I didn’t go straight home like usual. So when I spotted him in his unbuttoned oxford jean shirt over a plain white tee, rubbing his hands together and blowing warm breaths on them, I looked at him sympathetically. I trudged forward, hunched over. I watched as he greeted me with lips pressed together and head tilted.
My expression didn’t look all too good as he reflected it right back. Naturally, I took the seat beside him. We sat on the steps of my porch, staring at the setting sun.
“Why don’t you wear your jacket?” I turned to the article resting on the top step.
He shrugged and picked it up. I felt it wrap around me. “It’s okay,” he exhaled. I choked a squeal—it was an audible sigh that I hadn’t meant to make. He turned to me and I could feel his eyes boring a hole right through me. “It’s okay that you like him,” he gestured towards Robert, who I hadn’t seen standing on the sidewalk. Robby was just idly standing, looking right at us.
Then I knew, the wind, no matter how strongly I felt it or loudly I heard, wasn’t real. I waved my hand over the image of Robert.
“Stop it,” I mumbled, but there was no one there to listen. I was alone.
In the dreams I often had, this boy with a gentle touch and cautious steps always listened to what I had to say. No matter how ridiculous my problems became, or how childish I sounded, he never failed to listen to every word. He took them all with full sincerity. In return, I kept dreaming.
But everyone, no matter who will leave in the end.
All of Chapter 2 is up. I will be taking a break during April to catch up on edits and personal projects. I hope to return on the first Thursday of May!