Chapter Two

We all have someone we never speak of. Someone who meant so much, that even hearing their name makes your soul tremble with memories and pain. Someone who makes your heart break a little more each time you accidentally think of the color of their eyes.

Our love has long passed a long time ago. It’s now nothing but a thing about the pass. A memory. But whenever my eyes contact with his, my heart still beats to the rhythm of my slow breaths. After how many years has passed, he’s still the one for me. It’s him always and forever.

“You believe in the word ‘forever’ ?” I asked, giving Ashton a questioning look. He just shrugs and smiled, ruffling my hair to which I groaned and he laughs. It’s his thing to tease  me and ruffle my hair everyday. Not a day has he not tease me. I may show it that I don’t like it but, deep inside I love it. It’s like his way for showing his love. Ashton has only said he likes me and said he loves me probably for three times only. He shows it more than he say it.

“I love that word. Forever. I love that forever doesn’t exist, but we have a word for it anyway, and use it all the time. It’s beautiful and doomed.” his charcoal eyes screams with gentleness while his lips turned upward. “Or so I’ve heard...” he continues giving off a laugh.

“Do you believe that you’ll be with someone forever?” I asked again. Ashton hummed as he looks at the sky, a mixture of orange and pink as the sun begins to set, then he looks back at me.

“We all will be with someone we’re happy with and love truly. But we can’t have someone forever.” he pinched my cheeks softly as if I were fragile. Ashton then slips intertwined his fingers with mine and held them tight, piercing his eyes through me.

“Do you see me in the future together with you?” I managed to asked. Ashton’s smile faded, slowly letting go of his hand yet I held them tight. He’s hesitating.

“Do you?”

“I might.” Ashton replied shortly. So he’s not. I find myself stupid for hoping that maybe something will happen between us.

What are we ?

I tighten the grip on his hand as we sat inside the cab. Ashton noticed it and let out a sigh then gave my forehead a peck.

“I’m not going anywhere.” Ashton reassured, leaning for our forehead to touch. But I know he will. He’s still full of uncertainties.

My lips curved up yet my eyes remain stony. I was prepared, but it still hurt.

“Luna...” Ashton's friend called, his painful stare bored into mine, making it hard not to back away. “Ashton told me he wants to stop whatever's happening with you two.” he said firmly.

I sway, my eyes started to blur. “What do you mean ‘stop’ ?”

He sighed, sat at the chair and rested his arms at the table.

“He told me that you’re both clearly not ready to be more than friends yet and you two have been like this for two years--not in a relationship. He told me he can’t do this anymore, Luna.” I looked at him, he was staring sadly. “I’m sorry. I was so happy when you both felt the same but I can't do anything about this. I have tried talking to him but he said he's sure.I can’t—I don’t...I’m sorry..” he stammers, scratching the back of his head.

I knew it was going to be like this yet it still hurts.

Him letting go. Him giving up. He gave me a small smile and pat my back softly.

I forced myself to smile even though tears were flowing down to my cheeks. “...Okay.” I whispered, suddenly exhausted of today. I can’t tell him not to let go, right? I don’t have any rights to let him stay. I just loved him, that’s all. I’m in no way to stand between him and his new love. But...I really love him. To the point I’ll let Ashton ruin me if he wants to.

“That’s it?” a voice hissed. I turned around and Ashton was there the whole time with his brows pitched together. I suddenly felt anger inside of me, why couldn't he said those words himself if he was there? Coward. But what more can I do aside from letting him go? I nodded and wiped the tears in my face as I give out a heavy sigh. Ashton clicked his tongue and shook his head then walked further away from me. He finally drifted away.

I regret what happened.

I wished I could have hold his hands, begged for him to stay.

To grab the tendons of his arms and tell him it’s not okay for me to see him with someone that’s not me.

That I don’t want to live a life without him. But I was also mad. He let someone else said those words to met when he was right there at the beginning. I could have slapped him if I wanted to for being scared.

After that day, rumors were spreading all around the classroom. It was about Ashton and some other girl above our year. Oh, I laughed, so that’s why he wanted to stop our thing. Because he found someone else. Someone prettier, skinner, and gentler. Someone he can shout to the world ‘my girl’.

“You’re staring at him again.” My friend sighs. Ashton’s in front of the room, laughing with the rest of his friends while the teacher’s out.

“I’m not.” I reply. “Simply just gazed over in a direction and he was there.”

“Then why was that look on your face?” she crossed her arms in her chest.

“What?” I ask. “What look?”

She gave me a deep stare. “Like you’re longing for him.”

Ashton noticed my stare to which I turn away.

“Absurd.” I shortly replied, playing with my hands to do something.

“After all these months, you really should find someone new for yourself, Luna. He’s not coming back, you know that right?” she said seriously, looking straight into my eyes.

I looked back at her, and as I start to speak, I closed my mouth. I stared at her, and with my eyes like that. She knew it all.

After a moment of silence, I finally answered.

“Of course, I know he’s not coming back.”

Tears starting to well up my eyes, giving her a weak laugh. “But here I am, still waiting for him.”

She looked at me sadly.

Months turned to years. Years of no communication, years of him not smiling at me. That I’m not the reason of his smile. And after the virus hit our country, the distance between us grew even larger even though we’re so close.

Another day has passed, I’m passing my school works again, hoping I won’t meet with him in school.

After years of him rejecting me, now is his time to show up and make me feel tingly again? I’m not someone he can just drop when he’s bored and picked up again when he has no one anymore. But, I still hope he’ll notice me again. He’ll love me again.

I wore a white button down long sleeves and black jeans, casual as ever and went upstairs to pass my notebooks. I greeted the teachers and staff as usual and was glad that the classroom is quiet. There’s only me.

I greeted my advisor, passed the notebooks and chatted for a while. In the middle of our conversation, Ashton came inside the room. I immediately stopped laughing, feeling the beat of my heart beating faster as he walks pass through me to talk with the advisor. Unease, I bid my farewell to the teacher and went on my way.

I breathed heavily, walking faster to grab a bus or a cab to get home immediately.

I said my goodbyes to the guard and called for a cab. I breathe out, relieved.

I shut my eyes when I heard a voice calling for me and the cab to stop.

It was Ashton.

What is he doing...Does he perhaps—

Ashton grabbed his knees as he panted in front of the cab, then went inside on his own.

“You’re here, again.” I said in a disinterested tone. I don’t want to be involved with him again. Not when I tried my best to forget him. He can’t just build me up again.

Ashton just shrugs then smiled, “Not just today...”

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