Not as Simple as "Heartbreak"
When you told me that you already knew I had liked you, I knew what it meant when people said "their blood ran cold". I felt like my heart had ceased as my breathe had.
How long could you have known? Apparently...from the beginning.
You still flirted with me and led me on? I was shaking by then. I'm so sorry. I really didn't mean to, but it turned out like that. I really hope you can forgive me, Ariel.
Of course! How could I say no to my first love? How could I tell him that my feelings weren't as estinguished as I led him to believe; as I led everyone including myself to believe.
How could I tell you that I would never forget those two years of flirting...that I knew were false from the beginning?
(Three years before)
"Ariel, this is Alexander, but we all call him Drew." My friend Lily sat next to a familiary guy. Of course I already knew who he was. I had seen him around during the last year of elementary school. It didn't change even though we were officially middle schoolers now. He definetly recognized me. I was a very out going person and with the in group, but after entering middle school, I became more mellow. So I decided to stick with my friendly and estatic friend Lily. I just hung out with her being the calm, "older sister" figure of the group. Now she was introducing me to the new friends she had made, somehow when I wasn't there.
But the introduction was a little unneccesary. I had already steeled myself to talk to this lone wolf of a boy. I could tell by the way he hid himself behind a curtain of hair, that he didn't like people to notice him. His atire consisted of long dark jeans and a light jacket over a t-shirt. I could tell he wanted to hide himself from the rest of society. When he greeted me, he didn't smile. His words were few, and I had a hard time getting a conversation from him. He would stick close to Lily, as a duckling would to its mother.
I found out while hangin out with on friday nights, that he didn't get involved. He watched everything from the side and just barely talked with Lily. At times I saw them walking around outside and going to the swings at the other building. I didn't have the guts to approach them. It was personal for them. Who was I barge into their friendship and relationship. Lily cared for Drew like a brother. She even came to me for help and advice about him. How was she supposed to know what to say. She was the youngest of three. She didn't have any experience with reassuring people and loving them with everything she had.
Their talks weren't always about him. When he did talk about himself was to reassure her. The irony. She would talk to him about the boy troubles she was having and about the various reasons we all felt depressed. Sometimes she would come back with red and puffy eyes. Then I would ask her what wass wrong, and she would kindly push me away. That hurt me even more than Drew.
We had known each other since she was born. She was born 6 months after I had, so I didn't have to wait long for a best friend I would come to love and hate. Seeing her in pain, and not being able to confide in me, was worse than seeing Drew alone and miserable.
Even as I think back on this day, I feel like crying. I had found out, on the last day of this trip, that I loved him.
It was a four day trip during winter break. I was an 8th grader. It was different from the 7th grade trip. We weren't as close during that one.
Maybe it was what the speaker said, but something broke inside him that night. There were people crying, people talking to their friends about their struggles, people praying, people meditating, and people simply singing along to whatever song was playing. I was praying when I looked over to where Drew sat in a seat; I was kneeling on the ground. He was gripping the side of his head, as if in pain. When I crept over, I saw tears fall from his face and land on him jeans.
Shock and panic arouse in me, something I wasn't used to. I was almost always calm and knew what to do. But this was Drew and a guy. I had never seen a guy cry, and I didn't know what was wrong. Since he had never told me about his life before, I knew he wouldn't tell me just because I happened to be there when he burst into tears. I looked around the dark room for Lily. She was talking to Becky. I wanted to pray for him so badly. To sooth his pains and wounds, but I caught the eye of a teacher. I had respect for her then. She was the older sister I always wanted, but that changed later in the year when I noticed she was kind of judgemental.
I had a desperate look on my face and Drew was there shaking and crying. She caught on quickly and asked him if she could pray for him. She did and I joined after a moment of shock. Why couldn't I have that type of courage. After praying for him, I burst into tears. Realizing how much I loved him. It wasn't something naive as puppy love or flimsy as liking a person. I loved him no matter what he did. Whether his temper snapped and became violent, whether he liked another girl, whether he pushed me away, even if he hated me...I couldn't help but love him. If he betrayed me and scarred me for life, if he came to me for forgiveness...I wouldn't heisitate for a single second to do so.
