that unruly curl on the side of his forehead in the photo on the left

Ten

There are ten beer bottles sitting on his kitchen counter.

All of them are empty, lined up in rows of three with the odd man out lying on its side. He spins this one around, the label blurring as he leans his hip against the granite countertop.

The countertop they picked out together, not so long ago. Dark grey, modern and stylish, just like she wanted.

Around and around the green bottle spins until his eyes can’t take it anymore. He throws the bottle in the garbage can instead of the recycle bin. Partly because he’s almost a full case of beer deep and wasn’t really paying attention but also because she always insisted that they recycle as much as they could.

“It’s better for the environment,” he muses out loud to himself, his words slurring as he starts chucking the remaining beer bottles into the garbage, one by one.

She’s not here to yell at him anyways, so why the fuck should he care.

Nine

There are voicemails waiting for him when he wakes up the next morning.

“Bellamy, it’s your sister. What in the hell are you doing not answering your phone for days? Call me back!!”

“Bell? It’s Jasper. Just wanted to check up on you, man. Let me know how you’re doing.”

“Yo, It’s Murphy. Fuck that girl, let’s get drunk.”

“Hey, it’s Monty. I’m sure everyone is calling you but…we’re worried about you. Please let someone know if you’re okay.”

“Bell, honey? It’s mom. Please call me when you get this, your sister and I are worried about you. Love you.”

“Blake, it’s Miller. Octavia is freaking out man, hasn’t stopped calling me since yesterday. I know you’re hurting but…just please call someone back. Later.”

“Mr. Blake, it’s Professor Stanley. I just wanted to let you know that I received your email and am sorry to hear you won’t be able to speak in my class this week. Hope we can schedule something again soon.”

“God damn it, Bellamy Blake! If you don’t call me back, I’m going to tell mom about all the stupid shit you did in high school. And we both know you don’t want that hellfire to rain down upon you. Call. Me. Back!”

“Hey….Bell. It’s me. Look, I know we said we weren’t going to call each other but…I just wanted to say that I’m sorry for the way that we ended things. I know it was for the best but…I just…please don’t pull away from everyone. They all love you so much. And so do I. I’m sorry.”

He deletes all of them but the last one, sets his phone on that fucking grey countertop and hits the speaker button.

“….They all love you so much. And so do I.”

Her voice is broken but so is his heart so he listens to it a few more times until he feels like breaking his phone.

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