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I Took the Bullet, You Took the Blame
It was a Sunday in October. Yeah, a Sunday. And you were with me, jogging down the street, looking out for any sign of danger. Yeah, like danger would be on a street corner. But you were right to be afraid. Because he had been watching me for months behind that alley, and was waiting for the right moment to strike. Although you couldn't do much, I was glad you were there, by my side, one last time.
Now, I had on my usual clothes for the late fall. Black windbreaker, running shoes, pants. You even made me leave my MP3 at home, so there would be no distraction. And I'm glad there wasn't, because I was enjoying myself way too much.
I remember that we had pet names, because you hated your real one but I liked mine. But pet names were nice, and you used mine way too often.
#Albini! Wait up! Seriously!#
Yep, Albini. My real first name is Albany, but he thought Albini suited my pale figure, my skinny frame, and my white blond hair. He thought it was pretty funny, but I had gotten my revenge.
#Sorry Stubby! You're not going to beat me this time!#
He had lost his middle finger when he was about eight, playing around in his dad's tool shed. And guess what was there? One of those electronic wood slicing saws. And guess whose hand got too close to the blade? About ten stitches and multiple whoopings later, he had only nine fingers. And, as I said, he hated his real name. He thought the name Richie sounded stupid.
I started speeding up, trying to reach Market Street before you did. The Publix on the corner was our usual stop for a drink on Sunday afternoons, especially in the summer. And you always knew what I liked best, no matter how many weeks it had been when I underwent chemo. Yeah, like a sob story, I once had cancer.
But I went into remission and you were by my side every day since, trying to treasure what you almost lost. Something you never wanted to lose, never. Well, no matter how many times you wished upon that star, your wish didn't come true. But, you kept me away from anything dangerous, like driving.
Sometimes if it was a special day, you would pull out your old pick up and let me drive through the graveyard before school. I had always thought that being in there was creepy, wondering how the corpses of newly deceased souls liked a back firing truck interrupting their eternal slumber. Too bad that I would be buried underneath that soil, way too early that what I would've liked. Boo hoo, I'm dead.
#Stop! What if-#
Your sentence was cut short by my blood curdling scream.
He had watched me for so long, and now he was going to have his prize. Me. Little cancer survivor me, with barely any fight left in her. But, I had just enough to kick him in the groin, and give him one good shiner on his left eye, causing him to stumble backward.
Let's just call the wannabe kidnapper Womanizer. His stupid accent and the alcohol that was on his breath proved that he was most likely a pervert or a lunatic. Too bad it was nearly both. He got up and had me on the ground in seconds, holding a knife to my throat.
He began to speak. I wanted to gag, or puke even. I knew the smell of Goose Vodka anywhere. My uncle had a shot on the weekends.
#Now yous better nots try to run girl, or yous gonna be all over the pavements.#
Stubby, you got there right about at that point, and seeing me scared half to death on the ground wasn't too good either. You pulled out your own weapon. Your Binky.
AKA your two bullet gun that you carried in case of an emergency.
#Let the girl go, or your gonna get a cap in your head.#
I had to intervene. Stubby didn't like violence, but he can get scary when he had too.
#Don't! We're not going to solve anything like this!#
That's when I felt the agonizing sensation of being stabbed, three times, in the back. It felt excruciating, and I could feel the warm liquid running down my back. That's when you shot Womanizer in the shoulder.
Running at a buzzed up, alcoholic lunatic isn't the best idea, especially when he's armed, Stubby. Before you knew it he had the gun pointed at you. And I stared, horror stricken, at the thought of you dead. So, when he fired that gun, I took the bullet like the saint I am. Right in the neck.
I had dialed 911 earlier, but I knew that they would probably be another ten minutes at the most. Womanizer took off, holding his injured shoulder, while you dropped to your knees, and put my head on your lap. I had to spill everything. It sounds romantic and cheesy, but I had to spend my final minutes doing something, right?
#I...was going...to ask you..to prom. Would you have....said yes?#
I had never seen a man cry, ever. But here you were, crying like a baby without a crib. No comfort for you. And you thought it was your fault.
#Yeah. I would've. And, would you have...kissed me?#
#Sure. I've got all the time in the world, now don't I?#
And, the kiss followed. My first kiss with a guy, and my last kiss with anyone. I remembered that I had left my flat iron on that morning. I knew mom would be mad. But, that didn't really matter now, did it?
#I promise I'll get him for what he did. And I promise I'll-#
Breathing was becoming difficult. My vision was becoming blurry. I could hear the sirens coming closer. I decided to make one last joke, for old times sake.
#We'll never solve anything with violence, will we Richie?#
Police were yelling, and I started to laugh. Not loud, cackling laughter, but enough to cause him to smile. He laid another kiss on my lips, and said he was to blame. I told him it was never his fault. The police had me alive long enough to put me in the ambulance, with you holding my hand for awhile. I could faintly hear my heartbeat, getting slower and slower. But, I will never forget what you said.
#You still need to go shopping for prom. I think you'd look best in purple.#
You know what I said?
#Get a matching corsage, and put it on my headstone when I'm gone.#
And I shut my eyes. The heart monitor went, eerily, silent.