A Daydream

It was snowing lightly, and the way the light bounced off the pure white struck her as beautiful and peaceful. Her cheeks were red, just slightly, enough to show the chill in the air. As the wind blew her hair playfully around her face, she smiled, because everything felt right. The boy next to her noticed the smile and returned it, squeezing her hand slightly to reassure her that he was there with her, and felt the same way she did. She turned to face him, and a laugh bubbled up inside her as they walked through the falling snowflakes. He reached up to fix one curl that was astray, and she thanked him with a loving kiss on the cheek. He stopped then, still grinning, and took both her hands, glancing upward, and she saw that a single strand of mistletoe was hanging above them…

A burn seared through her fingers as the flat iron that was supposed to be clamping her hair caught her hand instead. She dropped it quickly and clutched her burning fingers, annoyed because she hadn’t been paying attention enough to avoid the accident. The clock next to her clicked over to 7:00 pm, flashing in neon blue. She sighed and turned the iron off, staring at the done-up reflection that faced her. A rap came from downstairs and, grabbing her purse, she exited her room. She started down the stairs slowly, hoping the night would go the way she wanted to, not the way she was expecting. These were two completely different scenes. She realized that he was never late. And, she assumed, this was because he wanted her to be ready on time. Nothing short of what he usually asked of her.

Her hand poised on the doorknob, she saw his sharp featured expression through the window, anxiously waiting for her to let him in. He glared, tapping his wrist, obviously in a hurry. She replied in the same fashion, turning the knob and allowing him to step inside.

The boy pulled her closer, into a warm inviting hug that she melted into slowly. The snow seemed to fall exactly in the right way, framing her face and his eyes and everything perfect about the day. His breath on her lips was hot as he wished her a Merry Christmas, kissing her carefully and meaningfully. After, he glanced up again, shyly grinning at the cliché moment that had just occurred, but she didn’t mind at all. She slipped back into his arms like she was meant to be there, and at that moment she knew that she was. She leaned up to kiss him again, and he let her, just like he should. He grabbed her hand again and began to lead her down a slowly winding path draped in white. The evergreens surrounding her were like protective walls, blocking the two of them off from the rest of the world, and she felt like the day could not get much better.

“I asked you if you were ready,” His tone was sharp, and his hand wrapped around her forearm. It should have been kind, but it was too hard, too rough, and too protective. He was wearing a suit, and he was undeniably a handsome catch. His tie matched her dress, both crimson red, both looking crisp and clean. The unnatural wave that snuck up on her since the day they met returned, as it did every time his eyes locked with hers.

He looked at her carefully, expecting a response.

“Yes.”

After a long second, his hand released her, and she fell in step behind him, as usual, matching his pace. He walked quickly and with determination to his car, and she opened the door for herself.

The car started up with a heave, and she wondered why he couldn’t be different. But he was the boy. The boy that everyone wanted and everyone envied. And she should be happy to have even been there. And this is what she told herself every day.

“It’s very important that you enjoy the dinner tonight, Cassidy,” he said, eyes on the road as they began their drive. She nodded, smoothing her dress. It really was beautiful, something she wished she could wear and feel beautiful in, too. But it felt wrong and forced. She hoped, more than anything, that he noticed it, too.

“I mean it. I’ve worked very hard to make this come together, and I know that you’ll appreciate it. You will appreciate it, won’t you?” His tone suddenly became needy and scared. She felt the pull of guilt that had so often made her stay.

“Yes Jason, I appreciate everything you do.” How terribly robotic and stiff she was. Her muscles tensed and her true voiced burned in her throat. The snowflakes gathered on the windshield, making Jason angry and annoyed. She stared out the window solemnly, watching the flakes gather as well, but instead, she thought they were beautiful.

He led her back only a few steps farther, and she giggled. He had covered her eyes with his hands playfully, leading her along the way. He hoped she would be surprised, and she assured him that anything more from him would make her happy either way. He finally stopped them, wrapping his arms around her waist and letting her open her eyes to a fully light and decorated evergreen, small enough to fit one present underneath. She was speechless, and he held her close, telling her that he hoped she liked it, and that he wanted her to have a Christmas memory she wouldn’t forget. She felt the tears rise in her eyes, ones of happiness. He stepped forward with the little white box with a red bow and handed it to her. It was a beautiful necklace, which he carefully hooked around her neck. Inscribed was, “I love you. Merry Christmas”.
“I hate it when you lie to me, Cassidy!” He suddenly turned to face her, jerking the wheel to the left all too much in his random surge of anger. She flinched, scared, and her eyes flickered with fear. He was looking at her completely now, and she felt her insides turn in a familiar way. His hands were off the wheel and she tried to reach for it. He grabbed her wrist instead, shaking her arm hard.
“I do everything for you!” he yelled, but his bipolar words were covered by her scream.

The car lurched forward into a turn, and it wasn’t until they were too close to the evergreen that he realized what would happen. They hit the tree dead on, smashing the front of the car in completely.

That night Cassidy and Jason stayed under the tree, the snow blanketing them peacefully. Christmas day came slowly, and they weren’t found until the sun peaked over and the light began to reflect of the sheet of white snow. Cassidy died in the arms of her worst enemy.

She smiled and thanked him and they hugged and kissed and were happy. She wished him Merry Christmas once again, and he kissed her forehead with love, and respect, and everything that should be important between two people. That night, they fell asleep together under the beautiful evergreen, and they awoke the next morning in each other’s loving arms, where everything was perfect.





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