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Ebooks   ➡  Fiction  ➡  Young adult or teen  ➡  Romance

Book of Hearts

             

To Michelle Johnson for believing in me when no one else did. Also to my Mom and Dad who were always there for me.

This is my story…

It was perfect. I finally had her. Jessica was all mine; there we were holding hands at the beach and it was the best moment of my life.

The sun was setting and the breeze was perfect. I could see the light shining in her bright green eyes. This moment was the moment I’ve been waiting for so long. I finally had her.

She looked at me and holding my hand she said, “You ready for this kiss?” She was smiling and I could see her perfect shining-white teeth, and her little rounded nose, and her perfect shiny-blond hair.

I was so nervous. I didn’t know how to kiss, since I never had a girlfriend before.  I looked at her stunned and all I could do was say, “Yes!” It was a sad sight.

I started getting near her smooth lips. I was about to kiss her when she said, “Stop wake up! Breakfast is ready! You’re going to be late for school!”

I woke up, tired, on my bed. It was seven-thirty in the morning and school started at eight. I had to get up. I hated Mondays.

I sat on my bed rubbing my eyes, “Uh that was just a dream. What a letdown.” I told myself out loud while slapping myself awake.

I stood up and pulled clothes out of my dresser. I looked at the mirror on the back of my door. I was in my boxers and nothing else. I tried to flex, but I’m just a skinny kid with no muscles.

I took a shower and got dressed. My long black hair still wet as I walked down my stairs to the kitchen. My Mom was cooking food. “Are those eggs?” I asked looking at a pot filled with what looked like a mess of throw-up.

"Yes, I made some eggs, bacon, some potatoes--the sweet ones you know-- some cheese, and spam," my Mom said smiling, proud of her hard work.

She is so old that her wrinkly skin droops down when she’s not smiling. Her baby blue eyes shine bright with excitement, and when she laughs it is like a vacuum sucking up a bunch of marbles. She’s a very short woman, but I love her.

“Thanks mom, do we have any tea?” I said in my fake British accent.

“Y…yes my dear boy, I do say. You look rather handsome with your black Volcom shirt, black pants, and black Vans. I do say,” She said in her fake British accent, laughing. “Hurry up now you don’t want to be late for school.”

I shoved the eggs in my mouth, replaying the dream I had last night. Oh how I wished it would come true, but I’m just a nobody.

It took me five minutes to get ready, so I sat in the car and waited for my mom to come.

Our car is like any regular family car. It’s a purple minivan—so embarrassing. At least I got dropped off at a store close to the school instead of the school parking lot.

My mom finally came out and started driving to school.

As we drove, I watched the sun trying to dance its way in between the morning clouds. The trees were covered in bright green leaves, and the flowers were starting to bloom.

Spring finally arrived and I was looking forward to summer, because I would be sleeping in every day.

“Here we are. Have fun at school,” my mom said as we entered the school parking lot.

“Thanks mom, catch ya later,” I said shutting the door. I watched as she pulled out and drove off down the street. “What to do now?” I said to myself, starting to walk to school.

The late bell rang and when I got to the front of the school the office wall had a painting of a skunk, with the words underneath it “Westville High,” the sweet town I live in. It’s not that big, but that’s ok.

I pushed open the office door. Miss Thorn the attendance lady greeted me, “Why hello, Adam. Late again I see. What’s the excuse this time?”

I looked at her and smiled, “Same as always I guess, but oh well, someday.”

She knew what I was talking about, “Here is your pass get to class quickly now, bye.”

“Thank you,” I said before turning around and walking toward class.

My school is like any other high school; single level classrooms in rows, except for the history classes that had two levels. The performing arts center is up front, while the Senior Quad and the cafeteria were close to each other. The campus is always clean because our janitors are awesome.

I walked in my first period classroom and gave my teacher the note. “Late again, Thornberry,” scolded my English teacher.

“It wasn’t my fault Miss B.” I told her with reassuring eyes. All of my classmates were laughing now. They thought I was funny, or were they laughing at me?

“Oh Miss B., don’t hurt my feelings, you’ll make me cry,” mocked one of the jocks in class.

The whole class started laughing. They were making fun of me. I just wanted to die. It was so embarrassing.

“Class, quiet down now!” Miss B. said, “Get to your seat please.”

I stayed quiet in the corner of the back of the class for the whole period. The bell rang for second period and I started walking.

My second period class is across from the history classes at the end of the hall.

I noticed how loud the hall was. Everybody was talking to their friends. I sighed, and walked past a group of cheerleaders who were gossiping. My hands were in my pockets as my phone went off.

I smiled as I daydreamed of Jessica texting me, but when I looked at my phone it was my mom. “Don’t forget I’m picking you up afterschool.”

My dreams were shattered, oh well. It’s funny I don’t find it sad that my mom and brother are the only people in my contacts.

I walked in my classroom just as the bell rang. Miss Ching said with her fake Filipino accent, “Ah you almost late. Go in Thornberry. I no mark late. You good boy, very good. Sit your desk. Draw picture for next project.”

She is so nice and happy. She always nods her head when she talks as if we were kinder gardeners who didn’t understand English. She’s a little Asian lady. She has squinty eyes, long black hair, and walks with a little hunch. She’s really nice though, my favorite teacher.

We talk often of how her grandfather escaped from the Vietnam War to America a long time ago. She understands me, and I understand her. It’s like she’s my second mom.

I sat in my desk and pulled out a fresh white piece of paper. I couldn’t decide what to write so I looked around the classroom for ideas. The classroom is pretty big. It has two doors on each side and pictures and paintings hang on the walls.

Miss Ching walked to the front of the class and called out for silence and attention. “Today you will draw a picture using charcoal. It will be about something that you fear in the future. It’s due tomorrow, so work hard on it.” She smiled at me and handed the class a piece of charcoal.

When she got to my desk she looked at me and said, “You’re going to be a big artist one day. Make a great charcoal drawing and I’ll put it in the art show, ok?” She patted me on the back.

“Thank you, I’ll do my best” I told her with a smile, but I didn’t really know what to draw. I thought to myself for some time,” What do I fear in the future?”

I know what I fear, but I don’t want to think about it.

I sketched the outline for my drawing, and decided I would do it at my house. I didn’t want it to smudge inside of my backpack. The bell rang and I walked to my third period class.

The classes today went really fast. Not much was said, and the fifth period bell rang. It was time for lunch.

I started walking out of my physics class, with my hands in my pockets and sighed…it was another day at lunch.

I walked to the tree at the far end of school by the softball field. I sat down as I put my bag next to me. I looked around at the people in the distance. I didn’t know any of them. I watched as friends huddled in groups and gossiped. They all talked and laughed together.

The truth is I envy all of them. I hear them laughing and having fun, maybe it’s because they’re popular. I don’t know. All I do know is that I have no friends, and nobody cares about me. If I live or die it doesn’t matter because no one will miss me.

I had thought that one day I would end my life right here at school. I don’t know why I don’t do it already; maybe I don’t want my mom to cry. Oh well…I’ll just have to endure it I guess.

I sat there at the tree, staring at the clouds in the sky. I stared at clouds my whole life. When I was a little boy, clouds were the only friends I had. By that time I was eight and my brother wasn’t born.

Those were really lonely days. Mom worked at night to pay bills. God…she sure worked hard. I wonder how she felt, or if she felt lonely. Well after all, my Dad left when I was born, and we never heard from him since.

Well I grew up without a dad, and had no friends. Cry me a river. I never really cared, I guess I got used to it, but it still hurts.

I was staring at the clouds wondering how they felt when I was brought back to life by the school bell.

