Sleep brought me no answers. But when does it?  I’ve heard the expression ‘let me sleep in it’, so it must work for some people.  For me, I still had no idea how I was going to react when I see Kayla in about a half hour. I went through my routine and found myself ready to go in record time. I guess my nerves drove me into high gear. 
I decided to run back upstairs with my extra time, and check my email. Maybe there would be something from Kayla, or even Mark. No such luck, but there was a new message from AJ. He asked if I was having problems with the IM stuff, or if I had changed my mind. He said he was really looking forward to talking to me, and hoped we got to soon. I sent him back a message that said I was just about finished with getting setup and I’d talk to him soon. 
I went back downstairs and peaked out at the bus stop. It was empty. I set up shop at a side window, where I could see the bus rounding the corner. I was going to take a page out of Sid’s book, and run to the bus as it was getting ready to leave. That way I wouldn’t have to deal with the Kayla meeting until we were sitting down. I don’t know what difference it makes, aside from buying me a couple minutes. 
A few minutes later, I saw the large yellow machine, so I darted out of the front door and made it to the bus stop, right as he was about to shut the slider and pull away. I glanced at all the sad faces as I ascended the stairs, and saw no Kayla. Most days I would be worried about such a thing. Today, I kind of welcomed it. 
I managed to get through the first half of the day without even opening my mouth. Well, I probably yawned a few times, but that’s not really what I meant. 
The bell rang, telling me it was time for lunch. I hopped into the al-la-carte line, and walked away with some chicken strips and a cup of ranch dipping sauce. I parked at ‘our’ table, and started to nibble disinterestedly at the breaded poultry. After a few minutes, it appeared I would be eating alone. Mark never showed up either. Probably for the better. Without Kayla there, it would have been extra awkward. As it turned out, things became more awkward than I would have ever predicted. 
While I was sitting there with my face buried in my plate, I heard a chair slide along the floor, across from me, at my table. Without picking up my head, I lifted my eyes, to see what was going on. 
“Umm…hi…hehe. It’s Danny, right?”
“Yup. Hi.”
“I’m Amy…ummm, we have algebra together. I don’t know…”
“Yeah. Hi Amy. I’ve seen you…so, how are you?”
“Welllll…oh my god. This is kind of weird. I can’t believe I’m doing this.”
Amy nervously looked over her shoulder, to a table full of girls, sitting, giggling, and staring right at us. I could feel my cheeks starting to burn, and a sudden sense of dread. What does she want?  This can’t be good.
“It’s ok…so…umm?”
“Well…my friend Katie. She’s umm…over there.”
Amy pointed to the table with the giggling girls, all of whom, now had big eyes, but for one, who was hiding her face in her hands.  
“She kind of has a crush on the boy that usually sits here with you, but she’s a big chicken. Can you, like, give him this?”
“You mean Mark?”
“Yeah…is that his name?  Mark?”
A smile crept across my face, and I had a huge, internal, sigh of relief. This wasn’t about me. Thank god. 
I reached across the table and retrieved a folded up note from Amy, saying “sure. No problem. Here. I’ll put it in my pocket. I won’t even read it. Ok?”
Amy giggled and “cool. Thanks.  Guess I’ll see ya.”
“Yeah. Bye.”
As she stood up to leave, she added “oh…umm. Me and my friends think you and your girlfriend are really cute together.”
She was gone, before I could even react. Thanks Amy. Now I get to brood on Kayla leaving again. 
I never saw Mark the rest of the day, but I rarely due, aside from lunch. I have my first real hockey game tonight, so I’ll make sure to bring Mark’s love letter, in case he shows up for the game. If we were on better terms, I could embarrass him in front of the whole team. As it stands, I’ll be discreet. 
As I walked up the sidewalk to my front door, I saw Kayla, waiting for me to get home. I had a moment of panic, but I saw she was nervously tapping her foot.  I jogged the last few strides, and pulled her up and into a tight hug. 
“Hey Kayla. I missed you today. Everything ok?”
She had shifted back into that quiet, sad girl from last week. She whispered “everything is not ok. Can we…umm…talk?”
“Yeah. Come in.”
We stepped into the house and walked toward the kitchen. I grabbed two cans of Sprite and guided her to the living room. I sat on the couch, and she sat at the corner of the other couch. 
Daniel…I saw you last night…on the sidewalk.”
I gulped back some tears and pride, and quietly responded, “you did?”
“I’m so sorry Daniel. I wanted to tell you so bad…but I didn’t know how. It sucks, you know. I don’t want to leave. I wanted to come out to you last night, but I couldn’t stop bawling. I was such a mess. And I didn’t want you to find out that…”
“Shhh. Shhhh. Shhh. Kayla. It’s not your fault” I assured her, reaching for her hands. Trying to soothe her, as her eyes poured tears. She broke down even further, as she leaned into me, for another heartfelt hug. Her crying got me started, and we just held each other, counting on the comfort and support we found there.  
After some time, I decided to start the inevitable conversation, just to get it out of the way. I peeled myself away from her, and invited her to sit next to me, snuggling her head into my chest. 
“You ok?  Feeling any better?”
“I’m happy that you know, but it doesn’t make it any better.”
“So, where are you moving to?”
“Back to Toronto. I guess that was always the plan, but they never bothered to tell me.”
“What do you mean?”
“My dad only took the job here, so he could set himself up for the next step in Toronto. The stupid corporate ladder. I guess a bigger pile of money is more important than his only daughters feelings.”
“That sucks. Why didn’t they tell you?”
“They probably didn’t think I would meet the most incredible boy ever, and…fall in love with him.”
I held her a little tighter and kissed the top of her head. “I love you too, Kayla.”
We sat there in silence for a while, letting it all sink in. 
“So, when are you…umm leaving?”
“First of the year. If the house isn’t sold, we’re still leaving. His company will sell it or something. He starts January 2nd, so we have to go.”
“So that gives us like a month huh?”
“Kayla?  I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. Like way a lot. We both know we can’t change this, and being bummed out sucks. We have a month. Let’s not ruin it. Let’s have the best month ever. What do you think?”
“I’ll try.”
“Not good enough. If you can’t do it, you should just leave tomorrow. Look, wouldn’t you prefer to remember the last month here as fun?  And not sad and stupid?”
“Yeah. I’ll try Daniel. But I can’t promise I won’t get sad sometimes.”
“Me too, but I’m gonna try like Hell.”
“What should we do, to like, keep it a fun month?”
“Sex. Sex. And sex.”
She slapped me on the shoulder. “Oh my god Daniel! Are you serious?”
“No. But I got you to smile. That’s a start, right?”
“You jerk. But you know…some sex would be nice. Maybe even a lot…”
“Hey. Are you busy tonight?”
“Wow! No. Why?”
“Oh my god!  Not sex ya goof. Do you want to go to my hockey game?  We have our first game tonight.”
“Yeah. I’d love to.”
“Well, I should go I guess. Umm…what time is your game?  I can just walk down before you leave.”
“It’s at 7:00, so leave here at like 5:45.”
“Ok. See ya then.”
She walked toward the door, and turned back to give me another big hug. “Thank you Daniel. For being so awesome.”
“Nah. You’re the awesome one.”

