I sat staring at the lake. Normally the water it holds bobs and flows, but today it did neither because last night it was colder than usual, so it had frosted over slightly.
It was still calming, though, but not as beautiful as it usually is in the morning.
Over the past few weeks, the weather has been getting colder and colder. And, also over the past few weeks, I’ve seen no sign of Gerard anywhere which left questions flowing through my mind.
Did he forget about our friendship?
Maybe he got married and just is too busy nowadays?
Maybe he just doesn’t care?
I don’t know.
I have thought about calling or texting him seeing as I have his number, but, being me, I can never bring myself to do it. Part of it, honestly, was because I feel as if I’m being clingy. And I hate being clinging, like really hate being clingy.
But without Gerard I’m just lonely again.
Sighing heavily, I got up and walked to the edge of the water, picking up a small pebble before throwing it.
For the first time this morning, the water actually moved.
I picked up another pebble and threw it once more, but this time I attempted to skip it across the surface like Gerard had tried to teach me to do. It failed, of course, but it was worth a shot.
I heard a soft chuckle from behind me then a voice say, “You still suck at that.”
I jumped around and saw Gerard sitting in the stone bench, smiling at me.
“I tried calling you.” He told me. “But you didn’t pick up.”
“What.. Hang on..” I frowned, reaching into my pocket and pulling out my phone. Of course, like expected, I had missed calls. “It was on silent..” I mumbled as I shoved it back into my pocket.
“That’s ok.” Gerard smiled. “I knew you’d be here anyway.”
“How’d you know?” I asked, walking over to him, sitting beside him and looking down to my feet.
My eyes had remained on my feet and we both sat in silence for a few brief minutes. Occasionally they would flick around a bit, but not actually settle on anything. That was until I noticed the jar that Gerard was holding anyway.
“Gerard, why are you holding a jar?” I asked, looking to his face.
“Oh, it’s got a butterfly in it..” He mumbled, holding the jar up to his eye view.
I then saw a little blue butterfly fluttering around in the jar. It seemed to energetic to be locked up in that jar, and it was oh so obviously trying to escape from its prison.
“Everyone in my art class got given a butterfly in a jar. We’re supposed to draw it.” Gerard continued with a sigh and passed me the jar. “I hate it.”
“Why?” I asked, confusion obviously in my voice as I studied the butterfly inside the jar. “You just have to draw a butterfly.”
“It’s not fair.” Gerard sounded disgusted.
“Gerard it’s just a drawing.” I rolled my eyes.
“I think it's cruel that we're keeping a butterfly cramped up in a jar for our own purposes.” He told me, taking the jar back from me.
I couldn’t help but ask, “So you're a nature freak?”
“No. But nothing disserves to be caged for another living creatures benefit..” Gerard mumbled as he unscrewed the lid on the jar. “Hold out your hands, Frank.”
Obediently, I held out my hands and Gerard tipped the jar onto them. As he slowly took it away I clasped my hands together carefully and felt the butterfly fluttering around in them.
“Go to the edge of the water and set it free..” He whispered ever so gently.
I nodded and walked over to the edge of the water, my hands still clasped together.
Once I reached the edge of the water, I peeked in at the butterfly through a small crack in my fingers, then I looked back over at Gerard.
He smiled a sweet smile at me and stood up, walking over to me. Once he was standing beside me, he placed his hands on top of mine and gently formed a grip around them. I looked at him. He looked at me. And with that, he parted my hands and watched the butterfly begin to fly away.
I stared at the smile on his face for a bit before I looked at the butterfly; It danced freely along the surface of the water before taking off into the sky, higher than Gerard or I could reach.
“Nothing is more beautiful than the sight of a butterfly flying freely.” Gerard smiled, exhaling loudly.
Without thinking I asked, “What’s so beautiful about it?”
“I don’t know.” Gerard shrugged, slipping his hands into the pockets of his jeans. “I have eyes and whatever they touch is beautiful, I guess. I mean, I look at things all day, every day, and I’ve learnt that everything is beautiful in a way.”
“What about the ugly and bad things?” I asked.
“Still beautiful.” He smiled. “Do you think you’re beautiful, Frank?”
“That’s a bit of a self centred question..” I mumbled.
“Uh-Uh-Uh, don’t try to avoid the question.” Gerard smirked, waving his index finger in front of my face. “Do you or don’t you think you’re beautiful?”
“Ok, no. I don’t.” I frowned. “I've never considered myself to be beautiful, and I never will.”
Gerard smiled. “Who are you?”
“You know who I am.” I rolled my eyes.
“No, I mean who are you?” He repeated.
Confused, I raised an eyebrow and said, “I’m Frank Iero. I’m seventeen in a few months. I know, I’m short for my age; but I will grow! Uh, I have a few tattoos and piercings. I play guitar.. And I don’t know what else there is to say about me..”
“It’s beautiful to be yourself.” Gerard smiled. “So, therefore, you are beautiful.”
“I’m not beautiful..” I frowned.
“Yes you are. Everyone is.” He smiled. “You may not see a beautiful person when you look in the mirror, Frank, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t beautiful.”
Gerard smiled and scruffed up my hair, “You don’t give up, do you?”