School ended pretty fast and I walked to meet my Mom at the store. She was already in the parking lot waiting for me. I got in and the music she was listening to was some old group called The Temptations. I didn’t mind although it wasn’t my kind of music. I would rather listen to the XX, but they don’t get played on the radio.

“How was school son?” my Mom said, starting the car and putting it in gear.

“It was ok,” I said switching to different radio stations.

“That’s good. Very good…Miss Ching called.”

“Oh yeah? What she say?” I said, looking out the window at the cars passing by.

“She said you were entering an art show. I’m so proud of you.” She was smiling.

“Thanks Mom.” I thought to myself: Where would I be without my mom?

“It’s all true,” she told me smiling.

I love my mom so much. Nothing in this world can compare to her.

We finally got home. As we pulled into the driveway my little brother Omar was playing baseball with his little friends. He stopped and looked at me. “Hey Adam, when we going to the beach?” He was staring at me with his little brown eyes.

“How about Friday? I’ll watch you swim?” I told him. His mouth turned into a smile showing the dimples on his cheeks and his eyes started to sparkle. We all have dimples. It’s not weird though.

“Yes it’s gonna be so awesome!” he said running toward his friends. “Thanks, Adam!” He was happy.

I went inside my house. The sweet smell of cinnamon buns filled the air; dessert sounds good right now.

I walked in my room and locked the door. I took off my shoes, put down my backpack, and sat down on my bed. I looked around and I thought to myself how proud I was of my clean room.

All of my things are neat and organized. My acoustic guitar is black and shiny on its stand, and my plasma screen television is mounted on the wall and it is super clean.

My room is pretty big. I have a big closet, with all of my clothes organized on hangers. There are posters all over my walls, and on my dresser is a cross with Jesus on it. Even though I’m not really religious, I still have it there for protection or good luck, I guess.

I turned on my T.V. and started watching cartoons. The sunlight was poking through my blinds, so I went to shut them.

I looked outside and saw a U-Haul. I guess people were finally moving in next door. The house had been empty for a while now. I saw a man unloading a box from the van. He saw me, and I closed the blinds. I ignored the fact that people were moving in and I started watching cartoons.

My mom came in my room “Food’s ready come to the table son.” She was smiling. I think I make her happy.

“Ok I’ll be right there,” I said, turning off the T.V.

My brother was already at the table ready to eat. I sat down on my really nice oak chairs, while I was staring at all the food on the table.

On the table the food looked like a Thanksgiving feast. There was a bowl of mashed potatoes, a plate of cinnamon rolls, strips of bacon, hamburgers, and a thick leg of ham.

“Yes! I’m so hungry!” my little brother said, hurrying to get food.

My mom grabbed his hands, “Not until we say grace, ok. Everyone bow your heads.”

I didn’t bow my head. I looked at her while she was praying to God for everything. She looked like she was going to cry. “Well let’s eat,” she said smiling.

The food was great. I ate a lot of plates and so did my little brother. After we finished, we all did the dishes together. We were smiling and laughing. We were so happy.

I went back to my room and took a shower. When I was finished I didn’t have much to do so I went to sleep.

This time I didn’t have a dream, but my mom still woke me up. “Honey wake up, we have to leave early today,” she said shaking me softly, turning on my light.

I rolled over and grumbled, “Wha…what? Why?” I was rubbing the sand out of my eyes and looked at the clock, it was only seven.

“The neighbors, the new ones, came over yesterday, really nice people. Well they have a daughter…um Ruby, her name is Ruby. The parents work early and asked if I could take her, and then you could show her around school and her classes.”

“Well…ok then, I’ll do that,” I said getting my clothes ready.

“Ok and I couldn’t cook breakfast today, so make some cereal,” she said, looking kind of sad with her head down.

“Mom, it’s ok, I’m still full from dinner.”

She looked up and smiled, “Ok good, I wouldn’t want my son to starve.”

“Thanks Mom,” I said as she left the room. “Hmm neighbor…Ruby,” I thought in my head as I got dressed.

I wore my black zip-up sweater, it’s so soft, my black pants and black Vans. I grabbed my backpack and sat in the car. To tell the truth, I was pretty nervous. I couldn’t remember the last time I talked to a girl. I didn’t know what to tell her when she came.

My mom came out of the house and locked the door. As she was walking toward the car I saw a girl walk out of the house next door.

This girl was wearing black pants and a black shirt with black shoes. I couldn’t really tell how she looked from far away though.

She sat down next to me in the second row of seats because my little brother was sleeping in the front.

I saw her face. She had baby blue eyes, a smile that showed a row of perfect white teeth, a rounded nose, and black straitened hair. She didn’t look like the girl of my dreams though.

She sat down and put on her seatbelt, “Thank you Miss T,” she said as my mom turned around.

“No problem dear. Ruby this is my son, Adam,” she said pointing to me.

I didn’t know what to say. I stared down and started playing with my thumbs. I played with them when I was nervous. “Um…hey,” I said, still playing with my thumbs.

I saw a hand open, waiting to be shaken. I looked up and saw her smiling. I shook her hand as she said, “A pleasure to meet you, Adam. Want a piece of gum?”

“No thanks,” I said putting on my seatbelt.

The whole ride to school was quiet, except for my mom asking Ruby questions like “Why did you move here?” or “Who thought of coming?” or “Do you know your way around town?”

Ruby answered most of the questions in one word, sometimes two, but she looked like she was thinking a lot.

We got to the store and my mom told me that she loved me. “I love you too Mom,” I said. I didn’t care if Ruby was there. I love my mom and I’m not afraid to show it.

My Mom said bye to Ruby and then left out of the parking lot, so we started walking to school. Ruby had her schedule in her hand and gave it to me.

I looked at her schedule. She had a lot of honors classes. It shocked me when I saw that she had the same first and second period classes as me.

We got to the school and I started showing her the classes. “Well most of your classes are close together,” I said, pointing out where her classes were, “And we have the same classes for first and second period.” This time talking I wasn’t nervous because I was pretending I was a teacher.

After I was done showing her where her classes were she said, “Ok thank you…well if you want to you could hang out with your friends I don’t want to bug you,” she told me smiling, I could tell it was fake.

I seized the moment and said, “Well I don’t really feel like hanging out with all of my friends right now so it’s ok,” I smiled.

“Ok then,” she said, putting on that fake smile again.

“Well we have thirty minutes until the bell rings, what do you want to do?” I said, thinking to myself.

I was wondering how I could get out of this situation. Well she wasn’t ugly or weird, but I kinda wanted to be alone. Well I was used to being alone that’s all, and I didn’t know what to say.

She looked at the floor, then at me, then at the floor again. She had her hand on her arm I guess she’s shy. “Um…I don’t know whatever you want to?”

“Uhmm…ok, well is it ok if we sit by a tree?” I said.

“Sure,” she said, following me down the main hall to the tree.

We sat down, and I really didn’t know what to say, so I just stared at the clear blue sky.

“It’s beautiful isn’t it…the sky,” I snapped out of my thoughts. She was staring at me, I was stunned, and I didn’t really know what to tell her, “Yeah, it’s nice,” I said.

“Don’t you wish you could fly?” she said, flapping her arms pretending to fly. “That would be awesome wouldn’t it, to get away from all the bad things?”

I looked, I could see cuts; straight lines under her arms. “Did you do that?” I said pointing to her arms.

She looked at me, then at the ground, “It’s nothing.”

I looked straight at her eyes, “It’s not nothing, it’s something ok, or I wouldn’t have these,” I said rolling up my sleeves to show the many cuts I have under my arms.

