I could feel that he wasn’t as in to me as I was in to him. I sat awkwardly on my twin bed against the window as he stood, vacant, at its side. Conversation had been dull and vague throughout the night and I spent it wondering what was on his mind, even though I already knew. I thought that a boy who charmed me the way he had in the beginning would be the one. I guess I was wrong, and now I’m stuck in this limbo until he voices his feelings, or ghosts me, which I could see him doing after today.
Even in his oblivion he was so handsome. I admired his thick, dark, furrowed brows that matched his mask of hair and sullen eyes. His expression on his tan face was of boredom, and it hurt to know it was from me. He was someone different from the boy who would smile at me in the school halls and pass me notes in class. He once was the crush I never admitted to and now he’s making me wish I never had.
We stared at the ground in silence. He, probably waiting for his cue to leave, me, wondering if I could seduce him because that would probably make him stay. A few moments passed and instead of words breaking our silence, gunshots did. First we heard one, and looked at each other in dismay. No way was someone using a gun on my childhood street of Brookpoint Drive. It had to be something else. Then, we heard rounds, right outside my house.
He, finally, hopped up on my bed beside me to look outside the window. What we saw was straight out of a scary movie. There was this guy, maybe early 20s, late teens, with a strung out face and a huge, all black, AK-47 in his hand. He wore a plain white tee with jeans, and nothing to hide his identity as I could see his short dirty blonde hair as well. We watched as he screamed a “woo” and let another round go straight into the sky with one hand swing. He was walking, almost prancing with joy, right in the middle of the road under the spotlight of the streetlamps where anyone could see him. Where he could see us.
Almost in slow motion, we watched as his eyes met ours. My light was on so of course he could see our two heads bobbing above my bed frame from the contrast of the night. It was less than an instant before he turned to my house and ran straight for the door. My heart dropped to my stomach and I think amongst the chaos, both Ryan and I froze from fear. Then I remembered my mom and brother were downstairs and I snapped into adrenaline mode. We bolted for my bedroom door, half expecting the boy to be standing there since I knew for a fact our front door was not yet locked for the night.
I don’t know if relief or fear grew stronger when he wasn’t there, for he could have reached my family already, but I do know my senses were shot. I couldn’t hear or see clearly, all I could focus on was getting down the stairs in one piece so I could find them. Ryan followed urgently behind me as we swung around the banister pole. At first all I saw were legs on the ground, and as we got down the short hallway to the kitchen I saw my mom covering what must have been a bullet wound on her arm. As I looked around frantically I realized it was my brother on the ground who had been shot, but just in the leg. How did I not hear the gunshots? Oh well, they were hurt, but they were okay.
Now, where was the shooter? My mom and Ryan, who were standing in front of me, went from concerned to petrified. My mom’s eyes were glazed over as she looked directly behind me. Her mouth quivered and you could tell she knew exactly what was going to happen next. I turned around slowly, bracing myself for the worst. As soon as I was all the way around, he pulled the trigger. No hesitation at all. I saw his intense glare and wicked smirk, I saw the gun and how close the barrel was to my heart, and the next thing I know, I was on the ground. I thought no, no, maybe he aimed higher and missed, maybe I’ll be okay, I will be okay, I have to be okay.
I didn’t feel anything but pressure on my chest from my hand covering the wound and weakness coming over me as the blood drained. I laid there, looking straight up at the white ceiling as my vision began to black out, but just on the sides. Tunnel vision. The tunnel got smaller and smaller. I tried to fight it. I had to fight it. I tried to focus on my surroundings but no one was in my view, no one was helping me. I had no idea if the shooter had run or if he was standing there watching me suffer as he waited to do the same to the rest of my family and Ryan. I couldn’t fight it. It was too strong. The darkness grew until it was all I saw.
Then, I woke up.