"Memories": A short story

I've been thinking about you lately.

I hadn't thought about you in a while. I mean, I didn't forget you, I could never forget you, but I'd just been so caught up in my life that I didn't have time to think about the past... But then that changed, last week.

I was just walking down the road, lost in my thoughts, when I heard someone call your name. They weren't calling you, of course, they were calling someone with the same name as you, but hearing your name made me remember you and all of our experiences, everything we lived through together.

Since then, you've been on my mind a lot. Little things keep reminding me of you; for example, the colour of the autumn leaves reminds me of the colour of your auburn hair. The cold blue sky reminds me of the shades of your ever-so-slightly different-coloured eyes. The laugh of a stranger on the train reminds me of your laugh. For the first time in over a decade, I've been constantly thinking about you and - yes - missing you.

I remember when we were just children, back before everything got confusing. I remember that we'd play together in the park near my house during the summer, or at home when the weather was bad. We met when we were just toddlers, and while we grew up we saw each other pretty much every day. I had other friends, of course, but you were my best friend, my special friend, the one who I confided in the most, the one who understood me completely. You were like family to me.

You were always a dreamer, and you inspired me to dream, too; we'd lie on the grass together at the park and talk about beautiful princesses, handsome princes, wicked witches and enchanting fairies... A fantasy world that we created together, that belonged to us and to us alone.

Our friendship was beautiful, enviable to everyone... but then things started to change.

As we moved into our adolescent years, I started seeing you in a different way. I noticed things about you; found myself staring at you when I thought you weren't looking. I noted that your face wasn't perfect, but somehow so lovely at the same time. I was mesmerised by the way you talked, your little mannerisms, the very essence of you. Every time you looked into my eyes I felt my heart jump in my chest, felt my pulse quicken. I treasured every moment I spent with you, and whenever we were apart you were in my mind full time... I couldn't stop thinking about you.

It took me a while to realise that I was in love with you, and when I finally did, at first I was confused, then scared, then hopeful... then came the crushing realisation that you would never, ever love me back.

I realised I couldn't possibly tell you how I felt. It would have ruined our friendship forever. It would only have hurt both of us. So I kept silent, my feelings for you kept a secret that I was determined you'd never know. We were still best friends, but something had changed, altered... I felt guilty for keeping such a monumental secret from you, ashamed of my feelings, frustrated that I couldn't tell you what I so badly wanted to say. Sometimes it was painful for me to spend time with you; I thought that maybe our friendship would have to come to an end, this situation wasn't fair on either of us... but at the same time I was terrified at the thought of losing you. I knew that I couldn't let you go.

So we stayed friends throughout our teenage years, despite my guilt, despite my frustration, despite my feelings that only got stronger the more time I spent with you.

But then something terrible happened the year we were sixteen. Something that I'd always feared might happen, but that never had until now.

You started seeing someone else.

I reacted so badly that even now I still feel ashamed of my actions. Quite simply, I got jealous.  I hated the fact that this other person, this stranger, would be allowed to have the type of relationship with you that I'd wanted to have for so many years, but had always been denied. I behaved terribly towards you, and the worst part was, you had no idea why I was being like that. You were confused, and hurt, and upset... I made you cry once, and that was like being punched in the heart. I hadn't realised how much I was hurting you, but now I knew what I'd done... I was consumed by self-loathing.  I realised that you and this other person were happy, and that I had no right to stand in the way of that. If I truly loved you, I had to distance myself from you, or I would only end up hurting you even more.

We barely talked again after that. It was hard at first, but after a while I started feeling better. I had ambitions for the future, and I threw myself into my studies, knowing I had to get good grades to be able to achieve what I wanted. I still thought about you from time to time, but mostly I pushed you to the back of my mind; a memory that I could look at when I wanted to and that would stay hidden when I didn't.

I remember the very last time I ever saw you. It was on our last day of high school, before we'd all take our different paths in life. You came up to me through the crowds of students. I was surprised, and unsure how to act around you after everything that had happened. But you put me at your ease, you were as open and friendly as you always had been... I can't be certain, but I think that by then you'd guessed my feelings for you; you finally understood. We chatted for a while without it being awkward, as though nothing had happened, as though everything was the same as it always had been. When the time came for us to say goodbye, you hugged me, and on an impulse I kissed you on the cheek. We pulled apart, and you smiled at me. For the rest of my life, I will always remember that last smile you gave me; it will live in my memory for ever. I never saw you again after that.

I know that I'll never forget you; you've been such an important part in my life, such a special person to me. Until the moment I die you'll always live in my heart. Perhaps one day I'll get to see you again, and we'll talk and laugh together about our childhood, reminiscing the old days. But sometimes I think that maybe it's better if we never meet again... I want my last memory of you to be that smile you gave me just before we said goodbye. That smile sums up all of our experiences together.

I'll never forget that smile as long as live. I'll never forget you.

                                                                                                          

I hope you enjoyed this piece of writing, if you did please leave a comment, I love getting feedback on my work.

-IndigoSky

Comments

  1. That just hurt my heart... BUT in like, THE BEST WAY POSSIBLE!! It's like... I'm not sure how to explain it. BUT this was an A-FREAKEN-MAZING short story! I gotta tell you if you ever write a book I'm sold! I would read that double time! Your writing is incredible!!
    -Dani Jones

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    Replies
    1. Omg thank you soo much!! You have no idea how insanely happy it makes me that people enjoy my writing! Thanks for your comment! 😊

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  2. Awwwwwwwwnnn I feel like crying... This is so totally touching... Beautiful story❤️❤️❤️

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    1. Thank you so much Zoë, this means a lot to me! Glad you enjoyed this 😊

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