She started crying. I didn’t mean to make her start crying, but she was. “Please don’t cry, why are you crying, please stop” I didn’t know what else to tell her.

She wouldn’t stop she didn’t stop until the bell rang. She wiped her tears then looked at me and hugged me, “I’m sorry.” Her hair was tickling my neck.

“Don’t worry about it ok I’m here for you. We’ll talk about this at lunch ok, well that’s if you want.” I told her, wiping a tear off her cheek.

“What about your friends?” she said looking down.

“To tell the truth, I don’t have any, never did, not even when I was growing up, I’m sorry I lied,” I couldn’t help but look down. I felt ashamed.

“I know how you feel, I really do. Well I’ll meet you here at lunch ok we should go to class.” She smiled; it was a real smile this time.

“Ok then” I said, still looking at the floor.

We walked to our first period class.

I sat down in my desk as Miss B. introduced Ruby to the class. She looked very nervous and shy up there in front of the class; I mean everyone staring at her made her nervous. They didn’t really care though; she was just a nobody like me I guess.

Ruby sat down in her seat, it was a few rows away from mine. She waved and smiled, showing her high cheekbones’. I waved back, but then put my head down and started sleeping.

I woke up when the bell rang and walked with Ruby to our next class. I never slept in art class, it was the class I loved the most.

“Good morning, good morning who’s your friend?” Miss Ching said as I walked in the door with Ruby right next to me.

“This girl Miss Ching? Or the one behind me?” I said sarcastically.” This is my friend Ruby she’s new here so be nice to her Miss Ching.” I started laughing.

Ruby started staring at the floor, then looked at Miss Ching and said, “Hello.”

“Oh new student, we’ll make a fine artist out of you. You will make great artwork and enter in contests and eventually become a well-known artist like Adam,” she said patting me on the shoulders and showing me to Ruby.

“Stop Miss Ching you’re making me blush,” I said laughing

“Do you have your drawing?” She told me

“Yeah it’s in my backpack,” I said pulling out the painting.

I handed it to her. She and Ruby stared at it for a while, and then Miss Ching gave me a hug, “So this is what you fear in the future…I’m sorry.”

She didn’t let go for a couple minutes. I didn’t mind though. I know she feels sincere about it, like I said earlier she understands me, she really does.

The picture, where do I start. Yesterday I was sitting in my room and didn’t really know what to draw. I didn’t fear anything in the future until I thought about how I saw on television how some teens get so depressed they commit suicide. Well I sort of copied that idea and put it in my drawing.

The picture was of a boy, he was sitting by a tree with his head in his knees. His long black hair was all you could see of his head. There were tears still in midair, and he was sitting against a tree that took up all of the space at the top of the paper. The boy’s arms were spread showing the underside, he had cuts, so many cuts. There was one that was the largest, and his arms hung limp by his side. In his right hand there was a razor that was dripping blood.

This was my drawing, this is what I feared would happen in the future if this depression…this solitude didn’t go away. I needed something…someone…to help me before it’s too late. Yeah I admit I have a problem, but I can’t really do anything about it.

I already tried counseling and anti-depressants, but that just made things worse. Cutting is the only thing that relieves my pain, the only thing that helps.

I stood there, lost in my thoughts, until I felt Miss Ching’s arms go back to her sides. “It’s ok…just a drawing,” I said, giving her a fake smile.

Ruby had tears in her eyes swelling up. I called her a crybaby and sat down with my arms folded on my desk; I put my head in the middle of them and started crying.

I felt a gentle hand on my shoulder. I looked up and saw Ruby. She was crying, “I know how you feel, it hurts huh, so much you can’t take it…feeling like every day might be your last. I know how you feel you’re not alone anymore ok I’m here…I’m here.”

I got out of my chair and gave her a hug; it felt so nice to be hugging someone. We were both crying, we didn’t care, this felt right…so right.

Miss Ching put Ruby’s seat right next to mine. I told her “Thank you,” then she started explaining to Ruby that she would have to take the basics before she could give her any of the assignments. She turned to the class and said, “Good artwork class, now draw what you hope will happen in the future.”

The bell rang, but I already knew what I was going to draw. Me and Ruby went to our separate classes, but promised to meet at the tree at lunch.

The rest of the periods went by fast, probably because I was sleeping most of the time. I was really too smart for my classes.

The bell rang for lunch, and I had an easy time making my way to the tree. I sat there, staring at the clouds. They looked like little puffballs in the sky. I wanted to touch them.

I was imagining what they would feel like when Ruby sat down next to me and brought me out of my trance, “Hey how you feeling?” She looked very worried.

“I’ll be fine how about you?” I said looking at her big blue eyes.

“I’ll be ok,” she said, looking at the clouds, “I want to just lay on them; I wonder how it would feel to just sleep on one you know.”

I smiled, “Yeah I want to touch one, they just look so soft…well could you please tell me why you cut yourself?” She suddenly looked down.

She took a piece of grass and twirled it in her fingers, “Well it all started when I was growing up as a kid…” She talked for the whole lunch period about how her dad puts her down all of the time, how she grew up with no friends, and having to watch her Mom have a lot of mood swings.

It was sad watching her tell her life story of how cutting is the only way out, and how she plays guitar and draws to feel better. I knew how she felt, I understand her, and she understands me. I was kinda glad that I wasn’t the only one who felt like that, but I was really happy that I wasn’t alone anymore, I felt relieved.

I looked at her when the bell rang, “Promise me one thing,” I said, grabbing her hand and looking straight into her blue eyes, “promise me you won’t cut anymore.”

She looked at me, then at the floor, “I promise if you promise me something too.”

“What is it?” I said looking down at the grass.

“Promise you won’t cut, and that you’ll never let me be alone again?” She looked like she was going to cry.

We were still sitting down, “I promise, and I keep my promises.”

She smiled, “Thank you.”

I smiled too, a real smile, “No…Thank you.”

We went to our classes and said bye afterschool. Her parents were off work, so they picked her up.

I walked to the store where my mom usually picks me up. She was already waiting for me. I love my mom, I hope she knows that.

I got in the car and changed the radio station. “How was school?” my mom said, “Did you show Ruby around? Did you talk to her? She’s a good girl; her parents said she was very smart. How was your drawing?”

“Yea she’s nice Mom, my teacher liked it and school was ok, how was work?” I said staring out the window at the clouds.

“Oh you know, wasn’t too busy just work,” she said smiling at me.

I knew her day was rough, it was always rough. She works so hard and I’m grateful for that.

My Mom works at a bakery. She runs back and forth all day making desserts and cookies and stuff. Usually she works so hard she falls asleep when she gets home. I love her so much for taking care of us.

I told her I would get a job, but she said I need to focus on school and that I already had my scholarship from art, so I didn’t have to worry about paying for college.

“That’s good mom,” I said, just as we got home. Omar was playing with his friends again. He saw me and ran up to the driveway, “Hey Adam just three more days then were going to the beach right? Three days?” He said counting three days with his fingers.

He was only five but he could count with his fingers. He was really smart. He looks up to me; I think that’s pretty awesome. “Yeah, three more days. Can you wait that long?” I said smiling and putting my hand on his head.

“Yeah! The beach the beach! I’m going to the beach with my brother!” He yelled as he ran to his friends. He was happy, that made me smile.

I went inside the house and it smelled like chicken. I went inside my room and put my backpack down, but instead of taking my shoes off and watching TV; I grabbed my guitar and went outside.

There she was, standing right by my tree with her guitar. At school I asked Ruby if she would want to hang out afterschool. She told me we should play music and make a song.

“Hey what’s up?” I told her smiling.

“Nothing much, I like your guitar,” she said touching it.

