His father didn’t drive his mother to drink. He hit her to it. And left her to it. There was another woman, of course. The last time he saw his mother, she was yellow and bloated in a hospital bed.
His lover knew this because he told her two months after they met—the second time they saw each other, second time they touched other, second time they shared a bed. The last time she saw him, he left bruises on her arms that turned yellow two weeks later.
I didn’t hit you. I shouldn’t have shoved you, but I’d never hit you.
fuck that distinction, she texted back.
I love you, even if you don’t love me.
She didn’t reply. She had three-quarters of a bottle of whiskey left. She drained it. Down the sink. She knew it would kill him if she drank like that.