I watched her walk down the path, turn, and give me a final wave goodbye, before she disappeared from my sight. I exhaled, as a single tear fell from my eye. I was proud at how well I kept it together in front of her, but inside I was numb. This girl was going to break my heart every single day, for I don’t know how long.


13 responses to “LIVE THROUGH THIS (part 48)

  1. How appropriate that as I was listening to this, Pink Floyd's “Comfortably Numb” song came on. I really feel for Daniel right now. Superb writing. Anyway, back to the shadows for a while.



  2. I think Daniel handled that very well. Kayla was as upset as he was or even more so, she needed the support and comfort he gave her. It’s nice they will have a month together before she has to leave, a time to build some memories that will live forever. Hopefully they can continue to be friends even from a distance.

    It will be interesting to see Mark’s reaction to the love note from Katie when he gets it.

    The great writing continues… – Aof


  3. Hello David
    A lovely chapter – how brave and tnoughtful of Daniel to keep his own feelings inside, and find a way to help Kayla. And maybe have a way to get Mark back onside, too.

    Love & best wishes
    Sammy B


  4. Daniel is more of a man than probably anyone gives him credit for. Being the one who moved all the time, I know how hard it is to say goodbye, but no one ever suggested we make the rest of our time together the best ever! Truly a wonderful chapter. I'm glad to know they're going to part friends.

    Peace <3


  5. First of all…don't any of you people work! Lol. Sammy, you get a free pass because of the whole time zone thing.

    Ok, I just want to day thank you again, from the bottom of my heart. It's especially nice to hear words of encouragement when I recall some darker times and places. You guys lye me know I'm not just writing to an empty room. Welcome aboard “the other David”. Nice to hear from you.


  6. Actually, I do. But while you whelps are out for the summer, we work four 10 hour days, and take Friday off, for about 10 weeks. It saves a lot of money since 75 buildings don't have to be air conditioned for 3 days in a row!

    And you're welcome, D_. It's heartening to see a young man actually writing, and astonishing to see him writing his own story. To say it's compelling is a bit of an understatement since so many of us have known you for so long. It's interesting to see it from your perspective.


  7. Thank you for the kind welcome, @D_, it means a lot. I've been reading in silence since the beginning, and, will continue to do so for a few reasons. I'll throw a couple comments in from time to time – I know, you said I was totally welcome to hang out and stuff, and it isn't that I don't feel it, believe me, but I have my reasons.

    But it's really great to see some old faces, and some new ones too of course. Some of you might remember me at least.

    As for a job, well, you know I work and that I work hard! But I posted this on the train on my way to work. And this comment is during my lunch break. Remember, I'm a few hours behind you too. So where's my free pass, lawl?

    Lastly, you are certainly not writing to an empty room. There are a lot of people here, and, we all support you, through good times and bad. Those darker times, though they may be horrible and painful, did teach you a number of lessons. I'll be the first to admit that some of them were really hard and a few maybe didn't even need to be learned, but, you survived, you grew stronger, and it's now a part of your past – a past that partly made you who you are today. For what it's worth, the person you are today is one hell of an incredible guy, and I think everybody who has read the past 48 chapters would agree with me. If you don't believe that, ask them yourself.

    I'll catch you on the flip side, @D_. And to everybody else, good to see you again, even if only briefly. Take care, and, all my love.



  8. Hello David
    I work in a 24/7 industry, so I have the joys of working all sorts of weird and wonderful shifts, weekends and all sorts, so, even allowing for being this side of 'the pond', I'm often around when the 9 to 5 crowd are slaving away. I'll take the free pass with gratitude, though! And as far as your story is concerned, I can't ever imagine that you'll ever be talking to an empty room – as Jay said, there's a big hook, especially for those of us that have known, and cared about you for the last four and a half years.

    Love & best wishes
    Sammy B


  9. Job? What's a job? Haha! I was surprised to see so many comments so early. Bunch of slackers!

    I don't know why, but I see the note for Mark playing out a little different than expected. But I usually over-think things and get carried away. Guess time will tell!

    It's a bummer about Kayla leaving, but definitely the right idea to make the time left the best time ever! And sex would be a great way to do that, haha.




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