How to save a life

Ava and Luke have been best friends for 11 years, but Luke is drifting away. Depression has taken over him and his multiple suicide attempts have left Ava with only one option; to show her friend that life is worth living before she loses him completely.
Follow them on their journey through Lukes bucket list.

Based off the song by The Fray.

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6. Step 6 : Drive until you lose the road

I waited outside the local college for Luke, arriving from his Mandirin Chinese classes. The class hadn't cost much, surprisingly. And it was number seven on his list. An odd request, until I remembered a conversation we'd once had with his dad years back.

 

"Whats that on the wall?" I asked curiously, eyes big and inquisitive. Henry chuckled. "That's a traditional chinese sword, Ava. It's authentic." He explained.

"It could kill someone!" Luke added eagerly.

Henrys smile thinned. "Only for the right reasons, son. I got that sword in China. They believe in traditional fighting, self defence, being at peace..."

"Can we go to China one day Dad? And take Ava?" Luke beamed, cutting him off.

He chuckled. "Of course Luke. We can try. And if we don't, you go alone, you might get to see how they use the swords. It's mega cool."

 

He was fulfilling his dads wishes after all. It just surprised me how he hadn't actually put 'Go to China' on his bucket list, though.

It was Sunday now, about 12:30 in the afternoon. I had plans to fit in an extra activity too.

I saw him step out from the front doors, another boy beside him. He was asian and just a bit shorter than Luke. Both boys were laughing, grinning ear to ear like they were sharing a private joke. I waved a hand at him.

He looked up, spotting me, and said what I lipread as a quick goodbye to the other boy before jogging over down the white tiled path. He was dressed in a dark blue plaid shirt and skinny jeans, with combat boots that clicked against the ground. He was so energetic when he was happy, and that made me shamefully giddy. Like not just him but I too was 8 years old again.

He ran up, not slowing, and I was lifted from my feet and spun 3 times. "Hey!" I cried. Luke put me down, smirking. "Sorry - I just wanted to thank you!" He cried. "I made some actual friends." He made a 'huh' sound and scratched the back of his head. "It's a weird feeling."

I tried not to be offended at how suddenly he'd written me off as an 'actual friend' and looked happy for him instead. "So it was a good class?" I asked.

He linked me, joining me walking down the street. "Yeah. Way good. Or, Shì fāngshì hǎo." He gave me a smile resembling the cheshire cat far too much.

"How would you say, 'creepy pervert smile?' " I asked teasingly.

He rolled his eyes. "Something along the lines of ; Bukimina hentai no egao."

"Uh-huh" I grimaced.

 

***

 

 

"Change the song!" Luke wailed. I smirked.

"Hey, I'm driving you and you're borrowing my car, I'd shut up." Logan retorted with a snark.

I really wish we could drive ourselves...

A drive in movie, number eight on Lukes list. It would be fun, wouldn't it? We weren't going romantically, just as friends. I shouldn't panic about this sort of thing with Luke. We were best friends.

"But it's The Wanted, man" Luke complained. Logan sighed. "Better than that rubbish you listen to."

Luke sat back, putting a finger to his lips theatrically. His other hand clutched mine. His dark hair was styled in curls for once, not matted over his eyes. He looked different, but kind of adorable. I guess the girl instincts I tried to ignore were taking over there.

We pulled over at the side of the road, where there was a field full of cars and an old fashioned projector screen. A red, white and blue banner read 'American drive-in movie.'

"Right. I'm going to go find my friends, they're here somewhere." Logan said after parking us on the 3rd row back. He hopped out but poked his head in Lukes rolled down window. "Get in the front, behave, don't kill my car."

I rolled my eyes and clambered into the drivers seat, Luke following behind.

"Man," He sighed. "Your brother is pretty high maintenance."

I shrugged. Logan could be reckless, and annoying, and cruel, but he meant well really. I knew he did. After all he'd driven us here, right?

