‘Nah, man,’ Jessie says, ‘it’s not like that. She still loves you, of course she does, she just wants you to love you too.’ He rubs at his nose idly and watches the other patrons mill. ‘It’s gotta be hard for her,’ he says, ‘I mean you’re pretty fucking annoying.’ Anyone else might have gotten under my skin, but I know what he means and how he means it. I’m told loving me is like living with an unscratchable itch. ‘Doesn’t matter,’ he tells me, ‘I’ll always love you, just ease up on the torment and so will she.’

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