This Girl I Knew

So there’s this girl I’ve been thinking about a lot. Her name’s Amanda, and she sits next to me in my French class, all the way in the back corner. Thanks to her, I don’t know any French. We talk everyday for the entire class. We laugh about everything and talk about everything. For a while, we were just friendly, but now I’m…thinking. What if? Why not? Who else? Should I? Could I?

She’s really pretty. Extremely pretty. I’ve never seen it before, since she typically keeps quiet around people she doesn’t know, but now she knows me. And she is so cool.

I really like her.

One day in French, we were all waiting for our teacher to stop talking to another teacher so we could start class. For once, Amanda and I weren’t talking and I was messing around with one of my guy friends, despite how much I wanted to talk to her. My friends aren’t nearly as hot. One of her friends, though, came up quickly to her desk, probably snapping at the chance of a free Amanda.

“Like my Band-Aids?” Belle asked giddily with a wide grin. I peered over to see what she was talking about. Covering a knuckle on her right hand was a Band-Aid with Disney princesses. “I was at Wal-Mart yesterday getting some tennis balls because I wanted to play tennis but we didn’t have any balls so then I was in the check out line and saw these!” She rushed the sharp words out of her mouth as quick as she possibly could, and there was feeling in each word. Almost too much feeling.

“Sweet,” Amanda cooed, much slower than her friend. “Can I borrow some?”

“Maybe…I’ll think about it. They’re pretty valuable. Especially the ones with Belle on them. Belle’s my favorite.”

“I wonder why.” Belle shrugged with a smile in retort. Then, the teacher called for everyone to sit down, and Belle returned to her seat grumpily, again with very much feeling.

“I didn’t know you were friends with Belle,” I whispered to Amanda, still watching the dark-haired girl. For once, I noticed, I wasn’t staring at Amanda or her boobs. I immediately focused all my attention back to Amanda.

Amanda smiled oddly. “Yeah, she’s my best friend. Why?” Well, she got me there. I had asked an odd question. I knew exactly what she was talking about; Why is Belle so important?, she must’ve thought.

“I used to be best friends with Belle in elementary school. We would just hang out together, and go to the park together, just us. Then, in sixth grade, we just started drifting apart. We were both going through awkward stages. Now we never talk. Weird, huh?” I confided. Belle was always a touchy subject for me. She was the best friend I ever had, and every once in a while I would start liking her. Now I just miss her.

“That is weird. She’s never told me about that. I’m sure she wants to talk to you, though. She likes good memories, and you guys probably have a lot,” Amanda explained thoughtfully. Silently, I noticed that there was no hint of jealousy in her voice, and that made me slightly discomforted. Why wasn’t she jealous? Did she not like me like I like her? Oh, sh*t.

We didn’t talk about Belle anymore that day. We talked about our normal random stuff, the safe topics. I don’t like talking about Belle. For some reason, it just makes me feel empty inside. I get the same feeling everyday when she walks her dog in fornt of my house. I just glance at her, and then I look away so I don’t get that empty feeling in a strong wave.

That night, though, I couldn’t stop thinking about Belle. When she walked her dog in fornt of my house that night, I made myself watch her and see if she looked longingly at my house. I just wanted to see what she did.

It was odd though. She had a letter in her hand, and she walked up to the mail-drop infront of my house. She dropped the letter in with a soft warm smile. She continued on her way after that.

Had she done that every night? She didn’t even look at my house, so could that have been her reason for coming her every night?

And what was the letter she was so peacefully happy about?

I knew I had to watch her the next night, and she did the exact same thing. I learned after a week that I was right; she dropped a letter in everyday. Sometimes, she would skip and beam as she dropped the letter in. Sometimes there would be light tears in her eyes. I wanted to just walk out of my house and ask her if she was okay , but something always stopped me, either physically or mentally. One time, I actually ran into the wall trying to go ask her if she was okay as she sobbed over the envelope.

After three weeks of watching her take the letters to the drop-off, I was done. The curiosity was eating at me. I almost asked Amanda a few times what was up with Belle, but I didn’t want to intrude. I knew that this would have to be between Belle and I, and not when she was crying. It would have to be when she happily delivered a letter.

The 26th day of basically stalking her was the day. I knew it from the moment I woke up. All I could think about that day was Belle and her letters. I had to know what was in those letters. Who could she be sending them to?

The only problem with that day was that Amanda decided to make her move that day.

