Chapter 9

Venus traced Jules's lips with her fingers and although they were cold it left a trail of fire against his skin. 

He thought of nothing, then everything as he held her. He thought of how clouds of gas and dust collapse into itself to form galaxies, he thought of how she was a star that had a person's name. Vee-nuhs. He thought of Venus. 

When he closed his eyes he could still see her engraved on the back of his eyelids asking the same question she asked the day they met. Are you alive or just existing? 

He opened his eyes finally ready to answer. "I'm alive."

She smiled like she knew what he was talking about but she probably didn't—since it all happened in his goddamn head, after all—or maybe she did, maybe she was lying when she said she couldn't read his mind. 

He looked at her. Can you hear me, Venus? If you can I just wann

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