He had recently found a way to manage time itself and brush his fingertips against the evergreen grass that lined the sidewalks of his town. It was all her doing. Meeting her was like a fresh breath of air after clumps of smoke. He would shift his focus towards her as soon as her eyes drifted away and glanced through the tinted window beside her, her chin resting in the palm of her hands, her elbows against the desk. He would lie awake at night, refreshing his messages every millisecond, waiting for the minute she would respond. Loving her was like soaring past the clouds and over the dashing moon. Her head falling gracefully onto his shoulder was like a missing puzzle piece finally found.
She had begun to deeply inhale the fresh air, letting it fill up her lungs, and bathe herself in the sun’s light. It was his doing. He was the sky blue water that you would splash onto your face in the mornings, the drug that elicited severe withdrawal symptoms. He, the one with the big, wondrous eyes, who stood by her, willing to accompany her walks to school and back, their hands always centimeters apart. She would lie awake at night, eyes locked on her phone sitting by her nightstand, waiting for his messages to light up the room like a child’s night light. She was the first to have mascara tears stream down her face that Friday night as the two stood still on a balcony, rave music shaking the floor, their hands holding the others.
They were the pair that would make one want to gag or stare in awe.They were the ones that others would place bets on and always lose. A pair that had a healthy dynamic seemed like something reserved for the movies these days.
And yet here they stood, in the midst of sunflowers on a hill on a breezy autumn’s day, many inches apart. The hands on the clock had spun for many, many hours and all the two could do was scan each other from head to toe, wondering if there was any ounce of chance left.
“It’s been a while.” The girl had finally spoken, cheeks flushed red as she stuffed her hands in the pockets of her long coat.
“A year.” He replied, shocking even himself with the clarification. He swallowed the lump in his throat before he spoke again. “I fell in love.”
“So have I.” His head dipped slightly, preparing himself to hear the crack in his heart. Nothing. “But I missed you.”
“Why did we even try?” She asked a question for the two as she pushed her hair back once the wind grew in force. She had become a woman full of independence and grace, breaking through the cocoon. “If it wasn’t going to work out in the end?”
He shrugged. “We didn’t know. And I wouldn’t change that.”
“I guess not.” Part of her was embarrassingly desperate for him to press his lips against hers, let his cherry chapstick rest on her taste buds. Only then, she would wake up from this fallen tale and soar into his embrace, letting his warmth energize her lost soul as if it were the first time. He couldn’t help but feel the same, yearning for the way her breath brushed against his ear when she whispered. Maybe that could break his trance, his apparent likings for girls that weren’t her, girls that didn’t resemble her in the slightest. Their love had chipped away like a fake golden ring from a thrift store once she boarded the plane to a land far, far away.
The girl had glanced at the watch on her wrist. She had bought a new one. “I have to go. I’m sorry.” She apologized, feeling a weight of remorse.
“I loved what we had.” She told him. “I’ll miss that.”
“I will, too.” He no longer had those big, curious eyes searching for something, anything. Rather, they were more formed and precise, like a ceramic artist adding the final touches to their pot of prime. “Goodbye.”
Her eyes were clean like the rivers of Eden and her face was dry like the Sahara desert.
Danna Taboada (she/her) is a sixteen-year-old writer from New York. She loves listening to music of any genre, dancing, spending time with her family and friends, reading, and writing. She plans on majoring in Creative Writing in the future.