The silence in my hotel room was suffocating. My groomsmen walked around aimlessly, voices were still as stones. This meant, yes, even Joe had nothing to say for once. My mother sat at the corner of the room, fumbling with her fingers. She had been acting that way all morning and throughout the day. If everything was normal, she would have been running all over the place, being the compulsive Italian she was raised as.
Normal. Where did that come from?
Had everything been normal even before this?
I doubt it.
Normal doesn’t seem to be in my future; in any of our futures, really.
I looked at Dad who was the only one who even tried to act as if nothing had happened. He was checking around, making sure all of us looked perfect and ready. He tried to slap a smile between our cheeks. He was trying to keep the act as long as he could. “For the sake of our family”, he stated it. Our family is wasting away before his eyes and he was too busy to even realize it.
Poor little Kimmy, the confused little girl is spinning in her tutu inspired dress. She repeatedly told me along with everyone else in the room that she couldn’t wait to show Maya her “pretty ballerina dress”. Just like her, I was awaiting for Maya to just spontaneously walk (stumble) in. We all waited. It was about thirty minutes before the waiting and she was still a no-show.
“Daddy, where is Auntie Maya? I really want to show her my dress!” She pouted. She grabbed Kevin’s hand and shook them rigorously. “Why is she so late?”
All Kevin could do was shrug.
“She’s not comin’ is she?” She raised her bright hazel eyes that she had inherited from Kevin. The disappointed was stapled into her complete expression. We all turned our heads to Kevin, awaiting his response. He dropped his head, resolutely and as he brought his head back up again and shook his head. Her eye brows had lifted even higher. “Well where is she?” Kevin shrugged. “Does she not love me anymore?” Her eyes very quickly began to water.
Just as quickly as she cried, I ran to her side and took her into my arms. “I’ll talk to her.” I carried her on my shoulder and took her out of the suffocating room as to help the both of us. I knelt down and brought her down to my level. Her breathing was heavy set and her tears were forming rivulets on her small face. I brought my thumb towards the corners of her eyes and wiped away the tears. “Alright, why the tears, Kimmy-bear? You’re supposed to be happy. Your Uncle Nick is getting married!”
Her eyes quickly searched downward. She shook her head alongside a less than happy frown. “But you’re not happy. You don’t love Mi-wey. You love Auntie Maya and she’s not here.” Her contagious eyes were beginning to grow on me. My heart was weighing down on me.
At the same time, I saw Mandy strutting down the hallway with a card in her hand. I looked up to see her smile that seemed to make up for everyone’s less than happy mood. She stopped and outgrew her wicked smile as she handed down the letter naming me off on the front in perfectly written script. “She can’t wait to see you.” She said slowly as the venom was just pouring in her words. She whipped her head around and strutted back to their territory.
Completely sitting on the ground now, I took Kimmy in my lap as we both read the card together. On the front was two bears dressed up a bride and groom dancing together. A small mild smile grew upon my lips as I opened the letter. “Dear Nick,” I read aloud. “I know everything seems at an odd right now but I know that after this is all over, normalcy will be restored. I’m sorry for what I said last night. I guess I was stressed from all the wedding plans. You’re going to be a wonderful husband and possibly in the future, father. I love you, Miles.”
Kimmy looked up towards me. “Who ya gonna choose?”
The burning question was forming a hole in my heart. I looked down at the little angel in my lap as I kissed her curly locks and pulled her up. After I led her back into the hotel room, I began to sprint, knowing exactly where I was going. Looking down at my watch, there had to be enough time to see her before the wedding. The small quantity of time had only motivated my legs harder and farther than I imagined. I had to push my way through a crowd, people who were coming to the wedding and just normal bystanders. I didn’t bother to greet them or even pretend to notice them.
Bending over as I tried to catch my breath, I made my way into Miley’s hotel room, leaving a rather shocked mood-change in the entire room. Miley, whose back was facing me, whipped her head around and was just as shocked as the other bridesmaids, most especially Carly. Miley furrowed her eye brows as she tried to hold an amused grin. She came towards me and held my arm, rather too tight. “Sweetie, what are you doing here? You know that it’s bad luck to see the bride before the wedding.” She said, dipping her voice in a thick sugar coat.
I raised my eye brows and whispered into her ear roughly. “Could we talk?”
Mandy shifted sides and guarded her arms against her chest. “You do know that we should be leaving for the beach in ten minutes? We’re on a schedule here.” She rolled her eyes.
