Can't Live Without You

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

A boy realizes what he has been missing all along. And it was her.

“Let’s just be friends.” I hugged her a bit tighter, reassuring her this was for the best.

“Okay.” There was despair in her voice. She was sad.

There was awkward silence, as I was still trying to comprehend what she asked me. And what I told her. As we stayed like this briefly, thoughts swirled through my head. I liked her a lot, but I’m scared of getting hurt. And scared of hurting her.

That moment was the last time I saw her. I lost track of the days. Months even. Until we crossed paths once again.

I walked into the classroom where we both worked on Saturday mornings. We were both assistants to a lady who taught there for young teenagers.

I always wear the same thing; my varsity football jacket, jeans, and Timberlands. Usually, Anya always wore sport shorts and t-shirts. I loved how casually she dressed and cared little about what others had to say about her fashion sense. I admired her for that.

But it was different this time. The moment I caught eye of her, I couldn’t even stop my jaw from dropping to the ground.

She was stunning.

Instead of her usual apparel, it was this red flannel dress that rose a few inches above her knee. She wore tan boots and had on a fuzzy, red scarf and grey jacket. She was even wearing jewelry. A shiny silver necklace with a letter “A” engraved in it and a beautiful silver pair of earrings. She also had a silver anklet and rings which were barely noticeable under her winter coat and boots. Her hair, a bit lighter and curled. But what was the cherry on top was her braceless smile. The brightest, whitest smile I’ve ever seen. I think I nearly fell over. She looked so different, so unique, so beautiful. What didn’t catch my attention was the boy standing next to her, wearing his winter clothes in the classroom. I recognized him as a assistant back in another class. It looked like they came together.

My thoughts were interrupted by the teacher, an older lady we call Jenny. “Andrew!!” She ran over and gave me a tight squeeze. “How have you been? And how was football?”

I returned her hug. “It was great. We won States.”

“Well, congratulations. I am happy to hear that.” She smiled at me and then turned to Anya. “Everyone! Andrew is here!”

Anya turned and gave me a slight smile. “Hey Andrew.”

“Hey...” I smiled back and walked over to her. I gave her a hug, nearly picking her up off the ground.

She laughed. “H-hey!” She hugged me back. “It’s nice to see you again. I hope everything has been going well.”

“You’re still pretty short.” I laughed and looked at her in her eyes.

“H-hey!” She punched me gently on the arm. “There are heels on these boots.” She looked away.

“Of course, don’t wear yourself out too much or else you’ll get blisters again from them.” The other boy, Kyle, remarked, smiling at her.

“Okay okay, but if we hadn’t walked around the whole stadium, I wouldn’t have gotten them.” She beamed.

“You said you needed to take pictures for your Photography class though.” He replied.

“Yeah, I know. You were a really great guide by the way. And the ferris wheel-” She continued.

What is this? When did they become such good friends?

Kyle interrupted his conversation with Anya. “Hey Andrew.” He smiled. “How’ve you been?” He came up to me and held out his hand.

“G-good!” I replied, shaking it. She chose this guy? Back when we were working a few months ago, she never even really talked to him. How the hell are they dating?

“Well, I’m so happy to see everyone together!! Now, let’s run down who is doing what for today’s speeches!” Jenny said.

“Okay Mrs. Jenny!” Anya said, walking over to the table.

“Mrs. Jenny?” I chuckled. “Jenny?”

Anya gave me this flustered face. “Sorry, it’s a bad habit.”

“Break it.”

“It’s easier said than done Andy!” She turned away, beet red. She sat down at the table. I took the liberty of sitting down next to her before Kyle could. Kyle, completely immune to everything, walked around and took a seat across from Anya.

Work went well. Anya and Kyle talked a lot more than usual. I felt weird being there. Like all of a sudden, why did he take my spot? I used to always talk to her and now, it’s like I’m not here. But then again I can’t blame Anya for not wanting to talk to me. I did sort of reject her after all.

After class, Kyle left before us all. Anya was helping Jenny pick up some things and bring them to her car. I was in charge of table duty - pushing them back into place and whatnot.

“I’ll see you next week Mrs. Jenny! I’ll just drop these off at your car and then I have to get going!” Anya said.

“Okay, thank you so much sweetie. Text me when you get back so I know you’re safe.” Jenny requested.

“I will!” She waved one hand and then with that walked out the doors.

I stopped pushing tables for a minute. “Jenny, I wanted to ask you something.”

“Sure Andrew. What is it?”

