2. July 23, 2002
I had taken a “shortcut” to school after a few blocks of watching them walk with small talk swirling around them. The one bad part about the shortcut was I would have to pass through some forestry in which you had to watch your back a lot because it was so dense with trees and vegetation the outside world was hesitant to check for mysterious disappearances if they had anything to do with the area.
I, unlike most of the town, knew that the woods weren’t that dangerous. It was actually quite beautiful this time of year. The sun would hit the tiny creek and shimmers of light would dance across the variety of colored skin on the trees, which made them beautiful in themselves.
I was losing track of time and somehow missed the sound of an incoming intruder of my thoughts when I felt a hand on my shoulder. I reached into my back pocket in a flash and held up my secret pocketknife and flicked it open as I turned quickly to face my opponent. Silently I prayed that I would live to see the light one last time, but then when I realized who the intruder was I lowered my knife but held a defensive stance.
William Bradley, whom I like to call “sparkle” for his bright blue-gray eyes. His hair was showing a little more brown in color today compared to the usual black. His stance was normal from what I could tell, it wasn’t as if he would hurt me anyways. I had known him for years, not as if we were friends or anything, just acquaintances.
As I flicked the knife back into it’s non-stab-ready place, and he put his hands back down at his sides. I motioned for him to speak but he didn’t get it. That was typical though, boys usually don’t understand body language let alone hand signals.
“You have the right to speak,” I said leaning against a tree, while placing the knife into my back pocket again.
At first he kind of spaced off and then made eye contact. When he finally opened his mouth to speak I cut him off knowing what was to come. “Don’t beat around the bush Will.”
He stood defensive again, “How do you know what I’m gonna say,” his eyes narrowed.
“It’s the look in your eyes, usually when people are going to try to avoid the actual subject they try to find something in their field of view to distract themselves with before speaking. You just spaced off to find an object.”
“You and your scientific reasoning for everything… you got that from tumblr or something didn’t you?”
I blushed lightly, “maybe a little bit…” I trailed off. For a second I thought he was going to tell me something like it wasn’t real or make fun of me but instead he just laughed lightly, and honestly I couldn’t help but laugh a little either. It was nice, I hadn’t laughed at anything actually funny for a while. It’s not like I have tons of friends, but I had known him for years so it wasn’t weird. The strange part of it was that we still go to the same church and the same school yet we hadn’t said a word to each other in probably over a year. Funny how time flies when we don’t even realize what day it is.
I turned back to him a smile still playing on his lips. “So, what did you come here for anyways?”
My tone stayed light, but his face fell almost immediately. I opened my mouth to ask what was wrong but instead he cut me off.
“I saw you hide behind my bushes this morning, actually I’ve been watching you go by for the past four months now, please don’t get mad at me, but I know ‘bout your secret.”
I could feel my face turning more red as his words made his way into my head, and I think it was showing soon because he started up again, “no, no, don’t get upset, it’s really ok, I mean I’m totally cool with it actually I was gonna tell your this sooner or later-”
“You know? No you can’t know…. No, no,” I shook my head in frustration, I was so careful, or maybe I just thought I was.
“Yes I know about-”
“Don’t say it,” I whispered.
And then I ran.