"You can't keep doing this," she whispers behind me. I shiver slightly.
It's the cold middle of December, and I should really be anywhere but in the middle of a graveyard, sitting on the ground against freezing granite.
I don't turn around to see her; I don't need to.
"It's not your fault," she says a little louder. "You couldn't have fixed anything, Thom."
I laugh lightly. "Does it matter?" Cold snow seeps into my jeans, crushed by my weight. "It happened anyway." The gravestone's hard coolness makes my arm go numb slowly.
"You need to go home," she says, sounding closer now. More desperate.
I wonder if she's really here, or if I'm just losing my mind. Wouldn't it fit? To lose it now that it's the only thing I have left?
"Only if you come with me." I tell her.
"You know I can't do that," she whispers sadly, just a breath on the wind. She's fading.
She's leaving again.
I laugh and turn around, deciding I don't mind if she's not really there or not.
"Why do you care, anyway?!" I shout at the empty grave behind me, my hair frozen stiff and my jeans caked with snow. I choke back a sob. "You're dead. Why should you care if I join you?"
Silence. Her gravestone is a cold reminder against my leg that I'm slowly going insane.
I feel a soft wind, almost warm, race against my face and I turn back to the gate, pressing my hand along the top of her tombstone in thanks. I walk home slowly, heart feeling like just an empty space; I can't feel the pump of blood in my veins anymore, though that might just be the hypothermia.
'She's gone anyway,' I think as I go home, refusing to realize that, to most people, she's been gone a lot longer than a few minutes.
I'll be back here tomorrow, and so will she.
I'll stay just a little longer next time. I'll get just a little colder.
(She'll seem just a little realer.)