“I like yours too,” I said staring at her milky white acoustic guitar.

“Well let’s go inside my tree house,” I told her pointing up to my tree house.

I built it last summer all by myself for my brother, but he never used it so I made it my hideout. It has a lock on the bottom, and I’m the only one with the key. It’s like any other tree house. It’s pretty big; well it had to be to fit in my big oak tree. It has a sky roof with windows that open and a ladder that I use to climb up.

“That’s a nice tree house, did you make it?” She told me smiling and touching my tree.

“Yeah I made it last year, well let’s go inside?” I said pulling out the key from my pocket.

I unlocked the door and we climbed up to the tree house. Inside there wasn’t much, a few posters, a couch, a few flashlights, an electric lantern, and my secret stash of candy.

“There’s not much in here, but it’s still a tree house right. What do you want to play?” I said getting out a piece of paper and pen from a small cabinet.

“I think it’s nice,” she told me smiling, “Hmm let’s make a song about anything?”

“Hmm death?” I asked curiously.

“Nope too cold, how about hunger?” She said laughing

I couldn’t help but to start laughing, “Nope too foodish, how about love?”

“Sure, but not about love. How about everlasting true love?” She was smiling, a big smile, she was happy.

“Yes that sounds like fun,” I said while taking the cap off the pen and began brainstorming ideas for the song.

There we were all afternoon, writing, rewriting, playing, and singing our song that we made together. I felt so happy, for the first time I had somebody to hang out with. I felt special, I felt needed, and I felt like it mattered if I was alive or not.

When it got dark out, Ruby had to go back inside, but we were looking forward to the next day. We were both really happy, and it felt like nothing could change that.

I took a shower after I ate with my family. I told my mom that I loved her before I went to bed.

I had a dream, a regular dream this time. I was with Ruby. We were just staring at each other smiling and holding hands, it was weird but okay. I really didn’t mind having it.

I woke up early this time and got off my bed to pee. I opened my door and the house was quiet. I walked down the hall to my bathroom door, as I opened it I looked to the right into my brother’s room. I saw my mom holding my brother as he was sleeping; she was kissing him on his forehead.

I didn’t give it much thought as I was going to the bathroom though, because my mom really loves us.

I got dressed, same as always, black shirt, black pants, black shoes.

My mom made breakfast burritos filled with eggs, bacon and potatoes.

The three of us sat at the table eating. It was pretty quiet, then my mom looked at us and smiled, “You boys have grown up so fast…it seems like yesterday I was changing your diapers. I know you will grow up to be great men.” Her eyes were watery, but I didn’t understand her.

“What you talking about?” I said finishing my burrito.

“I love you two so much. Never forget that,” she said, still smiling.

“I love you too,” I said, wondering what she meant.

“Omar! Omar loves you too!” He said jumping up and down. She hugged him again and kissed him on the forehead.

We got in the car and waited for Ruby to get out. She walked in a hurry to the car, “Sorry for making you wait Miss T.,” she said putting on her seatbelt.

“Oh don’t worry about it Ruby, you’re a good girl, I know you’re a good girl,” she said looking back at ruby. “You stay with Adam always, be the best friend you can be ok. Can you promise me that?”

“Mom you’re acting so weird,” I said very concerned.

“I promise Miss T,” Ruby said looking down.

Was there something I didn’t know? I was so confused. I was still confused as we got out of the car and as I said bye and to my mom. I really didn’t know what to think. Was she pregnant…I don’t think so. Did she get fired…no that’s not it. Well I really didn’t know.

The bell rang right as we got to school. We didn’t talk much during the walk from the store, I don’t know why. We got to our first period class and sat down. I didn’t feel like doing much so I went to sleep.

I was woken up halfway through class. My pocket was vibrating, I got a text message.

I looked at my phone and it was a message from my mom. It said, “I love you so much son, never forget that.”

“I love you too mom, so so much.” I sent it. I really meant it; I do love my mom so much.

I waited a couple of minutes but there was no reply, so I put my phone in my pocket, I figured she was at work or sleeping.

I went back to sleep, and woke up when the bell rang. I and Ruby walked to class together, not saying much.

During second period nothing much happened. I was just drawing more things, but my mind wasn’t here. I was thinking about life and just confused. I was thinking to myself, but then I heard crying.

I looked to the right of me and saw Ruby with her head in her arms crying. I tried putting my hand on her back but she pushed it off, “I’m sorry, I’m so sorry.” She looked at me and kept saying that, I didn’t know what to say.

“What’s wrong?” I told her.

“I’m sorry,” she said before raising her hand, picking up her stuff and leaving the class. She went home.

This day was going by really weird, I didn’t know what to think. I just put my head down in all of my classes and slept. I even slept at the tree at lunch. I just didn’t feel good, something didn’t feel right.

Well, school ended and I walked to the store, my mom wasn’t there though. I waited about ten minutes until I saw the car pulling into the driveway. I was happy; all of my anxiety went away.

“Why are you here?” I said as I opened the door and saw my aunt in the driver’s seat.

“Something happened.” she said, she was crying, “I’ll tell you at home.”

“What happened?” I said almost screaming.

“I’ll tell you at home,” she said, tears were flowing down her cheeks.

The ride home was cold, silent, and there were black clouds in the sky. I had a bad feeling.

When we got to the house there were cars all over the lawn and in the driveway, everyone was here.

I walked inside the house and my uncles and aunts all hugged me, they were crying. My uncle looked at my aunt and said, “I think you should be the one to tell him.”

We went in my room and she looked at me. She started crying. Then she said, forcing the words out of her throat, the words I will never forget, “Your mom passed away.”

I cried, I cried so much, “What? Why? What happened? How?” I said crying so much. My world shut down I didn’t know what to do, I was so confused.

“Cancer, she died of cancer. She’s been fighting it for so long. She’s been so strong. Her last operation was today, but she didn’t make it. Oh my older sister! She’s in a better place now ok. “She started crying and she got on her knees, “Oh God why? Why did you take her from us! It’s not fair!”

I hugged her, I was crying, I was so sad. I don’t know what happened the rest of that day it was such a blur. My life was ended. My mom was dead.

Everyone left except for my aunt; she was going to move in with us. Omar didn’t know what was happening, he just cried for his mom.

I was in my room still crying when my aunt knocked on the door and said, “Honey, there’s someone here to see you, it’s the girl from next door…Ruby.”

I got up and opened the door, “Hey,” I told her as she came in and sat down on the bed. I went and sat down next to her.

She looked at the floor, and was playing with her hands. “I’m sorry,” she said, still looking down.

“Sorry for wha-,” Before I could finish my sentence she looked at me, tears rolled down her cheeks.

“I knew…I knew your mom was sick,” she started crying again.

I didn’t know how to feel. Was I supposed to be mad or sad? I really didn’t know. I just looked at her, it felt like forever, “It’s ok,” I said, “It really is. I just wish I could have told her more, I hope she knows that I love her.”

“She knows, she knows, thank you.” She started crying, “Here, she said to give you this when the time was right,” She handed me a letter.

I looked at this white envelope, I didn’t know what to think or say, “Thank you,” I said.

“I’m sorry,” she said before going home.

I was sitting alone on my bed. I had the envelope in my hands; I was scared to read it.

Finally after a while of thinking, I opened the envelope and pulled the paper out. My mom’s handwriting was so neat. I cried reading it, she told me to be strong and that she was sorry she didn’t tell me, she didn’t want to worry me. She said to look at the little things in life and to be grateful for them. The part of the letter I will always remember is the part at the end, “Son, never forget that I love you, and will always be with you, I love you so much, and I know you love me the same. Be graceful like the autumn wind.”

