There's those moments, those special moments, when you meet someone. When you automatically know that you will know them for the rest of your life, from the second you lock eyes. No matter how short that amount of time may be.


1. The beginning and the end

My dark leather brogues press into the rainbow of leaves adorning the forest floor. A few small insects scuttle away as I walk onwards, mere tiny black dots moving over the vast forest floor. I look around to the left, noticing the branches bounce slightly as a squirrel hops away, jumping nimbly from tree to tree.

Lips pursed, I continue.

The path is trodden for me; the dusty line walked through by thousands of people each year. But I soon swerve to the left, off the usual trail leading to a warm coffee shop, into the place that only I know. It's a struggle to get to, many trees reaching out to grab my hair, logs attempting to trip my nimble feet and the air slowly darkening around me, the canopy of trees getting thicker and thicker.

But I reach it eventually. 

My hand flicks down to the loop of rope at tied around my waist, wrapped round and around it until there was none left. Hands heavy, I begin to unwind it, slowly and carefully, taking my time. I wouldn't want to waste these precious moments. Soon the weight from around me is gone, and the thick rope is clutched in my white fingers, several large rings adorning them.

Pushing it up my arm to my shoulder, I walk over to the tree and grab a small branch sticking out low down, pulling myself up, where I grab a bigger one. Within no time at all I have climbed up to the sturdy branch I'm aiming for, around ten feet off the ground. I feel the wind on my cheek and look up, seeing the small green shoots flutter slightly. Shaking my head, I return back to the job at hand.

The gnarled bark is rough beneath my fingers as I hold on tight, slowly shimmying along the branch. When I'm at the middle, far enough away from the trunk, but it's still able to support my weight, I stop and sit up, wrapping my legs firmly around it. I pull the rope from around my shoulder and bring it down to my view. 

I quickly work it between my fingers, quickly doing the knot I have practised so many times on a piece of string in class. Soon it is done, with just enough rope left to loop around the large branch, a secure knot keeping it in place. Loosely it falls from between my fingers, hanging gently and waving slightly, back and forth. 

Some people prefer to do it in their bedrooms, surrounded by their entire life and everything they hold dear. I prefer the opposite. Each object, each souvenir, each memento is just a reminder of what I have lost. Here in the park, the small clump of trees I can escape to, it is just as dead and silent as at home. But there are no reminders here, no bad memories, nothing to ruin this.

My hands are shaking as I pull the loop up, gently threading my head through the gap. I ready myself for the drop, the inevitable plummet to the ground, the end of it all. Even though I know it's what I want, it's hard to believe I'm actually doing this.

Just as I grip the branch and begin to lift my leg over, waiting for the inevitable drop, I see something move out of the corner of my vision. Look away, I tell myself. This is the most important moment in your life. Don't stop now, just for a sparrow.

But I still look.

I still see the person that would change my entire life.

Black hair swishes over his pale forehead, hazel eyes coated with a layer of black stare back into mine, equally shocked. He is crouched a few branches to the left, clutched a loop of rope in his hand, tied exactly the same as mine.

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