LOVE Writing Competition- Runner Up: “Almost” by Janice G9

“Almost” by Janice, G9

She was doing fine. For a hundred and ninety four days, she was doing absolutely fine. But one conversation just had to bring him up. His name brought up memories that she wished she hadn’t made and his face that she wished she hadn’t met.

A hundred and ninety four days ago, she didn’t think about the fact that she’ll be crying in her bathroom three hours later. She just thought that winter break was finally starting and the cold chilly air would be perfect for hugs – and most importantly, she thought that it was a normal day, where she’d see his face again. She knows, she likes him and he likes her, but she also knows that both of them aren’t going to admit that. And she hoped that the last day of term one would be the day someone did.

There she walked, through the hallways, passed the lockers and into her class. Class was going to start in twenty minutes and she was the first to arrive, so she sat and waited patiently until class could start and school would end sooner. Minutes later a boy walked in and her eyes widen as she saw the tall figure that opened the door roughly in front of her.

It was him and his dark hair and brown eyes that made her thankful that she didn’t press the snooze button on her alarm that morning. She shyly smiles back and fiddles with her fingers, not knowing what to do as silence consumes the room – she peaks at him and he does the same. She’s always done that but he’d never notice, but this time, he looked back at her directly in the eye and she was so taken back that she had to break the gaze.

“I need to talk to you,” His voice booms and every thought inside of her head were being played at once.

She slowly stood up from the chair, her legs slightly shaking and every part of her body seemed to be dysfunctional apart from her lips that smiled almost too bright. Thinking that this might be the day that will start something absolutely new, she walks confidently to him and he stands up, his tall frame over her small figure.

They stared at each other for a while, but something was wrong and she knew that. Her eyes were the only ones that contained of happiness whilst his seemed gloomy and soulless. With that, she looked to see if no one was looking and grabbed his hands, wrapping them inside her small palm.

“What’s wrong?” Her voice laced with concern.

There was a small pause as he looked at her nervous hands that tangled in his and he looked back at her, who was waiting for an answer.

“I think I like you,” He mustered every strength to say and her heart began to pound.

She drops his hand and clasped it over her mouth. And every worry or denial seemed to disappear in a second. She almost saw a whole future with him just because of those five words and she knew that they’d definitely spark something. Or so she thought.

She looks down at the ground and smiled lightly as she confesses too and his reaction was barely different, but again the concern still lingered in his expression.

“That’s one of the things I wanted to say,” He spoke again as her heart rate started to increase but it wasn’t good anymore because she knew that something was about to go wrong and what they’ve built up would all be destroyed.

He clenches his hands as if he was unprepared to say the words he wanted to but it was inevitable.

“I’m leaving this school – I’m moving overseas,” He finally reveals and her expression drops along with her heart.

This can’t be. She thought. It’s all a prank and she knows that she’ll see him again the next term. Although a part of her knows that maybe she can’t accept the fact that he’s telling the truth.

“When?” She whispered, holding back the tears that rim at the bottom of her eyes.

“Today, actually.”

This is when all the regret starting pouring in and all she wanted to do was escape from that room. All she wanted to do was to go in a time machine and reset everything back to the way it was. And for the first time, she wished he never confessed. She wished that small talk never happened.

Her mind raced through thoughts and ideas that could at least make him stay, but he confirmed that it was final and his flight was at six. At that moment, reality struck her and all she thought was that he wouldn’t be in her sight anymore.

She cursed to god for sending him in her life at the wrong time and she can’t help but think of the fact that she was so close to being something to him.

All those thoughts made her suffer as she stood there quietly, trying hard not to cry. So instead, she gathered her broken thoughts and expressed them in nothing but a smile.

“Good luck, then,” She weakly nods, slowly walking out.

As soon her foot stepped outside the boundaries of the classroom she darted to the bathroom, tears rolling down her cheeks before she can even stop them.

She popped in the closest cubicle and finally decided to let herself flow with her emotions and in that moment, she felt nothing but absolute pain. That day didn’t feel so cheery anymore and all the happiness was sucked out of her – winter break became something she feared and goodbyes became something she never wanted to say again.

All she was thinking about was how much she regrets letting it in and not telling him before. Because they were so close.

Now she lives in new mindset. The feeling of missing him didn’t hit that hard and the pain that comes with it wasn’t as intense. They’ve both moved on and she’s living her life and he’s living his. But they both know that at some point back then, they almost had it all.

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