I started crying so much, “I love you mom, never forget that,” I said out loud looking out of my window into the night sky.

I don’t know if she heard me or not but I felt good, I took a shower and went to bed.

I woke up in the morning, it was seven, and I wasn’t tired. The house felt quiet, lonely as if the house was sad my mom was gone. I got dressed for school.

I didn’t want to talk to anyone, this feeling I felt was like no other. I was so depressed; it felt like I was dead inside. Everything felt so bad. I really wanted to cut. I didn’t want to live anymore. I was going to do it, no one would be able to stop me, and I’ll be with my mom.

Ruby couldn’t go to school today she was sick. I took a single razor in the small pocket of my pants. I was really going to do it; I thought about it the whole ride to school. I only talked to say bye to my aunt. She was still sad.

I didn’t talk during all of my classes, only to Miss Ching. She heard of the news, but gave me space. I thanked her so much.

I decided I was going to do it at lunch. I was really going to do it, I couldn’t take the feeling anymore, it just felt so bad.

The bell rang for lunch, I was pretty nervous, but I was going to do it. I already had my mind made up.

I walked to the tree and sat down. I took the razor out of my pocket. I put it against the big vein on my arm. I was staring at the razor, it was hungry for blood, ready to cut the soft skin and end my life.

I sat there, motionless, crying. I hated life, I really did. I didn’t know what to do, I stared at the razor, thinking about everything, my mom, my little brother, my family, but most of all I was thinking about Ruby.

I decided I was still going to do it. I didn’t want to live anymore, I was so fed up with this messed up life, with these heartless people, this depressed situation.

I pinched on the razor as hard as I could with my fingers getting the grip. I was actually going to do this.

I was about to cut. I heard footsteps, fast ones rushing toward me. I didn’t care, I didn’t even look up. I was about to press down hard, but then I felt hands on mine.

These hands were so soft, like clouds, they lifted the razor out of my hands and threw it. The shiny metal was there lying on the softball field, defeated.

I looked up and was face to face with Ruby. She saved me. “Are you ok?” She said in a worried voice.

I just looked down at my hands, at the little cut on my wrist that wasn’t bleeding much, at my feet, then the floor. “No,” I said.

“Why! Why did you try to do it?” She said holding my hands.

“I don’t know,” I said still staring at the floor. “Don’t tell anyone please, I’m sorry.” I felt so bad. Not because it was a bad thing I tried to do, but because she was crying so much. I felt guilty I broke her promise and I told her I wouldn’t. “I’m so sorry,” I felt so bad.

“It’s ok really it is, you’re alive that’s all that matters,” she was smiling. I could tell it was fake though, she was really worried.

I stood up and hugged her. I went to kiss her on the cheek to show her how grateful I was that she saved me or something like that. She was going to do the same thing and we ended up kissing each other. It wasn’t a long kiss, just a little smooch. We sat down shocked and just stared at the clouds, speechless. I couldn’t talk; my breath came out when I kissed her. I was so shocked, I forced the words out of my mouth, “Did we just…”

“Yes…we did,” she said still looking up at the clouds.

It felt so right; I don’t know how to explain it. It just felt perfect. I really didn’t know what to say.

We just sat there for the rest of lunch, not saying a word until we said bye to each other. We hugged goodbye but were keeping our distance, I guess she was in shock too.

School ended pretty fast. I didn’t do much but slept. My aunt picked me up from the store, but it didn’t feel the same. I really missed my mom, it’s not fair, but everything happens for a reason I guess.

I got home, put my stuff away and got my guitar.

I waited by my tree for Ruby to come out. After a couple minutes she did with her guitar in her hand.

We went inside the tree house and sat down. I looked out the window and saw Omar playing with his friends. He stopped and looked at me, “Brother, are we still going to the beach tomorrow?”

I looked at him, holding back my tears. “Yeah we are.”

“Yes! Okay!” He started playing again.

The reason I was holding back my tears was because my mom’s funeral is tomorrow. We’re going to the beach after her funeral at a cemetery close to it. I was sad I didn’t want to think about it, so I sat down and started playing guitar with Ruby.

We finally finished our song. It sounded really nice, because it was a duet. The chorus is the best part though, “Just be graceful like the autumn wind,” my mom’s words.

We decided we were going to play it in the talent show tomorrow. It’s a really nice song, it makes me really happy.

“Do you feel better?” She asked me, staring at me with those worrying eyes.

“Yeah I do thank you so much for helping me, you’re awesome.” She blushed, it was so cute.

“Thank you,” she said.

I don’t know why, but she made me happy. I looked at her face and felt a warm feeling inside my stomach. I wondered if she felt the same way about me. I didn’t know how she felt underneath that smile of hers. “How do you feel?” I asked.

She looked confused, “About what?”

I looked at her and smiled, “About us?”

She looked surprised. She really didn’t know what to say, and then she looked down and said, “What about us?”

“Everything, do you feel like we’ll be together one day or stay best friends? I’m curious,” I said grabbing one of her hands.

She blushed even more, it wasn’t embarrassing for her. I was though, “um…Well…I don’t know,” she looked so confused.

“Just forget I said that okay I’m stupid…I’m sorry,” I felt so embarrassed. I wanted to leave. “I think I have to go inside now…,” I said, opening the hatch and starting to climb down.

“It’s okay don’t worry please,” she said climbing down too.

We were standing by the tree now, just staring at each other not saying a word. I don’t know how much time passed by but it felt like forever.

“Well bye,” I said, standing there. I felt like I couldn’t move, like there was a magnet in my shoes holding me down.

“See you tomorrow, if you need a shoulder to cry on, you can cry on mine,” she said, putting her hand on my shoulder, smiling.

That made me happy, “Thanks, you too.”

We both went inside for the day, and everything felt right. I still missed my mom though. I took a shower and went to bed. I was so nervous for the funeral.

I woke up in the morning with butterflies in my stomach, it was ten. My mom’s funeral was at twelve.

When I got dressed in my black suit and walked out of my room my aunt was sitting at the table crying. I walked over to her and put my hand on her shoulder. She was dressed in her black dress, and was staring at my mom’s old pictures. “She’s in a better place now Aunt Rosa, she wouldn’t have wanted us to cry, let’s be strong for her.” She looked at me and smiled.

I wiped her tears off her cheek and poured myself a bowl of cereal.

After I finished, I got ready and watched TV. Until it was time to leave. Rosa got Omar dressed and we got in the car.

I was about to get in the car when I realized I forgot something. I ran back into the house and got the piece of paper off of my dresser. It was the drawing that I had to do for art. Miss Ching was going to be at the funeral, and I decided I was going to give it to her there.

On the way to the funeral the sky was blue and there were big fluffy clouds. I wasn’t really sad anymore because I finally realized that my mom really cared about me and wouldn’t have wanted me sad.

In the back of my head I kept thinking, what would have happened if Ruby didn’t come in time, what if I would have actually killed myself?

I didn’t have much time to think about it because we got to the funeral. I stepped outside of the car and was shocked to see more than three hundred people came to her funeral.

I walked through the people and they all looked at me and touched me on the shoulder. They made a path for us to walk to the casket. I didn’t know how to feel. I started getting tears in my eyes. Then I felt a soft hand on mine.

Ruby was right next to me, “I’m here ok, I’m here.”

I felt better, “Thank you.”

We walked up to the casket. I put a red rose on it, “I love you mom never forget that.”

During the funeral everybody was crying, even the pastor who knew my mom. She was loved by many. That made me think about my life and the people I know. When I die I want a lot of people to come, people that I’ve changed and made their life better, I want to be happy like my mom was, and live life to the fullest.

