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Author's note: I wrote this for my grandpa, as he passed away in September of 2010.
I calmly stood in the corner of the room, waiting for the family to sit down and leave the dying man at peace. I had seen it so many times. The family was reduced to tears and I would step in and perform a miracle. They would be so happy that their loved one was awake, or progressing, or getting better, a pleasure that I continue to smile about.
This man, Jim, was close to the end. He just came out of surgery for a ruptured aneurism in his belly. Most cases like these didn’t live, even with my help. I noticed a teenage girl in the opposite corner. She didn’t cry loudly like the others. She simply buried her hands in her arms and cried to the point of sickness. Every now and then, she’d utter the same words; “I love you, Grandpa. Don‘t leave me.” It made me upset, seeing her suffer. I knew this would have to be a miracle.
I moved in between two women, holding each other and crying. Gingerly, I touched Jim’s face. “Your family needs you, Jim. Especially your granddaughter,” I whispered. As I walked to the door, I looked at the crying girl. I bent down to her level, placed my hand on her shoulder, and whispered, “Grandpa’s going to be okay.” I gently kissed her forehead, and walked out the door. I turned to look into the glass door, and I watched as Jim moved slightly in his bed, and the women caught it.
“Daddy? Daddy, are you awake? Can you hear me?” one woman said. Jim made a mumbling sound, and the monitor started to beep. She ran out the door and shouted down the hall, “NURSE!! He’s awake!” At that sign, two nurses jumped up and ran to the room. I watched as they quickly removed the tube in his throat, and reset monitors. One nurse paged the doctor. I saw him come down the hall, a complex look on his face. He was wondering how his patient could be awake.
My eyes went to the girl next. She was watching now. Wondering if her grandfather was dying, or getting better. For a few moments, the tears stopped. Soon, Jim looked up at the nurses and the doctor. I read their minds. How is this possible?! they thought. He can’t be awake!
The girl jumped from her chair and ran to her grandfather. “You’re alive!” she said. Jim put his hand on her shoulder.
“You need me,” he whispered.
I patrolled the hallways of the ICU at Union Hospital. My normal routine. I stopped in the nursery in the ICU to check on Kaytlyn, a four month premature baby. She was hanging on for dear life, not willing to give in. I recently heard the nurses saying that she took a turn for the worse, so I thought a visit would be in order. Walking through the corridors to the nursery, I thought about that girl. How she would enjoy many more years with her grandfather. It made me giddy inside.
I found Kaytlyn in her usual spot; in the incubator, belly down, tubes crisscrossing her naked body. I peeked in, and saw her precious face, spoiled by a tube in her throat. She had her pink little hat on, keeping her fuzzy head warm. I looked around and saw her mother wasn’t there. She usually was. The clock said four thirty PM, so she probably wasn’t off work yet.
I carefully opened the door on the incubator, slipped my hand inside, and gingerly touched the infant’s tiny head. “Hang in there,” I whispered. I heard a door open, so I shut the door quickly. I turned and saw the nurses and Kaytlyn’s mother come in. I simply walked by them, knowing they knew nothing of my presence.
I soon became the unknown protector roaming the halls. As I walked, I looked in each room, seeing if I was needed. It broke my heart to see kids in beds with dozens of monitors and wires and tubes burying them. I saw happy families, sad ones, and occasionally, mad ones. Every time someone yelled that a bed was coming through, I checked to see if I should follow. Most times I didn’t, and only went with the most severe.
I seemed to get attached to people so much that I wanted to be the one to walk them to the Other Side, despite the fact that it would be the first time they had seen me for some people. I always get the ‘that’s-not-the-angel-that-I-was-expecting’ thing. Well, diversity colors the world. Everyone’s different. Why should that only apply to mortals?
That’s no fun.
I was so screwed. I was running ten minutes late, and that meant a good thrashing. Mom and Dad would probably have a belt ready. I pulled in, prayed that they might have an ounce of mercy, and slowly got out of the car. I quickly ran to the door, expecting to open it to a slap in the face.
