People take people they love for granted because they think those people will always be around — that’s kind of what Joel’s learned.

(“Learned” meaning he hadn’t yet completely forgotten or passed judgment on the most recent thoughts in his head.)

He already knew things like that — everyone did, it was an obvious concept that didn’t need to be explained — but the distractions of life packed all that shit up into boxes and locked them in the back of the attic and Joel forgot about it, and then things would remind him of it and he’d say, “Oh, yeah.”

Joel had learned to not let people he loved slip away into oblivion.

He’d learned to think of people he loved as his ideas.

He’d learned to never be mean to them even if it was a joke and even if he knew they’d get it, because they still might walk out the door and they might never come back.

Don’t let them walk away, Joel thought.

There were no doors in Antarctica.

Don’t let them slip away.

Like a note he never took.

And then they’re gone.

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