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Forever and a Day
He hadn’t seen her since the day they left high school. Her golden blonde hair glinted in the sun as she turned to face him. Four years worth of memories flashed before his eyes as her smile once again ignited his world. Wrapping her arms around his neck, she screamed in girlish delight. He twirled her round and round, back through time to the day they first met.
She stood alone at the top of the staircase, framed against the building looming behind her. The bell had already rung, and students had begun their slow trek towards first hour. He watched from the window as she sank onto the concrete and placed her head in her hands. Asking the teacher for a bathroom pass, he rushed down the brightly lit corridor and pushed open the heavy doors that led to the school steps. He paused, uncertain if she was aware of his presence. She turned her head and looked up at him, the weight of the world an obvious slump in her shoulders. A slight smile came across her face, and he held out his hand in response. She willingly grasped on as he pulled her into an embrace. Their hug seemed to last an eternity. Time froze in a tableau of longing and emptiness, and as she let go, the world became brighter. Her face no longer portrayed a deepening sadness; for now it held the power of the sun. Holding hands, they raced back through the doors.
As the years went on their friendship only grew stronger. His mother passed away the spring of their sophomore year, cancer consuming what he loved most in life, and she was there. She was always there. He realized he loved her the first day of their junior year, two years marking their heartfelt acquaintance. She stood on the top step, her sun streaked hair transforming her into a goddess of the heavens.
“Remember when you saved me?,” she called down to him
“No,” he responded, sprinting up the stairs to meet her. Taking her hands in his he gently tilted his forehead till it touched hers.
“You saved me.”
They danced the night away at prom that year, and he kissed her as they swayed to her favorite song.
She changed their senior year. A new boy entered the picture, and she did everything she could to please him. But in the end the boy left, and she retreated once more to that staircase. He was waiting and she ran to him. Everything they had been through became a strong current, forcing them together. His hand grazed her chin, and she looked through him with tear-filled eyes.
“Don’t ever change yourself to make someone else happy,” he whispered into her ear.
“Who you are makes me the happiest person alive.”
Another prom was spent in each other’s arms, and for hours after her warmth stayed with him.
The day of graduation came and he drove to her house. The door opened and she stepped out in a flowing white sundress, her golden hair reflecting the sunlight. He swore he’d never seen anything so beautiful. Their song came on the radio as they drove to the school, and she turned to him, tears streaming down her smooth cheeks. He pulled over, and they embraced, the years between them taking the form of liquid memories and flowing down the faces of two fated lovers. She left that day, an Ivy League scholarship lighting up her future, while he stayed, taking over the family business. Their final goodbye was tearful and passionate. He watched as her car drove into the horizon, and he began to run. But no matter how many miles he went, she was a forever away.
They stopped spinning and the world came back again, brighter than ever. She grabbed his hand, and they raced to the top of the weathered stone stairs. Looking down, the world seemed smaller. With her beside him there was nothing he couldn't do.
“I’ve loved you since forever,” he confesses, pulling her close.
“Well I’ve loved you since forever and a day,” she teases him.
He touches her nose with his and then pulls back.
“I’m going to love you for forever and a forever of days.”
“Promise?,” she whispers.
He kisses her then, and the world resumes its spinning as two teens, late for first hour, race into the looming building before them.