I could hear screaming. Not the normal screaming, but ear-piercing, blood-curdling, no-words screaming. It was a female and male voice, so I knew they were at each other’s throats. I knew I should have just walked in, went to my room, and said nothing, but a voice said that I should be there in case one of them got stabby.
A part of me wanted to watch them kill each other, and other said that was too harsh. It was like the little angel and devil sitting on your shoulder. One said, do it! The other said, do not! I was torn between the two, wanting to do both.
Using all my courage, I opened the door and flinched as the screaming grew to the point of busting my eardrums. I came to the kitchen doorway, and peered in. What I saw was several broken dishes, spilled food, and two familiar faces choked in red and tears. They screamed so loud that I thought maybe the windows would shatter. I stood, thinking of intervening, but wanting to stay out.
My thoughts of intervening really went down when I saw Mom waving a death trap; a thirty-eight special. She had got it from when her and her drunk buddies would play Russian Roulette. Yes, I said Russian Roulette. The game where you try to shoot yourself in the head. I’m surprised she didn’t kill herself already. I knew she’d kill Dad, and, frankly, I needed someone.
I ran in front of Dad and yelled over the screams, “Put it down! NOW!”
She stared at me in a crooked manner. Like I had four heads. If she was drunk, she probably did see four heads. “Put it down!” I yelled again.
“NO!,” she snapped. “I’ll kill you both! You wretched souls of hell!” she screamed-and raised the gun.
“NO!!!” I screamed, and she fired. I felt a fire enter my chest, my knees falter, and collapse. I felt my head crack against the cold, hard, linoleum, and, for a moment, thought I saw a light, and everything went black.
There was talk of an emergency coming in. Gunshot wound to the chest. I was considering checking it out, thinking it was a probably a drug deal gone bad. I walked down the hall to the elevators and to the emergency room. I saw so many cases of sickness, heart attacks, pregnancies, but none that drew me particularly to them. I didn’t think I heard right, but then I heard the motion-activated doors squeal open, and a mass of nurses, EMTs and a bed with tubes and straps came through. I watched as they ran through the halls, screaming “Coming through!”
I followed curiously. I could barely make out the face of a young girl from behind an oxygen mask. I didn’t know her name, but I knew she was probably seventeen or eighteen. I followed beside the bed as it snaked it’s way to the elevator and the ICU. The personnel began to pack the wound in her chest with gauze. The doctor at the ICU gave her grim circumstances. She needed immediate surgery to remove the bullet, and it was dangerously close to her heart.
They came upon the decision to do it, so they wheeled her to the operating room. Before long, they were skillfully picking at the bullet and pulled it from her chest. She soon was in one of the large rooms in the ICU. I visited her, and listened to the doctor give the update to someone who was probably a relative. She was a medium-height, heavy woman with short reddish-brown hair, and so much worry etched into the wrinkles in her face.
The girl was not looking good. She had a lot of damage, and now had slipped into a coma. Her chance of waking up was slim to none. Upon hearing this, the woman began to slip into tears, and almost collapsed. I put my arm around her, trying to help her just a little, to keep her from falling and hurting herself. She had no idea that I was there.
The doctor left her to her tears and the girl. The woman went to her bedside and took her frail hand, wasted by the IV and tape covering it. She began to talk to her.
“Phoenix, you didn’t deserve this! I know she didn’t mean it! I love you! Please stay with me!,” she cried.
So this frail girl was Phoenix. I looked at her beautiful face, covered by tape and a tube in her throat. The machines were the only things keeping her alive. I gently touched her hand, then her face.
“Phoenix, I know you can hear me. Your family needs you. Stay with us. You’ll be okay,” I said. I walked out of the room, started down the hall, and waited for what I wanted to hear; the woman shrieking that Phoenix was waking up. A nurse said that it was impossible, and that she was just twitching.
“How can she just be twitching when she’s opening her eyes and looking right at me!” the woman yelled. Like with Jim, they rushed in and removed the tube. Gasps of amazement floated out of the room.
