His tone was obnoxiously serious, but all I could do was smirk at his attempts of sincerity.
“You know… this will never work, if you don’t ever give it a chance.” He said pointedly.
I remained close to the bed of the truck, still refusing to venture out to the picnic blanket and basket that had been set out ever so neatly before me. Turning his attention back to the basket, he pulled out two plates and two sets of flatware, setting them out neatly, before returning to my side.
I watched him cautiously as he reached out his hands. The moment I caught on to what he was reaching for, I flinched, pulling away abruptly. Frustration set in across his brow and he dropped his arms to his side. “Please?” He asked again, his voice had taken on an unbelievably sobering tone. I eyed him carefully, the look on my face clearly conveying my doubt.
He remained steadfast holding out his hands again this time giving them a come hither motion with his fingers. Letting out a heavy sigh, I reluctantly threw my arms out so that my hands dangled freely, waiting for what ever he had planned for them.
He took them in his own and carefully guided me across the grass, stepping deliberately and backwards the whole way. When we reached the blanket he knelt down sitting onto his heels. He then gave my arms a small pull indicating that he wanted me to do the same.
Less than willingly I obliged, carefully balancing on my heels, I let out yet another miffed sigh. His eyes were now looking at my hands as he rubbed the outside of the right one with his thumb.
“What was it?” He finally asked.
“What was what?”
“What was it that I did that you refuse to forgive me for?”
“Everything.” I seethed haughtily.
“I know that, but there is something. Something that hurts more than the others. Please tell me what is was. You said you remember everything so please, I want to know.”
This I was not prepared for, I yanked my hands away and stood back up from the blanket.
“Why do you want to know.” I inquired, refusing to look back.
“Because, you and I will never be able to move forward until I know what I did, that makes you hate me so much.”
“Why should I believe you? What have you ever done that would lend me to trust you in any way?”
“Nothing, and I know that much. Please, Lil. I want to understand. This is your chance. Tell me what I did to hurt you. Verbalize it. Make it real. No more hitting. Talk to me.”
I could feel my childhood anger bubbling up inside me. I turned around and stomped right up to him, poking my finger in his chest. “You wanna know what you did huh?! Fine. I’ll admit it, yes! I liked you. I liked you a whole lot, but the first time I came to talk to you, you… you made fun of me! The things you said were so.,. so… MEAN! I didn’t even get to ask what I had come ask. I ran home crying instead. Did you know that? Yes Wittle Wily was crying and for some reason you found that even funnier.”
“You liked me?”
“You never think before you act Disco! From there it was never ending. When you became friends with my sister, I was afraid to walk around my own house when you were there. You traumatized me! No way around it!” My voice cracked and I knew I was losing my composure. I threw my hands to face and began to sobbing heavily into them.
“Lil…I had no idea.”
“Ya! Well now you do!” I sobbed again.
Walking towards me, he tried put his arms around to offer comfort. I angrily pushed his hands away,
“Don’t touch me!” I screeched.
Still crying I desperately searched for some other type of ease from my freshly drudged up memories. There was none. This time I couldn’t refuse the willing source of comfort that was being offered before me, even it did belong to someone I didn’t much care for. I collapsed into his arms and whimpered into his shoulder, only it wasn’t my voice that I heard, the voice sounded much younger, much more like wittle Wily who had been hurt so many years before. Disco leaned his head against me, I could feel the warmth from his neck on my ear.
“Oh, Lil. I am so sorry.” His voice was hoarse and no louder than a whisper. If I didn’t know any better I would have sworn he was about join in on my bawl-fest 2011. He squeezed me tighter and this time I felt the next breath as it hitched in his throat.
“I was a horrible awful person for the things I have done to you. Oh Lil! I can’t believe I could be so stupid! I love you! I love you more than anything. How could I do this, to you of all people! ”
I honestly didn’t know how to answer him, so I sobbed harder instead.
Eventually as my crying subsided, he knelt down and cupped my face in his hands. The stain of tears tracked visibly down his cheeks.
“Let’s start over. Right here.”
“Lets pretend we are back at school. Go ahead and ask me what it was you wanted to ask.”
I wiped a stray tear from my eyes sniffing deeply. “What? You’re serious?”
“Deathly. Now where should I stand? Over here?”
I quirked an eyebrow his direction. “Ya, I guess that would work.” I said stepping closer. Looking into his eyes, I took hold of his hand shaking it.