Everyone was talking after the casket was lowered and the tombstone was put in. Every single person had a different story to tell me about my mom, she saved some of their lives and taught them about life. My mom was a great woman.

I walked to Miss Ching, who was putting some flowers by my mom’s tombstone, “Hey um, I have the drawing that was due, sorry I took so long.”

She looked up at me with tears in her eyes and smiled, “Oh it’s ok. Don’t worry about that, you know your mom was like my sister. We grew up together. I’m going to miss her so much.”

“Yeah me too, but she’s in a better place now,” I said smiling.

“That’s very true, we’ll see her one day,” she said smiling.

I pulled out the folded paper from my pocket, “Here,” I said handing it to her, “I think I know how to make it come true too. Could you please go to the talent show today?”

She unfolded the paper and stared at the drawing for a couple of minutes, “Oh I see,” she started smiling, “I will be there.”

I smiled, “Okay thanks. See you there.”

We hugged goodbye and I went to talk to more people.

After a couple of hours everyone left and I said my last goodbyes to my mom. We got in the car and headed for the beach. Ruby’s parents let her come with us.

The beach wasn’t crowded when we got there, because it’s a secret beach not many people know of. Omar was screaming his head off, “The beach! The beach! We’re at the beach!”

He went splashing in the water. Rosa sat down in the sand staring at the horizon. Me and Ruby sat down on a rock and put our feet in the water.

I looked at her and said, “You ready for the talent show?”

She smiled, “I’m pretty nervous, but I think we will do just fine.”

“So do I, we’ll all we have to do is wait,” I said staring at the clouds in the sky.

We sat there most of the day talking about life. She said hers was getting better and she was happy. I felt happy too; even though my mom was gone I learned how to appreciate what I did have.

The sun was setting, and there were only a couple hours until the talent show. I was really nervous. I looked at Ruby and saw her differently than when I first saw her.

To me she was beautiful, just watching the sun gently kiss her cheeks. Her eyes were so beautiful and blue like the sky, her smile was perfect. I was in love with her.

We left the beach and got home fast, because there wasn’t any traffic. We went home and got ready.

I wore my black suit to match my guitar, and Ruby wore a white dress and white heels to match hers. Rosa and her parents drove together to the school; there were a lot of people going to the talent show.

When I stepped out of my car and saw Ruby I was speechless. She looked so beautiful. I smiled and said, “Hey, you ready?”

She smiled, “I’m so nervous right now!”

I laughed, “well it’s a good thing we’re going last.”

It’s true; we were going last because we were late to sign up.

We said bye to everyone and went backstage to wait our turn. I was so nervous, but it was something I had to do.

There were only five more people in the talent show besides us. One at a time they went. One person juggled, one said corny jokes, two had dancing routines, and one had a puppet.

I was really nervous as I heard our principle say, “And now please welcome Adam and Ruby singing their original song Autumn Wind.”

It was finally our turn, and I had the biggest butterflies in my stomach.

We walked onstage and were face to face with this enormous crowd in the gym. They were all clapping and cheering for us, I felt so happy.

We sat down on stools with microphones by our mouths. I took the mic and said, “I would like to dedicate this to my mom who passed away Wednesday, I love you mom.” and we started playing our guitars.

The crowd was silent the whole song. We put both of our hearts into this song, it felt so right. I could see Rosa in the audience crying. Everyone was there to watch, everyone cared.

After the song was over, everyone stood up and started cheering. They didn’t stop for five minutes. The principle finally grabbed the mic and said, “Can all of the contestants stand out here; the judges are ready to declare the winner.”

The rest of the people walked out onto the stage and stood there. I was so nervous and I grabbed Ruby’s hand and closed my eyes.

The principle got an envelope from the judges, opened it, and pulled out a paper from it. “And the winners for this year’s talent show is…,” Ruby started to squeeze my hand, “Adam and Ruby!” The crowd started cheering and Ruby hugged me.

Jessica came out of the judge’s box and handed me an envelope, it was the prize. We won one hundred dollars. She looked at me and said, “Hey me and my friends are going to a party tonight do you want to come it’s only for popular kids.”

I looked at her and laughed, “No I would rather hang out with the unpopular kids.”

She said, “Fine!” and walked back to the judge’s box.

I grabbed the mic, “Excuse me everyone, can I have your attention? Could you please sit down? I have something to say.” Everyone was quiet and sat down again.

I looked at Miss Ching and smiled and I looked at Ruby and said, “Ruby, you’ve been there for me when nobody has, you cared about me and saved my life, I love you, will you be my girlfriend?”

The crowd started cheering; they were all chanting, “Say yes! Say yes! Say yes!”

She smiled and grabbed the mic, “Yes, yes I will.”

The crowd cheered and we kissed. I was so happy.

Everybody left and I talked to Miss Ching before I left. She said she was so proud of me, that my mom would have been too, and that she put my drawing in the contest.

The drawing was of me and Ruby. We were sitting at a tree, holding hands. On the tree was a heart. Inside the heart were our initials. At the bottom of the paper was writing. It said, “There is always something in life worth living for; you just have to find it.”

My drawing won and was put into the art museum. It is still there to this day. Ruby and I lived happily ever after.

To my Mom

Desire TO LOVE

        

Behind every great man is a great woman.  These words, these sweet, sweet words are the words in which I can say from my personal experiences are very true.

        My name is Rosa, but you can call me Rose.  Many people cannot see me, for only I can.  Dead yet I am not, I am real.  Yet I don’t exist—-I can feel, but I can’t feel.  I have no emotions, or at least I didn’t have any until that cold winter night.

        It was a winter night like any other night, and I was making my daily trip through London, searching for lost souls, so I can guide them to the golden gates, and I noticed a man on the curb.  I drifted toward him, pushing aside the air with my hands.  I stayed there, staring at him.  I stared at his face, peered into his eyes, and asked softly, “ What’s wrong?” He couldn’t hear me.

        He looked up but didn’t see me.  Tears were on his face—-he was crying, but why?  I floated around him; he was whispering to himself.  I didn’t understand what he was saying, until he started saying it louder.  He looked up to the night sky and said, or should I say asked, “Why can’t I find the one, why can’t I love?”  

        I was right above him, wondering what love was.  I never heard of this word, love.  So I decided that I’m going to follow this man and help him find love, but our trouble was, how can I help him find love.  

        I myself don’t know what it is.  I can only see what will happen when it happens.  This boy, or shall I say, man was about twenty-five years old.  He had a smooth face, two light blue eyes, long black hair and a rounded nose.  He was very handsome.  He got up and started walking.

        We were walking on the sidewalk now, trees were full of snow, the branches were dark, almost to the point of coal, and I floated right next to him.  He kept saying to himself, “ Maria, Maria, why did you leave me? Maybe, maybe I didn’t love you enough, all these times.  I could have stayed with you longer, gave you that extra kiss goodbye Oh, Maria!”  

        As I float aside this man, I’m just wondering what he’s feeling, what he was going through, and I just followed him in thought.  We went to a house.  It was really nice.  It was a two bedroom and it had a fireplace that was being lit.  He had a beautiful kitchen but that was about all that I could see.  He sat on a chair next to the fireplace and fell asleep.  I sat there and I watched this man sleep. The firelight on the side of his cheek, making his face glow with warmth.  I thought I would go back to work and I would find this man again. In the morning, just when he wakes up. I’ll help him find this word called love.

        The next morning I floated to his house, I can see the color of it now; it was a blue house with yellow railings to the door, before it was three orange-stone brick steps that led to a yellow doorbell.  I went through the door.

