We were in a tug-of-war.

Our arms, dripping with blood as we gripped tightly to the beating heart.  The sickly substance, warm and molten red, against my skin.  My cheeks lost a little color, and he wouldn’t take his eyes off the damned thing.

Finally, he says, “You enjoy this.”

I don’t know if it was anger because he couldn’t see me suffering even then, or if it was anger for the sake of itself, but I squeezed harder.  More liquid trickled down to my elbow, and onto my dress.

“Then don’t,” he says.

I almost want to laugh.  It’s too late now.  Look at us.  Blood everywhere, my hands shaking, his eyes so stern.  And suddenly,  I begin to lose focus.  Sparks of light flicker in my eyes.  “I can’t remember.”

He doesn’t understand.  My hands begin to lose their grip.

“I can’t remember,” I say.    I fall down on my knees.  “Who does this belong to?” I ask.  And when my cheek kisses the cool, white linoleum, stained with my own blood, I am finally wide awake.