I'm totally jumping on the boat late for this, but in my defense I didn't hear about the PG Love Scene Blogfest until earlier tonight. I really wanted to do it and then had to figure out how. I'm definetly a fade to black kind of girl, so I decided to take a pair of my favorite characters and wing it. This may be a little cliché, please bear with me and everything. I'm sorry this is late, and really long, but I just had to participate!
So here goes...
Her bedroom was lit only by a bedside lamp; it cast dim shadows across the bed, and the walls. The reasonably sized space looked like it would belong to a twelve year old girl, not the seventeen year old one that lay curled in the bed. Her cropped black hair pooled out under her head like a sheet of ebony satin, her pale skin all but glowed in the darkness. She wasn't the normal size of a seventeen year old, years of internal struggle had reduced her to a small figure nestled in the covers of the bed, trembles ricocheting through her body.
A boy about her age was wide awake in an arm chair next to the bed. Sleep weighed down on his eyes and every few moments he shook his head, he didn’t want to fall asleep in case she needed him. He glanced at her, stretching as he moved in the chair that had, in the past few months, almost become a part of his body. His blue eyes focused on her through the darkness, he ran a hand through his hair. It hurt to watch her in pain, and she'd taken her meds that night. He stood up and looked away from her, hands on his head as he walked over to the cork board she’d hung on her wall years ago. He needed to stay awake.
The board was caught in darkness, the pictures looked faded in the half light. They occupied all the photos as children, one was of them dressed as bride and groom, from kindergarten when they’d pretended to get married. Her long black hair had been pulled back into a sloppy ponytail, with large wide doe brown eyes, the ring he’d given her had been too big and so they’d threaded it through with a piece of string and put it around her neck.
There was a picture of them, around age seven, with birthday cake smeared on their faces; they were sticking their tongues out at the camera grinning like little fools. Another picture was of them on the last day of sixth grade, the year she’d left. He was standing behind her arms around her waist, chin on her shoulder, both were grinning at the camera, happy. Her black hair hung freely, down to her waist, and his brown hair stood up in a hundred different directions. Even then he’d been so much taller than she was. They’d never known what was coming.
“Demetri!” his name was just a tiny whimper, but it sounded pained as though she was trying to scream, but couldn’t find the strength. He spun towards her, his heart thundering in his chest. She sat up her hands shaking as she gasped for air, he could see the tears as they poured from under her closed lids.
“Zo,” he was at her side before she could utter anything else. “Zoie, what’s wrong?” his fingers traced her face, carefully wiping away the tears with his coarse fingertips. Her bottom lip trembled, but she didn’t answer.
“Zo,” his voice was steady patient, she never liked taking more meds even if it was what she needed. He ran a hand through her hair, and then rubbed it in circles along her back.
“What’s wrong? What hurts? Do I need to call Alyssa and Luc?” she shook her head, taking a deep breath before she opened her big brown eyes. He climbed up into the bed next to her.
“No, I’m fine, don’t call them. They’re on a date. It’s a long needed break.” Her voice shook.
“Then what’s wrong.” He asked as she tucked her head into the crook of his neck, threading her arms around his waist, he pulled her close.
“It was a nightmare.” She cried, biting his shirt in an attempt to stop her tears. “You-you died.” He could almost see the sick humor in it, the irony, he didn’t laugh, though one threatened to bubble up inside him.
“Before me,” her words stopped the chuckle cold. He stroked her hair, placing her into his lap as he kissed her temple again and again.
“Demetri, I— I want to ask you something.”
“Shoot, Zo.” She leaned forwards pressing her warm lips to his ear. Her voice was surprisingly steady for what she was asking, but musical. He held her tight, his eyes widened as she spoke, and his heart jumping into his throat. Of course he wanted to, she was Zoie, his Zoie, but he couldn’t. Once she was done asking she looked at him from the top of her large eyes, he’d never said no to that look, and rested her head onto his chest again.
“You’re sick.” Demetri whispered as though it was an answer, stroking her hair as he cradled her against his chest. He'd said no to her once before, and he wasn't sure he could say it again.
“I know,” she replied, her lips pressed against the fabric of his t-shirt. “Brain tumors aren’t contagious though. It wouldn’t hurt you.”
