A/N: This happened after I'd listened to Untitled 12 byI Can Make A Mess Like Nobody's Business 564987351657 times. Okay.

The girl that walked into the diner at 2 o'clock on a Sunday afternoon wasn't who I remembered her to be. Her hair was cut short; she looked about a half a foot taller and twenty pounds lighter than she had 3 months ago. 3 months ago, when it seemed she couldn't leave. But in reality, here I am, and it's 3 months since I've so much as spoken a word to this girl.

I was sitting in a corner booth, following her with my eyes as she hauled a big bag slung over one shoulder to a booth by the window, throwing it down on the bench and following it in. Sitting down, she propped her chin on one fist and stared out the window, the light through the blinds casting lines of alternating contrasts across her face. Dark, light, dark, light.

I sat and watched for a while, unable to move. The hand under her chin moved to the back of her head, twirling one strand of short, boyishly cut brown hair. That same brown as mine, as we'd so often been told. The hand came back under her chin, played with one earring. She checked her cell phone to see the time.

I remembered she'd asked me to be here.

I stood up, tugging at my jeans. I carded a hand through my own brown hair as I made my way to where she sat, drawing a hand across the back of the bench she sat in and stopping to stand at the end of the table. She looked up and jumped a little when she recognized me. What would she do? She stood to face me, staring blankly for a moment.

Then she grinned, but she still looked sad.

"You're shorter."

I smiled, thinking that she was still herself. "Something like that."

Despite what I'd thought before, she hadn't grown that much, but had still managed to grow 3 or 4 inches, a lot for 3 months. Especially when I'd always only known her at 5' 1". And already tiny, now she was even skinnier. But she was still shorter than me, and it felt the same as always as I stood over her, peering down on her as if I'd seen her just yesterday. And she looked up at me, questioning.

Searching my soul for an answer to an unknown question. Wondering. Just like that last day, three months ago.

We finally sat down. Ordered pancakes that we mainly picked at and pushed around on our plates. Made small talk.

It was familiar and foreign, everything and nothing all at once.

And as she spoke, I thought of that last note she'd left me, casual as can be in the driver's seat of my car while the rain beat down on everything outside the leather upholstery.

From one year into another, I think of you and I feel summer.

Thanks, Reagan.

And that was it. A line of Dashboard on funeral home stationary. Signed as a thank-you.

And then she was gone.

To this day, I would think of her now and then, whenever I heard the song or pulled out one of the CD's she'd made for me to listen to. And I'd regret never calling her after the funeral. But I couldn't now. I'd wonder how her birthday went. What she was listening to. And I'd picture her, walking in flip-flops down the street to school, wearing jeans with gaping holes in the knees and a coffee tumbler in her left hand; always with that big bag over her shoulder, the one everyone said weighed more than her. The same as when she'd left.

In my mind, she was always the same.

"You forgot to say good-bye." I said.

"I didn't forget." She answered. And I could see that though her face was joking, she meant it. She wanted it to hurt.

Suddenly, the year before seemed as far away as something you'd read in a history book. You couldn't even relate to it, it was so far back. And the teacher kept droning on and on about casualties. And you tried to find a way to go to sleep without being caught. You prayed for the bell to ring, to take you anywhere but there. Because you couldn't stand the monotone anymore.

"Hello?" She had asked me something, but I hadn't heard.

It still seemed so far away, but I knew for the first time why she'd left now.

She couldn't stand the monotone anymore.