By: Valeriya Ponomar
What is love? What does it mean to care for someone so much it’s all you can think about? Does it mean getting up extra early just to see that special person? Or having a smile on your face every minute of the day knowing you’ll see them soon? Does love always end up everything we want it to be? Or does it choose to envelope another purpose of teaching us how to love, and what it means to be loved? This is my favorite story about a girl and a boy, fighting to stay together, while everything rips them apart.
I slipped into my silver gown quickly, before tying my blonde hair in a bun. As I ran out the door I put on my white heels. The house was quiet so hopefully I could sneak away without any notice.
Down the large stairs I looked out the enormous window that showed the entire backyard, and of course, he was there, standing in the fog, with a gorgeous gray suit on.
My feet carried me out the large doors onto the grass.
The fresh air smelled like pine and lemons. It was chilly out but all I could feel was the heat that surged through me the moment I saw David.
He smiled, opening his arms. I ran into them at five miles an hour almost knocking him off his feet. We stayed like that for a few minutes just holding each other. I could feel his heart against mine, and his minty breath that caressed my face. My whole world began to shrink down to where only we existed.
When I looked up into his mesmerizing hazel eyes my mind went blank of all the worries, of all the pain, and sadness that I faced in my life. We belong together. I thought.
Suddenly his lips were on mine, slowly moving, as if memorizing the feel of them. I could taste a little bit of bananas off his mouth and I loved every moment of it. When he pulled away I almost cried out.
“What’s the matter?” I asked quietly.
He smiled sweetly, resting his head on mine. The moment felt too real, too good to be true.
“You know I’ll have to leave soon?” he said, with a shaky breath.
I pulled away. “That doesn’t matter! Let’s make the moment last. Isn’t that what you always say?” I could see tears gathering in his eyes. “What is it?”
“I can’t come back Julie. Your father talked to me, he said if I come back . . .”
I felt cold fear slash my heart. “What? What will he do that I won’t be able to stop?”
“He will take you thousands of miles away!” David shouted. The fog around us seemed to thicken. “I can’t risk not being able to find you; it’s not something I can just do on my spare time. I love you too much; if I ever lose you . . . I don’t know how I’ll live with myself.”
I reached for him at the same time he reached for me—our connection too strong for separation. His arms laced around my waist holding me tight against him, as if I might disappear from his grasp.
I began to cry, my sobs made my whole body shudder with pain.
David lightly traced my cheek, sending electricity through me. “I will do everything I can to see you again.” He pulled away very slowly as if he had to use all his strength. “But I can’t promise you that it’ll be soon.”
I let the tears spill out hoping that my heart could hold his words forever.
He looked at me one last time before turning around.
“David, wait!” I cried, running up to him.
My lips sealed his with a passion that could light the whole forest ablaze. My heart was thudding with pain and love which were battling each other inside me. I could taste the salt from my tears and the tremor from his soul.
He pushed away from me this time. “I have to go,” he said, kissing my forehead. “Wait for me.”
I watched him run into the dark forest without looking back. Hoping that he will stay true to his words and that we will see each other someday soon.
* * * *
“Julie, your father wants to see you.” Our maid Synthi told me from outside my room. “And please have haste; he doesn’t appreciate your tardiness.”
I groaned, my body aching from every movement.
As I got up I headed for my calendar out of habit. I looked over it with a pinch of hope that this might be the day, or the month, or the year David will come back. It’s been eleven years since his promise; honestly I don’t think I could keep hoping anymore. I had spent every night for the past eleven years hoping he’ll run out of the forest calling my name but in the end no one came.
Slowly I put on my red velvet dress, brushed my hair and, not bothering to put on shoes, walked out my room toward my father’s study.
The first thing I noticed was a man standing in his office. He had dark green eyes and blonde hair. He wore a black suit which I recognized from my father’s stores. He must be a costumer.
“Please have a seat,” my father ordered.
My father was a tall man with deep grey eyes. Only the brave would look him in the eye and those who do, wish they never did. But to me, those eyes meant nothing but pure hate and selfishness. His brown hair was combed nicely and he actually shaved today.
“What do you want father?” I murmured staring off into space.