“But it’ll hurt you.” Zoie pulled away from his chest to look at him, her deep brown eyes determined.
“I’m not afraid,” she pulled even further away from him, turning to look at the cork board running her hands through her short black hair. As she turned away from him he could just make out the seven blue dots at the base of her skull. He hated those damned spots, he thought they were cute because they were a part of her, but he hated them, hated what they meant to him, to her.
“Of course not. But we still aren’t—”
“I’m sick; it’s not a reason not to.” She muttered curling up next to him again.
“It’s all the reason not to.”
“I’m dying Demetri.” Her words stung, she’d said them before, he’d said them before but the way she was using them now. It hurt. He only wanted to make her happy to give her reason to keep fighting. Even though it was hopeless, every day he could feel her slipping away more and more.
“I know.” His voice caught and he kissed the top of her head fiercely as tears welled in his eyes.
“So I can’t do that.” He blinked the tears away as he said it.
“But you love me?”
“Always Zo, always.”
“Then do this for me. Please? While I can still see you, while I can still be aware, while I’m still alive. Please? I want this, I want you.” She sounded so defeated, and he had barely been able to refuse her before, and now he was emotionally drained and sleep deprived. How could he muster the ability to say no now? He wanted it just as much as she did, he just didn’t want it this way. He knew this would be the only chance they’d get; the only chance she'd get.
He wasn’t one to believe in miracles. Even though he wanted to.
He responded by reaching over and moving her bangs across her face. Tucked them behind her ear, and cupped her face in his hand, before bending his head down to kiss her. His lips were a little dry, but she didn't seem to mind kissing him back, her soft lips compressing against his with just as much hunger and force. She lifted his shirt over his head, as he unbuttoned her top.
When he was positioned over her, he mumbled words that sounded like “I don’t want to hurt you” “Tell me if I hurt you, I’ll stop”. But as he moved, she moved with him, when she cried out he talked her through it, kissed her harder and did whatever he could to keep her mind off whatever pain he was putting her through. His hands explored every curve of her body, and hers roamed freely over his chest and back. Pleasure pulsed through them, it was as though they'd finally become one. The connection that had pulled them together their entire lives was solidified, hosting two people as one. Everything felt right, for once.
After, she’d curled up next to him, her breathing steady a smile spread across her mouth, her bangs dampened with sweat. He reached up and brushed them off her brow, before putting his hand back behind his head.
“I love you.” she whispered, tucking her head into the crook of his arm. “Thank you, that was…perfect.”
“I love you so much Zo and I’m—”
“Do not apologize for giving me the most wonderful night ever.” She propped herself up on her arm, so she could look him in the eye.
“I don’t regret it, I’ll never regret it. Promise me you’ll never regret it too.”
“I promise Zoie. I’ll never regret it.” it was the truth; he had wanted it just as much as she had, though he felt guilty like they’d done it because she was sick. He wouldn’t regret the time he spent with her, ever.
“It was what I wanted.” She paused as she traced her fingers along his chest. “I’m going to miss your eyes.”
“I love you Zo.” His voice caught in his throat, he hated it when she talked like this. She bent down and kissed him.
“Just when— when I can’t see.” She took a deep breath, looking away from him as her fingers struggled to re-button her pajama blouse. He resisted the urge to help her, because he knew she'd be offended that he was treating her like a child after everything they'd just done.
“Don’t leave me.”
“That’s not fair. I’m never going to leave you, never. Please don’t talk like that.”
Zoie nodded, and tucked her head back into the crook of his arm. He could feel her shivering and pulled the blankets tighter around her, kissing her head, then her mouth, as she settled into his arms.
“I love you,” he whispered as she slipped into a deep sleep.
When Alyssa and Luc came home they found Zoie and Demetri cuddled together under Zoie’s covers. Alyssa smiled, reminded of the time when they had been children, best friends attached at the hip and everything had been so much simpler. She trusted them, knew that nothing beyond cuddling would occur, and besides Demetri had needed to get out of that godforsaken armchair and get some sleep. Alyssa tiptoed into the room and turned off her baby sister’s lamp.
And the verdict is? Hate it? Love it? Cliché? Please enlighten me!