Echo -Complete-

*Click*
Picture after picture I take and you're there. Not really but on the camera screen.
You're in my dreams. Your touch sends me away yet I've never met you.
Kiss me again. Make me feel alive in my reverie.
Who are you?
If I feel this way in my dreams, why would I ever wake up?

***This story is based off the book 'Elixir' by Hillary Duff. I will not/do not copy word for word nor do I steal the whole concept. If you've read that book and you see similarities, this is the reason why.

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2. A closer look

“Janae” a voice whispered in my ear. I shot up out my desk chair.

“Oh my gosh! Mason!”

“Woah! I called your name a bunch of times.”

I sighed in relief. Imagine being home alone, indulged in your laptop and someone whispering into your ear.

Not a walk in the park.

“What are you doing here anyway?”

“Well, damn, haven’t seen you in a few weeks and you’re saying you didn’t miss me?”

I stood up and wrapped my arms around him. “Of course I missed you.”

“Good. Missed you too Jay.”

“Please tell me I’m interrupting something!” Ravens voiced ringed through the house.

Mason and I pulled away.

“We’re in here Ray!”

She came walking into my bedroom with a smile on her face. I shook my head at her and went to shut my computer.

“Get ready Janae, my mom’s having a welcome home party for us.”

“Tonight?!”

“Uh yeah! I can tell her that you’re…busy” she says with a pointed look between the both of us.

I glance at Mason to see a blush rise upon his face.

Raven’s mom, Leena, and dad, Marty, have been trying to get Mason and I together for the past two years.

Wow, can’t believe I’ve only known him for two years.

My mom hired him to help me with my journalism. Everyone thinks we belong together. Leave it to Raven to say we’re soul mates.

“Shut it Ray.”

Raven and Mason talked a bit while I sorted things on my computer. I wasn’t going to open my files until they left. I don’t want to show them my strange figure before I found out who he really is.

They soon left after I told them I wasn’t feeling well enough to party. I instantly went back to my laptop and started zooming and cropping my pictures. I needed them to be perfect for publishing.

I clicked the picture of Raven smiling widely in front of the Parthenon in Athens and zoomed out to get the whole view of it. I scanned over the picture to see if I could cut out any weird edges.

I reframed the picture, but when I did I noticed a strange face in the crowd of tourists.  Familiar cheekbones and straight-lined jaw stood out to me.

No.

Not possible.

Instead of cropping out I enlarged the picture three times.

There was a crowd of five people. Four of them dressed with cameras and touristy Greek shirts but the fifth looked directly at the camera. He was obscured by the amount of activity around him but no doubt it was him.

My heart raced.

I set the Parthenon picture next to the Paris one and focused on that man.

It was the same man.

Noticing that he was not only with Raven and I on the Paris end of our trip but the Greek part a few weeks prior.

How could I not notice him?

I had no idea he was stalking us.

He looked totally out of place in both pictures. Both alone and in that same leather jacket, jeans and gray shirt.

If he was with us on the end and beginning of our trip, was it possible he was with us the whole time?

I began to scan through all my pictures. I zoomed and studied them all…and he was there.

A picture of the Cathedral and he was there. Standing there with his hands stuffed in his jacket, leaning against the building, standing on nothing. Floating in mid air!

What was he?

I panicked, snatched my camera from my desk and began to take pictures throughout my room. I instantly uploaded them and searched through them. He wasn’t the-.

Wait.

The picture of my dark closet, I saw his face.

I gasped as I slowly turned towards it…but I couldn’t see his face.

I can’t do this right now. I need to nap or something, this is all too freaky.

He wasn’t in any places Raven and me had been but in the pictures?

How?

I shook my head as I settled under my covers.

I finally fell asleep to the sound of the food network blasting through my room.

At least my dreams won’t be tortured with my thoughts.

Exact opposite.

I stood by the piano in my fringed dress and iris-charm necklace shinning as I sung my last note. The room went into applauses and wolf-whistles when I finished.

“Jasmine Kennedy!” Benny shouted proudly.

Benny owned this place, owned most of Chicago really. Certainly owned me. He was a dangerous man that you didn’t want to cross. Even as he gave a sloppy kiss on my cheek, I couldn’t stop my glance to the piano player. He peered up at me with a sweet smile that tugged at my heart.

Rick busted through the doors and ran to Benny. “What is it Rick?” “Sorry, Boss, it’s a raid!”

Everyone went crazy. Shots were heard. I ran out of the building and ran around the corner.

Free.

Well, for the next hour at least.

I ran into the alley. My piano player was there. I ran to him and wrapped my arms around him, kissing him like it’d be the last time.

“I hate to see you with him, Jasmine.”

I looked into his warm eyes and for once I felt wanted.

“Run away with me. We’ll go to Hollywood and you’ll be in movies just like you’ve always wanted.”

I blushed as I looked away, “Everyone wants to be in movies.”

“You’re not everyone, you’re talented.”

“I perform in a bar the size of a closet.”

“You can have everything you ever dreamed of. We both can.”

I believed him just for a second. I know there’s only one path for me.

“I can’t leave. Benny would kill me if I did.”

“I’d protect you. I’d die for you Olivia.”

That was a slap to the face. I took a step back. “Olivia?”

“Jasmine” he corrected, trying to reach out for me but I pulled away.

“It’s not the first time that’s happened. She your wife?”

A shadow crossed his eyes, “No she’s not. I told you what happened with her…I just…It was a long time ago. I’m sorry Jasmine…please look at me.”

I couldn’t help it, his eyes were like magnets.

I saw that he was scarred. His truth scarred him. He was telling the truth.

“I don’t know what she did to you” I said, letting him embrace me back in his arms, “But if I ever see her, I’ll kill her.”

He didn’t respond, just gave me a sad smile. He placed his hands on my cheeks and leaned down close before his lips sealed over mine…

I sat up dazed and confused. I grabbed the remote and turned off the TV.

It was a dream but it felt so real. And the piano player guy…was the man from my pictures. I could still feel his lips on mine.

I could still see through his dark pool of eyes…

I burst out laughing. What’s wrong with me?

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