“Does Anya like Kyle?”

Jenny sighed. “I don’t know. I do know a lot though.” She faces me and locked eye contact. “Whether she likes him or not I have no idea, but I do know he does really like her.” She paused. “Why?”

“I just feel like-... I don’t know.”

“Well, you had a chance to date her Andrew. But you let her go. She’s a one-of-a-kind girl. You’re not going to find another like her.” Jenny proclaimed.

“I didn’t want to hurt her.” I looked down at the ground.

“I don’t think it was that. I think you were scared. Scared to hurt and scared to take a chance.”

“I didn’t feel worthy of her.” I looked up to the ceiling. “She’s perfect and I’m not.”

“I can guarantee Anya does not think that at all Andrew. She thinks you are perfect just by being you.  You, yourself, are a worthy human being. The fact you are alive and can experience happiness and pain and joy and sadness is all given to you to prove your worthiness to be a human. If Anya felt you were worthy, then you are worthy. She would never hurt you and you know that..”

“She’s just so different, unique, amazing.”

Jenny paused. “I will tell you that after the class a few months ago, she confided in me. She was constantly worried about you. The people you surrounded yourself with, your well-being, your career and future. And at one point, she caught on to how you were feeling down. She already knew. She has good intuition, I presume. But I know that deep down, she cares for you. I think that she still does really like you. Think of all those times she was there for you. Did you not feel like you knew her without really knowing her? She helped you when you were down and wanted to make you feel special and important. She was positive when you weren’t and wanted to make you smile. She wanted to be apart of your life, but you wouldn’t let her be apart of yours.” She paused. “Before you start complaining about it and saying how much you want it, think twice about your mistakes and go after it.” And with that she walked away.

I was in complete shock. Anya was worried about me? All of this time? I never even cared.

I started to run. Run fast. Out the classroom doors. Fast. Out of the building. Faster. I have to reach her. I raced out of the parking lot yelling. “Anya!”

She was at her car, just about to get into it. When she heard my voice, she turned around. “Andy?”

“Anya!” I ran over to her. I bent over to catch my breath. “Wait.”

She laughed, and when I looked up, I saw her beautiful smile. “I’m waiting. You’re funny.”

I smiled, and bent upward. “Are you mimicking me?”

“What makes you say that?” She insisted.

I catch my breath. “Nothing! Nevermind.”

She looked down, but then at me. “What is it?”

I gulped. “Anya, about that time a while ago, I’m sorry.”

“Andy...” She said.

“Wait, let me finish.” I replied. “I was scared. I didn’t want to hurt you and to be hurt. But that didn’t mean I didn’t like you. And for sure as hell didn’t mean I would get jealous over you being here with Kyle. Kyle of all guys.” I paused. “I didn’t like him with you. It bothers me. And I know that maybe you’ll laugh at me for saying these things, but what the hell. I still like you. You’ve always been there for me and I just never noticed. I was blinded because of other things. But I feel most like myself around you. I won’t blame you if you say no or say that you don’t like me, but I wanted you to know that.” I looked down at the ground.

There was no response for a minute.

I looked up.

She had tears in her eyes. “Andy...”

I hugged her. Tightly. More tightly than I’ve ever hugged anyone before. “Don’t cry. I don’t want you to cry.”

“No, it’s not that.” She wrapped her arms around me. “You’re still you.”

“Anya..”

“I was worried that something happened. I was so worried that something happened to you or something bad was influencing you. I was scared to lose someone who I considered my best friend. I was scared to lose you. But to see you now, you are the most perfect you. You’re perfect in your own way and I just want you to know that I still like you.” She smiled.

“Really?” I smiled the biggest smile. “But what about Kyle?”

“Kyle? What about him? He and I are friends.” She looked at me. “Did you think we were dating?” She questioned.

I froze. They aren’t dating? They really aren’t!?! A smile crept onto my face. “Nope! I’m just happy that you aren’t dating him and that you are mine!” I picked her up.

“Hey!” She held on tight to me. “I’m heavy.”

“You aren’t heavy at all. The only heavy thing you have is a heavy, but big and loveable heart.”

“A-Andy!” She laughed and smiled, wrapping her arms around my neck tightly and pulling herself closer.

I held her for a bit.

Anya, I don’t think you know this yet, but I think I’ve realized something.

You are what I needed.

What I wanted all along.

And I can’t live without you.


Submitted: September 06, 2015

© Copyright 2022 Emma Brooks. All rights reserved.

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