“Okay, Jackson,” Amanda said hotly in the middle of French. At the moment, I realized that I was actually paying attention…because Amanda wasn’t talking to me. I was so stuck on Belle that I hadn’t even noticed Amanda ignoring me.

I confusedly looked over at her death glare. Then she whispered in a raging rush, “I have been giving you signs for the past month and you have not done anything about it. I don’t know what else to do other than just tell you!”

My eyes widened. Did she like me? What signs? What did she have to tell me? Why was she mad? All of these questions came out in, “What?”

Bad idea. That just made her angrier. “What do you mean what?! I have been throwing myself at you! I flirt with you everyday, I touch your hand, I talk about my crush, and always give a hint that it’s you! What else am I supposed to do, Jackson? Do you want me to write ‘I like you’ on my forehead? I’ve pretty much done everything but that! Because I do like you, Jackson. I really like you!”

A laughing smile spread across my face. She looked at me like I was crazy, but then smiled with me. I thought about saying all the same things, about the signs I’ve been giving her, but I didn’t want to wait any longer to make her mine. So I grabbed her hand and twisted my fingers through hers. I brought her hand onto her desk for everyone to see. Then I looked at her in the eyes and said, very smooth and chill:

“I like you, too, Amanda.”

She grinned and held my hand for the rest of class. Belle kept looking back, at first shocked, and then she would give a thumbs-up about every five seconds.

When school ended, I waited by my window all day until Belle showed up. I wanted this good day to continue. I wanted the answer today. I needed the answer today.

At 5:34, Belle skipped in front of my house with her dog’s leash in one hand and a letter in the other. I ran out the house immediately, almost jumping out the window.

“Hey, Belle,” I said out of breath from sprinting. I tried not to show it, and I don’t think she noticed. That would just make this conversation much more awkward.

“Oh, hey, Jackson!” she replied cheerfully. She continued walking up to the mail-drop, and I watched as she dropped the letter. Her eyes lingered on it for a little while. “What’s up?”

I ignored her question. It was too unimportant. I didn’t know how I was going to word this. I hadn’t thought about. “Um, what…I see you drop letters off everyday. Who are they going to Belle? You don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to. I’m just extremely curious.”

Belle smiled and looked down. When her gaze returned to me she asked, “Have you been stalking me, Jackson?”

“Of course I have, Belle. But seriously. What’s up with the letters?”

“I have a boyfriend over seas fighting. We hadn’t been dating too long before he left, but it was enough time for me to fall in love with him. I promised I’d write him everyday, even if he doesn’t get one everyday.”

Wow.

“How long has he been there?” I asked quietly. I had not been expecting that. I expected a pen pal, or an old friend, maybe even an aunt. A boyfriend, though? A soldier? I’ve known Belle for years, and I always expected her to end up with a rock star or a biker. This guy fights for the country she dreams to get out of.

“Eleven months. He comes home next month for his nineteenth birthday. I think the days are getting longer everyday that goes by.” This sounded like Belle, though. She opens up about her life to total strangers, which is pretty much what we are. She hides nothing.

“You got a picture?”

“Of course!” she chirped. She reached into her bra and pulled out a little photograph. I laughed.

“You keep him on your boobs?” I laughed. He probably asked her to do that.

Instead of being pissed at me, like Amanda would’ve been, or any other girl, she laughed out loud. Joyously. “No. He told me to keep him close to my heart, so I keep him as close as possible.”

My smile fell. This didn’t sound like the Belle I knew at all. Belle would’ve kept him in her bra so he could be on her breasts. When did she get so sentimental?

I knew the answer as soon as I asked the question. She was the good old Belle when she fell in love with this guy, and then her relationship with him got real and she realized she could lose him in instants. She was growing up, and I really hope not too fast.

I looked at the picture that she was staring at. It was hard not to whistle. In the picture he was staring directly at the camera with Belle standing in front. She was mich shorter, and he had his arms wrapped around her neck loosely. He smiled widely and happily, and his eyes clearly said that he loved this girl. Belle looked gorgeous with her sweet and tired grin, which is what solidified that she loved him. It was such a raw and genuine photo, beautiful even.

Then there was him. He looked young, still just a teenager. He was average height, and he already had a crew cut. He was built well. Now, I’m straight, but I can tell a good-looking guy from just an average guy. And, to be honest, in the eyes of any girl, this guy was smoking hot. He would make any guy uncomfortable and jealous. He was plain gorgeous, and so did Belle. They looked amazing together. They make other couples look like crap. There wasn’t much I could say.

