childhood bed or in the refrigerator. But every once in a while, I’d have a beautiful dream that made me reconsider insomnia in favor of more sleep. I’d dream about days where flower petals whirlwind in the breeze and the sky is a golden haze, as I lay in a field with this man, a faceless man, who, when he held me, made all those nightmares disappear. All I remember now from those dreams are clips from cut-up movie reels: flashes of me laughing, the grass tickling the backs of my arms, the kind of kiss you only get in books and dreams, the feeling of that faerie dust sun.
All this time I’ve laid in miserable wait. Hating myself, waiting on that man to walk right out of my head and into my heart, and telling myself over and over again that it was never going to happen – that I would die alone just like my subconscious told me so. In fact, I had myself so convinced that no one would ever come to save me from myself that it felt like a punch in the gut the first time I saw you and you lodged yourself right between my ribs, drilling closer and closer to my heart each day.
I still can’t really believe you’re here.
You know, I laughed out loud when I read what you said about the first time you saw me. I laughed because I totally thought you thought I was a dickhead too, and I laughed because I felt the same way – like I had just stumbled across my other half; the person I’d been waiting for all my life. Only, I’d never imagined that you felt that too. I was convinced you just found me obnoxious, and it was so fucking typical, that I should finally meet the man from my dreams and he had to be the one to see me for the asshole I truly am.
Do you know what Joe told me, on the day we met? He said, “Don’t do this to him.” And I ignored him, even though I knew deep down that he was probably right. You didn’t know then (or maybe you did, maybe you’ve always known everything I’ve ever tried to hide from you) what a complete tool I am – or, was. I like to think I’m on this self-improvement kick now. But the point is, I used to devour people and chuck away their bones, picked clean, when I was through with them. A single person could hold sway over my entire existence for as long as the way they gleamed in a particular light caught my eye, but too soon they tarnished and I, like a child, found some fresh occupation to pique my interest. Joe knew. He knew and he wanted to save you from me.
As it turns out, he and I were both wrong. You were never in any danger. You know why? Because there is one essential difference between you and every other human being I ever met in all the long years of my life I was wasting until you came along:
You’re my soul mate.
I don’t know if you believe in that kind of stuff, but I do. I always have, I just never actually believed I’d find mine until the day he found me. You wonder how you can be everything to me? You are everything. Everything that matters, at least.
I suddenly find myself middle-aged and only just recently introduced to the world. There is so much to learn and to experience, surely a hundred lifetimes would not suffice to explore it all and enjoy my proper fill of each and every beautiful nuance, and yet here I have but one life, with so many years spent already, to soak you in. I could span six generations just memorizing the precise pattern of your pulse or spend centuries swimming through a single drop of your sweat. I could dedicate ten lives to the study of your eyes and twenty to the study of your thighs, leave an eternity in between to ride the sound waves of your sighs and room for another, after, to explore the caverns of your mind, and still it would not be enough. Still, I would hunger for more of you.
That is what I mean, when I say that you are everything. I mean, quite literally, that I would live within you if I could. In a way, I feel as if I already do. You are the paradigm through which I see everything else, all those people and past times and street signs that seem so utterly meaningless in the shadow of our love. You are not only my reason for living, you are my life.
There was a time not so long ago, though it seems like several millennia now, when I wanted to die because living seemed too cruel without you. I knew then what I know now – that you really are all that matters, all of the hopes and dreams of the world rolled up into one perfect person and walking the streets in Argyle socks, some very subtle savior – but I was certain that I would never have you. I had found the meaning of life, only to be accosted by the reality that I was far too base and avaricious to be deserving of it. My own lowliness was magnified in your preeminence. And I knew that, without you, there was no point in living. How could I? How could I go on living when everything in the world had become so dull, after seeing how brightly you shine?
Now, I have only gratitude towards whatever fate it was that let me outlive my own stupidity long enough to know the feeling of you first thing in the morning and the way your lips shape the words ‘I love you.’ I don’t even regret all the mire I had to drag myself through to arrive here, at the happiest of junctures. It seems fitting that unadulterated joy must be so earned.
Please, don’t be afraid. I was in too many pieces before to even be capable of picking a single one back up when I dropped them all on the floor, but I am healing now. I know that I’ve been so selfish; so selfish and so childish, stomping my feet and whining and waiting for a grown-up to come along and clean up my own messes for me, and it was even more selfish of me to ask you to play that role; selfish and stupid. Because you know what? Every single person who ever set me back on my feet when I was down, all they did was exacerbate the problem. They coddled me and kept me from growing, holding me further and further away from the day when I could stand up on my own.
That’s another reason why you’re so different and so special and I am so, so blessed to have you. It’s taken a while for me to see it myself, but all this time that I’ve been asking you to save me, I’ve been asking completely the wrong question. I need you to teach me how to save myself, and that is a process you’ve already begun. By being here, by shredding my insides through the eye of a needle, and by being on both sides of that door, you’ve made me learn how to start piecing it all back together. By myself.
Will you ever know how grateful I am? Will you ever know how truly you have saved my life? Maybe not. But one thing I hope, one thing I’d like to believe, is that you do know how much I love you, because you can feel it too.
With all the love in all the universe (including all the recycled love from dinosaurs),