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All Promises Kept
As Robert snapped his backpack off and tossed it aside on the couch, I searched for a seat and made myself comfortable. Beads of perspiration slid down my face, and I wondered if I was sweating because of the heat or the fact that being in Leah’s house made me so nervous.
“Are you okay, Kelvin?” Robert asked, noticing my nervousness. “I know this is your first time back in here since you and my sister broke up, and if you need anything—”
“I’m fine,” I reassured him. “Maybe, we should just get started on this homework.”
Robert nodded and rummaged through his backpack. He paused and pulled out a journal and pencil. I know I should’ve been focused on the homework, but I just kept thinking of Leah.
As if on cue, Leah swung open the door, her little Yorkie, Travis following in suit. Her hair was disheveled in a loose ponytail. With only sweats on and tennis shoes, she was the most beautiful sight at the moment. Soon enough, all my emotions came rushing back like a waterfall.
I stayed on the couch, motionless, lost in her face. It’s been six months away from her, I keep telling myself. Six months without her. But only six feet away from her now. I slowly rose from the couch and tried to think of words to say, but I was just speechless. Robert quickly rose and broke the silence.
“Is anyone up for some Pre-Cal?” he cheered. The smile on his face made the situation even more awkward than it truly was. I wished he was just out the room for this one second. Maybe I could’ve had Leah all to myself—even for the slightest second.
“I’ll leave you two alone…” Robert trailed off, making me think he read my mind. He grabbed his backpack and whistled for Travis to follow him to the backyard. The dog grew, I noticed.
“Did you just go for a walk with Travis?” I asked, hoping to start a good conversation.
She nodded and tugged at her bangs, swallowing a lump in her throat.
“You know…he didn’t like walks. Things have…well, um, changed,” she stuttered.
“They have,” I agreed. I didn't know if I was agreeing that the dog has changed or life itself had.
“Well, uh, what are you doing here?” she asked, not noticing the sting the question had. I winced and touched a knot on the back of my neck. “I didn’t mean it like that. I’m sorry, um, you know I should just go clean up; I’m a mess, and now I’m being such a—” she broke off.
“Don’t apologize,” I insisted. “Maybe it was wrong for me to come here. Can you tell Robert that I’ll um…can you just tell him I’ll see him at school?” I grabbed my backpack and rushed to the door, whiffing past her.
“Wait,” she ordered. She placed a hand on my arm, the feeling electric. I looked at her hand as it rested there. She quickly pulled back her hand and shook her head. “Why are we doing this?”
“I don’t know,” I shrugged. “Isn’t this what we wanted?” I laid my backpack on one of the kitchen chairs and studied her.
“I mean, yeah, Kelvin,” she nodded. “I thought this is what I wanted…a break, but six months?”
“Well, what do you want to do?”
“I don’t know,” she shrugged. “We’ll see.”
I nodded, looking down, because I was disappointed at her answer. However, when I raised my head to leave, she had that mysterious gleam in her eye and that daring smirk, telling me she was up for one of her challenges.
I smiled and ruffled my hair, not knowing how to kiss her. It was like I was kissing her for the first time again, crap. My hands were sweating, and she only looked at me with those daring eyes, plotting her next move on me.
As I leaned forward, she turned her head.
“Promise me something first,” she ordered.
“Anything,” I hitched a laugh.
“Promise me that when we look back at this, we’ll laugh nervously and quickly change the subject,” she decided.
“I promise,” I said.
She stood on her toes and inched closer to my lips until another thought came to me. This time, I turned my head.
“Now you promise me something,” I interrupted. “Promise that you’ll help me and Robert with this Pre-Cal. Between you and me, he doesn’t get it either.”
She laughed and opened her mouth to say something, but was interrupted by a familiar voice.
“I heard that!” Robert whined. “And just so you know, buddy boy, Leah sucks at Pre-Cal.”
“I do not,” she argued. “I made an eighty on my last quiz.”
“An eighty? You might have to show me a thing or two,” I whispered, my forehead leaning against hers. She looked up at me and smiled.
“Oh, guys,” Robert groaned. “Please get it over with. Would you just kiss her already?”
And so I did.