Running From Eden

(Edited by Pervy Muskrat, whom I love)

I live where the artists come to pretend to be big, the broke guitarists come to play on the streets, and the children of the bohemian times come to be free.

I live in an apartment above a bookstore.

I live to learn about everything.

I live to pay rent and work two different jobs.

I live to continue dreaming.

I live in the big and bright New York City.

I live to continue loving him.

My name is Eden.

--

My father's dreams were for me to grow up and take over the store in a small dilapidated Louisiana town. I took his dreams and crushed them when I ran away to New York with my best friend, Joshua Cunnings.

We were seventeen at the time, and Joshua had filled my head with the bright lights and the never-ending adventures of New York City, though I probably would have followed Joshua anywhere since he was my first friend.

Joshua and I met when we were about ten. He started out as such an awkward character; long body that seemed to move without control, a laugh that could wake the neighbors, and the face of a fox.

Joshua moved down the street from my family the summer I turned ten. My father had made friends with his father at the store, so Joshua and I started to hang out as well.

Joshua could always find a way to get us into trouble, even if he wasn't trying to get us into trouble. I can remember the time that he thought up the plan to sneak into an old hospital. It was the only one in our town, but was shut down because of a fire in 1975, though the building was still in pretty good shape considering.

Joshua said that he saw in a movie or something that if you held a rug over glass and hit it with something it wouldn't make a noise. That was a lie since it made a lot of noise when Joshua slammed the metal pipe into one of the windows. I was sure that the police heard since the station was kiddy corner to old hospital. If they did hear, they never showed, and we crawled through the now broken window.

We went and looked in every room of the hospital. We found this office place with some files that weren't burned and looked through them but we didn't understand most of it, so moved on to have fun rolling down the halls on leftover stretchers.

When we left, he made me do our secret handshake to never tell anyone about what we did today, saying that the hospital was now our place.

--

I hear people downstairs chatting happily together since it's 'book club' day, a day where people could come in and get a book for a really cheap price.

I love the bookstore. I work there halftime on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Fridays. The rest of the days I work in an Auto-Shop a few blocks away.

Right now I'm just spread out on my hardwood floor, staring up at my ceiling fan that wiggled if it was on high. Today it's not on high since it getting cold outside and my window is open.

It's fall and the leaves in the park across the street are turning shades of beautiful bright colors. I like to watch them float to the ground since they look like tiny little fairies dancing to the ground together. I love fall.

--

"I love fall," Joshua said to me one day in a hospital bed. I was on the ground flipping through my English book trying to find some terms for my homework that was due the next day. We were twelve at the time and almost like brothers.

I looked up at him through my white-blonde bangs that were always hanging in front of my bright blue eyes. Joshua turned to me, putting a long arm under his head to prop himself up. I smiled at him and said, 'me too' before going back to work.

He continued to watch me until I was done with my work. I put my book away and I smiled again at him, sitting in a chair next to the bed. Joshua sighed and turned to lay on his back.

"I have something to ask you," he stated, eyes on the ceiling instead of me.

"What is it?" I asked, following his gaze to the ceiling and then back to his face. He was now staring at me with his green eyes.

"Do you ever think about kissing me?" he asked with a serious face on. I raised my eyebrows at him and shrugged my shoulders at him. He sighed and looked back up at the ceiling, muttering about my stupid indecision-self.

--

I sat at the desk in my boss's office doing the paper work for the day with the help of my boss who was pacing in the office. I'd look up at him every once and awhile to find him giving me a strange look. I smiled at him. He frowned at me, then continued pacing. I glanced back at the papers before looking back up.

"Is something wrong?" I asked innocently.

"No," he replied quickly, then stopped and looked at me, "but I do have something to ask you." He walked closer to my desk.

"What is it?" I questioned, eyes on his messy tie and aging face.

"Are you planning on quitting?" he said softly looking at me like a beaten child. I smiled at him and shook my head.

"Oh thank god," he placed a hand over his heart, "Michael told me that you were thinking about quitting because you got a better job offer."

"I don't know where he got that idea," I looked back at the papers, "though I was offered a better job but I turned it down because I like this place more."

"Good, good," he answered, rubbing his chin.

--

Joshua grabbed my hand the day I turned thirteen and rushed me to the hospital saying that he had my gift there. I hurried along with him but wasn't as nervous or excited as he was. He probably didn't get me anything and just found me a box full of surgeon gloves like the year before. I didn't mind though since it was still something and it always made Joshua laugh when I pretended like it was the most important thing in the world to me.

