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I got to stare at his back as he walked away. He was still dressed in his McDonald’s work uniform. But even being around deep fryers and condiments all day couldn’t take away from his scent. And that was a good thing because I never liked fast food. His scent was much better than fries or cheeseburgers.

How creepy does that sound? His scent. I sound like a hunting dog chasing after a dying deer or pheasant. Except for I wasn’t chasing, and I was the one dying.

I was left standing there in the middle of the park where we had spent time together the night before, watching him get in his car and drive away. And I was alone, alone with nothing but his scent hanging heavy in the air.

He smelled like cheap cologne, tobacco, and grape. As odd as that combination may seem, it was absolutely perfect. Because it was his. I never knew exactly what type of cologne he wore, but I’ll never forget how we would stop at a gas station every time we were in the car in order for him to buy his grape swishers. But he never smoked in front of me; he was a gentleman.

I know that smoking is unattractive and all, but it just went along with his charm. And boy, was he charming. As many times as I wanted to walk away from the drama with his exgirlfriend, he just knew exactly what to say to pull me back into his cologne and smoke and grape scented arms. And that’s all I ever wanted, to be in his arms.

But there I was alone. Standing in the empty park filled with countless people. And all I could smell was him.

I walked back to my car. Alone. Not the way I was expecting to leave. The wind bit at my skin, and whipped my hair around my face and all I could smell was my shampoo. I quickly tied it back with the hair band around my wrist, but it was too late. My nose was now tainted. The damage was done.

I climbed into my car hoping that I would smell the grape from last night, but my air freshener had eliminated it. My car drove me home as I stared at the road ahead of it. I walked upstairs and dove head first into my bed, hoping his smoking scent would still be lingering in the sheets so I could wrap up in them like they were his arms. But my mom had changed the sheets.

His scent, the only piece of him that had remained with me, was gone. And it could never be recreated. Just like he was gone, and what we had could never be recreated. Because, in my mind, his smell was perfect; because, in my mind, we were perfect.

I laid in my Downy scented bed and the only thing I could think about was how I’d never be able to eat at McDonald’s again. But that’s okay, because I never liked fast food anyways.



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