“Then give me five minutes, okay?” I snapped back at her which she was taken aback. The other bridesmaids began to file out of the room. Lastly, Carly turned back to me sending a pleading look that burned in her eyes. I looked down, losing contact as we both turn away from each other. Miley, still stunned, placed her hand on her hip. Her usual body language showed that she wasn’t very happy.
“Nick, what is this about? Why are you doing this to me? Can’t you just except that we’re getting married?”
I combed my fingers through my curly locks as I shook my head, aggravated. “That’s my problem, Miles. I don’t think I can do that.” I said slowly. Letting the harsh words slither down to her. I shook my head and began to stammer. “I mean I just got my life in order than I had to screw it up with all these marriage plans! I don’t know what I want now. I’m scared that I’m making a mistake each and every day.” I buried my face into my palms. The anxiety was banging against my head.
“Are you saying that I’m a mistake?” She snapped.
I shook my head, rigorously.
“Then tell me that you love me.” She challenged.
My head snapped upwards. “What?”
She hadn’t changed expressions. Telling me, she was serious. “Tell me you love me, Nick.”
Since I had not remembered my way, I was imagining the road map in my mind. That couldn’t be safe. I kept my focus solely on getting there and hopefully nothing else was trying to interfere with that. I was scared that I would spontaneously start crying and go hysterical. This wasn’t the time for distractions.
I leaned on the pedal a little heavier, allowing the car to run a little faster. What if he wasn’t there? What if he had already left? If so, my complete chance was just blown. It was no point on even trying afterwards. What was he going to think? What would I say? Someone, who I always thought I could tell anything to, was leaving my wordless.
Do you think he would expect me or be completely caught off guard?
I clutched onto my chest, trying to keep my heart intact. I took a swift turn onto my desired destination as I put even more confidence into what I was doing. Demanding myself to take even breaths in and out, my heart was pounding, allowing my ears to be sounded out. My eyes narrowed to a squint. I was so close and I hoped that for once my disadvantage of incredibly bad timing would for once give me a chance, maybe even a second chance.
Then I saw him. He stood there, staring down the line of a never ending sea. I smiled to myself as I put the car into park and jumped out of my car. I suppose that my carelessness of keeping secrete made him turn around. I wasn’t sure whether he was more shocked than happy. I couldn’t tell the difference but all I could see was that small smile that grew so quickly made everything worth it all.
He extended his arms to which I gratefully jumped into. He pulled me closer to him, where I could hear his heart beating at the same pace as mine. His fingers were tangled into my messy tresses. I could feel his lips smile against them. I could feel my life’s broken pieces inch towards each other, coming as one. This was where I belonged. This is what I lived for.
We pulled away as I stared into his deep blue eyes. Corey, still subsiding from the shock, smiled. “What are you doing here? Isn’t the wedding,” He looked down at his watch then back up. “right now?”
I shook my head. “Yeah but I think I had to put my priorities in check. This is where I want to be, need to be. I’m ready for the time of my life.” He smiled, taking my hand and gripping onto it.
“Then, let’s go.” He took the back of my palm and planted a sweet kiss. I smiled as we got back into our cars and drove towards the airport.
“It was a simple request, Nicholas. Tell me that you love me.”
The more she told me to do so, the more it ended coming out as a demand. It was one of those life or death situations that either answer, it’s going to go down badly. All my life it was exactly like that. Now, I was down to only one request and it will be my choice to how everything will happen. It’s my life now and it’s in my hands. Who cares if I screw it up on the way? All that matters is that I end up where I want to be.
Where I want to be is with Maya, right now.
“I can’t do that.” I said slowly. “Because I think we both know that we aren’t meant to be together. It’s just not going to the happily ever after like we both expected and hoped for.”
I was preparing myself for the worse. I imagined her throwing some glass object at the wall or maybe slapping me with a hard hand. I shut my eyes, trying to warn myself from physical harm. I had waited and waited. I didn’t hear a clang and I didn’t feel any contact. Slowly, I opened my eyes and saw that she was more relaxed than I imagined. In fact, she was calmer than I was.
Her eyes soften as she took my hand and clutched onto it. “That’s all I needed to hear you say. All I ever asked for was the truth. I’m a big girl now, Nick. We both asked for way too much than either of us could give each other.” She shook her head, seeming disappointed in herself. “I’m sorry that I put you through my selfishness that I forget to think about you.” She said in nearly a whisper.