I smiled at that same pleasure I always enjoyed. I love my job.
I was in a hospital room, with Aunt Penny and some doctors staring at me with astonishment. I had only one question; “Who was talking to me?” I squeaked.
“You heard me?” Aunt Penny asked.
“It was a guy,” I said. They looked at each other. “No one was, sweetie,” she said.
“Yeah, they did,” I said. I knew that, right after hitting the ground, I could hear someone talking to me, then I woke up.
A smile came to Aunt Penny’s face. “It was an angel!” she said.
“Whatever,” I said. Angels my butt, I thought. Her smile faded.
“At least you’re here,” she said, and sighed. The doctors left her and I, but still kept a close eye on me. “Mom’s in jail,” she said. I shrugged.
“Why do I care?” I said as I rubbed my raw throat. My chest didn’t really hurt, but that probably had to do with morphine.
“You should care because you have no where to go unless I take you,” she said.
“What about Dad?” I asked.
“Child Protective Services declared him an unfit parent. No custody,” she said.
I thought about it before saying, “Take me, I’m yours,” She smiled.
“Thought you might say that,” she said. Her phone rang. She looked at it. “Gotta take this,” she said, holding up a finger, and turning the corner out of the room. I sighed. I was stuck. Too little pain to complain about, too much pain to move. I reached over to get the remote for the TV off the table next to the bed. A pain shot through my arm and into my chest as I clasped my purple-tinted fingers around the remote. To get the job done, I tossed it onto my bed, then grabbed my chest. “Owwww….” I moaned. Hospital life sucks. I sat for a moment and let myself breathe.
I looked down at my fingers. It was cold enough in the hospital to make me turn purple. The place where the IV entered my hand was starting to turn blue. I probably looked like a zombie. I gently hooked my fingers on the remote, then hit ‘POWER’. I was greeted by Spongebob Squarepants’ nerdy laugh, and Squidward’s sinus-like voice snap, “Can’t you two morons let me be!”
I flipped through the channels. Mythbusters on Discovery Channel blowing up a car, Adam Richman on Travel Channel’s Man vs. Food trying to eat a ten-pound burger, Jeff Dunham and Achmed on Comedy Central making fun of suicide bombers. I came to the History Channel. They were debating the existence of angels. I thought about Aunt Penny’s guess, and my unknown visitor. Maybe it was an angel. I don’t know. I guess, in my mental state, I could have dreamed it, but I was sure I heard it. He told me to hang on. Knew my name. Said Aunt Penny needed me. Well, angel or not, I was there, and I wasn’t liking it.
Phoenix definitely held on. She was a smart-aleck, too. She wasn’t about to do anything anyone told her to do without a fight. She soon found that she wasn’t going to get anywhere arguing, so she soon gave up on everything. She was able to get up and move around before too long, first having to drag around her IV stand, then having to carry a water bottle if she didn’t want the stand. The IV stayed in the form of a tube taped to her hand to allow anything to be given without another injection.
When I wasn’t attending to someone else, I walked beside her and her aunt, watching her look into rooms with people who would never leave this place, or simply looking in amazement at machines and other things. They would talk, I would listen. They would never notice I was there. I never wanted her to see me, for fear of maybe scaring her into a heart attack, or for fear of her thinking I was a stalker. I kind of was, I guess. An invisible one. There were some close calls where I thought maybe she saw me, but one encounter really changed things.
I wandered down the halls of Union Hospital, carrying my water bottle, taking a sip every now and then. The hole in my chest was somewhat healed, save for a small black and red scab in the middle of the half-inch-wide, stitched hole, with a long, stitched line down the middle. Wearing a shirt that was tight on my chest hurt the wound, aggravated the stitches, and tore at the shirt, so I wore large shirts that I was used to sleeping in, or I wore Aunt Penny’s or Uncle Jerry’s shirts. Along with my AC/DC PJ bottoms and pink, boot-like slippers, and an oversized hoodie, I looked like a perfect couch potato.
