Dialogue Exercise

Just a short dialogue exercise to get my creative juices flowing.


Two share a bed. One is tall and the other is not. One has a love for words equivalent to the other’s love for equations. What they both have in common is that they have been silent for a while. Until now.

“Mmm.”

“Yeah.”

“That was…nice. Really nice. I…I missed this. I missed you.”

“I missed you too. It feels like I’m…”

“Like you’re…?”

Pause. A shift under the sheets. “Nevermind.”

“No. I want to know. I want to hear your voice, and see your lips move and your hands gesticulate you while you speak. We haven’t done that in a year. Seen and heard each other at the same time, I mean. Have you ever thought about that? How all the senses combine to form a complete understanding of a person or thing? The five senses orient us as humans to our world, but also connect us to each other.”

“I did think about that. I thought about that a lot. Being without you was…not great..”

“I know. It wasn’t very fantastic for me either. So…this? Being together now? What does it make you feel?”

“You sound like a goddamn therapist.”

“I like to think I sound like a concerned boyfriend, but that’s cool, too.”

A sigh. “I just.” Uneasy break, crack in the sentence. Then: “Like I have to…I don’t know. Like if I make any sudden movement, or turn my head for just a second, you’ll disappear again. And this time I won’t be able to get you back.”

“That’s ridiculous. I’m right here.”

“But you weren’t. A whole year, you weren’t. I counted days until I started mixing up the order of the numbers. I stayed up nights trying to remember how you smell after a shower, or that really particular way you comb your hair–”

“–I think that might be a tad impossible to forget. It’s a pretty elaborate routine.”

A small chuckle. “Stop distracting me.”

“Sorry. I’m sorry. I don’t mean for just now, I mean…for everything. I could have called more.”

“And I could have called less. I knew how much it was hurting the both of us to smother you like that. But I didn’t want to lose you.”

“Is that really what you’re scared of?”

“…Maybe.”

“After a year of nothing but phone calls, I’m lying right beside you now, and I’m…” Shuffle under the sheets. “…I’m holding you, and I’m kissing the side of your head, and I’m here. If you want to lose me you’re going to have to shake me off. Vigorously so. Okay?”

“Okay.”

“Good.”

More silence, painted warmly in contentment this time. “Hey.”

“Yeah?”

“Don’t let go for a little while, okay? I just need…I need…”

“I know. I know. Me too.”

The one who loves words falters at them for now, but the other understands. Neither moves for a long time. The sun rises on their together-limbs.

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