“We were both selfish but at least we know better now.” She nodded.
“What are we going to do now? People are probably wondering where we are.”
I shook my head. “I know what I’m going to do and I know what you’re going to do. You’re going to leave for our very expensive honeymoon and I’m going to go find Maya.” She nodded obediently with a smile. We still held hands finding our own secret way out of the hotel. The walk, more like run, was silent but once we found our, more like her, limo, we let go of each other’s hold. I took her palm and kissed it solemnly for the last time. “Have fun.”
She nodded and smiled back before she climbed into the limo. The driver, who seemed shocked that I was joining her, obediently started driving towards the airport. At the rear of the car, the “Just Married” sign was still trailing behind. Sighing dejectedly, I turned around and ran back to my hotel room to retrieve my things.
I tried to dodge the reporters, the guests, and most especially my family. Unfortunately, this is easier said than done. They were everywhere. I had to run all around the hotel and find new pathways to find my way through to the other side of the hotel. Sprinting upwards the emergency fire staircase, I finally managed to my floor, the top floor.
Panting, I got back to my room only to my surprise find my dad, standing by the window as if he was waiting for me unlike everyone else. He seemed slightly less high strung than the night before but it still didn’t change anything. He probably just as upset as he was. I stopped in my steps and stared back at him. I wasn’t sure of how to explain that I just let the bride go.
“Kind of late, don’t you think, son?” He said in a stressed voice. I bit my lip as I shoved my hands into my pockets. I found that question to be those specific kinds to not answer. He pulled the curtain out of his way and looked down on the street below once again. “So I saw that you let the bride-to-be go AWOL.” His eyebrows rose, questioning.
I sighed in sharply, ready to allow myself to completely pour out everything within me. “Look, I’m through wi-“
He stopped me midsentence as he walked towards me. “Nicholas, there’s no need for an explanation.” He said, resolutely.
I furrowed my brow. “There isn’t?”
He nodded, mirroring me as he also shoved his hands into his pockets. “You see, Nicholas, your mother and I tried to teach you boys the importance of self decisions for yourself and others around you. We tried our hardest to keep our family in close ties and now that this entire wedding exploded into a media parade, it got out of hand. I know that once this gets out, it will be worse but I’d rather know that we are okay in the end.” I nodded and smiled. He pulled me into a hug, acknowledging his pride for me. “Go get her.” He whispered into my ear as he patted me one last time.
I nodded; obeying him as I quickly took my car keys into my hands and dashed out of the room.
To my forgetfulness, I made the mistake of the taking the elevator leading the lobby where you guessed it, everyone was residing until the start of the ceremony. Even more to my disadvantage, I remembered this by the middle of the third and fourth floor. I had to make a run for it by the third floor and find a way out then. Unluckily, a group of college students jumbled in then realized who I was and started to have a fit.
“Dude, you’re the skinny jeans Disney rockstar kid! Man, aren’t you getting married to that little whore, Miley Cyrus?” I rolled my eyes to the obviously stoned teenagers as I didn’t bother going to defense. They wouldn’t even remember this moment by the morning. I let them have the best of it. Redeeming my self esteem wasn’t any of my priority at the moment.
I sighed thankfully when the elevator came to the lobby. My plan was to hide behind this horde of wasted kids until I could find my escape. It shouldn’t be that hard. When they began to file out, I crept close behind. I could see the idle photographers, waiting for my appearance. It showed that my plan was working since no one had noticed until…
“Nick, what are you doing? You’re supposed to be going this way!” Mandy had yelled from the opposite side of the lobby. The name had almost caused sirens since the stir of media frenzy began its awry. I could shambles and screams which had alarmed my legs to dash my way out, no matter how dangerous it would be.
“Nick! Nick! Where are you going?” All of them seemed to ask at the same time. “Are you having cold feet? Did Billy Ray scare you off? For a diabetic, I didn’t know you ran so fast!” The comments had spread wide and far. The accusations were beginning to shoot for the sky. The assumptions were getting out of hand. I had to keep them out of my head though.
I hailed for the nearest taxi since there was absolutely no way that I was going to make it to my car alive. As I caught a taxi driver’s attention, someone caught mine. “Nick!” She yelled. I turned around to see Carly running after me. I wasn’t in the mood for one of Miley’s bridesmaids to hold me back to marry the MIA bride.
“Carly, the wedding is off.” I said a little too loudly as the shutters of cameras had gone wild after that sentence. “I have to go and find her and make things right.”
