More than anything, he wants to take moments and erase them. He wants to rub them out, scatter stray grey curlicues of rubber across his life and forget them, mostly, maybe run his hands over the imprints left occasionally, but mostly, he wants to forget them.
He wants to take them and cross them out and say this is wrong and this never happened and underline moments in red pen and spell check the things he said.
He thinks of the moments he wants to throw in the bin, and he's not sure why he let them happen.
The words come out of his mouth before he thinks them.
"I didn't want your help anyway." and then a taut silence, teeth biting a lip and eyes too wide and a chance to say he's sorry.
He doesn't say he's sorry, but he thinks it so hard it ricochets around his mind, bouncing off of things and bruising and breaking.
He doesn't say he's sorry, and the door closes, and he says the end.
He breaks up with her because she's perfect for him.
He breaks up with her because she is sunlight, and he is not.
He breaks up with her because her hair is red and he prefers brunettes.
He breaks up with her because it breaks his heart.
He breaks up with her because he can't figure out why.
He breaks up with her because you die alone.
He breaks up with her because she deserves better.
He meets Godric for the first time at a party. It's Godric's party, and Salazar doesn't want to be there, because Helga will be, but Rowena makes him come. She promises good wine and a nice dinner, if only he comes to keep her company.
She doesn't promise he'll like Godric, because she doesn't think he will.
He shakes Godric and compliments his flat and then he hides in a corner and doesn't let his hands shake while he watches Helga and Godric laugh together, sunbeams clashing and dancing together and him in the corner. He thinks for a moment that they're together and he thinks they're beautiful, but when he focuses on Helga a little longer, he realizes they're not.
They meet again, Godric and him, in a bar, by accident. They sit together and they drink, and Salazar thinks he shouldn't trust somebody who smiles like that.
They go home together anyway, and they wake up together with bruises and bitemarks, sticky with sweat, and Godric smiles the same way even with his eyes blurry with sleep.
They fall together, and Salazar doesn't let himself fall in love. They hold hands in public and spend their days together and they have dinner with Rowena, but never Helga, even when Godric whispers it won't be awkward late at night with lights dancing on the walls.
He leaves bruises on Godric, fingertips and teeth and passion and love under any other name. Godric holds him close, close enough that there's marks on him and his life and it's perfect, wonderful even. Everything anyone ever dreams of.
And then he leaves.
He leaves his keys on the table and Godric asleep in their bed, his bed now, with bruises on his hips and bruises on his heart.
The end, he says, and wonders if it'll always end this way.
Brick walls and skin against skin and bones aching to be free and brick walls.
He tries to do the right thing.
He tries to call and apologize and make something better, make it better, make them better, make himself better. Better doesn't feel like a word anymore but he chants it and holds it and warps it into something it's not and shouldn't be and isn't.
There's an accident, and he can't take it back and he can't stop it and it's not even his fault, but it feels like it is, his heart hurts like it is, his skin aches like it is.
Better, not even a word anymore, not something he should want anymore, not for himself.
He imagines it at night, the sound of glass breaking, with his eyes wide open, staring at a ceiling that doesn't move.
His lips shape the words, and finally he can say sorry, when the person who needs to know it can't hear him.
Sorry, he says, for everything, he thinks. For that argument and for leaving and for not giving you what you deserve.
Sorry I ruined everything, he says.
Rowena tells him he wants something he can control.
He tells her that's nonsense, but it's not, because that is what he wants.
Love when he wants it, gone when he doesn't, a future, no future. Contradictions and hope and everything and not a person and not Godric and not Helga and not sunshine.
Something he can't destroy, something he can't ruin and leave behind and break, because that's what people do, they break, and he ruins them, and then sorry and the end.
He sees Godric and Helga again, sunshine and happiness and laughing together.
He hates it and it makes him sick and he puts his hand to the swell of Rowena's belly and feels a kick and he thinks she might hate it too.
He wants her to be his. He thinks, somehow, she's going to be like sunbeams just to spite him.
He goes away, to get away, and when he comes back Helena can walk and talk and she runs to him at the airport and calls him Uncle Sal and he wonders when that happened.
There's letters and postcards stuck to the fridge, and Rowena holds his hand when it gets too much. Helena is too big and too loud and he thinks he expected time to stop because he did, because he kept moving so he didn't have to change.
He doesn't cry, and neither does Rowena, and when Helena goes to bed they drink expensive wine and talk.
Rowena calls him lonely, and tells him why, and he doesn't want to listen but he does. He still thinks of Godric, brighter in his memory now than Helga, and he wonders what he's doing and he doesn't ask.
He rings the doorbell, and Godric's smiling when he opens it.