I walked to the empty waiting room for the ICU, and looked at the pretty glass panes that hung from the ceiling that resembled a waterfall. I walked to the edge of the balcony. The thirty-something foot drop was shielded by a crystal-clear pane of glass and a long, silver bar that snaked around to each wall. I watched people being wheeled in, people walking in, people limping in. I knew some of them would never be as lucky as me.
I never thought much about the voice. I knew Aunt Penny would never give up on the ‘it-was-an-angel’ thing. I still wasn’t for sure. I had my doubts. I turned around, expecting to see no one.
I came face to face with a boy. He had messed-up black hair, silver-blue eyes, handsome face, light blue jeans, motorcycle boots, black button-up shirt, and an unbuttoned black wool coat. A black or navy star was tattooed on the space in between his clavicles and his Adam’s apple, and above it, words were written, but I couldn’t read them. Different colors of rays came down off his neck and blended into elaborate designs on his chest. I could make out part of a maroon-colored Chinese dragon on the right side of his chest. His hands were out of his pockets, and his arms were tattooed down to his wrists. He had something tattooed on his fingers right below his first set of knuckles.
He looked at me with shock. He scared me at first, so I grabbed my chest as a twinge of pain went through me. The first thing that popped in my head was Redd Foxx in Sanford and Sons, when he grabs his chest and yells, “I’m comin’, ‘Lisabeth!”
The guy reached out and touched my shoulder. “Are you okay? I’m sorry! I didn’t mean to scare you!” he said.
Then it hit me; his voice was the voice that talked to me! It was him! It was medium-deep, and somewhat seductive. I knew it! It had to be.
Snapping back to reality, I said, “It’s fine. Just a pain. It happens. Do I know you?”
He looked as if he was thinking.
“I…uh…don’t think so. Well, maybe,” he stuttered. My experience with boys told me that he was nervous. I guess he had right to be. He could have gave me a heart attack.
“Did you need me or something?” I asked.
“I, uh, thought I’d ask you if you were okay. You look kind of sick,” he said.
“I got shot. I had surgery on my chest a few weeks ago. It still hurts. I’m just weak,” I said. He nodded.
“Understandable,” he said. “What’s your name?”
“Phoenix,” I said, holding out my cold, shaky hand.
“Jakobie,” he said, and gently took my hand, as if it was glass. His hands were warm and it kind of felt good. “You have a pretty name,” Jakobie said.
“Your name’s weird,” I said. I was being honest. He smiled, showing perfect, white teeth.
“Guess ‘Jacob’ wasn’t good enough,” he said. “Do you know what your name means?” he asked. I shook my head. “A phoenix is a bird that is made of fire, and when it dies, it burns, and another phoenix is born from the ashes,” he said.
“I guess it holds true,” I said, gesturing to the wound. He smiled.
“Well, Phoenix, I think I should be a gentleman and escort you back to your room,” Jakobie said, holding out his hand.
“Thanks,” I said and took it. We walked down the hall, and I was surprised that he knew his way around. “You really know your way,” I said.
“I have a lot of relatives come in,” he said. Every now and then, I’d steal a glance at him, taking in the tattoos, and his face. He was probably the single most gorgeous boy I’d ever seen. I’m not saying I like bad boys, I’m just saying I found him attractive.
“That’s my room,” I said, pointing at the doorway. He nodded. Jakobie stopped at the door. “Thanks for the escort,” I said.
“You’re very welcome,” he said, waved, and started down the hall. I stood, thinking about him again. I poked my head around the corner, and he was gone. Disappeared. Jakobie was a strange soul.
It was too late. She saw me, and there was no turning back. I was stuck.
She grabbed her chest, like she had a heart attack. It scared me to death. I thought I killed her.
“Are you okay? I’m sorry! I didn’t mean to scare you!” I said.
“It’s fine. Just a pain,” she said. “Do I know you?” Oh, crud, here we go, I thought. I’m so screwed.
