"Of course you don't." She replies curtly.
He stomps towards her. She glances down; both of his fists are clenched, knuckles white. He stops, just a few inches before her face. "Really? I don't?" he puffs up his chest. There is fire in his eyes.
But her icy stare extinguishes the flames. She is obviously not intimidated. He deflates. His fists unclench; his face relaxes. A sad, almost vulnerable demeanor washes over him.
"I-...it j-just hurts so much sometimes..." he says, his voice shaking. He looks up, eyes brimming with tears, and is met with her unchanging cold stare. He blinks the tears away angrily, trying to will the fiery rage to return; he feels nothing. He turns and walks slowly to the corner. He slides down the wall and buries his face in his hands.
Silence, for what seems like ages. Then, she walks over to his corner; she slides down the wall next to him. She looks at her hands for a moment, then blankly across the room. She speaks, her words like an icy wind, piercing all of his exposed, vulnerable parts.
"Pain can make you selfish. Pain can make you a coward. Pain can make you mean. Pain can make you bitter. Pain can make you hardhearted. Pain can make you numb. Pain can make you broken."
She shifts around uncomfortably, clears her throat, and looks down. Her voice changes, the coldness melting away.
"But...pain can also make you selfless. Pain can make you brave; pain can make you kind and grateful and softhearted and compassionate and...and pain can make you healed."
He looks over at her. Did he hear...emotion in her voice? She raises her eyes to meet his. There are tears streaming slowly down her cheeks.
"It sounds like you know a lot about this kind of stuff..." he says slowly, softly.
"Yeah," she lets a quiet, sarcastic laugh escape, "unfortunately I do."
He takes a strand of her soft chestnut hair and rubs it gently between his thumb and forefinger, "Do you...speak from experience?" he asks carefully, looking up at her. He knows the answer.
She looks down again, trying to fight back tears. Unable to speak, she nods slowly.
He wraps her in his arms. "I'm sorry, I am so so sorry..." he chokes out, stroking her hair gently.
"I forgive you," she whispers.