As teenagers, he and I both understood that happiness can be hard to find, yet so easy to misplace. That's why I can picture it perfectly. His house suffocating him until he runs out his door. Two steps and he can start to breathe again. His feet work on autopilot, but he trusts they know where he needs to be.
He walks for hours. It started pouring, soaking through his clothes. He barely notices.
He barely remembers walking up the dirt road he’s on now. He’d been distracted by childhood memories. Happy memories. Swings are the most vivid. They provoked a nostalgia he can’t quite understand. Then it clicks. He should have known this is where he’d go.
He can clearly see two houses, with a swing set in between. He’d lived in one, but the other still felt like home. He walked up the steps, tapping a familiar pattern of knocks. I opened the door. We look at each other like nothing has changed, though it’s been years. We’ve both known it was only a matter of time. I crave that same rare feeling that led him back to me. Happiness.