Reveille This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

September 23, 2009
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I’m going to die soon.

These were the five words your pretty little mouth would utter every time you wanted something very badly. I didn’t know that when I first met you. All I thought—being a silly 15-year-old teenage guy—was that you were one of the prettiest girls I’d ever seen in my life. Do you remember? I was hanging around the beach with my friends when I saw you swimming out in the open blue sea, wearing that white and red polka-dotted one-piece. Later on when I asked, you grimaced and said you hated polka dots—they made you look fat. I didn’t say it that time but I think you looked just right. It’s already been five months since then and I got to know a lot about you. Your favorite color is orange, warm and bright just like your smile. Why don’t you smile anymore? You like frilly and fuzzy stuff, although you don’t want to admit it. You’re filthy rich. You’re a spoiled brat. You scrunch up your nose—in a cute way—whenever it itches. And you’re going to die in three weeks.

That’s the most horrible thing. I only learned about it a week ago when I overheard your family doctor talking to your parents. Your dad sounded grim and your mother sounded like she would faint any minute. I wanted to barge right into the room and tell him he was making a huge mistake. But that wouldn’t change anything, would it? You knew it yourself.

Right now, I’m watching you from the window of your mansion. You’re in the garden arguing with your dad. Things aren’t going your way again. You’re tired of your wheelchair, you say, and you want the brand new model that you saw on TV last night. Your dad keeps shaking his head, saying it’ll just be a waste of money and he’s almost successful in refusing—until you say those five hateful words again: “I’m going to die soon.”

I want to scream. I want to run to you, grab your shoulders and shake some sense into you. My 3rd grade teacher used to repeat over and over again: “If you think you’re going to lose, then you really will.” I want to shout those words to you right now, because you’ve obviously accepted the fact that you’re going to die. I haven’t yet, so please don’t give up. Stop saying those words. They’re starting to appear in my nightmares, torturing me, reminding me of how short my time with you is. I want to get mad at you for giving up so soon, but I can’t. I want to—your head suddenly turns in my direction as if you heard what I was thinking. Now you’re smiling mischievously and rolling your chair towards the door, towards me. Why are you smiling? Why only now? A lump is forming in my throat. I take back what I thought before—you’re not one of the prettiest girls I’d ever seen—no, you’re at the top of the list.

I decide to say them now: those three words that no 15-year-old guy would ever seriously dare to say. Even though you’re the most spoiled brat I’ve ever met. Even though you told me you had a crush on that lifeguard at the beach. Even though you’ll probably laugh at me and tell me I’m being ridiculous. Even though my chest is pounding and I can feel the blood rushing to my head. So I say them. Those three little words that have been in my mind ever since the day I met you. Your jaw drops open and your eyes nearly pop out of your head. I hang my head, feeling my face get hot and my palms get sweaty as I stare at the cold green marble floor. Then I hear your reply. And I raise my head slowly to see if I heard right. Sure enough, your cheeks are as red, if not redder than mine. You come closer, maneuvering your wheelchair, tears in your eyes. I bend down and gently press my lips to your forehead, still dazed by your unexpected reply. We’re lost in our own little world, unaware of the servants and your parents staring at us from different viewpoints. As I pull you closer, memorizing the warmth of your body, I hear you vow never to say those five words again. Now all we can do is pray for a miracle.

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Emmmmwpcp said...
Oct. 10, 2011 at 3:53 pm
Wow....breathtaking.  Horribly tragic if she dies, but still absolutely beautiful.
billgamesh11 replied...
Oct. 10, 2011 at 8:02 pm
Ikr!!! I agree with that completely!!! What a great story!!! I can't say anything else, I am just too speechless. But I can say this: Great. Job. Please. Keep. Writing!!!!!!:):):);)
HollerGirl26 said...
Aug. 27, 2011 at 7:11 pm
Oh my...that was truly amazing..what a gorgeous piece!! I loove this!! And I have a feeling I'd like you too :)
girl-of-winter-skies said...
Aug. 27, 2011 at 3:29 pm
Superb! You have good voice... it ended rather suddenly but I almost liked that because I hope she doesn't die. Even thoguh she's a spoiled brat and all that.
NKsunshine said...
Aug. 5, 2011 at 12:56 pm
Utterly Breathtaking....:)
TheBug said...
Jul. 13, 2011 at 11:38 pm
Wow. This is utterly amazing..
quentin-arehart said...
Jun. 12, 2011 at 12:47 pm
When you said "Reveille" did you mean "Reveille-toi?" That's the way to say Wake Up in French, its a reflexive verb so it needs the toi. Btw, great story :)
JoPepper said...
Apr. 17, 2011 at 2:32 pm
What d'ya mean it's not original? If I could I would rate it 6 stars!!!! :D
alibi said...
Dec. 6, 2010 at 1:58 pm
that's really good. is there a sequel? the only thing is you don't give your characters names, which kinda de-personalizes them. other than that, awesome.
Let_It_Be said...
Sept. 9, 2010 at 8:14 pm
this is amazing! at first instead of "grab you by your shoulders" i thought you said stab you by your shoulders! haha. i guess im a natural blonde for a reason. can you check out some of my stuff? especialy "Imagine" thanks! you did great!
DiamondsIntheGrass This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 18, 2010 at 9:26 am
why is this called reveille?
raevyn_13 replied...
Aug. 18, 2010 at 2:11 pm
Reveille means wake-up signal or wake-up call, right? So I guess I wanted to show that the guy was a "wake-up call" for the girl to not take her life for granted and have the desire to live. Something like that. :D
Annabelle294 said...
Jul. 27, 2010 at 11:19 am
This is so sweet, and  i love hearing it from the guy's perspective.
CLC93 said...
Jul. 5, 2010 at 11:24 am
This is really good. It's actually really original. I liked it alot. :D I wonder why you titled it Reveille?
CLC93 said...
Jul. 5, 2010 at 11:23 am
This is really good! I like it alot and it's actually very original. Thanks for writing this. :D
CLC93 said...
Jul. 5, 2010 at 11:22 am
This is reallyy really good. And actually it's very original. I like it alot! :D thanks for writing this.
gymbabe This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 13, 2010 at 9:20 am

This was so great!  Very pretty, and honestly, I think that you made it original.  You're an awesome writer!:)

Anyone who sees this, could you comment on my work?  I'd really appreciate it.

cafelene said...
May 22, 2010 at 9:42 pm
aww! i like how you don't really say the "words". its just so like, idk? pretty. lol. i like it:)
Asif_by_magic said...
Apr. 30, 2010 at 1:44 pm
I'm tearing up. It was well .. amazing, incredible.
GirlInTheBeanie This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Feb. 23, 2010 at 8:09 pm
i think that this is perfect the way it is, with out any more added. it was so cute and sweet and short and perfectly summed up everything happening in those instances. =.=
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