After we broke up I went around in a blue funk and started ducking down alleyways when I saw her coming and walking out of rooms when she walked in and generally keeping my head down and trying to stay out of trouble. It wasn’t that I was afraid of a scene so much as I didn’t know what to say, or knew if there was anything I wanted to hear her say. We didn’t see much of each other, thankfully, except sometimes I’d be drinking my coffee and she’d laugh and I’d realize she was sitting behind me and I’d get a stiff neck from not looking around. It made me paranoid, that laugh, and because we had friends in common and she always seemed to be talking to them when I heard it.
Anyway, one time I sat down behind her without anyone realizing I was there and kept half an ear cocked on the conversation, that was how bad it got. Of course nobody said anything about me; probably they never had, and that ate at me worse than when I thought she’d been spreading poison around under my name. Somehow it’s worse to be ignored than be laughed at.