the credits run out and the lights come up. everyone else has left the theater, but they’re still not ready to return to reality.
she blows her nose, while he presses his palms into his eyes, in an effort to stop the tears.
“oh, man,” he groans.
they turn to each other and start to giggle. it’s like looking in the mirror, eyes red, noses running, puffy cheeks, satisfied smile.
she finds her voice first, “yeah, it was pretty good.” the sarcasm is obvious.
he laughs, clears his throat. “it kind of left me cold.”
they’re still off-balance as they step out into the sunlight. a beautiful summer day. they both wince and shield their eyes.
“it’s like stepping onto the moon,” he says.
she nods. “i left my sunglasses in the car.”
they just stand there, naked for all to see.
“it should be raining,” he suggests, as they walk slowly in the direction of the parking lot. “after a movie like that, it should be pouring rain.”
“i think that movie could cause rain.” she smirks, “they should play that movie when there’s a drought. like in africa.”
they soon lapse back into their own recollections, shuffling south like sleepwalkers.
her voice is strained, “when they buried her brother, and the boy turned to look, and she was watching him…” she tries to steady herself. “and then he…and then he…” and she erupts in heaving sobs.
he puts his arm around her, tears start pouring down his face, “he just wanted to tell her…he just wanted to tell her…” and he loses it as well. “but…she…couldn’t…” the tears are being torn from him. he can barely get the words out, “they needed to leave…” and he starts laughing through his tears.
and she joins him.
animal sounds are escaping. guttural. they are both completely undone.
he tries to clear his throat, “people are going to think we’re completely out of our minds.”
“…you don’t often see public bawling.”
“especially on such a nice day…”
“yeah, people usually only cry like this on a really crappy day.”
“i know. right?”
for a moment they pull it together. they spot the car and quicken their pace.
she looks down at her hands. “you know what i think?”
he turns to see her say it.
“after he died, they couldn’t be together,” she sucks in a deep breath “but they couldn’t bear…to be…” and she’s gone again.
he doesn’t even try to hold back, as the grief crushes the breath from him.
when they reach the car, it takes them fifteen minutes to pull out of the lot. neither of them is in any condition to drive.