        The man was up, and dressed up in a white collared shirt with black pants, black converse and a red tie. He was saying good morning to a picture in his wallet followed by a, I love you, and he put his wallet into his pocket.

        He walked out of the house and I followed him.  I could see that his eyes were clawing at his face to let his pupils bleed tears, but he rejected them and kept walking saying, “Maria, how can I get over you, how, how.”  

        I whispered in his ear, that’s all I could do, I told him in a soothing voice, “Boy, it’s alright, everything’s gonna be fine, don’t worry about the past, that can’t change your future, only you can, stop crying, it’s okay.”    

        He looked at the sky and then glanced at his wallet.  I think he heard me.  He must have because from that point on he didn’t sulk about Maria, he heard me.  We went down a road, a very unfamiliar road that I didn’t know of.  It was behind the hardware store, and it was a little dirt road that led somewhere.  About a half mile through the road there was a flower shop, the boy went in and bought a dozen roses.  Then we went on our way down the road.

        The man went through white gates, and jumped a brick wall.  I floated over it and I understood where this man was going.  The place we went to was stark, it looked cold, dead for millenniums, and it was a cemetery.  The man walked to an unfamiliar tombstone.  I was curious.  So I floated over his shoulder.  The tombstone had no name on it.  The only thing it said was   loving mother, loving wife, loving daughter.     I didn’t know who it was.  

        The man put two roses at each corner, and two more on each side of the writing.  He muttered words to himself; I heard him though, he said, “I love you, mom.”   I didn’t know who his mom was, I wish I could have, she sounds like a loving mother.

        The man got up and started walking.  We went through a black gate that led to a running shop.  The title was Quix Shoes, it wasn’t busy, I guess because it’s only a Monday.  As the man went in, the employees called him boss.  I guess he owns this place.  The man felt like working so we went to the cash register and told one of the men to go on break.  The man was happy to work.

        The man had a glowing face full of happiness when he would speak to the customers, almost like this was a really special day for him, but I don’t know.

        As women came into the shop, and a look suddenly came over the man’s face. “Hi, how may I help you?” The girl looked at him, her baby blue eyes glowing like two pearls in the moonlight, gazed upon this man’s face.  

        Her flawless teeth showed as she smiled and said, “ Yes, if it’s not too much, I’d like a pair of these in a size six,” holding up a pair of green running shoes.  

          “ Yes, of course,” he said smiling, disappearing into the backdoors.  I stayed over the counter, staring at this woman.  

She looked like she was twenty three; she had long blond hair, a smooth face and dimples on her cheeks that only showed when she smiled.  She was tall and skinny.  I thought she was beautiful.  I wondered if she was single, and I noticed she had a ring tan when she put her hand on the counter so she must be divorced.  

        The man came out with a pair of shoes and said, “Here you go,”   he paused.  

         “ Catherine, my name’s Catherine,” she said smiling, shaking his hand.  

          “ Pleasure to meet you.  My name is Kekoa, and I think your name is beautiful.”   I saw the sparkle in her eyes as he said that.

        I whispered in his ear once more, “ Kekoa, listen to me, you say You are looking for love, I myself don’t know what that is, but I believe this girl can help you find it, so try to get to know her.”  

        He must have heard me, he was smiling, and said full of Confidence, “ Catherine would you like to hang out someday, maybe go eat or something?”    

        The girl smiled, and said, “ Of course, it would be a pleasure to spend time with you, how Wednesday, so in two days.”  

         “ Yeah that would be nice.  We can go get yogurt down the street.  Where do you want me to pick you up?” He said with joy.  

         “ You can come to my house by the cemetery,” she said, blushing.

            “ You mean the green house?” He said laughing.  

        She looked at him surprised and said, “ Yes, how did you know that?”

        He smiled, “ Because I’m your neighbor.  I have the blue house.”    

         “ That’s great,” she said smiling, “Would you like to come over tonight if it’s not too much trouble?  We could watch a movie.”    

         “ Yes, my shift ends at six so after that I’ll come over,” he said.  

         “ Great!  So how much do I owe for the shoes?” She smiled.

        “Hmmm how about you give me your phone number and they’re free,” he said smiling.

        She looked at him smiling, and then said, “ You have a deal, writing her number on a piece of paper and handing it to him.”

        I stood there watching both of them, and I knew they were happy, as the woman walked out of the store after saying goodbye.  Kekoa was really happy, and looked up to the sky and said, “ Thank you.”  

        I smiled, even though I didn’t know who he thanked.  I smiled.  I saw him pull out his cell phone and dial numbers and texted Catherine.  The text wrote, “ Catherine this is Kekoa, it was really nice meeting you today and I’m looking forward to hanging out with you later.”   He was happy again.

        A few minutes later, he got a text message from her and it said, “ Kekoa, you’re a really nice guy, and I can’t wait to see you today, and I know you’re busy at work so I’ll let you go, until I see you—-bye.”  

        I looked at his face, and his teeth were sparkling in the light; he was in fact happy.  I went back to my job, and would be back before Kekoa went off of work.  And I would follow him to Catherine’s house and watch over him.  And I would help Kekoa find this word love.

        I went back to the shop at six, and Kekoa was barely getting off work.  He was walking back through the cemetery and he stopped at the grave again, and whispered words I couldn’t hear.  Then he walked to Catherine’s house and knocked on the door.

        Catherine came out smiling.  Her hair was curly and she was wearing black jeans with a white V-neck. “Why hello,” she said.

         “ Hi, you look pretty,” he said in a happy voice.  I noticed that he changed into blue jeans and a white Volcom shirt and his hair was still down.

          “ Thanks, you look good, too,” she said.

         “ So what movie are we watching?” he said.

           “ Predators, have you seen it yet?” She said with enthusiasm.  

         “ Nope not yet, let’s watch!”    He said happily.

        I floated above the couch while they were watching.  The house was medium sized, had two bathrooms, and a big kitchen.  Overall it was a nice house.

        They were hardly watching the movie, and were talking the whole time, about dislikes and things they like.  They talked about their life stories and about past relationships.  It turns out that they both got screwed over by their past partners.

        They were happy talking to each other, and told each other that they would love to hang out again when it got too late.  After they said their last goodbyes, Kekoa was about to leave, and to my surprise, she held on to his hand, hugged him and kissed him.

        There they were out that winter night, lying down on the car staring at the clear starlight night holding hands.

        I would float next to them and look at their eyes as they stared at each other, as if there wasn’t anything in the world that could tear them apart, like they were there and the world was on a different planet.  They didn’t care about the troubles in life because they have each other.  This was love.

        I went and whispered into the man’s ear.  I said, “Kekoa, tell her how you feel.  I see the way you look at her—-you’re in love.”  

        He heard me once more, he turned to Catherine and said, “Even though I barley met you, I feel like I’ve known you forever, and it feels like I know your life and who you are and I think I’m in love with you.”  

        She looked at him and smiled, then said, “Kekoa, I feel the same way, but I know I’m in love with you.”

        He smiled, “Catherine will you make me the happiest man and be my girlfriend?”    

        Her face glowed in the moonlight as she said, “ Of course I will——it will be my pleasure, and make me the luckiest and happiest girl in the world.”     They held each other in their arms for a while, and then they went to their houses for the night. I went back to work.

        The next morning I went back to Kekoa’s house.  He was up really early, and was walking toward work, dressed in a white collared shirt with black pants and converse.  He stopped by Catherine’s house as I followed him, floating by his side.

        He was so happy today.  It felt nice.  His face was glowing with warmth as he waited for her at the door.  The door opened and he said, “ Why hello, beautiful.”  

        She looked at him and smiled, “ Hey handsome.”  

