Trash Bag

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic
See what happens when you sneak up on two best friends having a private conversation? (:

Submitted: May 08, 2010

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Submitted: May 08, 2010

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Michael was walking down the hallway on the way to his locker when he heard Emily talking.

“What am I supposed to do, Olivia? I like Michael a lot more than I originally planned to. And you know what? He only likes me as a friend.” Michael stopped walking and listened as Emily continued. “There's no reason for me to keep on liking him. I'd just be wasting more of my time.” A locker door shut. Olivia, Emily's best friend, spoke.

“Emily, I just think you need to give it time. He might still be hung up on Joanna. You can't just give up.”

Someone sighed, and then Emily responded. “I'd rather give up now, than have my heart broken later.”

“You just told me that the feeling you get when you're with Michael beats every other feeling you've ever had. How can you throw that away so quickly?” Olivia asked. Michael heard an intake of breath.

“I'm not giving up on liking him, because you and I both know I'm in too deep. What I am giving up on is the chance that him and I could be one of the most beautiful miracles ever.” Her voice broke at the last word. Michael heard their footsteps suddenly, but they saw him before he could hide.

He was walking away as Emily's voice came from behind him. “Michael?”

Michael turned around slowly, and waved. “Hello.”

Olivia looked from Emily to Michael, and back again. “Um, I'm going to leave you two to talk,” she said, and walked away.

Emily looked down at the floor, up at the ceiling, everywhere but at Michael. Finally, she asked, “Michael, how much of that conversation did you hear?”

Michael thought about lying, but decided it wasn't worth it. So he told the truth. “Enough,” he responded.

Emily's gaze held his. Her eyes didn't show any emotion at all. The sparkle he saw every moment he was with her was completely gone, and he decided he didn't like it at all.

“Emily,” Michael started, “I really wish you would've told me how you felt.”

At that moment, and emotion Michael had never seen before entered Emily's eyes. “I really wish I'd know where I stand with you, Michael,” she shot back.

Emily wasn't angry; she was sad. Every trace of happiness had disappeared from her face, he noticed, and he could tell she was on the verge of tears. This wasn't at all good.

“Emily, we've known each other for what, a year? A little more?” Michael asked.

“Yes, which is why I didn't want you to know how I felt, because we don't know each other well enough.” Emily responded.

Michael shook his head. “You don't understand. I --”

“Of course I understand, Michael!” Emily interrupted. “You don't want to ruin our friendship. We don't know each other well enough. You're still not over Joanna. Blah, blah, blah. Whatever it is, I've heard it all before. I understand.” Right then, a tear slipped from her eyes, and Michael had the sudden urge to wipe it away.

She took in another breath, ready to start another raid. But Michael beat her to it.

“Don't.”
Whatever she was about to say, she kept it in, and waited for Michael to continue. So he did.

“You don't understand, Emily. No matter how much you think you do, you don't.” He took in a long breath, preparing for what he was going to say next. “We've known each other just over a year. But this year was when we really started speaking to each other.” Michael paused. “Even before Joanna and I broke up, I knew something was going on. When I'd see you, I'd get butterflies, and a smile would spread across my face.” He stopped to see what her reaction was. Emily's face didn't falter. “Then me and Joanna broke up, and the feelings got stronger. Every day I'd want to give you a hug, but I didn't want to ask because I had no idea how you felt. I'd see you in the hallway, or across the court, and I'd just want to sprint to you and wrap my arms around you. I was honestly scared out of my mind what was going on.

“Then Open-Mic Night came along, and I heard you sing – I mean really sing – for the first time. I was working, but during the song, I'd look up every other second to see you smiling and creating a beautiful melody. The lyrics you sang just sank right down to my heart, even though they had nothing to do with me. I couldn't control what was going on inside, and I felt so out of place. When you left to go eat, I prayed every second that you would come back. The moment I gave up, you walked into the door and straight over to me, where I was doing the trash.” Emily couldn't help but smile a half-smile. “I saw you standing there, and right then I wanted to tell you how I felt. But I just couldn't. The words I wanted to say just wouldn't come. Then, of course, you had to leave. I gave you a hug, and though I was holding the trash bag in my other hand, I didn't want to let go.” Michael took a breath, and looked at Emily.

She took a deep breath.

“Michael...” she started. “I had no idea you felt that way.”

He looked down at his feet. “Well, when you've been hurt so many times, you learn it's better to keep your feelings inside.”

Emily smiled. God, he loved that smile. “I know exactly what you mean.”

Michael stepped closer to Emily, and took her hand. “So.”

Their fingers entwined. “So,” she repeated.

“I guess I should ask you a question, then.”

“I guess so.”

“Emily Lambert.”

“Michael Richter.”

“Will you be my girlfriend?”

Emily leaned in and kissed him lightly. “I thought you'd never ask,” she whispered.


© Copyright 2019 Mary Leigh Everson. All rights reserved.

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