“I know and I have to go with you because I know where she is.” I raised my eye brows but didn’t ask any questions in lieu of time and allowed her to go ahead of me inside the car. Carly told him the address of Maya’s apartment, a good twenty minute drive from the hotel, and she demanded him to “step on it.” The car dashed away from the stand by photographers and the few who decided to run after our car.
The idea of not making it on time had scared me. I wasn’t going to let the greatest person in my life just leave. I rubbed my fingers roughly against my temples. I could feel an offered hand beside me. I looked up to see Carly as she held a genuine smile. She took my hand to reassure me.
“What are you saying that he just left?” Mandy said as she spat at the word.
Kimmy shrugged her shoulders as she wiggled her arms at her side. Mandy had stooped to her level, eyeing her as if to intimidate the young girl. It didn’t seem to work since Kimmy hardly flinched. Few people watched on being humored by Mandy’s serious scolding towards Kimmy. She pointed her finger to Kimmy’s little nose. “Now you listen to me, you little brat. You tell me where Nick and Miley are or I’ll have to tell your parents that you secretly ate a chunk of the cake.”
She raised her eye brows, amused herself. “Who cares?” She shrugged as she skipped away. Mandy sighed, frustratingly as she rested her arms at her hips. The wedding was shattering between her fingers, leaving marks for deep bleeding. Where was the damn wedding planner? She dashed out of the room and onto the aisle where she found Rebecca speaking quickly into a headset.
Mandy stood before Rebecca, trying to size the petite wedding planner up. Rebecca, furrowing her brow, looked up at the much taller Mandy. Just alike Kimmy, she showed no scare. “Is there a problem, Miss Jiroux?” She asked politely, holding onto her clipboard. Mandy grew up thriving on intimidation upon her insubordinates. It made her uncomfortable that Rebecca was also unclenched like little Kimmy.
“The problem is that fact both the groom and bride are gone. What are you going to do?” The image of tears spilling at a horrendous mistake would completely make Mandy’s day. Everyday must be perfect and by the guess of it, she knew perfect days would only happen if she was the one to control that. If the wedding was put in her hands, this would have never happened. She could have roped Nick to a chair as an option.
She looked down to Rebecca seeing a look of some kind of emotion. It seemed to be a mix of surprise, horror, or both. Then an enormous smile had spread against her rosy cheeks. She yanked off her headset and pushed it with the clipboard into Mandy’s abdomen. “Oh thanks the Lord, I am out of here.” She said, with an exasperated tone.
“What?!” Mandy yelled in horror. “No, get back here! Well, you can forget your paycheck!” She retaliated back to the ex-wedding planner who was ready to leave the room.
Before she opened the door, she didn’t turn back but held her hand up. “You can keep your petty cash!” She yelled back before walking out.
Mandy couldn’t believe it. How unprofessional and low class is that? Fury was boiling within her as she threw the clipboard against the floor and stomped back into the bridal room. As she plodded back in, she saw that both the groomsmen and bride maids had mixed in with complete confusion. No one knew where Miley and Nick where.
“Who let them go?” Mandy screeched to the innocent group. Her raging tone had thrown off everyone in the room. They circled at her, furrowing their brows in similar looks of even more complexity. “Oh, don’t act stupid with me. I know one of you set those two free.”
Then seeing a non-pink bridal dress, she found Demi holding Joe’s hand, seemingly frightened. She turned to Joe, pointing an accusing finger at him.
“It was you! You did this only because you and your little skank could be together. How selfish could you be? You might have ruined your own reputation, your white-trash girlfriend, and the wedding of the season! Are you proud of yourself? How could you possibly name yourself famous?” She screeched. A mutual rolling of eyes passed around the room.
Then no longer taking it, Selena, who was standing in the back corner, pushed her way through to stand up for her own best friend and testify. “That is it. I am through with you, your ugly-ass hair, and matching personality. Have you not seen what you’ve done? You’re the only reason why this wedding is ruined. If you didn’t make that stupid little announcement at the wedding reception, the wedding could have possibly been on right now. But what good is that? Because for once, you need to realize that you’re not God’s greatest gift, in fact, he’s probably regretting you. Nobody likes you and you know it so you intimidate them to make friends. Who does that?”
Mandy, now closing in, glared down at Selena. “Well what are you going to do about it?”