        I floated by them and I saw the way they looked at each other.  It was so nice.  

         “ So, you still up for the dinner tonight?” Kekoa said, looking with a sense of joy.  

         “ Of course, we’ll have so much fun!” She said smiling.  

         “ Okay, beautiful, I’ll see you after work then.”   He kissed her goodbye and started walking.  I watched as he went in the flower shop.

        He left the shop; I floated by his shoulder watching his facial expressions as he looked at the flowers.  His eyes were really watery, almost to the point of crying.  Despite his smile on his face   it was just a mask.

        I’m not a mind reader, but I can still see something happened to this man that kills him inside, that makes him depressed but what could it be.  I won’t worry about it.

        I watched Kekoa put the roses the same way as before, replacing the old ones.  He sat there a little bit longer this time though, and all of a sudden started crying.  I looked at his tears flowing down his chin and I couldn’t help but shed a tear and it got cloudy.  The sky became dark, and it started to rain.  But just for a moment until I wiped my tear.  I don’t know why but it saddened me seeing this man cry.  It wasn’t right.

        After time passed, Kekoa got up and wiped his tears and walked toward the back gates to his shop.  He walked in and took over at the cash register.  Again he had a smile on his face.  He seemed happy.  But he really wasn’t.  I headed back to work and would come back when he gets off.

        I came back to the shop at six and caught him as he was barely walking out.  He looked tired as he was walking down the street toward Catherine’s house, but at least he was smiling.  He was walking by the hardware shop and ran into a man that looked odd.  This man was wearing black pants with a black sweater and gloves, but he was also wearing a mask.

        The man muttered words to Kekoa, and flashed a gun from his pocket, he was a robber.  Kekoa looked really scared; his eyes were filled with shock.  He couldn’t move; he didn’t know what to do.

         “ Give me all of your money!” Said the robber putting the gun against Kekoa’s chest.  

         “ No,” said Kekoa to my surprise.  

         “ What did you just say!” He said holding the trigger.

          “ I said no, I’m not afraid to die,” Kekoa said coldly, looking the robber in the eyes.

         I couldn’t just watch, I went to the robber, and whispered, “Stop, please, if you believe in God, please stop.”    

        He looked surprised, almost shocked, and walked away.  Kekoa was still standing there, frozen.  I couldn’t imagine what was going through his mind.  A few moments later he started walking again, without a care in the world; he was smiling.  He went home changed and walked to Catherine’s house.

        He knocked on the door and was surprised to the point of shock and awe when Catherine came out.  She was wearing a black dress that was cut down to her ankles.  Her hair was curled, and she looked beautiful. “ Why hello cute stuff is Catherine home?” He said, smiling.  

         “ Oh, no I’m sorry, she just left,”   she said in a laughing tone.  Then she paused and said, “ Handsome guys like you deserve a kiss,” shortly before kissing him. “You look handsome you know that?”  

         “ Well, if you say so,” he said.  But it was true this man had a blue collared shirt with black jeans and some black converse.  They were going to dinner out in a restaurant downtown called “ Big Fish”, but I heard them talking about eating their steak.  I was going to stay with them just in case they needed anything.

        I waited outside while they were getting ready to leave.  I noticed how they were so happy together, even though Kekoa was sad.  It’s as if Catherine is the light at the end of the tunnel.

        A few minutes later, they were out of the house walking toward the restaurant.  I floated just above them, listening to what they were saying.  

         “ The foods going to be so good!” He said.

          “ I know just talking about it gets me hungry,” she said.

        The whole walk they were talking about food.  This food must be a real joy to them.  I wonder why.  We arrived at the restaurant.  It was really big, with a sign of a Big Fish that was dressed in cowboy clothes.  They walked inside; it wasn’t very crowded but was quiet.   The sound of clattering silverware filled the air.  It was a nice place to eat.

        They went to the front desk, and asked for a table for two and shortly after, were seated.  I floated just above their table light, watching them talk about what they wanted to eat.  The waitress came and took their order.   “ Hi, my name is Rosa; would you like to start off with an appetizer?”  I looked at Kekoa as she was saying that.  His eyes got watery, but were hidden by the light in the restaurant.

         “ That’s a lovely name, yes; I would like chicken wings to start off. Thank you,” he said.  

         “ Okay, and what would you like to drink?” She said.  

          “ I’ll have a root beer.  And what do you want to drink Cat?” He looked at her and smiled.  

           “ I’ll have a root beer, too, thank you,” she said.  

        The waitress smiled and said thank you and left.  I looked at Catherine.  She looked at Kekoa as if something was bugging her.  I thought she was fine until she said, “ Hun, why did your eyes get watery when you were talking to the waitress?”  

        He looked up, sighed, and showed her the wallet, opened it, and after a moment put it back in his pocket. I couldn’t see what he showed her, but she understood, and touched his hand in comfort.  

         “ I’m sorry, I didn’t know,”    she said, still touching his hand.  

        

         “ I remember this one time I put on a cape and a mask and ran around her car in my boxers when I was a kid.  It made her so happy,” he said.  I looked at him as he said this.  He smiled.  He was happy thinking about his past, and the woman that he loves so much.  I would love to meet this woman.

        

        The waitress came with the food and placed it on the table.  It was a bread basket with crispy chicken wings and dipping sauce on the side, along with their drinks.  She put the food on gently and carefully, smiled and said, “ Here you go, just call me when you’re ready to order.”  

         “ Thank you, we will,” said Kekoa.  They started eating the food, talking and pausing to chew.  They were wondering what to order.  Then they decided on the steak meal, which came with a baked potato and fries.  They called the waitress and ordered.  I had to go but I would come back as soon as I could.

        I was gone for a couple minutes, but in my world a couple minutes are many days on earth.  A year had passed, and to my surprise, Kekoa was not at his house.  His house was empty and there was a real estate sign on his front lawn.

        I flew over to his shop and he wasn’t there either.  I thought I would go see if he was at Catherine’s house.  I was right.  It turned out he moved in with her.  I walked through her door and found them eating breakfast at the table.  They were both smiling.

        It turned out that Kekoa was, in fact, in love with her and was planning on marrying her in a few days.  The marriage would take place at a church down the street.  I floated by their shoulders as they were talking about decorating and planning it, full of joy, looking at each other with a look of pure happiness and love.

        I decided that I would watch their wedding, but headed back to my world because I have done my part to help this man find love.  But I would visit in the years to see how he is.

        On the day of the wedding, everyone in the town was there, happily watching the bride and groom say their vows under the big oak tree.  I floated right next to them happy, watching everyone.  They kissed, and were married.

        Kekoa looked at Catherine and started crying, “ I wish my mom, Rose was here, but I know she’s looking down on us from the heavens, happy.  I love you, mom.”    

        I heard him say this and I realized, he was my son. “ I love you too so so much,” I whispered in his ear. “I will always be here.”    

        He heard me, he smiled and said, “Thank you, mom.”   He was happy. I was happy.

        I had helped this man, my son find love and I would visit soon.  I kissed him on the cheek and left.

        Two years have passed in their time, and I have returned to see how my son was doing.  I went to Catherine’s house and saw him, Catherine and a baby girl.  

        She was in a crib, with a bottle.  She had baby blue eyes, blond hair, pink mittens and pink pajamas.  I looked on her beanie, there were letters embroidered on it, the letters read Rosa.     “Every man will look to find love, for those who don’t,    regardless, have the desire to love.”

Fin.  


Book of Hearts

  • Author: Ruben Kekoa Solano
  • Published: 2017-06-15 06:20:14
  • Words: 13931
Book of Hearts Book of Hearts