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For What It's Worth
It’s been ages. How have you been? You’d think that I’d have something better to say to you after all of these years, but that’s all I can think of. You deserve more, but I couldn’t bring myself to say anything other than. I wish I could see you, and make small talk like we would if we met up somewhere. But we can’t. I want so much to have that kind of relationship with you. Things shouldn’t have ended the way that they did between us. I never should have walked out of that door and out of your life.
I think about you, more than I should. I don’t want to, it’s just every single thing reminds me of you. Even after all these years…
I drove by our spot tonight. I saw some kids, lying on the hood of an old Chevy, and I actually started crying. Then it started to rain, and those kids got in the car, and oh, Jace, that was me and you. I wish it still was. I want to be a kid again; I’d give anything to be seventeen again.
I need to see you, and if you ever get this letter, call me.
Samantha sat down in the green, retro style diner booth, and a plump waitress named Beatrice gave her the usual: a coffee with a cinnamon bun. Samantha sipped the cup of Joe and twirled her bun with a fork. She lifted the fork and poked at her teeth with it absentmindedly, while tearing through the pages of her book. She was unaware of everything around her, but there was something about that bell that pulled her out of that book.
The door swung open, and in swept the man. “Table for one please,” he said to the waitress. He was escorted to the table behind Samantha, and he sat with his back to her. She looked over her book and across the room. She flipped her long, brown hair over one shoulder and glanced at the back of that man’s head: dusty blonde hair and a farmer’s tanned neck. He was wearing a businessman’s clothing, but he had the physique of a man who’d been raised in the pastures. Samantha’s mind flew back to 2004, when the sun was hot, and she was seventeen.
There was a field of wheat, up to Samantha’s shoulders. There was a white sundress that came just above her knees and a pair of cowgirl boots that stopped just below them. Brown hair that fell over her shoulders in loose waves, not a stitch of make up on her face. A boy, in a white t-shirt and khaki pants, chased her, whispered “I love you,” and laid in that meadow of wild flowers. Then it fell apart, and she saw nothing but misery and pain, brokenhearted.
Reality came back to her in a flash. She slid out of her seat, leaving her coffee, book, and cinnamon bun behind her. She approached the man behind her, who was reading the local newspaper. “Excuse me, sir?” He looked up, oh those eyes. “You probably don’t remember me…” The man laughed.
“Samantha… I can’t believe it. What’s it been, four, five years?” He asked confidently, as if this was just a chat between old friends. Samantha looked down at her warn shoes.
“Eight years, Jace,” she said, “It’s been eight years. How are you? What have you been up to these days?” She slid in across from him.
Jace laughed and avoided eye contact with her. “That long, huh? I’ve been better, Sammy. You still live in town?” Samantha nodded.
“I miss that, Jace. No one’s called me Sammy since that day…” Samantha drifted off, bringing up the inevitable, the day the world stopped turning.
Jace twirled with the coffee in front of him. “Why’d you leave, Sam?”
She shook her head, “I don’t know. I really don’t. I think about it all the time,” she said thoughtlessly. Jace had that affect on her, making her speak without thinking. “I thought that there was something better out there waiting for me. It was only until I lost everything I had before I realized that I hadn’t even had anything since I left you.” Jace didn’t say anything, just gave her the look that made her heart sink every time, a smirk that bordered seductive and disapproval. “Jace, I wrote you, about a year ago. I never heard back, and I just gave up on you. I never quit loving you, and even though I haven’t seen you in eight years, I just needed you to know that.”
“Sammy, I moved on. You were the first girl to ever break my heart, and I’ll never forget you. I’ll always love you, too. And maybe one day, we’ll meet up again, start up again. But sweetie, you can’t undo what’s already been done, and you can’t change it. Oh, I would if I could, trust me,” Jace whispered, as if he was scared of someone seeing. He was older, therefore more mature and adult than Samantha ever was, and he could handle situations like that, but if there was one thing Samantha knew, was that Jace always left you wanting more.
Jace slid out of his seat, laid a crisp ten dollar bill on the table, and as Samantha saw the glimmer of a golden band on the fourth finger of his left hand, she started to tear up. Jace leaned down and planted a kiss on her forehead. He got close to her ear and said, “Be seeing you.” On that note, he walked away. Samantha wiped her tears and got up, but not before Jace yelled, “Oh, and Samantha?” She turned towards the door, towards Jace. “I got your letter.”