“You really love him,” I finally said. There was no question. It was as clear as glass.

“More than anyone else. I don’t care if I don’t see him, I love him and that’s never going to change,” she said defiantly. She said it with strength and certainty. “And I miss him. I miss him like crazy to the point where I just want to fly out to the Middle East and find him just so I can hug him.”

Now I had become honestly interested in this kid. We sat on my porch, and we talked about him. She told me everything about him, and she made him sound like an honest prince charming. She met him through her brother. They were best friends, so he was always over at her house, and she eventually just fell in love and so did he. They’ve known each other for years, but it only became serious the past two years. She was head-over-heels for him. She confided that the minute she could marry, she would. She knew he was the one for her.

After that day I had never really talked to her much about Dylan, her boyfriend. We pretending like it never happened, but we both knew that I was let into her heart again. A few weeks later school let out, and I didn’t expect to see Belle much. I was leaving three days after school let out, and not coming back till three days before.

When I was at the airport to fly down to my home in Florida, I saw Belle. She wasn’t wearing anything special, but she looked especially excited. She looked like something big was happening, and some teenagers around her calmed her down. I only recognized one, who was her brother. They all looked to be sophomores or juniors. I smiled. Typical Belle to befriend people older than her.

“Hey Belle!” I shouted out when I wasn’t too far away. I wasn’t about to walk over, since I had to guard my family’s luggage, but she looked back at me and waved with a big, entertained smile. She ran over to me quickly.

“Hi Jackson!” she chirped. I looked at her and smiled. I hadn’t expected her to come over. She seemed to be in a really good mood. “Sorry, I just wanted to say hi, but I can’t talk long. So hi!”

“Hi! So what are you doing here?” I asked. She had a pass around her neck, so she was obviously waiting for something…or someone… That’s when it hit, right as she said it.

“Dylan is coming home for two weeks today. It was only supposed to be one, but they upped it to two,” she said. She looked back at her friends. They were waiting for her. His plane must’ve been arriving soon. “Sorry. I have to go. Have fun in Florida!”

I found it odd that she had remembered that I go to Florida every year, but that’s just Belle. I took a seat and waited. I didn’t know what I was waiting for, but I guess it was Dylan. I wanted to see him in person, and put the two together. If I was this anxious to see him, I can’t even imagine what Belle was thinking.

After a few minutes, the passengers had started pouring into the airport. The group of teens started looking down the all to see him coming…except for Belle. She stood there motionless, but still obviously anxious.

Suddenlly, in a matter of seconds, a man in camoflauge walks into the airport. Immediately, Belle jumps onto him, wraps her legs around his waist as he grabs her back. She clings onto him as she begins passionately kissing him. Both of them try to bring the other closer, but they couldn’t get any closer. Their friends watch in sheer happiness.

A grin spread across my face. Belle has to pull her face away, and they’re wearing matching grin. I’ve never seen a happier smile. They looked so blissful.

I felt my other brother walk up and sit next to me. I shortly look at him, but then quickly back to the blissful couple. He asked me, “Isn’t that Belle Shorts?”

“Yeah,” I said shortly. Belle was still wrapped around the man as their friends attacked him with hugs. He only looked at them for a short time, since he mainly kept his eyes on the girl inches from his face.

Nothing affected their love. Not even excess love. Nobody could interferre with their connection that no one understood. They were so in love, and would obviously do anything for each other. They didn’t care about anything else except for each other.

Their love was passionate and unconditional. At first, it was just a fun game, but now it was serious and real. They were in love and they could only think about their other. They didn’t care about the people around them when they were with their other. They loved each other. They needed each other.

I know it’s cheesy, but they were two halves of a whole.

I wanted that.





Join the Discussion

This article has 3 comments. Post your own now!

Static14 said...
Aug. 2, 2011 at 11:29 am

He sure spends a lot more time worrying about belle than he does amanda...I dont understand the point of amanda as a a character other than to introduce belle, which i think could have been done by someone else so that it didn't seem as awkward that he creeps on belle.

 

 
DrSuessandUnicorns replied...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 9:48 pm
amanda isnt really supposed to be a character. she was just supposed to bring belle into the picture. she was a device. and i personally don't think that he was creeping on belle, but if he was, okay. he can creep on belle all he wants. and of course its awkward. when are teenage boys not?
 
DrSuessandUnicorns replied...
Aug. 17, 2011 at 9:53 pm
and also, he's supposed to spend more time on belle......thats the point.
 
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