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His mouth is curved into a grin, laughing at something you said. His eyes crinkle at the edges, and you feel a little less alone.
He agrees to be your prom date (it's senior year and you can't just go alone). He puts the corsage on your wrist and wraps his arm around your waist when you walk into the restaurant. You still wear the bracelet from the corsage to remind you that you were the only person in the room he looked at for five hours.
He gives the best hugs of anyone you've ever met, crushing you to his chest when you see him one Sunday. He's home from college and he all but lifts you off your feet, and you want to stay there forever.
He hates spooning, but God bless him, he pulls you into his chest every morning as soon as he wakes up, pressing little kisses into the line of your shoulder and whispering into your hair.
He quotes Neature Walk on your first date, laying in the grass by the lake minutes before he kisses you senseless. You'll never remember how it came up, only that he said, "You can tell it's an aspen, 'cause of the way it is," and that you were gone right then.
He kisses you like you're oxygen and he hasn't breathed in years, getting closer than you thought was possible, burning you alive with his hands and lips and tongue (and teeth, God help you).
You're talking at work one night when he looks at the scars marring your arms, and then he tells you that the guy who dumped you because of them is an a------. You shrug it off, but he looks you right in the eye and says, "I'm on your side." You nod and save your tears for when you are off the clock.
He gives you hope again for the first time in months when you meet. It's the first time you've felt alive in the longest time, and you know it's all thanks to how many times he hugs you in the first week you're friends.
He lets you hide your face in his shoulder during scary movies. Your lips end up against his collarbone, and you notice he's shaking. He admits later that it had nothing to do with the movie, and you admit that you weren't that scared.
His hands skim over your artwork almost reverently every time you show him a piece, and you refuse to admit to anyone that it's partly thanks to him that you have the courage to apply to art school. He's ecstatic when he finds out you're drawing him something.
He taps your hip with his knuckles by way of a hello at work one night, then pretends he doesn't notice the furious blush on your face. You hope he'll keep doing it at the same time as you pray that he won't.
He hugs you like he's holding your very bones together, and you're thankful for the opportunity to fall apart in the dark street. He doesn't always know how to handle it when you lose it, but tonight he doesn't let go of you and you love him for it.
He exists, and he's yours, and you're laughing at his latest joke, and you feel a little bit less alone.