"Life is a succession of lessons which must be lived to be understood." -Ralph Waldo Emerson
"So tell me again why we're doing this?" I turned to Jackson who had his eyebrows furrowed and his tongue sticking out a bit. We were working on an art project which required real life drawings that could be turned into paintings. Jackson thought it was just a great idea to draw the sky. He also thought that it would be a lot better if we saw it upside down. So here were were, at the local playground down the street, with our heads hanging off the sides looking at grey skies that New Hampshire has to offer.
"Because I said so."
"Alright Mr. Know It All."
"Shut up winter."
"Don't call me that." I sat up and frowned at him at the nickname he always uses on me.
"Why not? It suites you."
"No it doesn't. 'D' would probably be a better nickname than that. But don't call me that either." We were both sitting upright now with our legs swinging off the edge and brushing next to each other. Even the slightest touch gave me that electric feeling. I hate it.
"You were never one for the nicknames, even when we were little." He scooted closer to me and wrapped an arm around my shoulders. I had to look away so he wouldn't see the blush on the apples of my cheeks. This was one of the few times that I was glad that my hair was long and frizzy and in my face.
We sat there in a comfortable silence just watching life go by around us. He was probably sitting there all chill and thinking about anything and everything while I'm a train wreck. He makes me feel like a literal train wreck just erupted in my stomach. Screw those butterflies that they talk about. This was a stampede.
But, it wasn't always like this. When we were younger I always thought of Jackson as that weird nerdy kid who was way too tall to be in the 5th grade. Now that we're in high school, I just looked at his face one day and realized 'Wow, he's handsome.' It went from, I Kind Of Like His Face to WOW HIS PERSONALITY IS SO GREAT AND HE'S SO GREAT AND HE'S SO ADORABLE AND HE'S HELLA ATTRACTIVE AND I JUST WANT TO BOOP HIS NOSE AND CUDDLE WITH HIM AND AND...
So yeah, it escalated.
The silence was interrupted by the soft buzzing of Jackson's phone in his pocket. He pulled it out and smiled at the contact that displayed the message. I let out a small groan hoping he wouldn't hear but apparently he did.
"What was that for?"
"What was what for?"
"That noise you made. What was that?"
"A noise?" He looked at me with narrow eyes barely showing the blue that he was born with.
"If you have a problem with my relationship then just tell me."
"I don't have a problem with your relationship Jackson." I rolled my eyes and stood up. How dare he state the obvious.
"Look, I know you might not like her but she's actually a really sweet and kind girl. I wouldn't be dating her if I didn't think that."
"Ok Jackson! I get it! You don't have to get all fucking defenseless over her. You like her, I get it." I walked down the small steps and landed in the muddy mulch making my worn out Vans dirty and yet making no difference.
"Do you really December? Do you really get it because I don't think you do. Because if you did then you would support my decisions and not shoot them down like always." He was right behind me now.
"You're annoying me Jackson." I stopped walking and closed my eyes trying to concentrate on my breathing. He may be 6'4 but I could probably knock him out if I was angry enough.
"What is your problem? Why can't you be happy for me?"
"I am happy for you Jackson! You just...can't see it well."
"You have a terrible way of showing your emotions."
"I'm just worried ok?" He raised his eyebrows and stepped closer to me.
"Worried about what?" I hesitated my answer because I didn't even know myself.
"People. I'm worried about people." I mentally slapped myself across my already red cheeks. Where am I going with this?
"And what they'll say about you." Oh good one.
He gave me an offended look and shook his head.
"You really are something else. I'll um..I'll see you around." I watched him walk away and leave me to pity myself. With every step he took, my heart seemed to get heavier.
I really need to learn to shut up.
Any of you live in New Hampshire? I'm thinking about moving there when I'm older. I have no idea why.