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When you spread out under the sky on a gorgeous summer day, just laying on the moist, dewy grass, the sky seems to last forever, even if the people intertwined beneath it do not.
This I contemplated as I sat stirring my fully prepared coffee with a long wooden stick, Wuthering Heights open in my lap.
Maple Street’s famed corner coffee shop, Obsolete, was rumored to possess the ability to mend a broken heart simply by walking past its intricate stained-glass windows. A huge, majestic hearth stood to greet customers upon their entry into the glorious little shop. In the winter, small mobs of people crowded around it, trying to escape to the bitingly frigid winters Featherwood was infamous for, fire spitting and clawing at the bottoms of their coats.
I’d always loved coming here. Something about its welcoming, familial aura elicited a sense of home and conjured some of my most beloved memories.
The strongest memory is also the one I desperately needed to forget.
The day had been February 18th, a Tuesday, when I met Quinn. I’d been walking past Obsolete on one of my long walks home from school, and when the winter chill became too much to bear, I scurried inside the shop and attempted to warm myself in front of the fire. It was only after a few minutes that I noticed a redheaded boy in a long black trench coat seated beside me. He looked about my age, perhaps a year or two older. I was instantly, magnetically drawn to him, like I’d never been to anyone before. The moment he turned his head and met my gaze, his glinting deep blue eyes penetrating the depths of my soul, is forever engraved in my mind. Then when he spoke, his voice melodic and throaty, my heart stopped.
“Hey,” he said. “My name’s Quinn.”
We’d had seven glorious, unforgettable months together. I couldn’t remember being so frighteningly dependent on another human being. He’d felt like the other half of my soul, and I wasn’t me without him. The time we’d spend together, the euphoric jolt that radiated throughout my body whenever his name flashed on my phone, were now part of an eternal past.
The day I found out about her, about the months he’d been seeing her behind my back, was the day my world ended.
“Can I sit down?” a deep, gravelly voice calls me back to reality.
I look up from my coffee. My eyes travel up a tall, looming figure with chestnut blond hair and angular, defined features. Unaware of what else to say, I mutter, “Yeah, sure.”
He takes a seat.
“So,” he says, “what are you doing here all by yourself?”
“Attempting to reach closure,” I deadpan with a sigh.
“Ah,” he says sympathetically. “Well, I find that upon the closing of one door, closure is best found upon the opening of a new one.”
“Who are you?” I say with overt bewilderment.
He takes out a pen and a small scrap of paper and scribbles something on it.
“Here’s my number,” he says, a ghost of a smile creeping up his lips, “Call me if you ever need help with that closure.”
I smile. I can’t remember the last time I did. “Maybe I will.”
He nods slightly and leaves.
As I watch him go, a wonderful, warm feeling floods my insides.
Perhaps it won’t be such a bad day after all.