It was sunny for most of September, but when the rain finally came he felt much better. Grey skies better suited his regret. His apartment was darker than it was outside, day or night. Too much sunlight gave him a tension headache and the steady, artificial glow of the lamps in his apartment was too unfaltering for him to trust it. Nothing in his life had been constant or reliable since She had gone away, not even the weather in Los Angeles. Candle light was acceptable. It helped him to trick himself into thinking he was almost still good-looking when he passed the only mirror in his home. He liked the way it flickered, too. With all of his candles lit, the small and airy apartment was bright enough for him to get around and accomplish things, but dark enough to keep him from having a full on panic attack. In week four of therapy, Dr. Gardener told him to get rid of the Virgin of Guadalupe candle She had left behind, but he still kept it at his bedside. He told him he needed it for the light it provided. It was the brightest of them all. Its reds and greens reminded him that he hadn’t always been alone. The well-meaning therapist hoped the wax would run out soon and he would throw out the colorful glass which housed it, though deep down he knew he wouldn’t. He might keep it forever. It was one of his last remaining pieces of Her, long after the boxes on the sidewalk had been picked up and the cards and letters had been burned over his Weber Grill. The other piece of Her he still had left was the Polaroid photo of him, placed carefully on his windowsill, which She had taken exactly three months before their demise. In it, he was smoking a cigarette in the parking lot outside of the second best Philly cheesesteak place in LA. The first best had been too far. He wished now that he’d just driven the extra fifteen minutes in traffic to get them there. He also sometimes found himself wishing he hadn’t referred to Her as the most beautiful woman in the world so often. Even if She really was. When he stared at that photo, he could hear Her sharp little giggle as she snapped it, the cheesesteak in Her other hand dripping onions and Cheez Whiz. How could it not have been true love? 

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