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breakup (original fic)

They called it "photographic memory", which was, strictly speaking, inaccurate. It was more accurate by far to call it eidetic memory; photographs were purely visual time-markers, frozen seconds that didn't even tell half the story. The camera always lied; it was a lie of omission which, Lisa had been kind enough to inform him on her way out the door for the last time, was still a lie.
So he sat in the empty apartment that overlooked the river and marked time, watched the water flow and the wheels turn and the students walk by like swarming viruses in the arteries of the streets below, and was thankful that things had ended when they had, before the potion that was inexplicably Lisa had time to sink its way into his new apartment. As long as he didn't leave the boundary line of white walls and shiny new leather furniture all was fine, the now protectively shrink wrapped and kept away from his past. Good scientist, always kept his area clean and free of contaminants.
But eventually the boxes had to be unpacked, which disturbed his careful state of equilibrium - broken pods of cardboard that, once opened, diffused shattered memory fragments into the sterile field of his new life. Wisps of her perfume permeated his dirty laundry. His computer still ran the +finger script when he logged in, pointing out her ever-present connection to the CS machines in black and white ten point Lucida Console. Her favorite cereal hitchhiked home in his grocery cart and loitered around his cupboards for a while. Objects that gleefully reassembled long polymer chains of memory that bound themselves to his mind and wouldn't let go, undissolved by alcohol or sleep or caffeine and unaffected by the passage of time.

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October 2004
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