My first story on fictionpress... Man, I'm so nervous! Well...not . Please review.

Time of Day

Noon…at noon I vaguely hinted to candlelit dinners and red, red roses. He made sure to plug his ears in his disapproval, trying to make me think he was simply daft.

It was Perfect Picnic Sunday, and he and I danced through the streets with paintbrushes, swishing lopsided grins on Everyone and Everybody's faces; I was dressed wearing fake gleaming wings, and he was my ground-bound anchor holding my hand. And every hour, on the hour, he'd stop me with a tug and ask for my donations while holding out his free hand, palm up. I gave what I had, though it wasn't much, and he passed it out to the little sad children who were awed by the pretty colors. I wanted to tell him my gifts would melt in their pockets, but I had a feeling he already knew that.

Water was expensive, but he always bought me a bottle or two when I wasn't thirsty, insisting my skin felt hot and feverish. Never outright complaining, but constantly hinting, I'd always obey his insight, fluttering eyelashes to make him smile. He always liked my eyelashes—who knew how many butterfly kisses I'd given him, just trying to make him happy? He thought surreal, and I don't know if he really believed this or not, but he liked to say the more water I drank, the more tears I would blink out. He loved the tears that got on my eyelashes; he'd collect them every hour and give them to the frowning children.

Night…he told me I "had problems" before he finally let go of my hand. My fingers were dirty and raw by then and he had grit beneath his nails. My eyelashes he liked, but not my hands. They felt rough on his soft, naïve skin, and the last thing he wanted was exposure to the brutal.

I'd been picturing red roses, and a picture was what I got. Each rose a slender, starving model, stiff and identical. The fake dew on their petals reminded me of something, but he wouldn't tell me what, and shoved my attention instead on the ebony frame. Not ebony, really, not even wood, but a cleverly-disguised plastic, but he told me "it's the thought that counts." I guess, then, the roses were nothing.

I went to sleep with nothing in my stomach; he wanted me to resemble a rose.

Morning was a headache that smelled like bad coffee and tasted like gin, but dawn was his favorite meal of the day, so he woke me early and offered me part of the fresh grey light. And since it was an offer I couldn't refuse, I took what he gave me, but threw it out the window when he wasn't looking.

His sleep had been uninterrupted, like a coma he said, and he grinned at me toothy, yet full and satisfied. No, he wasn't lying, and how could I even doubt him? He'd no sooner lie to me than let me smell a rose.

Early morning, and he was feasting on my lashes again, smiling like a madman and breathing in a way only the dying can. He'd been dying for twenty years, hard and true, but sang like a phoenix and ate grey light every morning. He was not my phoenix, but I was his constant, and as a constant I gave him something to relive and re-die for. His slender, starving rose. I was his and his alone, defined by my lashes and the time of day. Philanthropists, he and I, with an obscure charity and no real concern for the frowning. He would never love, but always depend; he was heir to Narcissus, and I was his eyes.