I have been listening to Verka music for most of the day. In the morning, I listened to what I think of as “happy Verka music” and in the afternoon, I listened to her angry music.
Three of the parts have playlists now. Sam does. Charlie does. And Verka has two. I would make one for Katya but I can’t figure out what Katya likes. And I don’t know anything about Lana.
Verka’s music is there to help her express something: beauty in one case and rage in the other. Charlie’s is there to help try to understand. He watches the music videos and compares it in his mind to how his own memories look: How are the facial expressions like the ones he remembers? Is that tone of voice the same as the one he would have used in his past if he could have spoken?
It is his way of understanding the emotions he remembers. He is listening to music, but the music comes with pictures, and it is also making pictures for him in his head. He is lining up these pictures, side by side, to compare them and to consider what they mean.
He is, as you know, trying to understand love and he is also trying to understand sex. He is trying to understand what he felt for Natashka exactly and if what he felt hurt her. He is trying to understand if he is guilty of something or not, and if he is guilty, what it is.
It’s hard to do this, because he doesn’t have all the information.
When I switch the playlist in the evening, I realize this. I think of Verka’s post—her rage at what was stolen from her and her lover, which is really, a right to their own bodies, their own feelings, and to privacy for those things—and I contrast it with Charlie’s feelings, his love, his loyalty, his wish to never hurt anyone.
And I realize Charlie is that sliver. If, while I felt enraged at what was stolen from us, I still fought to keep some tiny sliver of our love for each other private and authentic and genuinely ours, he is the part that I did that in. He is the part that shut out the cameras and just thought about that hand in my hair—or in my hand, or whatever, as the case may be, but whatever we did to keep our connection to one another through the performance—and just tried to think about what his lover was feeling.
He is the part that insisted, without understanding it, that not everything could be stolen. Most of it could be. Most of it I did not have the power to stop.
But that tiny connection, that slender thread of shared feeling, that was fucking MINE.
That was ours.