Leah introduced Sam to her half cousin, Emily. We all know what happened after that. What what took place that fateful day when Leah had her first taste of heartbreak? My submission to the Obtober Challenge!
1. My Everything
Rating 4.5/5 Word Count 1598 Review this Chapter
I stood at my front door, holding Sam’s blazing hot hand. He wasn’t looking at me; his eyes were drifting towards the forest, slightly narrowed. I swallowed nervously, my anxiety, usually regarding Sam, growing with every breath. I tightened my hold on his hand, as if he would float away from me if I didn’t hold on well enough. I let out a ragged breath, concerned about the one man I ever loved. Lately he has been so distant, separating himself from me physically and emotionally. The best I would get from him would be a soft kiss or a peck on the cheek. It was like he was afraid I would break under him.
I forgot how his voice softened when he said he loved me. I forgot the way his eyes would suddenly melt whenever his gaze caught mine. I forgot who he even was. It was now my turn to narrow my eyes. He told me he loved me and would never stop. He promised he would never hurt me. Why then would he refuse to meet my eyes? What exactly happened those two weeks he was gone? I was frantic with worry, searching for him every day. I thought something bad happened to him or that he had an accident in the woods. But I never predicted this. It always felt like I was going to burst at any moment, all of my pent up frustration finally getting the better of me. My patience was dissolving very quickly and so was my sanity. If he didn’t just give me a sign that he was okay, then I was afraid that I was going to explode.
I started to unlock the door and jerked Sam’s hand towards me, silently telling him to look alive. I just needed some assurance. Sam blinked a few times and then adjusted his posture so that he was facing me. He smiled reassuringly and leaned down to kiss the corner of my mouth. I grinned, happy that some of My Sam was starting to reappear after seemingly going extinct. I squeezed his hand, content in knowing he was starting to come out of his gloomy faze. Maybe my anxiety would have been for nothing…
I slowly opened the door and stepped in first, happy to be out of the cold. Sam followed behind me, his eyes searching the house. I told him that I would finally introduce him to my second cousin. He was hesitant, but Emily and I were like sisters. I just have to meet the man you manage to talk about for hours at a time! She once told me over the phone. I chuckled at the comment, knowing all to well that once someone gets me started on a conversation, it’s hard to stop me.
“Emily!” I called out, wondering where in the house she was. She might have been in the guest bedroom reading or studying for exams. My face fell when I remembered the exams that I had yet to study for. I shook my head, trying to rid myself of depressing thoughts. It was the time to be happy. My emotional sister and my boyfriend were finally going to meet. But then why was my heart so heavy?
“Leah?” I heard a familiar voice answer. My bubbly mood reappeared and I jumped over to where I heard Emily’s voice. She was pushing the dining room chair in and, just like I predicated, a Calculus text book was lying open. Her excitement made her face light up. It was hard to not be happy around Emily when she was so animated. “So,” she said, trying to compose herself. “Do I finally get to meet this Sam you’re always blabbing about?” I mockingly scolded her and punched her lightly on her shoulder.
“I most defiantly do not blab,” I laughed and then grabbed her hand. “Come on, he’s waiting in the other room.” I pulled Emily out of the dining room and into the living room where Sam was waiting. He was studying a picture of me when I was little. I embarrassingly had ice cream smeared all over my face. His lips upturned into a smile and his gaze turned towards the next picture. “Sam!” I called out, my voice cracking with excitement. I was anxious to know what Emily thought of him and visa versa.
Sam’s face lit up in recognition and he turned his body to look at me. There I saw the Sam that I loved, not the distant Sam that I was seeing more and more lately. But he stopped between the two halves. His face glazed over and I had trouble telling who he was. It was like he was frozen in place. I also felt Emily stiffen by my side. My face fell and I rotated my head to look at Emily. My heart pounded in my chest. Did she not like him? She was a little pale and her face was rigid. I looked back at Sam and my heart seemed to stop when I saw his expression. His eyes were wide and filled with confusion, fright, adoration and…love. But it wasn’t aimed at me. Emily was receiving his praise.
It was suddenly hard to swallow. My legs seemed to turn to jello and my chest felt heavy. It was like I just ran a 5K and my body was starting to collapse on it’s self. Sam’s gaze didn’t waver from Emily’s face and it felt like my whole world was exploding. I knew that I should have said something, but my mind went blank. All I could think about was the love plastered on Sam’s face and the fact that ever since he went missing, that look was absent from him. Emily was the one that brought it back. He now belonged to Emily.
I felt Emily slip her hand out of mine and step backwards. I could hear her ragged breathing. “I-I need to get some air,” she announced before running towards the back door. I heard it creak open and then slam shut. It was quiet in the room for a few more minutes. I stared at the ground, the world suddenly feeling dark. Just ten minutes ago I felt like Sam was my soul mate. I didn’t think that would change…especially that quickly.
“Leah,” Sam started, his voice quiet. I refused to look at him. The feeling of betrayal made my head heavy. “Leah, please look at me,” he whispered. It was hard to resist his voice. Even if he might not love me any longer, I still desperately loved him. I forced my head to lift so that I could meet his eyes. What I saw there made my head slump back down to the floor. I heard Sam sigh. “Leah,” he started again. “I don’t know what happened just right now and I don’t know what to make of it.” All I heard was ringing in my ears.
“I think…” I choked out. “I think that maybe you should leave.” I lifted my eyes and saw Sam open his mouth to talk, but on second thought closed it again. He nodded briefly before walking past me and out the door.
“I’m so sorry, Leah,” I thought I heard him whisper, but I couldn’t trust my senses any longer. The door closed behind me and I was left alone in my living room. My legs finally gave out and I collapsed on the couch that was conveniently only a few feet away from me. I curled up in a ball and buried my head in a soft pillow. A strangled sob erupted from me and I wasn’t able to stop the tears from flowing.
I wasn’t sure what exactly happened, but I was certain of one thing. Sam was no longer mine. Never in the course of our relationship did I ever receive that amount of love I saw in his eyes just a few moments before. I squeezed my eyes shut, causing spare droplets to run down my cheeks. I just couldn’t fathom how my life could be turned upside down so quickly. He was my everything. Nothing mattered but him. And now? Now I had nothing. That was what hurt the most. That the one thing that mattered to me the most was wrenched away. I felt shattered.
With the strength I had left, I pushed myself off the couch and trudged up the stairs into my room. While walking in, I saw a picture of Sam and me at the beach sitting on my dresser. We looked so blissfully happy, content with the world because we were together. Just the thought of the Sam I once knew brought fresh tears to my eyes. I flipped the picture over so that only the back of the frame was showing. Suddenly I was exhausted. With feet that felt like they weighed fifty pounds each I blundered over to my bed and collapsed.
My heart ripped it’s self out of my chest and I cried out in agony. What did Sam do to me? How could something I loved so much hurt me like this? Abruptly the answer to my question was apparent. Just loving someone or something could destroy a person. And in this case, love destroyed me. Well, I was never going to let that happen again. But I loved him so much. Too much. I could never allow this to happen again. With that thought I started to build up a wall of around my emotions. Never would I have guessed how far I would take it.