He sighed. “Please don’t be disrespectful to me, especially before your new fiancé.” His words came out slow but even if he was talking a thousand miles an hour I would have understood them.
I laughed darkly. “Um, sorry I thought you just said fiancé. But the answer is no, again.” I got up and headed out the door.
“Stop!” my father shouted. “Stop doing this to yourself Julie! I’m doing what’s best for you!”
I turned around to see my dad had gotten off his seat and his skin tone was red.
“No you’re not dad,” I calmly said, but I knew he felt the acid in my tone. “If you were you wouldn’t have threatened David away. Now stop trying to get me married to your stupid costumers and we’ll all be happy.”
I walked out the door with him still shouting at me. When I was out of his sight I bolted down the stairs not wanting to crumble on the spot. I pushed through the front doors into the cloudy yard. All of the roses have died last year and the grass was light brown, a sign that I wasn’t the only one who didn’t have what was needed to keep me going.
My feet carried me far into the dying rose gardens and peach trees. Before I knew it I had ran a mile from my home.
Then I couldn’t take it anymore.
I let the sob break from my soul as I fell under an oak tree. I let the cold tears wash down my face chilling my core. I would do anything to feel the heat that I had felt with David in my arms but even if I threw myself into a fire pit, it wouldn’t be the same. With the emotions running out of me I remembered a special moment we once shared . . .
“What did the fish say when it hit a concrete wall?” he asks me. We’re sitting in the beautiful rose garden my mom planted many years ago. He is sketching a butterfly while I watched. So adorable.
“What?” I say, wanting to laugh and he hasn’t even told me the punch line.
He grins. Unbelievable how gorgeous he is. And that he’s mine. He loves me and I love him and how rare and beautiful is that?
“Dam!” he says.
I laugh out loud remembering that. I let myself fill with the delight I felt in that moment. The way I felt that day in the garden, kissing him, holding him close to me.
“Julie?” someone calls from the forest.
I panic. I get up from the muddy ground just as the rain begins to fall. My hair is brown now because of the dirt and my face is probably pink and puffy from crying but I didn’t care anymore, I stopped caring a long time ago.
I looked around but I couldn’t see anyone. But for some strange reason I couldn’t calm my heart.
“Who’s there?” I called, backing up.
Someone stepped on a branch right behind me and I screamed.
A strong hand covered my mouth, silencing me. At that moment I should’ve been afraid but I felt something. A spark deep inside me went off when I realized who it was.
As I turned around I saw David standing right behind me. His face was still as beautiful as I remembered. His gorgeous hazel eyes rapidly intensified as he meet my gaze. Without any words exchanged, he kissed me.
It wasn’t like our past kisses where he is gentle and controlled. This kiss was made from pure hunger and was beyond our control. I felt the familiar heart pulsing from my core, electrifying me. I knew he felt it too because he hugged me tighter and kissed even harder. My fingers were tangled in his wet hair pulling him closer toward me.
David pushed away with a low groan. “Well you haven’t changed,” he breathed with a tint of humor.
We embraced for a long time not wanting the moment to end.
“I can’t believe you waited for me . . . I thought you . . .” he stopped himself.
“I would have waited for you until the end,” I whispered. My head was resting on his chest which was still shaking from our kiss. I knew he would come back.
“That’s all I needed to hear,” he pulled away, rummaging in his pocket.
I couldn’t help but laugh of how he looked. His face was all muddy from our kiss, his hair flopped over his eyes, and his white flannel shirt had hand marks on it. Wow he must be a very strong willed man to have lived through that.
Then he pulled out a necklace. It was a silver chain with a dazzling blue gem on it. It looked like it was worth a fortune. Compared to all the jewelry I owned it was the most beautiful.
“Run away with me,” he pleaded, offering the necklace.
I couldn’t even think. My mind just snapped into place. If I stayed I wouldn’t be with him, but if I left, I could never come back.
“I—I don’t know . . . my dad wouldn’t . . .”
David smiled, putting the necklace on my neck. “Trust me,”
I touched the gem; it was warm, as if vibrating from its own energy. I sighed, taking his hand in mine.
“I trust you.”