“I…uh…don’t think so. Well, maybe,” I stuttered. I was falling fast. Falling with no splat at the end. I decided to make small talk. I quickly offered to take her back to her room and she accepted.
Walking down the hall, I noticed that I loved everything about her. Her eyes, her silence, her face. Then she caught me off guard.
“You really know your way,” Phoenix said.
“I have a lot of relatives come in,” I quickly lied. She directed me to the room I already knew. The room that I stood silently in so many times to watch her. In a daze, I bid her adieu. I went back down the hall, and it hit me; I felt all tingly inside. And I knew what it was.
I was in love with Phoenix.
I didn’t see Jakobie again for quite a while. It was like he disappeared off the face of the earth. He said he had relatives come in, so I actually kind of wanted one of his relatives to get sick. I couldn’t bear to not see his handsome face again. I know I’d only seen him once, but I was addicted from the start. And now I was in love. Majorly.
The thing that was weird was he couldn’t be any older than me, but he had all the tattoos, so he was too young. He couldn’t have legally got them. I wanted to learn more.
Before I could see him in the hospital again, I was discharged. I knew my chances of seeing him again went from some to slim, and I hated it.
After the hospital, I moved in with Aunt Penny and Uncle Jerry. Uncle Jerry is a pretty funny man. He had the long, gray, biker hair, like he refused to give up the last thing of his youth. He had a Paul Tuttle Senior mustache, and a couple tattoos. He rode his Harley often. He’s really funny, despite his bad appearance.
Both of their kids had moved out, so I was the only kid around. That also meant school was back in session. I never liked school. Not because I hated education, but because I hated bullies. Marissa Clark, in particular. The anorexic pig was the biggest tramp I’ve ever seen. She thinks anyone over ninety pounds is fat, and I unfortunately fall in that category.
The day I went back was a living hell. First, I had to pick what I was going to wear, and everything had to show my still-tender stitches and scars. I wasn’t going to wear an over-sized shirt. I’m not that big of a slob.
The second thing was that the second I walked in, people ran up and asked if I did get shot. They pestered me to the point of screaming. I ran up to my first hour class, hopefully to sit until the bell. It was still pretty painful to put pressure on my chest. At least I was excused from PE for a while. That didn’t last very long. Along came a spider named Marissa Clark. Make that an ugly, anorexic tarantula.
“So, Phoenix, your crazy, pot-head of a mother did shoot you. To bad she didn’t do her job,” she sneered.
“First off, you can insult my mom. I don’t care. Second off, with you in the world, I wish she did do it right,” I snapped back. She jeered at me.
“Why don’t you just kill yourself, then?” she said.
“I don’t think the angels would let me. Hell doesn’t want me, and Heaven doesn’t either. That’s why I didn’t die,” I said sarcastically. She made a dumb face, and pranced away. I was calling her plenty of names in my head.
My day was filled with plenty of sympathy, along with plenty of questions about what it was like to be shot. I tried to avoid the questioners, but it never seemed to work. I guess the only good thing I heard that day was there was a dance that Friday night. That probably didn’t apply to me, though.
At the end of the day, I was so ready to drive home that I wanted to hot wire the car rather than take the time to put the key in the ignition. I stood outside, next to the car, checking for my keys, and listening to Papa Roach through my earbuds.
Then I heard something. Like a loud squeal. It almost sounded unearthly. I felt something embrace me from behind as I closed my eyes and covered my ears. I was flipped around, and I felt tremendous pressure push on me, and I heard shattering glass and screeching metal.
After the sounds and feelings ended, I opened my eyes, and looked forward. A pair of motorcycle boots and light blue jeans were pushed against my car door, as if they were attempting to push it, but where his feet touched the car, huge dents bent the door in two. I looked down and saw two tattooed arms around me, covered halfway with black sleeves of a warm wool coat. I looked up, and I saw Jakobie’s gorgeous face.
“Jakobie?!” I snapped.
