He had had to do it, it had been necessary, just one of those things that needed to be done. Once it was over he could explain it all away, plead with those around him to understand why, tell them all about each and every detail of his decisions that had brought him here. They would understand, they had to do so, he could not live with it if they did not. Half of him hoped they trusted him enough anyway, at least some of them, or on second thoughts, perhaps just one of them. He could never see his partner sticking around someone he did not deem to be good overall, and hopefully all that time spent together in which he had not upped and left him to be a bad person all on his own had earnt him a day or two in which to explain before he did actually up and leave. He would give it forty-eight hours confidently until his partner reached the end of his supply of blind trust, and started wondering whether he really had backed a bad person this whole time without knowing it. And once he suspected that, it would be near impossible to convince him otherwise. He would be on the defensive lest he be tricked again.
The morning had been long and short simultaneously, a morning that when you are in it seems to be endless, but then you look up and it is over. I had not followed him this morning, not that I had done so any other day either, but I figured it was probably going to be on the plans for tomorrow and it sure had been on the plans for today until he had shown up at my door. It had been an important relationship, someone I knew was always at my back, and someone whose back was always at the top of my list of priorities. Opening the door after a cold night full of thought and deprived of sleep, I had not been aware I could ever give up on him. But it would appear I had done so. I had not known I had until I saw him. He had been so familiar, I knew every aspect of the person I was looking about, could see him when I shut my eyes, and yet somewhere throughout the night, I had decided he could not be my problem anymore. I did not have the willpower to fight the fight that was coming his way, not knowing whether I was on the right side or not. If there was one value I hated more than anything, it was loyalty. Loyalty to values, splendid, love it; but loyalty to people, no. I knew he figured I would be loyal to him, but I could not and I knew that now. I was going to be loyal to my values and I was never going to regret that decision. His obscure reasons for his decisions, his blurred lines, I would never do that myself, so I could not continue being an extension of him.
Breakfast had been a rushed affair, comfort being the furthest thing from his mind at present, and he was considering the fact that he might grow to regret that decision when he arrived at his partner’s flat early in the morning. His calculations, it would appear, had been off. His partner was not standing around waiting for him to provide him with an acceptable explanation after which he would be grumpy for about four minutes and then get down to business mode. Instead, his partner had opened the door to him and broke his heart. He could tell from the look on his face, his body language as he seemed to have to force himself not to slam the door, that he had made his decision without him, and that he had decided against him. It was only fair, he supposed, it was more than understandable that this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. The clash of their morals, the clash of their motivations, had caused issues before, forcing each of them to do things they did not want to do, or not to do things they did want to. And the amount of times he had put his partner in uncomfortable positions, or done things himself without his partner’s sanction but in which his partner was included as a natural part by everyone else, had brought them to this point now, watching each other from across the hallway like strangers, a life thrown away, behind them now and disregarded.
The resignation on his face should have hurt, it did not. Yesterday this was the person I was supposed to protect, to value, over any other. And I would not have had to remind myself of that, to think about that responsibility, it was natural, a part of me. He was me, I was him, we were the same person in more ways than we were not and it had led us here. It had become too much, an impossible ask and one which had eventually broken down under the eyes of a questionable moral code built in a world of grey areas. I was struck by how easy it was too not care anymore, to accept that we were now two, that I had been the one to make that happen, that I was alone watching my own back now. It had never seemed like something that could ever happen, like mixing two different flavoured drinks together that then can not be unmixed, and I wondered whether this meant that they had never been mixed at all. It should not be this easy to split yourself in half and watch the other half suffering, stuck in a hole dug by itself. He was likely to try to explain anyway, and perhaps I would understand, I would forgive him and I would help him out and argue for him, but it would not be the same and we both knew it. Everything felt wrong, everything felt small, and I wondered if really I had been alone this whole time.