“Hi, I’m Waterlily.”
Returning my hand shake he smiled brightly. “Hello, Waterlily it’s nice to meet you.”
Our hands released and the most serious voice I could manage I asked my 9 year old question.
“Would you like to come over and play some time?”
I couldn’t keep it in a moment longer, I started to giggle. “I’m sorry this is just too weird!” I chuckled. To my surprise we both started to laugh together. Most likely due to my already erratic state, I laughed so hard I had to clutch my side to hold myself up. Once I had finally composed myself again, I looked up to find Disco watching me.
“Feel better?” He inquired softly.
“Good. Would you like to join me for a little dinner now?”
“OK.” I smiled lowering myself down onto the blanket.
We sat and conversed rather comfortably as we finished our meal. I finally allowed myself to take in the unbelievably beautiful view was stretched out before us. Well as gorgeous as you can get for Twizzlerbrook…
I dropped my plate to my lap. “So I gotta know. Did you really set this all up by yourself?”
“Well not exactly. I may have had a little help.”
“Someone obviously female.” I teased.
He laughed. “Ya, definitely female.”
Once we had finished eating, Disco hopped up from the blanket and ran back to the truck. “Wait right there!” He called back towards me. I remained on the blanket watching from afar trying my best to catch a glimpse of what he could have possibly been doing. To my surprise he hopped into the back of the truck and opened something that I could quite see, due to the sides of the pickup being in the way.
A moment later he hoisted a small black box out of it’s bed. Jogging back over , I could more clearly see it was a stereo he had in his hands. He placed it close to the blanket and pressed play. A beautiful and slow song began to emit from its speakers, stepping closer, he offered out his hand..
“I only have one night, so Miss Waterlily Whip, would you dance with me?”
I took one step forward and paused. “I’m sorry, this is all just a little weird for me.”
“I know, and that’s my fault as well.” He offered out his hand. Still unsure on the whole situation I continued to stand there. Sensing my hesitancy he closed the gap between us. My eyes watching his the whole way. My heart was now pounding in a whole new way and not the usual anger fueled one. He slid his hand down to mine and gently took hold. This time I allowed him to guardedly place my hand on shoulder.
I laughed nervously as his other hand came to rest on my hip. He pulled me in closer and for the first time ever I let my inhibitions go. It felt nice to be held, the usual frustration and anger had subsided, so I took the opportunity to relish in the affections of someone, who according to them, really liked me. I rested my head on his shoulder. The music purring from the speakers as we swayed to and fro.
“You know I was gonna ask you.” Realizing I didn’t get what he was referring to he added. “To Prom.”
“Ya, you probably don’t believe me, but I was.” He laughed. “And I had a good idea you have told me to stuff it too. Still I was going to ask, but your dear sister had other plans…”
The thought of Saphh caused me a moment of guilt. “Sapph.”
“You were right you know. I should have never lead her on so long. She and I had a nice talk a few days ago. I told her how sorry I was. Promised I would make it up to both of you.”
“You talked… to Sapph?”
“Ya… who do you think helped with all this.”
I stared at him dumbly. “But.”
“She is still my best friend, but as a promise I made to her and you, you won’t see me around. A deal is a deal, the least I could do for hounding you. I just needed a chance to say… no show you how truly sorry I am. For everything.”
I flattened out the edge of his lapel. “She told you about my date with Pomp…”
We spent the rest of the evening talking. Talking about things that didn’t concern our past or future. Just talking, like most friends would do. I wasn’t ready to consider him a friend just yet, but he was certainly checked off my enemy list. 11:20 he stood from the blanket and helped to get to my feet.
“I should probably get you home now.”
When we came up the walk I had the sinking sensation that at one point he had almost reached out for my hand, but never did.
Stopping at the door, I turned to say goodbye. But instead of a handshake or hug, I received a gentle brush against my cheek. “I had a great time tonight.”
“It was nice.”
“There is something I want you to know.” He breathed heavily letting out a dejected sigh. “I will spend the rest of my life regretting the chance I wasted with you. I can truly and honestly say hurting you has been the biggest mistake of my life. Maybe one day you can forgive me, but I know it will take time. Time that will be spent without me around. I love you, and I know you don’t love me, but tonight… tonight was more than I could have ever dreamed of. Goodnight beautiful Waterlily.”
I opened the front and stepped through. I tried to smile, but it came out only halfheartedly. “Free at last. Yup. Free…”