He smiled. “Hey, Phoenix. How’s it going?” he said halfheartedly.
“Okay until someone tried to kill me,” I said. He gently sat me on the ground as people rushed to help me. I turned to look at Jakobie, and he was gone. Like ‘poof! Be gone!’. He just kept getting weirder. People grabbed me and asked if I was okay. I said I was, but because of my recent injury, they called an ambulance. I was thoroughly checked at the hospital, and I saw the face of the kid who tried to kill me; Tyler Newell. A poorer-than-dirt kid who had the IQ of a snail.
“I am so sorry, Phoenix! I couldn’t stop!” he cried as a nurse checked him on the bed across from me.
“Accidents happen,” I said. I no more than finished my sentence when Aunt Penny and Uncle Jerry ran in, asking if I was okay. Aunt Penny glared at Tyler.
“You will have your license revoked, boy!” she snapped. He looked ashamed.
“I’m sorry,” he mumbled. The doctor pulled Aunt Penny and Uncle Jerry aside to talk to them. I gently pushed on the stitches, and then looked up. Across the hall, Jakobie stood, leaning against the corner of the wall. He smiled when I looked at him. I jumped off the bed and went over to him.
“How’d you do that?” I asked immediately.
“What?” he asked.
“You magically appeared, kicked two huge dents in the car door, and disappeared,” I said.
“Adrenaline, I guess. Sorry about the door,” he said sincerely.
“I don’t care about the door! What’s with you? When you took me back to my room that day, you disappeared again. Are you supposed to be like Edward Cullen from Twilight or something?” I snapped, harsher than I intended. He frowned.
“I’m not a vampire,” he said matter-of-factly.
“What are you, then? The Hulk? Werewolf? A guy that came into contact with radioactive waste?” I snapped.
“Okay, don’t stress yourself. And why do you think I’m something bad?” he said defensively.
“You don’t exactly look like Mr. Nice Guy,” I said, gesturing towards his tattoos. He looked at the small visible portion of the maroon dragon.
“There’s a story behind the tats, okay. I-”
“You won’t believe me,”
“Try me, Jakobie,”
He sighed. “You won’t think I’m nuts?”
“If you are, we’re in a hospital. Psych ward’s an elevator ride away,” I said. He sighed again.
“I’m an angel,” he breathed. I furrowed my brow and stood silent for a moment. I chuckled.
“That’s the best you got?” I asked.
“Yeah, ‘cause it’s true,” he said quietly.
“Where’s your wings?” I asked.
“Shhhh! Little quieter, please,” he said, “I don’t have any,”
“Yeah, right. Sure. You don’t have any because you are not an angel, Jakobie. Don’t lie,” I said. Once more he sighed.
“I’m getting nowhere. Okay, I’m not very convincing, but you know how you can meet a very kind-looking man, and he could be the cruelest person ever? I look evil, but I’m not. It’s called hanging with the wrong crowd,” he said, “Right? Remember last summer?”
“Yeah, well…wait, how do you know about that? You can’t know! You…rrr!” I stuttered. He was making my brain hurt. He couldn’t know that! I’m not proud, but last summer, I got in trouble for having cigarettes. Some kids that were my ‘friends’ had me give them to someone else, and I got caught.
“Don’t make yourself sick, Phoenix. I know because I’m an angel,” he said, gently grabbing my arms as I put my hands over my ears, refusing to listen. He still managed to get through. “Look, I got in trouble, too. I was convinced by mortals to do some bad things, and now, I’m paying for it. I have to live with it every single day. I wasn’t cast out, but it was close. You have to trust me,”
Now I gently took his arms. “Why’d you save me? Twice?” I demanded. He started looking nervous. Then I knew for sure what I thought I knew, and I wasn’t about to let him think that I didn’t know it. “You love me,” I whispered. He took a deep breath.
“Just because I wouldn’t let you die doesn’t mean I love you,” he said quickly.
