So we just sat there.
I had hoped he'd be a bit more happy about the prospect but he just sat there. I can only imagine what was going through his head. Surprise? Disappointment? Analyses? Who knows, some sort of data processing. Going through that folder in his head of possible ways a proposal might be made and why his 18 year old boyfriend would possibly pop the question in a funeral home whilst picking out his best friend's coffin.
He must have thought me scared, petrified of dying alone or maybe he thought I had AIDS or something. Amazing how Hollywood programs us, isn't it? In any case he just sat there for the longest time. Practically forever. And I just stared into my lap hoping not to hear the word no.
No, you're 18 and you don't know what you want, how could you?
No, you've just lost someone and I don't want to replace them, I can't replace them.
No, ask me again in 5 years time if you still want to.
No, and it's always going to be no so let's just split.
No, I'm already married and I never told you.
No, you silly fool, why on Earth would you think I would want to marry you?
But he said none of those things. That is, after the silence was finally broken.
We just sat there.
Who asks someone to marry them in a fucking funeral home?
I just didn't know what to say.
It's not that I didn't love him, I loved him so much. But pick your moments kid!
Dave just died! And...
He didn't know of course. He didn't know I'd been married before, at his precise age and I knew it was a mistake. Not just because I was gay and she wasn't. But because at 18 you don't know anything and you certainly don't know yourself. But I loved him, and I didn't want him to think I didn't. I didn't think we were close to being over, but that doesn't mean I wanted to be married again. Ever. To anyone. I wasn't looking for a change at all.
My little fool. Actually quite grown up for his age but still so full of youth. What would I do without him? What was he doing with me anyway? I'd be a fool if I turned him down, yet I couldn't just say yes. So we just sat there.
Finally a little bitty tear let me down. He saw it fall on my hand and instinctively wiped it away. The touch of his hand, so calming, so devastating. His fingers slid into my palm, forcing my fingers apart to make way for his.
I'm a fool, I said, and he squeezed a little tighter.
He called himself a fool and I couldn't help but smile. He makes me smile so easy. Yeah, I said, but you're my fool. He started proper bawling then and I caught his tears with both hands as they came cascading down his face.
I love you, I said, just don't ask this of me.
I thought it was over then. Me having a proper greet in the funeral home, not about my friend but for myself like a baby. But that's not what was supposed to happen to us. The ghost of Dave must have been lingering because suddenly we could hear the ice-cream truck and we both started laughing. Quietly at first and then manically, cackling.
Come, he said, it's maybe not the fancy affair you were hoping for, but why don't we start the rest of our lives together over some fairly dodgy ice-cream?
I kissed him then. Are you going for vanilla or strawberry? I asked. You choose he said, just like Dave would have.
Hi, this is a little experiment in writing, where I will write one short play (most of which will be awful) a day for the month of February. They're not polished, there are no rules, I just write them and post them. But I have to post one a day.