Now completely losing restraint, she pulled her fist back then whisked against her face. Her hand had stung in the after effect but not as much as Mandy’s eye seemed to be. Her right was quickly beginning to swell. Silence had riveted throughout the room as shock had flown through everyone’s mind.
Mandy, then knowing there was nothing left to say, ran out of the room.
“What if she’s not there? Where do we go after that? I mean she’s probably gone now!”
The panting I was forcing against myself had completely thrown off my equilibrium. My head was thumping to an unsteady beat of what I recognized as “Baby, Come Back.” My heart was beating out of control and my hands couldn’t stop shaking. It seemed like I was having a steady convulsion.
“Nick,” Carly placed her hand against my shoulder, keeping my body in steadiness for once. “Calm down. She has to still be here. We’ll find her. I promise.” She leant a helpful smile that made my heart calm slightly. I smiled back as I took her hand and placed a lucky kiss against it.
I noticed that she had checked her phone a lot of times, checking her clock, and then sighing dejectedly afterwards. I wondered if Carly possibly knew something else but she swore that Maya was at her apartment which threw me off. I tried to ignore any extra unnecessary thoughts, including Carly’s suspiciousness. Maya was my only priority now.
While I let my heart lose the beat of the cheesy 80’s song, I found a strange silence between Carly and me. This was probably this first time we were together, by ourselves, with no one else around us. I didn’t know much about her. I knew she didn’t favor Miley or her family but was strangely close to Maya. In fact, a lot of the time, Carly was the only thing Maya would talk about.
Before, the only topic of conversation we were able to talk about was the wedding. Well, obviously, that topic was no use to either of us now. Instead, I looked at my window and she looked out hers. We tried to avoid the traffic and more importantly each other. I nibbled softly at my lower lip and nervously shook my legs, and tapped my feet furiously.
“Could I ask you a question?” I heard her ask which made me whip my head across. I nodded as she continued. “What made you change your mind?”
“About the wedding?” She nodded back. I shrugged and lost eye contact immediately. I began to stutter, maybe even mumble but somehow my mouth came out with this. “I mean there were a lot of reasons why. I was just too arrogant to notice any of them. I couldn’t do that to Miley or myself.” I rehearsed.
She rolled her eyes then wrapped her arms securely against her chest. “Nick, I don’t have People Magazine stamped on my forehead. I don’t want nor do I care to have the B.S.-ed version of this entire situation. I want to know what happened and why we are even in this taxi.” She said sternly which forced me to be taken aback. Maya wasn’t kidding when she said that Carly perfected an intimidation factor in a quick second.
I sat up in my seat then buried my forehead into my palms. I wasn’t ready to admit everything in a taxi, in the middle of traffic, and to a person who I hardly knew.
Carly didn’t seem to care whether or not I had known her for weeks or centuries. She wanted to know and I knew
I wouldn’t be able to get out of this taxi alive without her knowing everything. Guiltily enough, I spilled everything and censored nothing. I would rather be safe than sorry.
A confused look had wiped over her face. She scrunched her brows and shook her head. “What I don’t get and don’t take offense to this, is that how could you have possibly been stupid enough to just notice this the day you got married? I mean as far as I’m concerned, you’re a smart kid. How could a smart kid like you completely miss the target here?”
I rubbed the back of my neck. She was beginning to throw question after question. Each one was slap harder than the one before. “I guess I was so distracting, so blinded, to only see the truth. As a kid, I always believed that one thing would always make my life eternally happy and for once, everything would be okay.
No matter if it was a toy truck, another world tour, or just something materialistic. This time around I wanted to settle down and make a lifetime commitment. I thought it was a good idea at first.” I shook my head as I looked back at the idiocy that had taken over my body. “I pushed away my best friend because I was selfish.” Anxiety was aching in my bones.
“We all knew that if anyone would have jumped the gun on marrying you, it would’ve been Miley with a bullet.” A small smirk played across her lips and I, myself, couldn’t help but do the same. Miley was just like me. We didn’t specifically know what we wanted but if it sounded good in our ears, we would do it in a flash.
Another silence had postponed the conversation momentarily. Then I looked up at Carly who had shared the same glance. “Do you think she’ll take me back?”
She stopped, thinking of an answer. Minute after minute had ticked the time away. She wasn’t going to censor the truth but she was trying to be easy on me. She bit her lip and contorted her mouth. It was as if she was breaking the bad news slowly and painfully. I looked away, trying to distract myself with the slow pace we were being driven at. For the rest of the ride, she had not answered that question. I shouldn’t have asked it in the first place since the blatancy was so obvious.
