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Love Forever, Addison May

The sand had gone from burning the soles of her tanned feet to sending a sharp chill up her legs. These icy shocks caused goose bumps to form on her freckled arms but she still continued to burrow her feet deeper and deeper into the soft east coast sand that she loves so much. She had been sitting on that spotted towel for hours that day with headphones in her ears and her precious Nikon around her neck. “Why does this have to end? I don’t want to have to face the kids at school yet, or ever at that,” She thought to herself as she pushes her hand through her thick hair and the long, dark waves dance over her shoulders. With a deep breath in and a hard exhale she put her camera on the towel, brushes the sand off of her legs and walks to the water.

As her toes feel the sting of the cold ocean water she is sent back to that cold day in the mountains. She can still remember the feeling of the seat in her aunt’s little blue Jetta, the rough material scratching at the back of her leg every time Addison jokingly pushed her as a sign to stop singing so she could hear Addison’s beautiful rendition of “I Will Always Love You”. But before she let herself think about what happened next, she dropped. Her entire body froze as she was overcome by the shock of the water. She feels her jean shorts hit the ocean’s sandy floor and her head drift under the cold September water.

There hadn’t been a day that summer that she had not been in the ocean and she wasn’t going to let the cold weather stop her on her last day of freedom. Kayden had been at that very beach everyday that summer once she was able to go home. She had seen what had called her to the beach that very morning countless times. Kayden would look up and see the airless clouds almost being pulled to the ocean, silently calling her name. She had seen the warm July sun and the beautiful August stars by laying silently on what to her was the only safe haven. Though the memories there were still strong she managed to find peace in the very same moments.

When she emerged from the water, her shorts were heavy and her tank top was drenched. The water colored purple print on her shirt looked as if it was melting off of her. She felt to heavy too stand so she just stayed there and looked out to the horizon and let her mind drift and pull like the water beneath her. The sky was a spectrum of colors ranging from almost black to bright pinks and oranges. The bright yellow circle in the center of her view mesmerized her until she was brought back to reality by a wave crashing over her unsuspecting head. She then stood up, ran to her towel to get her belongings and headed home.

As she walked down the dirt path with her beach bag in hand she felt the dirt kicking up from behind her. The miniature missals that her beat up brown flip flops were shooting at her felt like pins to the back of her legs, what a familiar pain that by tomorrow may be missed. She looks down the path at the average sized blue colonial style house in the distance. All the memories she has had in that yard. She can almost see her five year old self pushing Addison on the swing and hear Addie giggling as she sways back and forth. She can feel a lump start to form in her throat and her eyes start to burn as her trance is broken by her dad on the porch. His tall body almost covered the doorway as his echoing voice yelled “Kayden, there you are, mom wanted me to tell you that dinner is almost ready”. She nodded her head and told him she would meet him in the kitchen as she turns around and the vision of the two happy little girls that she had once known were gone. With her head held low and many unwanted memories flooding her mind she escapes into the house that once felt like home.

As Kayden walks up the porch steps the thoughts of the two little girls still filled her mind. The giggles and cries of the last few days they had spent together just haven’t seemed to fade. When she steps through the door she is immediately bombarded with the caring questions of her parents. What did you do today? How was the beach? Did you see anyone you knew? How did the pictures come out today? Can I see them? But all Kayden does is silently nod her head yes or no to their ongoing questions and sit at the kitchen table that never seems to change. The same center piece that was there for every Christmas and birthday that had gone by but at least then the room was filled with laughter and conversations instead of the clicking and clanging of silverware and questions asked only to try and break the unforgiving silence.

Sitting around the kitchen table that night felt like a reoccurring nightmare. The emotionless expression on her fathers face and the plastered smile on her mother haunted her even when she closed her eyes for a moment just to escape. But when she would open her eyes and look across the table all that she could see were the concerned eyes on her parents face that sat on top of the plastic smile they both have had since the day she came home. To them pretending it never happened is the easiest way out. Her nightmare went on like that for an hour until she quietly asked to be excused, thereby freeing herself to the foggy comfort of her room.

Walking through the hall leading to her room that night all she could feel is the pain of the daggers in the eyes of memories framed on the walls. Down the hall a little further is the snow white bay window where she sat with Addison that last day. She can see Addison’s shoulder length, straight blonde hair shining in the light from the window as she just sits there, looking out, waiting for her mom to come roaring down the driveway so they could have the car to go to one of their favorite places. It was the first time Addison could drive them to the cottage in the mountains and nether of them could wait. She then shakes her head and stagers into her bedroom, slamming the door behind her and falling to the bed.

As she hits the pillow she can no longer hold herself back. Her mind started racing and she again was in the passenger seat of the little blue Jetta. “I Will Always Love You” still ringing in Kayden’s ears from both the radio and Addison’s beautiful voice that at that moment sounded like nails on a chalk board to her. All Kayden wanted to do was to stop thinking and just to forget about everything that had happened next but she couldn’t. Then within seconds that little blue Jetta was spinning on black ice. Addison’s song had turned into screams and then everything was silent. The car flipped and just for a moment everything was black and when she opened her eyes again there was red dripping down the window and Addison’s warm blue eyes had turned to ice.

Kayden then rolls over to see the last thing she could handle right then; two smiling teen girls, one straight, blonde shoulder length hair and the other long, curly brunette. How did that get there? Kayden thought. She swore that was the first thing she had put in the box under her bed the first day home from the hospital. Then out of pure rage she threw her hand at the shining silver frame and launches it across the room. With a loud smash against the hardwood floor it shattered. Glass glistened around the frame that was now in four pieces. Two pieces of silver painted frame, the still smiling faces of the girls and a folded note.

She then curiously rolls out of her bed and slowly walks around the broken glass to get to the note. As she is reaching for the folded piece of paper her hands start to shake and she again feels the lump start forming in her throat. When she finally unfolds the paper she sees the small and graceful writing of Addison. Tears start to well in her eyes as she reads:

Dear Kayden Marie,

Happy Sweet Sixteen baby cousin! I cant believe I am able to call you that but six mouths still makes me older! I cant wait for our weekend away in three weeks! I have so much to tell you and I know you have a lot to tell me yourself! Like for instance, how have you and Brice been? I haven’t heard much and that isn’t normal but I know you guys will last forever, he really does care about you and you need to let him. We have been through so much together Kayden and you know I love you for that. You are not only my cousin but my best friend and the sister that I have never had. So always remember, keep your head high and everything happens for a reason so don’t let it slow you down.



Love Forever,



Addison May

Right then a tear hit the hardwood. It was the first tear shed since that June and it fell heavy as if it was a tear of lead. But that single tear was not the last shed that day while Kayden lay on the floor of her bedroom. To Kayden it was a tear of relief and comfort that had cleared the fog that had once filled her room so she was again able to look down and see herself smiling with her best friend, Addison.





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