driving north

I was actually born and raised in Beauvais. When I was twelve, I hitch-hiked my way up to Dunkerque. This is just one of those small things I haven’t told Quentin about. I’m not sure why. He seems to hold in such high respect that we were both born here, he seems to believe that it makes us even more special, even more connected, I’m afraid of the reaction he might have if I was to tell him I was born in Beauvais.

At least I assume that’s where I was born. I could have been born here and my parents on a trip down south could have dropped me off in Beauvais where I spent my childhood and early years in the orphanage before I ran off, not wanting to deal with the nuns anymore and landed in the streets of Dunkerque. I had no roof, I had no real meal on a daily basis, at first I thought it’d been the worst decision I’d ever made, but eventually things slowly started to turn around.

It’s colder up here than it was down in Beauvais so my first winter was one of the worst ones I’d ever survived through. The following winter, I’d begged my way into enough money to buy a thick winter coat and several blankets. I was a bit better off. Not a whole lot but it was better than not being better off at all.

When I turned fifteen, someone seemed to believe I was trustworthy enough to let me have a job. It was crap as I was literally picking up after everyone else, just wandering the streets and cleaning up whatever I was finding but I wasn’t forced to any kind of schedule and I kind of started when I got in and finished when it was too late to really keep going. No matter how long I had worked, the pay was the same so I figured out before too long that it was easier to do a set number of ours that felt almost worth the money and just appreciate that money the rest of the time.

Sure I saved it all up. I only used up a little on food as I’ve never needed as much as most humans do, though now I realize I don’t need much less. Quentin has been feeding me fair portions and I’ve gained a bit of weight, which is a blessing, I was skinny. I still am. Chasing crazy Bengal kittens around the household when they’re feeling playful is good exercise!

When I was eighteen, I’d found a place I could almost call my own, it was a quiet spot under a bridge. Most folks tended to avoid it so I wasn’t often bothered. There was a little nook in there that kept out the worst of the wind and the rain so I was almost cozy, as cozy as anyone can be when they don’t have a real roof over their heads.

At that age, I’d also started up in the ‘art’ business. I’d gotten my hands on a few cans of spray paint and I’d tagged a few different buildings. Old places that no one inhabited anymore, at least. I wasn’t really feeling destructive, I just wanted something out there in the world that screamed ‘I’m here, if you find my corpse somewhere, I was still here, I was alive!’ or something. I guess I didn’t want to go out not having known anyone in any way.

Sure I talked to the other homeless folks but it wasn’t quite the same as having someone to really know who you are, though I’m aware now that no one would really have known who I’d been just from looking at these scribbles. Quentin found them though, it brought him to me.. or me to him in one way or another and I guess I see that as a bit of a blessing.

I think that soon I’ll be telling him about Beauvais. I don’t really want to hide anything from him, it wouldn’t be beneficial to us. It might hurt him that I didn’t tell him the truth straight off but you can’t really blame me for that. I mean, he didn’t tell me where he was off to on that month-long time away he took. Not out of choice but still, he didn’t trust me enough to tell me where he was headed off to and I didn’t trust him quite enough to really tell him the absolute truth about myself.

That I recall, in any way.

At times I do wonder and I think. I ponder. What would Beauvais be like at this point? I haven’t been there in ten years, I bet things change in some ways. Ten years, I can’t help but find it a little amusing. In some way, both Quentin and me, we’ve been gone from where we were raised for a decade. Though I think a bit more and I have to remind myself that it’s been just a little, tiny bit longer than ten years. Not that it changes much in the long run but it’s just been that long, it’s a good thought to have.

I have a new life now, it’s filled with a lot of ups, a few downs, a lot of exercise, art and peace. My heart still is securely wrapped in strings that tighten a little every day, every time he sees fit to doing something that’s just absolutely sweet for me. Not that I ask him for anything, he just seems to be that way naturally, towards me in any case.

I’ve seen and heard him lose his tempers where others are concerned, when he thinks I’m not around. Though really, these idiots deserved him going off on them like that, I still feel half bad for them but I feel absolutely blessed that he doesn’t seem to see a need to be that way with me. It’s like I’m one tiny step above everyone else in that regard and it feels good.

Oof, there goes that string tightening a tiny bit again. I can live with that. It means I’m absolutely head over heels for him and I know he has to be aware of something. I mean, we kissed. It was an absolutely unexpected thing but it still happened and he did kiss me back so he has to be aware of my feelings to an extent and it’s good enough for now. I can’t ask more from him and I won’t. Let him figure things out at his own pace. There’s no need to rush at all.

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