Eventually, the taxi began to pick up the speed. I sighed, forcing myself to relax but I couldn’t this time. My bones were rattling under my skin which made it uncomfortable to slump in the seat. I leaned forward and brought my head close to my knees. I let clock pass, keeping my thoughts away from the time that was inching away so quickly. Carly kept quiet for the rest of the ride until I heard a soft sob.
I turned my head slightly to see her wiping away some black tears that were remnants of the heavy mascara. She brought her index knuckle and slowly made them evaporate. I didn’t say anything but reach for her hand and squeezed it enough to motivate each other. I didn’t let go and neither did she.
“THIS IS IT!” I nearly yelled into the taxi driver’s ear and pointed towards Maya’s apartment building. My heart was beating and thumping through my ears. I flung a hundred dollar bill to the front of the car and dashed straight out of the door. I could hear a gracious gasp swiftly before I slammed the door closed behind me.
I blistered my feet against the burning pavement and let the beat of my matching burning heart thump uncontrollably. I pulled apart my black bow tie, and let it hung untied around my neck, aimlessly. I shifted my arms upwards then downwards, to allow myself agility. She had to be here. I could feel her presence as I got closer to her apartment.
Carly sped very close behind. Unfortunately, Maya had chosen a rather further apartment. Luckily, I wouldn’t need to work out for another week. My legs were on fire and my heart was out of control but that didn’t stop me. I wasn’t going to let the only thing that separated me from Maya to be myself. This had only forced me to push myself harder. Within time, she would have been waiting for me. I knew it.
“We’re almost there, Nick. Just one more turn!” Carly motivated as she strongly huffed. I nodded, thus, sprinted farther, quicker. My temples were blazing from an intense headache that I was beginning to grow. My arms were weak from shaking them too rigorously as I ran. My eyes were losing focus. All of these things still didn’t stop me. She was here and all I longed for right now was to have her in my arms, apologizing away the pain.
“It’s that one!” I pointed to the familiar door with a smiley face welcome mat. I leaned over, trying to catch up my breathing as I scurried to find a spare key. It was under the mat and not above the door frame. Beginning to panic, I turned to my left and found a nearly dead plant that Maya never quite knew how to properly care for. I fished through the wilting leaves then found the sun reflected key buried into the soil. I pulled it out then jammed it into the key hole.
My heart was on fire and my equilibrium was suddenly completely caught off guard. I swung open the door, allowing my arms to open for her to close them into.
The apartment was completely empty.
“What?” I said, my voice already beginning to crack. I threw the key to the side and slowly walked into the quiet kitchen, then to the living room. The apartment will had looked like it was lived in, the fridge was still on and fully stocked. Yet, her closet and drawers and her entire bedroom were completely emptied out. I checked to see if she had taken her valuables which she had. She took a few picture frames accept two. I picked them both and studied them.
One was of her and her mother.
The other was of her and me as kids.
“No, no, no.” I said in a slow whisper as I felt my body crash against the ground in complete defeat. “She can’t be gone. She couldn’t have left me now. I was so close!” My voice was cracking uneven as my eyes were beginning to soak with unrecognizable tears. I felt Carly walk behind me and caress my back with a smooth palm. This had only brought the strain tougher, rougher. Tears were beginning to burn in the room and flow down anxiously.
“I am so sorry, Nick.” Carly said quietly, her voice was soon diminishing. I clutched onto the frame then felt two pieces of paper taped behind it. I pulled it off and wiped away some of the tears. I could feel Carly gasping besides me. “It’s from her.”
I quickly opened it as if it was my only chance to resolution. Initially scanning it, it only seemed to be an apology poem and a sealed tight letter, only meaning that she truly left. I wasn’t sure I was ready to be able to both of them but handed the poem over to Carly to read. She was if I was sure, but I shrugged. I wasn’t sure of anything anymore. Loneliness was already beginning to haunt me. Despair and suffering was inching into my skin and I shivered at the thought of it.
Through the corner of my eye, Carly, also weeping, held the poem in her ever shaking hands. Her tears were like diamonds tragically caressing her cheeks. This had only left me more emotional. I was losing myself the more I felt Maya walk farther away from me. I had let her go out the palm of my hand deliberately.
