The hot tears streamed down my face onto my knees where my head was buried. I knew if I looked in the mirror I would see a red faced, puffy-eyed, broken hearted girl with nothing left. I was just glad no one was around to see me.
As if reading my mind someone opened the door, it was around the corner and I couldn't see who it was. I got up as fast as I could and started running to the opposite door with my hair sticking to my face, I was almost there when he spoke.
“Is anyone in here?” he called. As soon as he spoke I knew who it was. Alexander Conan, the man I love and the man who didn't love me back. I moved to the wall, swung my hair in front of my face and froze. Out of all the people who could have walked in, it just had to be him. The one person i didn't want to see me like this.
I knew he would see me once he cleared the corner. He would see me weather i moved or not, but if I didn't move then he would definitely see my face. I needed to move.
I ran straight for the door as fast as I could, I felt my hair fly behind me uncovering my face and out of the corner of my eye I saw him come around the corner but I kept going. I pushed the door open so hard it hit the wall, I heard him call out behind me.
“Rosealinda are……” I didn't hear what he said next, I ran down the hallway into an empty choir room. There was a piano in the middle of the classroom with chairs around it, posters of musicals all over the walls, and a big white board on the wall next to the door. I have been in this room everyday for four years and I would never be in it again, tomorrow was graduation and this would all be gone. I sat at the piano and stared at the keys, I knew what to do but couldn't bring myself to lift my arms.
I pulled my legs up to my chest and just stared at the keys, after a few minutes I raised my arm and ran my hands along the keys, just as I was getting ready to play the door swung open and Alexander walked into the room. Before I knew what was happening I had stood up and walked to the door, I tried to go around him but he blocked my path.
“Let me out” I said trying to get around him again.
“No, not until you tell me what's wrong, you never cry” I didn't know how he knew that because we have never had a conversation even though we’ve known each other since we were in 4th grade.
“it's none of your business, you don't know me and I don't know you, now please let me out” I avoided his eyes while I said this so he wouldn't know I was lying. I wanted to scream and tell him that I did know him, that I loved him and I wanted him to live me too.
“What are you talking about, of course we know each other, will you please look at me?” he tried to look at my face but I pulled away and walked back to the piano. He stood on the opposite side of the piano, but I could tell he was trying to find a way around to me.
“please just tell me what's wrong” he said again.
“Nothing I'm fine” I lied, again I avoided eye contact and it sounded like my nose was stuffed, I knew my face still looked red and you could see the lines where the tears had run down my face. I turned around forgetting he was trying to get to me, I turned around but it was too late. He sat on the piano bench and pulled me to him. His face was so close to mine and I could feel his hands holding me in place. His face was perfect, sculpted like a statue, his hair a light brown almost dark blond; I wanted to reach up and run my fingers through it more than anything.
“Rose, what’s wrong?” he asked, at this point I realized I was basically sitting on his lap. My breathing for heavier and I could feel every part where our bodies touched. We were so close I could see his contacts and smell his cologne and it smelled good. I could sit like this forever, but I knew I couldn't
“Let me go Alex” I looked him straight in the eye hoping he wouldn't see that what I really wanted was for him to hold me and never let me go.
“Not until you tell me what's wrong” he looked me straight in the eye and I understood. He actually wanted to know, and I had no doubt he would hold me here until I told him. That meant I had to tell him though, there was no getting out of it.
“Chad” I whispered, but there was no doubt he heard me, I felt his whole body tense up and his grip on my waist tighten. His face distorted and he looked angry but as soon as I saw it, it was gone again.
“Who's Chad?” he asked, but I could tell it wanted to talk about it just as much as I did, which was not at all.
“No one” I said but I looked away, praying he would drop the subject.
“Obviously it isn't no one of you're crying, is he your boyfriend?” he sounded bitter but also like he actually wanted to know the answer. I burst out laughing, I didn't mean to but the idea was just utterly ridiculous. He stared at me like I was crazy.
“What's so funny?” he asked staring at me like I was crazy.
“Chad is Not my boyfriend that would be really weird” I was still laughing at the prospect but stopped when I felt his body relax and saw relief cross his face.
After I pulled myself together he started to talk again.
“Are you mad at him, did he do something to upset you? He asked.
There was no point in trying to get out of this now, he was going to ask until I told him.
“yeah he did something to upset me, but I'm not mad at him, I never could be” I said it as if it were fact but he looked confused.
“What did he do?” That was the dreaded question wasn't it, the reason we were in this situation. I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes threatening to leak out, I need to focus on something else, if I started talking I would start crying.
His hands. I could feel them on my waist gripping me and holding me there, but they weren't rough but soft and even though his grip was tight it didn't hurt. I was ready to talk.
“He decided to join the army” I said it very slowly and as soon as I said it I knew it was true, it became real.
“That's it?” At this, I snapped. I wrenched myself from his grip, standing up but he grabbed me at the last second.
“Wait, you were fine a moment ago, what did I do?” my face probably looked shocked I thought it was obvious what he did.
“That's it? I don't think you understand what how I feel about this. I'm so afraid he's going to come back paralyzed or missing a limb. I'm afraid he that when he comes back he'll have PTSD or something and he won't be the same person, I'm afraid he won't come back at all” By now I was yelling and sobbing harder than ever, I couldn't even make out his face through the tears, but I knew He had let me go and the door was close behind me.
“He is all I have left my dad left when I was two and my mom works so much she home maune an hour a day, Chad is all I have left and he's leaving, and as much as I don't want him to go I can't tell him to stay. I can't….I don't…….” I couldn't breath and my heart felt like it was going to burst open. I still couldn't see him but I could make out his shadow as he walked past me like he was headed to the door. I tried to breath but oxygen refused to slip down my throat into my lungs, I was panicking.
