Mistakes

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Things like this just didn't happen... it couldn't be true...!

But it was. Just as I shut the door of my locker, I saw his wonderful face, and my whole heart lit on fire. Shallowly gasping, I hid discreetly by the student next to me. The boy down the hall walked closer, his eyes locked on mine.

I could feel my heart stuttering as each step he took brought him closer. I fought to keep my face cool, collected. Everything around me began to shudder, my vision blurring every couple of seconds.

Had it been only seconds?

He smiled and stepped right by me. I panicked. What to say... what to say?!

"Hello." The boy said. His voice sounded like silk, carressing my heart in a way that almost constricted. Stuttering and blundering like a surprised and anxious teen, I opened and closed my mouth repeatedly. He was absolutely GORGEOUS.

He laughed, and it's sound rang through my ears. I froze, and tried to stop hyperventilating. My eyes began to go out of focus, and I had to clutch on to my locker to keep from tipping over.

"I can see you're a little busy. I'll talk to you later," He said, sounding a little abashed. He blushed, and turned to walk away. Before I could stop myself, I put a hand on his shoulder. "Wait!" I gasped.

He turned around, smiling slightly, his cheeks still flushed a gorgeous pink. His sandy hair curled slightly, falling almost to his eyes. His really, really green eyes. Which at the moment were staring a hole through me.

I should hve felt chagrined, or perhaps a little paranoid with his stares, but I found myself unable to look away, so I probably was looking the same way.

"Yes?" He asked, and I realized I hadn't said anything in more than fifteen seconds.

"Oh, um, I never... er, learned your name." I said. Totally true.

His eyes crinkled at the corners. "Actually, I didn't catch yours either." He said. The bell rang, and we both looked at it irritatedly. I sighed. "Well, I guess I'll talk to you later." I said. He smiled ruefully. "Hopefully sooner than later." He murmured, and then walked briskly towards the science room. I bit my lip, hugging my binders closer.

I walked to my classroom too, thinking of him the whole time. What a beautiful smile he had! It was absolutely amazing, but my heart was still pounding by the end of Language Arts. I searched eagerly through the crowd of students. I hadn't met any of them. After all, it was my first day at this new school.

But I didn't find the face I was looking for. Disappointed, I shuffled out the double doors. I'd only met one other person today - a girl named Lila who had seemed very friendly, but was a year younger than me. She was in another hallway, and ten to one I wouldn't see her again today.

That night, I dreamt of the boy. I dreamt that we were married, on a beach in Florida, our feet dangling in the tide. We were the only ones on the beach, becasue the storm clouds were overhead, casting dark shadows and loud thunder around us.

Everything was still perfect. When it began to rain, I lifted my face to it. But then everything disappeared. The boy, the beach, EVERYTHING. I was alone in an endless black.

I woke up, gasping. What a weird dream... it hadn't been scary, not really. No, it had been so real that it was hard to let it go.

That day, the flag was raised half staff. I looked at it, fluttering in the wind, picking up quickly. I felt my eyes tighten.

Homeroom was as loud as usual, until we heard the announcments click on.

"We have an emergency assembly in ten minutes. Teachers, take attendence and get it to us as soon as possible." A woman said grimly. She repeated, and the intercom snapped off.

Everything was quiet for a fraction of a second. Then a loud clap of thunder made everyone jump. Outside, the sky was black as night, strikes of lightning streaking their way though it rapidly. I felt the hair on my neck rise, an involuntary chill run down my spine. Something was horribly wrong.

The room erupted in talk, students coming up with crazy stories; some sounded pretty close to the truth.

"The flag was half staff this morning! I bet that Mr. Craw died. He was having trouble with his heart...,"

"Stop it Tagen! Mr. Craw was in the teachers lounge earlier. I saw him on the way to breakfast."

I was quiet, silently praying for that it was something a lot less horrible. Like, I hoped maybe someone had put a kick me sign on Principal Joans or something. But my paranoia ran wild.

In the auditorium, I sat numbly on the bottom bleacher. My whole body shook with anxiety of what might be coming.

Principal Joans stood in front of the microphone and cleared his throat. A layer of sweat gleamed on his forehead. He wiped it away, his face set in grim sadness.

"Last night, something happened." He began. The shcool, which was most likely loud during assemblys. Now, the air was hushed, only whispers of fear filtering through the air.

"Last night, your peer Kellan Parte was in an accident." The whole student body burst into cries of surprise and horror.

"The reason I bring this up, is because Mr. Parte was a very important person in this school, as all of you are." Joans said quietly. Everyone grew quiet except for the soft crying in the back. "He was a student who conversed well with othes, always had nice things to say about everyone, and always had knowledge to share with anyone."

My heart raced. For this boy I did not know, I felt tears well in my eyes. My dark hair shook as my body trembled. I pictured a mangled body in the back of the car, and my stomach lurched.

"Also, I need to tell you all what happened. A bright student, Kellan was, but he made a bad choice last night. At fourteen, this boy decided he would just drive over to his friend's house. Surprisingly, he made it there alright. His parents had no clue.

"And then, his friend had offered him a drink. Persuaded him to take a swig of beer." I stifled a gasp. This kid had been DRIVING. Not in the back... now, a new and more grotesque picture entered my brain. A limp body over a steering wheel. I swallowed forcefully, listening to the grave voice coming from the speakers.

"On his way back home, he drove head first into a tree. He died at one-tenty three this morning at Lake Hospital."

The words sounded awfully final and deathly. My eyes allowed one tear to spill over, and I wiped at them so I could see.

"I want to tell you just how real this is, children," Joans said, more soft and kind. The words were sinking in slowly. "Your peer died this morning, because of a stupid mistake. Let this be an example as to why we try to keep you from this kind of thing.

"I want to show you a slide that Mrs. Ara made this morning. She came in early just to do it. Let us always remember Kellan Parte...,"

Joan's voice trailed off as the powerpoint began. I watched it fade in, watched it start.

And I couldn't believe my eyes.

On the screen, was the face of THE boy. The one I had met and dreamt about in one day. The one I had been fantasizing about... the one I actually liked - no, loved. In one day, I had known that I wanted him, and nothing but; and just as quickly, fate had ripped this boy away from me.

I saw various pictures, all reflecting on the years of Kellan's middle school life. Pictures of him laughing, him on the football team, him racing someone in gym.

I found myself quietly sobbing. Tears streamed down my face, and I couldn't see the screen anymore.

Things like this just couldn't happen... how could it be true?

A couple of other girls saw me and tried to comfort me. I made friends that day, and I realized I had lost a potential one. All becasue of some dumb mistake. I realized that life was a little more precarious than I had once imagined. Crying with these other girls, I remembered the conversation between him and I less than twenty four hours ago, and shivered delicately:

"I'll talk to you later." I had said. "Hopefully sooner than later." He had replied.

It struck me then... I hadn't even gotten the chance to ask for his name - he had never known mine.





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