Luke splayed out his hands innocently. "Hey, he annoys me!"

"He annoys everybody." I agreed, smirking slightly.

He paused for a second. So I looked up at him, studying how the flecks of green in his blue orb-like eyes moved with the starlight through the windows. Like space made those eyes, the stars moved as the colours shifted...

His forehead creased. "Hey... Bukimina hentai no egao?" He said with a small smile. I found myself blushing, looking away with harsh blinks. "Sorry..."

"I know I'm gorgeous but you gotta stop staring like that." He teased, grinning like the Cheshire cat again. He flashed two full rows of perfect white teeth...

Damn it, Ava! Stop thinking about that!

His smile faltered. "That makes you blush?" He asked quietly, in unconscious surprise. I looked at my legs, my cheeks burning. "Well done Sherlock..."

"You never blush. What's up?" He asked, suddenly very serious. I avoided looking up into his eyes. Maybe I liked him a little, who cares? The reason I was doing all of this was to make him happy, dating would likely end badly and he'd wind up even more depressed.

That's the thing. In books, films, even lyrics, the broken person always falls in love. But similarly the other person always leaves... Leaving them even more broken than how they started out. It just wouldn't last, would it?

"It doesn't matter." I breathed. "The films starting."

He gave me a sympathetic look then slipped his arm around my shoulders. I didn't want to move, nevermind if I knew I should. I rested my head against his shoulder and I felt no remorse.

 

 

 

 

"Cool film, right?" Luke smiled. Logan groaned, and I saw him roll his eyes in the wing mirror. "Too much romance. You guys never told me it was the modernised version of Romeo and Juliet! I mean come on... He's like 18, she's 13, that is NOT a relationship, it's babysitting!"

"It's a work of art." I sighed almost dreamily. "'Give me my Romeo, and, when he shall die, take him and cut him out in little stars, and he will make the face of heaven so fine, that all the world will be in love with night.'" I quoted absent-mindedly. I'd always had a thing for Shakespeare, I knew the words to practically every act in the tragedies. My mums books from when she was my age had been left at my grandmas villa, and one year when my Ipod died I'd had nothing to do but read them.

Logan groaned again. "Don't even start with that! Also, the whole thing happened in five days and they all freaking died in the end. Come on, you met her less than a week ago, just go kill yourself because she faked her death." He sighed inwardly.

"I think that was pretty noble." Luke offered. "Showed how much he cared for her!"

"Still, killing yourself? That's pretty cowardly as it is now, but back then -" He stopped, and his mouth formed an 'O' shape. Luke shrank back in his seat.

I was almost shaking with concealed rage. How could Logan be so insensitive? Saying something so cruel like it was nothing at all?

"Cowardly, huh?" Luke whispered, barely audible. I couldn't help it. I threw my arms around him in a bone-splintering hug. "It's not cowardly Luke. You are no coward. You're a brave brave fighter and you've been through a lot." I breathed. I could see the guilt in my brothers eyes, however he stayed silent.

Logan pulled over outside Lukes house.

When he opened his car door I caught his hand, "I'll walk you to your front door."

We were in total, blissful silence, led by his porch-light. His hand felt warm while mine were icy cold, my anger still subsiding. I paused at his doorstep. "Look, I... I'm so sorry about Logan. He's an idiot. I bet if he could take that back he would." I said, words rushing out. He smiled slightly but still sighed. "I'm not upset, Ava. I've heard worse. But thanks for caring, okay?"

Then he stepped towards me. What was he doing...? He leaned in and pressed a gentle kiss on my lips. Lingered there, then stepped back.

"Night, I'll call you tomorrow." He smiled. My cheeks, I guessed, were crimson. I couldn't respond until he'd vanished in the doorway.

I could barely register what had just happened. He kissed me! My best friend kissed me! Oh, damn. I shouldn't be so ecstatic...

My brain and my heart fought for dominance. I wasn't stunned when my heart won.

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