They taught us at school to make our dreams come true...he confused the advice and made his nightmar

February 8, 2010
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Walking through walls filled with lockers and daily reminders of afterschool activities creates blisters on my heels. The air conditioning is all I hear, because the people around me have grown too cold for me to actually listen to. There my ex-boyfriend stands and there is that girl with dark wavy hair beside him. He smiles and looks into her eyelashes that she glues on. Still, there is something in the way he shifts his head, or maybe it is in his longing eyes. This reminds me of the dream he once had of me…
We were in a gas station. But it wasn’t really me in the dream, because my hair was grown out too long. It was like those show horses, with their black hair strung down into knots and tangles of weeds and splinters. My eyes were some chocolate color, and he thought I had gotten colored contacts because I always threatened getting them, if he ever shaved his head. And my arms, legs and face seemed so much darker. Just a different skin tone, maybe even a different race. He tried talking to me, but I didn’t respond. The cash register was blinking a price and I stared at it, and the Gatorade I just bought. He knew it wasn’t me, but still wanted to hear her voice.

‘Valerie, is that you?’ He asked, and she frowned. Then he frowned too, and a few seconds later, “I’m sorry, I thought you were someone else…” No longer trying to talk to her, he left the gas station with an empty tank. It didn’t really matter to him. He drove down this road where we used to go.
The gravel on the road was gone because of the many car windows the pebbles shattered. The trees that used to surround it, in their dark bark and moist leaves, were chopped down, to make paper. So now it was a dirt road, with empty fields. But I was there. The real me, sat in the middle of a place that was only magical in memory. And a butterfly cried on my shoulder. My ankles were bleeding, and my hands cuffed around my stained feet, trying to hide the shreds. But he still noticed the tiny pieces of metal engraved in my skin. “What happened to you?” He said, and I didn’t respond, expecting him to know. And then he remembered. He never told me what he remembered, but he just somehow knew, it was his fault I was hurt. “I’m so sorry.” He said, staring at a rock by my feet that had two red drops on it. I rested my head on his shoulder, “Am I too late?” He asked, and I nodded my head as the butterfly cried more. “I’m so sorry.”
“Me too,” I said and handed him the butterfly, beginning to float up, somewhere higher. And he stayed on the dirt road. There was not a single scar on him, but he still wept with the butterfly…

And now I notice him searching for something in a hug he gives her, that girl who stands where I used to sit. I notice him forcing his lips into a curve. I turn away, as he looks at me. And I smile, because I know that the butterfly will soon be leaving my shoulder.

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