Scarred Souls

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Anniversary

‘Flowers?’ I cast a sceptical glance at Silver.

‘Not flowers.’ He pointed in exasperation. ‘Roses.’

‘Why roses?’ I couldn’t believe I was standing in a flower shop with my best friend looking at bouquets of flowers. What was so special about flowers?

‘It’s your anniversary.’ He raised one eyebrow. ‘You have to get him something. Red roses are perfect. It’s what you give to someone you love.’

‘That is too cheesy.’ I wasn’t about to come home with a bloody bouquet of roses in my hand. What was the point, anyway? They’d eventually wither and die, and it would happen sooner rather than later. How could that be a sign of love?

‘You want my help or not?’ Silver was exasperated now. ‘Your anniversary is today and you haven’t got him anything.’

‘Why make such big deal about being together for a year?’ I scowled at the flowers. ‘What’s the point? It’s not his birthday.’

Damian.’ Silver took a deep breath as if to gather himself. ‘An anniversary is a big deal. You’ve been together for an entire year. It has to be celebrated somehow. If you last another year, you do it again. It’s part of being in a relationship.’

How was I supposed to know what people did for their anniversaries? I’d never been in a relationship. This was all new to me and Josh hadn’t mentioned anything about gifts on these kinds of days.

My uncle and aunt went out for dinner, just the two of them, on their anniversaries. But that was their wedding anniversary. That was something else altogether.

‘Buy him some flowers. And something else. Something that lasts longer.’ He scanned the shop, but as it was a flower shop, I couldn’t fathom how he could find anything lasting in here. ‘How about buying him a bracelet?’

‘He doesn’t wear any. Except for those rainbow rubber bands—or actual rubber bands.’ He used the latter to snap against his skin if he got the urge to cut. Sometimes they worked… other times they didn’t and he ended up with a razor anyway.

‘What about a neck chain then? Or a pendant? Something like that?’

It was certainly a better idea than bracelets or flowers. Still…

‘Josh hasn’t mentioned anything about gifts.’ He would’ve told me if it had been expected, surely?

‘Come on, mate. This isn’t something he’s going to tell you.’ He clapped me on the shoulder. ‘Buy a bouquet of roses, Damian. Be a little romantic. Then we’ll head off to a jewellery shop and look at neck chains or pendant or whatever.’ He picked up a bouquet and looked at it critically. ‘Seriously, what would you do without me?’

‘Put that down.’ I wasn’t going to buy flowers, no matter how much help he was.

Because it was true, what he’d asked. What would I do without him?

I hadn’t thought about today at all, but when I’d mentioned it in passing to Silver, he’d been shocked to hear I hadn’t bought Josh anything.

So here we were, in a flower shop. Where I wasn’t going to buy any flowers.

To think it’d been a year though. It was unbelievable, really, that I managed to keep a relationship strong and steady for so long. Unbelievable… and amazing.

I reckoned giving Josh a gift wouldn’t be too bad… but flowers was taking it too far.

I didn’t have a romantic bone in my body and showing up with flowers like you saw on film or the telly… it just made my skin crawl.

Josh liked me for who I was. I didn’t need to change anything. I didn’t have to do something that I wholly didn’t believe in.

But I’d get him something… something he could wear or use or… something practical. Those were the best gifts, after all.

‘Come on, let’s get out of here.’ I headed towards the door before I even finished speaking.

Silver hurried after me.

‘You are so weird. I’m totally buying Kian red roses for our anniversary. Which is in a week. Holy hell.’

‘You and I are two entirely different people.’

‘Thank fuck for that.’ He chuckled as he hooked his hands behind his neck, stretching. ‘No offence, mate, but I need some sex and romance in my life. Preferably in that order.’

I snorted.

‘You do things your way and I do it mine.’

‘Deal.’ He grinned.

Good.

No more silly flowers. Time to find something of value. Something he needed or something he’d use. Not something that would wither and die—that wasn’t what I wanted for our relationship, either.

It had to be something lasting. Like I wanted us to be.

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