It thrived for years, though occasionally showing bits of shriveling spots of rot that somehow I could prune away and forget about leaving only sweetness and love. I thought he was a perennial, a forever plant that would never die. I was so wrong. Just as with some berries as sweet as they look, they have prickles and thorns. Picking them can make you bleed. I bled. In the end, I knew that the beautiful and sensitive man that I first met would eventually infect the entire garden

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