I loved him, you know,' she said. 'I would have loved him as hard as he'd let me, for the rest of my life.
For as long as I could remember, a part of me had been waiting for the day it would happen; with the cunning that comes to people whose minds have been stripped to one desire, she picked the only day we weren't waiting for.
That long sigh again, above us. This time I saw it, moving through the branches. Like the trees were listening; like they would've been sad about us, sad for us, only they'd heard it all so many thousand times before.
I should've known the eyes. Wide, bright blue, and something about the delicate arc of the lids: a cat's slant, a pale jeweled girl in an old painting, a secret.
He told me and Rafe to stay put in case you came home, burn the note and get hot water and disinfectant and bandages rea
How's Alison getting on?'Conway snorted. 'Tucked up in the sick room like she's dying in some season finale. Little fadey voice on her and all. She's having a great old time.
If you're good at this job, and I am, then every step in a murder case moves you in one direction: towards order. We get thrown shards of senseless wreckage, and we piece them together until we can lift the picture out of the darkness and hold it up to the white light of day, solid, complete, clear. Under all the paperwork and the politics, this is the job; this is its cool shining heart that I love with every fiber of mine. This case was different. It was running backwards, dragging us with it on some ferocious ebb tide. Every step washed us deeper in black chaos, wrapped us tighter in tendrils of crazy and pulled us downwards.
If her mind had held even the smallest chance of a future, she would have had no reason to tell me anything at all, whether or not it could send her to prison. But this is what I know about people getting ready to walk off the edges of their own lives: they want someone to know how they got there. Maybe they want to know that when they dissolve into earth and water, that last fragment will be saved, held in some corner of someone's mind; or maybe all they want is is a chance to dump it pulsing and bloody into someone else's hands, so it won't weigh them down on the journey. They want to leave their stories behind. No one in all the world knows that better than I do.
The lines of her face, turned up to the sky, would have broken your heart.
Everyone knows a wife and kids tie you down. What people miss sometimes is that mates, the proper kind, they do the same just as hard. Mates mean you've settled, made your bargain: this, wherever you are together, this is as far as you're going, ever. This is your stop; this is where you get off.