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Smokey Hope

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The flames licked the sky and I watched nervously, drumming my hands against my thigh. Oh please be alright, please be alright, I thought. What was taking them?

This was very hard. This was the first time I had to watch the love of my life run into a very big potential death trap. I just wanted to see him come out safe.

Then someone kicked the front door of the house down. A cloud of smoke puffed out and I stood anxiously.

There he was, in all his glory. Well, in all fairness, a lot of that glory came from simply being alive. But he was there. Suited up with a grin on his face. And in his arms, he had a box.

“I’ve got kittens,” he shouted across the road. I squealed with delight and he set the box down as I started to run towards him.

He opened his arms and as I got closer I could feel the heat getting intense. But he was there, and he was alive! That was all that mattered.

I was just about to get to him when one of the kittens leapt from the box. In an effort to avoid it, I lost my footing and started to stumble forward. I smashed through the front railing and through the porch into the basement.

My head slammed back into the concrete. Everything started to get blurry and my thoughts fogged. I couldn’t see anything because of the smoke but my head hurt too much to move.

I saw his face looking down through the hole I made, panicked. “I’m coming for you!” he shouted but I could barely understand what he was saying. My head was swimming and I started to cough.

I looked around. From what I could see, the opposite wall was set ablaze. It was glowing orange behind the thick, dark cloud of smoke.

I coughed harder and harder until breathing turned into sporadic gasps for air. I tried to crawl (although to where I didn’t know) but fell back again.

My eyes closed and I focused on finding those little breaths. It was getting more difficult.

Then I felt something. Someone’s arms were scooping me off of the hard ground. I opened my eyes and saw his face.


“Don’t worry, you’re going to be okay,” he said reassuringly. I nodded weakly and buried my head in his suit. It smelled smoky but it was hard to tell the difference anyway.

My head still ached and I could hardly breath. I felt the gentle bouncing of his movement and felt the heat of the fire around me. I heard the shouts of the other men and the water splashing from the hose.

Then suddenly the smoke was gone. I was still coughing of course but there wasn’t more gunk filling my lungs.

I looked up. The sun was out. The day was still beautiful, and he was alive. And I was alive. And we were together and that’s all that mattered.

“Now maybe that will teach you not to play with fire?” he asked playfully, but his voice quivered.

“I think so,” I choked out.

“Please don’t do that again.”

“Don’t worry.” He laughed a little.

“But I do, these types of thing happen to you far too often.”

“Yes but we’re both here.” His face started to blur and I think he noticed my consciousness fading.

“Yes we are. I love you.”

“I love you too.” He pulled me up and kissed me. I heard an applause and everything faded.



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