This what I wanted, right? For him to leave me alone. For him to let me go? Now that he was going I knew that he didn't feel the same way I did.
All of the sudden I felt him behind me, he grabbed my hands so that our arms were pinned together and pulled them up to my chest and wrapped them around me. He was holding me so tight like He thought I would run away from him. He pulled me to the ground but didn't set me on his lap, just sat behind me with his body wrapped around mine.
“Just breath” he said, and i did. I sat there until i caught my breath. I closed my eyes and focused on his arms wrapped around me and the bearing of his heart next to my ear.
“i'm….so…….sorry” I choked out after a few minutes, the tears were slowing down and my breath was coming back.
“T-this has n-nothing to do with y-you, you d-don't have to w-sorry a-a-about it.” I said trying to stand up, but his arms tightened around me and he wouldn't let me get up.
“you're not going anywhere yet” he said and started stepping my back
“You need to calm down” All I could do was manage to nod.
We sat like this for what seemed like hours even though it was only a few minutes, the tears subsided and my face dried bit i didnt want to move.It felt nice sitting here but I knew it would soon be over when he asked me if I was alright.
“Yes, thank you, you didn't have to do that, but thank you”
“i know what it's like” he said and I looked at him.
“i know what it's like to have someone you love join the army, how it feels when they leave. You think you're never going to see them again, or something bad will happen and they won't be the same person that were. I know what it's like.” He wouldn't look me in the eye.
“Who?” I asked trying to look at him, but he kept me turned around.
“My brother joined the army before four years ago before I started high school, he died last year in Iraq.”
I gasped I didn't mean I but it slipped out, along with a few years that were still hanging in my eyes. I turned around, he could hold me this time.I looked him straight in the eye even though he didn't want me to.
“i'm so sorry”
“Why are you sorry, it wasn't your fault?”
“Because it's an awful thing and you don't deserve it” sensing he didn't want me to say anything else I turned around a layer my head on his chest.
“i'm so so sorry” I whispered.
I felt him squeeze me then release me again. After a few minutes i sensed it was awkward so i went to get up but he pulled me back down,i tried to get up again thinking that if I got up he wouldn't see how much I wanted to stay, but he still wouldn't let me up.
“I know I have no right to ask this” he said and a strange look covered his face, I couldn't make out what it was though. “but, could you please not right me, can we just stay like this for a while”
I thought about it for a minute, I really didn't want to move.
“Alright” I relaxed into him and as if taking that as his cue he relaxes into me and layer his head on top of mine. He was so warm and I could have fallen asleep but I couldn't stop wondering, why? Why did he want me to stay here? I didn't understand why he wanted to know what was wrong with me, why he came after me? I just didn't understand. I could ask him but he might not answer, and he would definitely move and maybe I wouldn't like the answer.
If I didn't ask though, I would never know.
“Why?” I said it so fast that I didn't even realize I had said it until i had.
I heaps my breath afraid of what he would say next.
“Why what?” he asked in a sleepy voice, he was talking asleep I realized.
“Why do you want me to stay? Why do you care what's wrong with me?” I regretted asking it the moment after, I wasn't ready for rejection, I wasn't ready to leave. I felt his head leave mine and his body tense up.
“You're everything to me” he said. There was moving but silence, I didn't say anything at all, I just sat there. I could hear him suck in breath behind me, almost as if he was taking mine. I didn't know what to do, so I did The only thing I could think of.
I turned my head toward him in a jerk, I saw him looking at me, his eyes roaming my face searching for any sign of anything.
I knew when i looked at him that I loved him, but I didn't say anything, there were so many thoughts in my head i couldn't form any words. Sensing that I wasn't about to say anything, he let me go and started to stand up, I stood up with him.
“it's alright, you don't have to say anything.”
I wanted to scream, he turned and walked to the door.
“I love you” it was barely a whisper and I didn't think he heard me, but it was all I could manage. He stopped, I saw him freeze like I had when he caught me crying. He turned around and looked at me disbelief in his face.
“You do?” He looked confused but I didn't know why.
“Yeah, I've been in love with you since I met you.” I said it all in one breath and turned away. He couldn't see my face, this has to be some kind of joke, how could he love me? “You have?” all I could do was nod, I couldn't look at him.
“Me too” I turned around and almost fell back when I realized he was right in front of me.
“Why?” it was my turn to be confused, He looked mad.
“Are you an idiot? I love you because you're smart and beautiful and funny. You nap me laugh at the stupidest things and every time I see you I want to hold you in my arms, I want to run my fingers through your hair and kiss you until I have no breath left in me. You are amazing and beautiful and I love you, can't you see that?”
I stared at him, I couldn't believe it. I felt so warm inside its what I wanted for so long, he actually lives me too, it's not just me.
“No, I don't see it, I never saw it, I thought you would never go for a girl like me, I thought the girl you dated would be the opposite of, I thought shed be pretty and smart and popular.” I stopped because he looked angry.
“Don't ever say that again, you are the most beautiful girl I have ever seen , and I've loved you since we met.”
Before I knew it be had grabbed me and pulled me to him, our bodies pressed against each other, he stared at me then brought his lips down on mine, hard. He kissed me fast at first like he had been waiting for a long time and was afarid it wasn't real. He tasted like fresh Apples and I never wanted it to end. I wrapped my arms around his neck and tangled my fingers in his hair, it was soft and lush, I felt bad for messing it up but not too bad. He grabbed my waist and pulled me closer to him, finally we broke apart, out of breath, my hands still in his hair and arms around his neck.
“I love you so much” he whispered, and pulled me back in.
“I love you too”