You put it in your mouth and you light it up. It burns. And you burn.

You inhale it devouringly. You feel the nicotine infiltrating your bloodstream and you feel your hunger for it getting satisfied. You feel the smoke filling up your lungs, and you hold it inside for a while so your demons can take their share too. They like it. It keeps them still and it keeps them quiet. They asked you to do it more often last time you sat together and talked, last time you were bargaining for your sanity.

Enough, you decide.

You exhale, feeling every ounce of pain, every burden, every shred of insanity and every horrid creature inside you blending with the smoke and escaping with it. Reposefulness. But it’s an illusion; an illusion of momentary salvation you’re addicted to. What’s inside of you remains inside of you. The smoke particles diffuse through the air forming a hazy painting composed of faces; faces of people you miss and faces of people you would like to meet, faces that taunt you and faces that beckon to you in vain. You see your madness manifested in a puff of smoke.

You smoked too much, your body is numbing and you can’t feel your limbs. You don’t care, because what good are your limbs if not for entwining with theirs?

You light another one.