Are You Happy?
Are You Happy?
Author: Karishma CM
Chapter 1- The Last Day

I thought I was happy. I thought that my life couldn't get better. It was near perfect. Brie and May, my amazing (sometimes annoying) younger sister Ali and Kye. The boy that kept me going, the first face that I had seen when I first entered high school. The one who cared for me when I thought I was nothing.

I realised how wrong I was when I met her.

We'll go back to the last day of summer counting down to our last year at high school. We had driven Kye's car up the hill at the far end of our small town and I was sat next to him on the bonnet, my head resting on his shoulder. Beside us, Brie had opened the strawberries, and everyone was crowded around her. And by everyone, I meant Taylor, Kye's best friend and May. May and Brie had known each other years before I moved here at the start of high school (Freshman year). However, they had welcomed me into their little group with warm hearts. Kye lent over to kiss me softly on the cheek and I grinned wrapping my arms around his neck and climbing into his lap.

"You two are way too cute for words!" Brie squealed happily watching us in awe, her blonde ponytail swinging from side to side. I blushed a little, giving Kye a little peck on the lips and returning to my original position beside him. I glanced around at my friends, smiling. A few years ago, I didn't think I could ever have a group of friends as welcoming and honest as this and yet, here we were. I then took a moment to admire my boyfriend, his shaggy, black hair and bronze skin that seemed to glow in the sunlight. It was nothing like they described in the hundreds of romance novels I had read, his eyes lacked shine, shadowed by the sun. My heart didn’t flutter when we kissed, I never felt nervous around him… He felt… safe. I frowned at the realisation that maybe the whole 'falling in love' thing really wasn't what you read in stories.

"Why so glum?!" Kye joked, used to me being closed off. I leaned over, not wanting to share these thoughts, shrugged, then kissed his nose lightly. I often did this- avoided telling people what I was feeling. I guess that I'd never really had anyone to confide in when I was younger, well except for my mother. Here I was, sat here there with the people that mattered most to me in the world. Yet, it also felt as if something was missing. Something crucial.

Moving was the best thing that ever happened to me. In my old school, I was no one. I had no friends, in fact I'm pretty sure no one even knew I existed. Not that I had minded. I've never liked talking to people, I guess I'm just scared everyone will judge me. I never used to raise my hand in class- I kept to myself and I liked it that way. Or I thought I did. Coming here opened my eyes to what was really important. Before, I never actually lived; I've lived more in these past 3 years than I have in the entire previous 14 years of my life. Now was the last year I'd get to feel young before I had to face the world, I wasn't going to waste it.

"Go on!" Taylor yelled below us, derailing my train of thought. I watched as Brie threw a strawberry and it landed directly in the centre of his mouth. The two of them high-fived in accomplishment, smiles stretching across both of their faces. May, cheered, her hazel eyes lighting up with excitement.

"Ok, my go…"May said, grabbing a strawberry from the container, she threw it with large amounts of hope which slowly died as the fruit hit the ground with a sad, thump. The raven-haired girl frowned, furrowing her brow slightly, "Well that was disappointing…" She murmured sadly. Brie rubbed her hand in circles on the other girls back in order to try and cheer her up.

“Some just don't have the talent…” Brie said boastfully, causing May to whack her on the shoulder, "Ow…" The blonde murmured in response, both girls now glaring at each other playfully. I just laughed and their gazes immediately turned to me. To this, I just held my hands in a fake surrender.

"I said nothing…"

***

After the others had left, gone to get an early night. Kye smiled at me, hauling me back into his lap and tucking my long dark hair behind my ears. The view from the cliff was beautiful. Normally, you could see the amount of chaos below, cars rushing by, sirens blaring. Yet, at night, it all went away. The stars glimmered faintly in the sky, the streets were desolate and the sun peaked softly above the horizon preparing to rest for the day. He held me by the waist as I looked into his crisp juniper eyes. They looked darker in the shade of the sun. His whole face looked darker, shadowed by the crop of messy black hair that hung over his face. Resting his forehead against mine, he spoke,

"You are amazing, you know that. I couldn't have wished for a better girlfriend...." He whispered softly into the air between us, "I'm going to miss this summer, hanging out with you every day…" He trailed off, giving me a chance to speak.

"You'll still see me every day, at school…" I said, trying to reassure him. In response to this, he looked up at me sadly.

"I know it's just that we barely have any classes together and I only really get to see you at lunch…" His voice sounded faint, as if he wasn't really there with me.

"Are you alright?" I asked, trying to catch his wondering gaze.

"Yea… um... Mel, can I tell you something?" He asked nervously, looking deep into my eyes. Part of me felt unnerved by this gesture but I nodded regardless, curious as to why he was so nervous.

"I..." He stammered, his voice flailing in the now fiercer wind, "Melody Parker…" he put his hands and both of my shoulders taking a breath before saying the next three words, "I love you."

My breath caught the second he said this and for a moment it felt as if I were suffocating. It had taken me by surprise and all of a sudden, my heart had started racing. Did I love him? Was this it, was this love? I stammered a little, unsure of what to say,

"Oh..." I muttered, to nervous and confused to say anything else. Narrowing his eyes at me, he placed his hand on my cheek,

"What's wrong?" He said it reassuringly, but I was still panicking, rummaging around in my brain for something else to say. Why? - because I wasn't sure If I could say the same back. In movies, when someone says those three words it means the relationship means something. Of course, he meant something to me- right? So why couldn't I bring myself to say it back? I'd waited my whole life for a guy to say that to me and now, it felt almost out of place.

"Nothing… nothing… We should go. We have school tomorrow." I muttered, quickly turning to get in the car. And that was it. He just looked at me, a sad, lost expression painted all over his face and got into the driver's seat.

I didn't look at him the whole ride home, thoughts rushing in and out of my head. More panic rising with every breath. I should I realised that this would happen eventually, but I was still trying to figure things out… Hell, I didn't even know what love was let alone that I may actually feel that way towards someone. When he had said those words, he had seemed so sure- so confident as if he had been toying with the idea of telling me for months and of course I had to go and ruin it… I wondered how long he’d known, was it a new thing or had he known months ago? All of these unanswered questions were soaring around my head and I had no idea how I could answer them without facing the one thing that I was terrified of. Love.

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