Tears I Won't Shed For You
Anneliese Zhang, Grade 10, Mater Maria College -
The golden rays of the sun glisten through my bedroom window, forcing my eyes open on a chilly December morning. I squint them to protect myself from the frosty glare of the sun. The floorboards creak in the deafening silence of the little flat I live in. I wash my face thoroughly and put it on. The very thing that I use to hide the vulnerable parts of me. The parts that I don’t want people to see. The tears I don’t wish to shed. As if they haven’t all already seen enough, to them I’m the girl who lost everything to someone she loved. I slip my parka on and greet the chilly breath of the winter morning.
People either avert their eyes when they see me or give me sympathetic looks. I had trained myself not to give away anything to anyone. I learned that lesson long ago when I gave everything to Him. All the trees in the park I wander through are stripped bare. I hug myself tighter as the furious breeze tightens its grip. A cheery voice from the bench calls me. Wes, the golden boy and my neighbour, with that sunny smile of his although I have no idea why he would be smiling. I greet him without looking at him and keep walking. Footsteps jog after me.
“Are you always this persistent, Golden Bboy?” I finally turn around and face him.
“Not everyone is as persistent as me, Sunshine”
A memory punches me hard in the face as I remember Him calling me that only for it to be a lie. I whirl around in a panic.
“Leave me alone”.
He steps closer, “Why?”
“Just go now please”. Flashbacks stab me all at once. Promises of love. Screaming. Passion. Fire as it wiped away everything. Sound of sirens as they arrived too late. His face.
“Why do you push everyone away?”, Wes’ eyes search mine imploringly.
“It’s better to be alone when everyone is going to hurt you”, I glance away.
“I wouldn’t ever hurt you”
“Don’t make any promises”.
“Maximilian Wallace!” I freeze. Wes has just said His name. The face that scars my mind. ”It’s true isn’t it, what everyone says?”
This was it. I cracked.
“I-I was so naive, I lo-loved him but he was only using me to steal my family’s riches, he set my home on fire with my family still inside and ran away once he had everything he wanted, I-I didn’t listen to their warnings about him, they all died because of me”. I could feel my facade, my mask beginning to crack as I trembled not because of the cold. Wes doesn’t say anything as he tilts my head up gently to meet his eyes and carefully embraces me. The wind releases its grip as the warmth of our embrace makes me feel as if I’m in heaven.
My mask finally shatters as tears trickle and for once when I close my eyes, his face isn’t what I see.