In narrow streets where you can smell the sea, Ava leads me through her gate. Her hands feel like a soft blessing on my cheeks when she shows me her park, where all the flowers were forgotten by everyone who was supposed to look after them. In between overgrown bushes and tall trees, Ava made her second home, here she grows her herbs that she serves over grilled vegetables and it smells like home.
She lies down in the grass and tells me that for her the sun has always smelled like honey, her own honey coloured hair curling around her forehead as she closes her eyes.
This is long before I break her heart and she runs away to the city hoping it’s as broken as she feels. Long before she paints her lips in red so no one will touch her. Before she closes the curtains and pretends the world doesn’t exists while her screams crescendoed.
For now, I reach for her and kiss each of her 17 freckles and tell her she’s the only girl in my life, and she doesn’t yet know I’m lying.