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Part 1: D is for Drama- Horatio's perspective
Horatio Hammond slammed his English binder down on his desk, as a single chocolate brown lock of hair fell in front of his profound jade eyes, slightly obstructing his vision. As he patiently waited for the bell, he rhythmically tapped his defined hands against the pale desktop, creating a steady beat of distraction from the world around him. He sighed and looked up, accidentally locking eyes with someone from across the room. Veronica offered up a friendly wave and mouthed something to him. He scrunched his brows and slowly swerved his head, as if to silently say “What?”
Veronica laughs, and then purses her lips as she holds up a finger, telling him to hold on a sec.
He watched her as she muttered something incomprehensible to her friend, offered a quick wave good-bye, and made her way over towards his direction. He took a second to check her out. Her pale yellow sundress flowed freely around her knees with every step she took. She looks good, he thinks to himself.
And he wasn’t lying. Veronica’s skin was a delicate pale shade, unlike the majority of his female fake-n-baked classmates. Her brunette waves swung a few inches above her waist with every step she took. And there was something about her than was so intangible… something in her eyes had changed. They were still their usual tone of light brown, but she seemed more focused, more at ease with herself. Veronica had a bit of newfound confidence that made her seem unfathomable. This was a change, a good change, which Horatio observed in Veronica. Unlike, the usual tense, high-strung girl he knew so long ago, a carefree goddess stood before him now.
“Hey” She whispered, her voice was fragile and delicate, like the wind.
Horatio blushed, but only slightly. “There’s something different about you… you’ve changed.”
“Good or bad?” She winced theatrically in anticipation.
“No, no… it’s a good thing.” As he softly chuckled, he angled his chiseled face slightly to the side, and gazed deep in her eyes, searching, “You just seem, well… different. That’s all.”
Veronica giggled, but not in that dim, air headed sort of way. She laughed in more of a tranquil, serene state; as if she finally reached a rare place of comfort within her soul. She gazed back and stared into his eyes for a few seconds, not exactly comprehending his words. All was silent in their worlds, not in an awkward sort of way, more of a content manner in which what they needed to say had no need to be spoken. Her fearlessness seared into his soul, forcing him to look away. He felt a sudden urge to change the subject.
“How was your summer?”
Veronica tilted her chin slightly upwards, and closed her eyes, as if she were enjoying a light post-summer breeze that was passing by. “It was great. I met the most amazing people.” She softly smiled, as if her memories brought back a sudden twinge of happiness. “The island… it was so refreshing. To know there is a place out there that just wants me to be happy, and will love me with no exceptions. I can be who I am… and that’s enough.”
He could feel it coming back already. He hadn’t expected this quite so soon. All of their past together; the thoughts, the hopes, the dreams they shared, it was too overwhelming to ignore. It flooded his soul like an incoming tsunami. Like a tidal wave, this undying love taking cover in his heart was hard to ignore.
Horatio reached out and lightly positioned his hand on her jaw, focusing her face in his direction. She placed her hand on top of his and gently pulled it away from her face. He frowned, wondering how she wasn’t experiencing the exact feeling at this moment. She looked at him once more, almost as if she were reading his mind. Horatio knew at once she could hear his thoughts in this moment, she knew exactly what he was thinking.
“Horatio…” Her eyes were all the warning he needed to know that she was serious about this, as they momentarily paralyzed his and then dropped to the ground, “We’ve run out of chances…”
“The past is the past” He shook his head, but not out of anger.
“What exists in our minds is still in the present.” Veronica’s voice shook, but she was still in control. “The same exact scene replays over and over in my mind, every waking day of my life. Doesn’t it seem unfair that I have to deal with the anger, the pain, and the nightmares? How about you? Of course you don’t care… what did you lose?”
Horatio placed his hand just above his eyebrow and left it there. He opened his mouth to speak-
“You can’t expect me to simply forget all of it, Horatio; it’s not that easy for me!” Veronica took a deep, hard swallow and felt her throat on the verge of closing. She wouldn’t let anything come close to happening again. She thought back to that night long ago…
Veronica was crying now, she couldn’t handle this anymore. She felt her legs weakening beneath her. As they gave out, she fell to the ground; she could feel her body scratching along the pavement.
Horatio felt his heart drop, literally within himself his heart was panging, threatening to rip through his chest with every breath he took. He recognized this feeling right away; hatred. The odium engulfed him. His breath became short and shallow, as he gazed upon her face. “Leave.”
The crumpled figure shuddered in response.
Horatio couldn’t even make eye contact with her. His world was shaking, as he lifted his arm, he lost his balance momentarily. He simply pointed down the street, which was slick from the storm. “Just leave!”
“Hora-“Veronica shook her head, all her calmness exuded from her body and quickly grew into panic.
The thunder boomed above them.
Refusing to walk away, Veronica’s sobs become audible at once, she was crying loud and heavy. There was no stopping in sight.
“HORATIO!” She screamed, but her shrieks were but whispers compared to the surrounding frenzy.
The rain was pounding heavy on her now, she could feel it, just like big fat drops of regret, one after another…
“Veronica, babe, are you alright?” Horatio’s sea-green eyes contained waves of concern, as her brown ones stared back.
She studied him momentarily. How could this sweet guy be the same careless boy that had hurt her so long ago? Her head lowered in shame. “Uh, yeah I’ll be fine.”
“Are you sure?”
“Please, Horatio. Don’t pretend you care.” Veronica wasn’t going to fall for any of this again, she was done.
This, of course, angered him. He’d always had a short temper. “I hurt you once, Veronica. I’m not going to let that happen again. I promise.”
“A promise is a comfort for a fool.”
“Vero-“Horatio was interrupted by the ringing of the bell.
“I’m sorry too”
And with that, she walked away, not looking back.
“Veronica! Please. I’m not the same as before. Give me a chance to prove it. I’m different now. For goodness sake, that was three years ago!” Horatio shouted, not caring about the fact that the entire hallway was looking at him like he was crazy.
Refusing to make the same mistake twice, she continued walking.