He climbed through the broken window then let me in. I walked through the door and followed him down a hallway that was poorly lit because of dust covered windows. Joshua let me go and walked to a stop in the middle of the hallway.

"I want to give you something," he said quietly. I smiled and approached him.

"Do you want me to close my eyes?" I asked playfully.

"Yes," he said turning around to look at me. I smiled and closed my eyes, holding my hands out in front of me expectantly. Joshua grabbed my hands and brought them down to his waist. I was about to open my eyes when Joshua pressed his lips to mine and I closed them tighter instead. Little shots of pleasure rushed through me as he pressed closer when I didn't push away.

He pulled his head back after awhile, a deep red coloring his face. I smiled and licked my lips, looking downward at our tangled hands.

"I think I may like you," Joshua squeaked out. I played with his fingers for a few moments before looking up to meet his eyes.

"I think I may like you too," I said in a tone of a calm happiness. I tiptoed my way up so I could kiss him again.

--

I watched my boyfriend slide into our small tub slowly. He hissed at the hot water but didn't stop until most of his body was in the water. I turned away from him to look in the mirror at myself. I've hardly changed since I was younger, still with white-blonde hair I am too lazy to do that hides my eyes that have currently dulled to a serene blue.

There's a small scar on my neck from where Joshua tried to give me a 'love-bite'. I fingered the small scar for a moment then dropped my hand. I glanced at my boyfriend, biting my lower lip. He had his eyes closed, just relaxing.

"Sean," I said in a soft voice. He opened his eyes to a crack to look at me. I smiled at his laziness and finished what I wanted to say to him, "I love you."

He smiled and shut him eyes again before lazily replying, 'I love you, too'. I turned around to the mirror once more, opening it to reveal the medicine cabinet behind that held my anti-depressants.

--

He grew out of his awkward stage and into a beautiful man. Joshua did, I mean. I say this because I watched him sit in front of a window slowly smoking a cigarette. He was just so beautiful. I slowly got out of the bed that I was on and made my way over to him.

He didn't look at me as I leaned against his shoulders, sliding my hands down his chest.

"Josh," I whispered against his neck, placing a small kiss there, "let's do something."

I felt him pull away from me to put his cigarette out on the wall. He made sure that it was fully out before he stood up to his full height, 6'4". I have to look up at him since I'm only 5'10".

Joshua moved closer to me but stopped just a few inches short. I made a face at him before grabbing him by his shirt to pull him the rest of the way. I wrapped my arms around his waist looking up at him. He brought his beautiful artist-like hands up to cup my face. He bent down and placed a small kiss on my lips but I brought my hands up to his neck to hold him in place.

He smiled against my lips before forcing himself away. His reddish-brown hair hung a little in his long face. His beautiful green eyes danced with a rebellion glint to them.

He moved his head closer to mine, quickly giving me a kiss, then whispering, "I love you Eden."

My heart jumped and a whispered it back.

"I love you so much," he said walking to towards the bed with me still tightly pressed to him. He helped me onto the bed as he kissed me on the lips with tiny pecks.

I ran my fingers through his soft hair, holding him in place so we could kiss properly. His tongue slipped passed my lips with ease.

We just kissed for a while but his sly hands got under my shirt after a while. I broke the kiss and leaned back a little, lifting my shirt over my head. Joshua's eyes moved over me slowly before his hands started on the buttons of his shirt. I leaned forwards helping him with the buttons after we got them the shirt slide off him with ease to the floor to join mine.

"I love you," he whispered again pushing me down on the old hospital bed.

--

I curled myself into a ball on my living room floor holding my head. I tried to keep the sobs in since it's 3 in the morning and Sean has to be up in the morning but it hurts.

It really hurts. I don't like the memories of him. It hurts so much to think about him. I pushed my face into the floor more and just let it out. My tears seem like waterfalls down my face.

I miss him. I miss him so much that I wish I could run away from my body and meet him in heaven.

I laid there for what seemed like forever before I finally got to my feet. I wiped my tears and heard the soft click of a light switch being turned on. The living room had been lit dimly with the hall light.

I looked towards the hall where I saw Sean come into the living room. He didn't turn on the light, though; just stared at me for a while before turning back around into the hallway.

"Eden, come back to bed," he left me alone to return to bed himself.

I felt tears sliding down well-known paths once more.

"I love you too," I whispered to myself before following Sean to bed.