“Yes, you do. Admit it,” I demanded. He was silent. His eyes were filled with a fear that wasn’t a fear of danger, but of being discovered. He silently shook his head, not about to give in. I let go of his arms and pulled away.
“Fine. When you want to come clean, you should know where to find me-if you really are what you say you are,” I said, and walked to the chairs to get my coat and backpack. I went to Aunt Penny and Uncle Jerry, who were talking to Tyler‘s parents. “Let’s go,” I said, and went to the car.
I screwed up. I screwed up so bad that ‘screwed up’ makes it sound minor. I let the only girl I would ever love slip away. And I was too much of a egotistical moron to admit to her that I didn’t want to watch her be killed. It was all about pride. It would have made me sound weak, and I didn’t want her to think I was that way.
I had to get her back. I couldn’t let her get away now. And I knew just how to do it.
I wanted to cry. I wanted to sit in the corner and shut out the world. I wanted most of all for Jakobie to never have existed. He wasn’t about to say he loved me. His ego was to big for that. And he wasn’t an angel. That was the biggest lie I’ve ever heard. I rejected all the facts that said he was. In the imaginary computer in my head, I right clicked the file marked ‘JAKOBIE’ and hit delete. I answered no to the question ‘are you sure you want to move this file to the recycle bin?’ and yes to ‘are you sure you want to delete this file permanently?’.
I sat on my bed that night, in my pajamas, legs covered with my blankets, flipping through the channels. I came upon a mushy-gushy romance. I wish real-life romance worked that way. Too bad it didn’t. I finally decided on Criss Angel; Mindfreak, and settled in. I started in on the levitation special, then realized that Criss reminded me of Jakobie. I was so fed up that I just turned of the TV and tried to sleep.
The effort was fruitless. There was no way I could sleep in the mood I was in.
Then that voice in the back of my head said roll over. I obeyed, and almost wet myself. There was Jakobie, standing in the outline of my window, illuminated only by the light of the full moon. I shrieked a little, and felt a zap of pain in my chest as I jumped from the covers and to the opposite side of the bed. I felt that the bed wasn’t going to protect me if he was going to attack me-which he had right to, because I was a genuine, bona fide butt to him-so I grabbed the board that Uncle Jerry employed to hold the window open during the summer. I held it like I was about to give Jakobie a good whack, and that’s what I felt like doing for scaring the snot out of me.
“How’d you get here?!” I snapped.
“What do you think?” he asked.
“I think you’re a crazy stalker and you’d better leave before I call the police,” I threatened. He leisurely walked around the end of the bed and up to me. I still held the board, ready to beat his brains out. He put his hand on mine, his height and size very intimidating, expression unreadable. He wasn’t massive, but he could definitely crack me in two or pancake me since I was still weak.
I wasn’t going to let go of the board, but his gaze made me feel under his power. He gently pulled it from my hands, and calmly tossed it to the other side of the bed.
“You’re not very intimidating,” he said, amused and smiling.
“You’re very intimidating,” I breathed. He smiled again. He lifted his hand, and I immediately backed up, ready to hit him (Even though it wouldn’t have done a thing in my favor).
“Easy…” he said quietly. He put his hand on my shoulder and said, “Close your eyes,” I shook my head.
“No,” I snapped.
“Why?” he asked, somewhat amused.
“I don’t trust you,” I said, remembering what he said earlier. You have to trust me.
“I haven’t hurt you yet, have I?” he asked. I said nothing. “Have I?” he repeated. I shook my head. “Close your eyes,” he said again. I took a deep breath and closed my eyes, waiting for him to hurt me.
It was the exact opposite.
His warm lips gently touched mine, and his hand pulled me closer. We stood there for a moment, our lips locked. When he let go I opened my eyes and met his. He looked kind of intoxicated. “Told you,” he said quietly.
“Holy crap,” I said.
“That’s an understatement,” he said. I covered my face. That was my first kiss, and would probably be my favorite.
“Do you believe me?” he asked.
“I don’t know. Maybe,” I said. He smiled.
