Butterfly Kisses

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
The real life story of a boy taken too soon.

Submitted: January 11, 2008

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Submitted: January 11, 2008

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"Mani..." I whispered quietly, "I miss you Mani..."

I sat alone on the floor, a circle of pictures around me. Years of memories- dead.

I felt hot tears slowly trickle down my cheek. They fell silently onto the jacket I held in my lap. It was all I had left of him, and it was not enough.

My voice was soft, a shaking whisper, much like that of a child left alone in the dark.

“Why did you do this to me? Why did you leave me? You knew how much I loved you…”

I held the jacket to my face. I could smell him on it. It was a beautiful smell, but it made me wish I had never known it so that without it I wouldn’t feel so alone.

I rocked back and forth, the soft fabric still pressed against my face. I sat for a long time, remembering, wishing… trying to comprehend what had happened.

At first, I hadn’t believed what they told me. It couldn’t have been true. It was a mean trick. A mistake, maybe. That call wasn’t meant for me, not with all my plans for the future. Not with all my fantasies. Not with Mani. He made everything work.

But, as the voice went on, I realized it wasn’t a joke at all, it wasn’t a mistake. It was real. The truth.

Mani was dead.

I waltzed up to Mani and hugged him; he smiled down at me and whispered words into my hair.

“I love you.” He said. I love you too, I thought.

In my head I was excited, thoughts racing with each other, competing for attention. It was our second anniversary, two wonderful years together, and soon, they would get even better.

We had made our plans. In two years, I was going to move in with him, and we were going to get married. I loved Mani more than anything and I would gladly die for him any day.

When I was younger, I had always thought I was ugly, but then I met Mani. We were young, fourteen, but I loved him from the second I saw him.

We hadn’t been apart since.

I had always known he had issues at home, but he didn’t like to talk about it, so I never brought it up and I never learned much about it. Also, the first year we were dating, he was a heroin addict. He supposedly quit, and I didn’t give it a second thought. I was in love after all, there was very little that I gave a first thought.

Mani took me to a club downtown. Our fake ID’s got us in the door. We drank and partied until three in the morning. I was so drunk, the next day I couldn’t even remember how I got home. It was a good anniversary…

School was normal all the next week- I slept in math, texted Mani in science, and skipped Spanish to meet him at the park. Everything happened as it always did, planned yet spontaneous.

However, the next week on Wednesday he didn’t show up at school. I was a little surprised he hadn’t called me to brag about faking sickness to escape his geometry final or something to that effect, but I didn’t worry about it. Mani was Mani. He went where the wind took him and did what he wanted, there was no use trying to pin him down.

But, when I got home and I still hadn’t heard from him, I was slightly curious about what trouble he had gotten himself into now.

And that’s when the phone rang. It was the house phone, not my cell… and Mani never called my house.

I answered it happily though, knowing it would be him.

But it wasn’t him. And it never would be again…

I was sick of remembering, of analyzing every minute detail. I couldn’t take it anymore. I was still on the floor, surrounded by two years worth of pictures. Two years worth of Mani and Audrina. Audrina and Mani. The two best years of my life over in mere moments, and the worst part, I couldn’t do anything about it…

“Mani…” I whimpered again in my child-like voice, “Are you there Mani?”

He had promised to never leave me, and since the call I had believed his promise to be a lie. But now, in my hopelessness and despair , I was wondering if somehow- someway, he was still there. Not in the pictures, or the letters, or the doodles on my History test, but there nonetheless. Some presence I could not see or comprehend.

“You never left, did you?” I questioned the air, my voice cracking. “But tomorrow, after the funeral, will you still stay, or will you abandon me for good?”

No answer. Not a sound. Not a movement, or a thought, or anything.

I grabbed the pictures closest to me and ripped them to shreds.

“You stupid addict!” I screamed, more pictures ripped. “You stupid, stupid boy! You don’t care about anyone but yourself!” Rip. “I hate you!”

My face was red, tears ceaseless. “How dare you do this to me! How dare you!”

Anger was all I felt. It was running through my veins with a burning fury, a fiery passion.

And suddenly, it was gone. As soon as it came, it was gone. I stared horrified at the mutilated pictures.

What had I done?

It was all I had left of Mani. Now it was gone. I cried harder now, hating myself for being so childish, so stupid.

I’d been to funerals before, but none like this. Those funerals made no impression on me. They were for old, sickly people who had lived a full life. This was for a sixteen year old kid. He never had a chance at anything. He’d never graduate high school, go to college, get a job. We would never get married.

Only now did I realize that after two years, I knew almost nothing about him. It broke my heart.

I walked to the front of the church to gaze at my sleeping lover one last time.

But could I bear it? I stepped slowly down the aisle. Everything became hazy and I thought I would faint, but I made it. And I wished I hadn’t.

He was so pale. His face was sunken in and he looked so frail. I thought I was going to be sick.

It was Mani, but only somewhat like the person I knew.

They had clothed him in a fancy suit that he would have hated. I could see him now setting it on fire. I almost smiled at the thought. What I wouldn’t give to see him burn something again.

His hair was the same. Bleach blonde with pink and black streaks to match mine. It was gorgeous. He would have killed someone had they dyed it for the funeral.

I felt tears on my cheeks. I hadn’t even realized I was crying. I wiped them away and looked at him one last time.

I leaned into his coffin and quickly kissed his forehead- I felt I would die if I didn’t.

Then I left the church. I couldn’t stay for the service, it would hurt too much.

I walked home slowly, enjoying the sun on my back and the wind in my face. And suddenly, gone as quickly as it came, I heard something. Like a whisper on the wind.

“I love you,” It said, “Goodbye.”

“Goodbye Mani.” I whispered back. The wind brushed across my cheek in an almost surreal way, like a soft butterfly kiss.

I smiled. I was ready to let him go.

So I did.


© Copyright 2017 Rowan Brooks. All rights reserved.

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