When I was a teen I had a rat. A white dumbo rat, with red eyes, who was blind. Her name was Fresno, like the California nightcrawlers she bore resemblance to.
I’ve never felt much like a person, more like an imitation. A replica so dead-on that nobody knows it’s fake.
Her and I were not so different. People hate rats. Vehemently, they do. They trap them and hurt them and kill them and then—they turn around and pin the blame on rats for being born.
Fresno was my friend. We were peers, her and I. She slept in the hood of my jacket late at night, while I sat up and stared at the ground. She licked tears off my face lovingly. She buried her head in my neck as I cried. She begged to be held when I had awful dreams. She chewed at my hands when I’d think about death. She loved me, above all my doubt, she loved me.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Fresno today. About how she was left in that house all alone. There was nothing adjacent to love in that home.
They let her die to spite me.
Those fuckers took my best friend after every last thing else.
She is the only thing I’ve ever loved so wholly. I wanted to rip them apart.
I wanted to go with her.
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