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End of the World

He had almost told her once, during a long bout of drinking in their second year of university. She was heartbroken at the time, after walking in on her boyfriend and her roommate mid-coitus. Ever since high school he had been her shoulder to cry on, the dependable friend who would help her piece her world back together when it was falling apart. He was the coward who was never quite able to tell her what he wanted to, the tortured fool who would quietly watch her move onto the next in a long line of mistakes.

He wanted to tell her then, but the bottle of tequila they had shared was nearly empty and she had fallen into a drunken sleep on his shoulder before he could ever summon the words.

But now the world was falling apart, literally, and as far as he was concerned there was nothing left to lose. Death itself was raining from the skies, sulphur filled the air and people filled the streets praying to whichever deities they put their collective faith in.

He didn’t care for prayer though, if he was going to face his last moments on this Earth, he was going to do it beside her. The journey across the city had not been without its dangers, fissures cracked open and giant sink holes had swallowed skyscraper’s whole, but he was relieved to see her building still stood unscathed amongst the chaos. A small voice told him this was folly, that she had probably already fled the city, but he refused to listen to it — he had to find her, it was the only thing that mattered now.

Kicking the door to her apartment open, his heart leapt to see her standing out on the balcony with a bottle of tequila clutched in her hand.

“There’s something I need to tell you,” he said between gasps.

“No need,” she answered with a smile. “I already know. Drink?”

She handed him the bottle, and together they watched the world burn.

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Email: TCPhillips@cobblestonescribe.com