I didn't get to know him any better the first summer trip because I got sick in the middle of it. But the second one was full of pain and longing.
We definetly were close. We had become great friends. Even to the point where flirting was second nature. He had definetly become more chipper but I now know that he just got better at faking it.
I didn't mind the flirting. I fooled myself saying that he actaully liked me, but occasionally I heard about him liking another girl. I was a fool. Believing that just because he flirted with me, he liked me. I should've have known better.
We did things that only couples would usually did. He gave me piggy back rides, we teased each other, played ping-pong, pool, walked around, waiting for each other, he massaged me, I gave up rock climbing so I could hadn out with him, we fooled around on the turf under the harvest moon, and prayed together.
During the three days...or was it four?, we were just like a couple. Even after the trip people asked me if we were dating or if I like him. When they did, my heart clenched, longing for that to be true. But I told them differently, that we were only friends. At one point, he was so tired he told me to sit next to him, and when I did, he laid in my lap. I froze, and he reassured me. He asked me to just stay there. I agreed, how could I refuse? My friends teased us, but I told them to be quiet, giving the excuse that he was tired. It didn't help that we matched. A plain red t-shirt and blue shorts.
After our waiting was over, and he got up, we entered the building. It was the last day again. Lily and I had mended our relationship and we told each other the struggles we had gone through during the year. We sat in the pews, me being near the aisle. Peggy, by now I had my own nickname for him, came sat in the space that was inbetween the end on the pew and me. As he sat, his hand came down on my shoulder. I knew he was praying for me. My left hand was taken by Lily, and my right hand was on top of Peggy's. After 5 mintues or so, he moved his hand so it flipped over and held my hand. My face felt hot, and I was momentarily distracted.
Lily knowing that I liked him, saw us holding hands, gave me a good luck smile, and left. We stayed like that praying. Even after everyone was done and we were singing, we stayed like that. Even after standing, we were holding hands. Having bad eye sight, I left to get my glasses, letting go of his hands. When I did, he seemed shocked. As if it hurt him. I told him not to worry, I'll be back with my glasses. I came back but I wish I had never let go. He didn't hold my hand ever again.
(Last day at the old campus)
I was determined to confess. He had told me he loved me on chat, and even if it was the friend "love", I wanted him to know. I love you, Peggy.
In the end, he left without saying good bye. I talked to my other guy friend Peter, I told him about my plans. He told me about my friend, Allison, that he had dated for less than a month. She had dated this one guy so a long time but he hadn't given her anything as a gift. Peter got her something from an amusement park after she broke up with her boyfriend, trying to make her feel better. She ended dating him, not a week after she broke up with her ex. Allison broke up with him shortly after.
He asked me whether or not I like Peggy. I confirmed his hunches and asked him how he knew. He told me that Allison had a hunch and told him about it while they were dating.
I still hadn't told him, and now I couldn't. Allison was dating him. Apparently, Peggy liked her ever since he met her, but she had a boyfriend then and couldn't do anything.
I haven't seen him for over half a year. He is falling deeper into his depression. All thanks to Allison. He needed someone to talk to and who would care for him and listen to him. She didn't want that. She just wanted a boyfriend who she could adore. She was the dominant. She went through three boyfriends that month. I can't hate her though, because she truly loves all her boyfriends...or at least I'd hope to believe.
I still remember him. I will never forget him. I will never stop loving him.
I told him it was compassion, not love. I still believe it is, but sometimes I like to believe I really was deeply in love.
A/N: Here's a well-known song. "Wedding Dress" by Taeyang. A good song to parallel the pain I went through. Here's a link with the song and translation. then add /watch?v=fKoqDoVVKIs&feature=fvst.