“You need to,” he added. I nodded. “I heard you have a dance to go to Friday,” he said.
“I’m not going,” I said. He took my hand.
“You are now,”
I’d been nervous going to something important, but this took the cake. I had just introduced Jakobie to Aunt Penny and Uncle Jerry that morning, and that evening, we were going to the dance. They didn’t quite approve of Jakobie’s tattoos, but he convinced them that he was okay. I signed out early to go with Aunt Penny to get a dress because she was tickled pink that I had a boy ask me to the school dance.
We settled on one that was red, strapless, and showed off my curves. I had silver and diamond heels, and I wore my brown hair down and curled. The only bad thing was half of my scar (stitches removed!) showed, and it was still red and swollen slightly. Aunt Penny started digging through one of her many jewelry boxes. She pulled out a beautiful and intricate diamond and silver necklace. She placed it around my neck and it covered the scar perfectly.
Aunt Penny gave me one final look-over, and approved me with a smile and a hug.
“Uncle Jerry’s down there with your guy friend,” she said.
“He’ll scare him off,” I joked.
“He won’t be too hard. He knows Jakobie really likes you,” she said and hugged me again. Aunt Penny went to the door and shouted down the stairs, “Roll out the red carpet!” She smiled at me and walked me to the door. I took a deep breath, and walked down the stairs. I looked at Jakobie. He was very handsome in a black suit with a white shirt. He smiled.
“Wow,” he said.
“I second that,” Uncle Jerry said. I reached out and took Jakobie’s hand.
“Don’t be too hard on her. She’s not made of steel,” said Uncle Jerry.
“Found that out the hard way,” I said. Jakobie smiled.
“Don’t do anything dumb,” Uncle Jerry said.
“Didn’t plan on it,” I said.
“Have fun,” said Aunt Penny.
“Will do,” Jakobie said, and led me outside. The sun was setting, and I gazed upon a brand new black Shelby Cobra.
“Nice car,” I said.
“Thanks,” said Jakobie as the opened the door for me. After he shut it, he went to the driver’s side, and we headed to school. We pulled up, and some students parked the car. We walked in, and was greeted by a blast of pop music. I saw a lot of kids I knew dancing with their boyfriends and girlfriends. My friend Jamie looked at me and waved. I waved back.
“Why don’t you sit for a moment?” Jakobie asked. I nodded. He led me to a bench and sat me down. “I’ll be right back,” he said. I nodded again. Before too long, Marissa Clark came prancing over with her jock boyfriend.
“All by yourself? Sorry no one finds you attractive,” she sneered.
“I have someone,” I said.
“Really? Is he blind?” she snapped. Right on time, Jakobie came and took my hand as I stood up.
“Excuse us,” he said with a hint of sarcasm. I think Marissa’s jaw dropped a little, and her boyfriend definitely looked intimidated. We passed just as Ke$ha’s ‘Dancing With Tears in My Eyes’ came on. “Shall we dance?” asked Jakobie.
“Good luck with that,” I said. Other kids and their dates came out to slow dance. He put my hands on his shoulders, and put his hands on my waist. We moved so slow that we were almost standing still.
“Why’d you cover your scar?” he asked.
“It’s not fun to look at,” I said.
“It’s who you are,” he said.
“That doesn’t mean I accept it,”
“You need to,”
“There’s a lot of things I need to do, aren’t there?” I said. He paused for a moment.
“Do you believe me yet?” he asked.
“No comment,” I said.
“You need to,” he repeated.
“Okay, you’re starting to bum me out,” I said. He smiled. “If you are an angel, I love you. If you’re not, I still love you. No more or less,” I said. He smiled again. He came close to me.
“You need to,” he whispered, and touched his lips to mine.
Started November 2, 2010
Finished November 20, 2010 11:08 P.M
For Grandpa; I know angels led you to heaven, and I want them-and you-to lead me there, too. This page will be stained with tears, for I cry as I write.
I love and miss you dearly.
You are finally home.