She started slowly, hoping to say the entire poem without losing her voice. “My dearest loved ones,”
When tomorrow starts without me,
and I'm not there to see,
If the sun should rise and find your eyes
All filled with tears for me:
I wish you wouldn't cry
The way you did today,
While thinking of the many things,
We didn't get to say.
I know how much you love me,
As much as I love you,
And each time that you think of me,
I know you'll miss me too:
I had so much to live for,
So much left yet to do,
It seemed almost impossible,
That I was leaving you.
I thought of all the yesterdays,
The good ones and the bad,
I thought of all the love we shared,
And all the fun we had.
If I could relive yesterday,
Just even for a while,
I'd say good-bye and kiss you
And maybe see you smile.
But then I fully realized,
That this could never be,
For emptiness and memories,
Would take the place of me.
And when I thought of worldly things,
I might miss come tomorrow,
I thought of you, and when I did,
My heart was filled with
I promise no tomorrow,
But today will always last,
And since each day's the same way
There's no longing for the past.
You have been so faithful,
So trusting and so true.
Though there were times
You did some things
You knew you shouldn't do.
But you have been forgiven
And now at last you're free.
So won't you come and take my hand
And share my life with me?"
So when tomorrow starts without me,
Don't think we're far apart,
For every time you think of me,
I'm right here, in your heart
“Love, Maya.” After barely finishing the poem, her shaking hands threw the poem aside and she began to lose it. She inched closer towards me, requesting that she wrapped her arms around me. I allowed her too and she rested her head under my chin. I could feel the tears soak silently against my tuxedo shirt as I buried my own dripping diamonds into her hair. If we were abandoned by the one person who understood us the best, the two of us had nowhere else to go. We were now strangers who were stuck in a familiar world.
The image of Maya was burned into my head. I was picturing her in ways I hardly imagined. She was a hero, a best friend, and the only stability I was able to hold onto. The stability I had once thought I knew was only now a memory that hardly seemed real. Maya almost seemed unreal. I had to cling onto the fact that I knew she loved me. Whether or not she still loved me was forever a mystery. I knew what I felt and for the first time I was wanting something, no, needing something that was out of reach for once.
Even though she was gone, she still had done remarkable things to the people she loved. She brought two opposites and made them all too alike.
I held onto my suitcases tight, my grip constantly tensed then I forced it to relax again. I was hoping that time would somehow slow down. I was beginning to get cold feet of my own. I was secretly wishing that Nick would somehow jump in spontaneously and beg me to come back to him. I’m sure there was still enough time since Corey was still checking in our luggages. I turned to watch the automatic doors, watching every person that walked in. I waited and no one familiar came to beg me back.
Even though I was furious with the night before, I was still unsure if New York was a good idea. This meant that I would completely and totally rid of what I grew up to know. I would make a life of my own and somehow make a career around it. I’ve never been anywhere without any of the Jonases with me. As much as I didn’t want to admit to Carly, I still loved Nick. No, I am still in love with Nick and by the looks of it, that wasn’t going to change.
I felt a firm hand slide towards my waist. I smiled, my heart fluttering. Maybe, I was right. What luck would it have been if he really did come back for me? He would stop me from hiding once again and becoming another me. He would keep me from the evitable and take me for himself alone. I spun, opening my arms to wrap them around Nick. Then I only saw Corey smiling, excitingly down on me.
I tried not to let my smile completely falter but clenched onto the forced grin. “You ready? Security is,” He turned from side to side before pointing leftwards. “This way.” I nodded slowly as I began to follow him towards the terminal. I inconspicuously turned behind Corey’s back to check one last time. He was nowhere in sight and I felt my heart breakeven.
I could feel my eyes soak with burning tears quickly. It was all hitting me now. I was just a constellation prize, maybe even a one night stand, to him. Either way didn’t change the fact that everything was about to change. I was scared, broken, and furious all at the same time. Emotions were flying throughout my brain and he wasn’t there to hold me together. I was to pick up every piece by myself now.
Corey was still walking ahead, allowing me to wipe away the tears quickly but they kept on flowing like rivulets against my cheeks. Corey turned his back and grew wide-eyed at my state. “Are you okay?” He wrapped his arms around me, hoping to stabilize me. At the moment, I tried to force the feeling of comfort in his hold but felt nothing. They weren’t warm and felt like dead weight against my body.
I looked up to see his worried eyes meet mine. I stood still, feet deadly weighted against the cold floor. I was silent for a matter of minutes, studying what I was truly getting myself into.