Gerard questions the paternity of the baby.
"Hi Sara," he said softly. "Can I take a seat?"
"Yeah, sure." I watched as he took the step beside me. We sat in silence, neither one of us knowing exactly what to say. I studied Gerard's face, the way the sun made his skin look more pale than it really was. I smiled to myself, not knowing that I was doing it until he look over at me and asked, "What?"
"Nothing. Just thinking I guess."
"I've been doing that a lot lately." He flashed me a beautiful grin. "
Sara, this is going to seem random, but did you ever read what I wrote in your yearbook?"
"I don't think I did." I tried to remember if I ever did, but I didn't remember doing such a thing. "Why?"
"Just wondering." He looked up at the sky, which was quickly darkening. "Sara, do you remember in grade five when we went on the class field trip to the beach?" He paused, waiting for an answer, and when I replied with a mumble, he continued. "We had to find some stupid shell to take back with us, and it took you forever to find what you were looking for. The perfect one. I remember thinking you were to picky, and I ended up yelling at you right there that it wasn't a life changing thing, and that you didn't need to think so much about it. But you being the person that you were rolled your eyes and kept looking until you found it. It turned out the perfect one had been right at your feet and you didn't even notice it. You just looked over it, taking for granted that it was just like every other shell you had seen."
"Gerard, I'd love to reminisce about our childhood, but I'm getting cold. So if this story has a point, could you maybe not take a few years to get to it?"
"I'm trying to say, that maybe...Maybe you've looked over people too, just like you looked over that shell. Maybe the perfect one for you was right in front of you and you didn't notice."
"I'm sorry Gerard. You know I don't like to talk about it. It's just part of the past, and we can't change it." I got up and brushed my pants off before turning to go back inside.
"Can you answer me one question then? I think I deserve it."
I sighed. I had been expecting him to ask me, and I wasn't at all surprised when the words came out of his mouth. "Is it mine?" he asked simply. I turned back around to face him, making sure that my face was as neutral as possible. Some secrets weren't meant to be told right?
"No." And with that I went back inside, but instead of going up to my room, I went to the basement and pulled out my boxes of old stuff that I didn't want to take with me to Toronto, but hadn't wanted to throw out either. I rummaged through at least four boxes until I finally found it. Its glossy cover with barely any scratches, binding together pictures of memories that I found so hard to think back on.
I took a seat on the cold cement floor, leaning my back against the wall and propping the book on my knees. I took a deep breath before opening my senior yearbook. I skimmed over all the comments until I found the familiar scrawl of Gerard's. I read it slowly, taking in every word as if I were a sponge.
Saying this to you in person and having you reject
me would just about kill me so I have to write it
instead. In grade five, when we went to the beach
with school, it was the first time I realized I was
in love with you. And that I have been ever since.
I don't just love your perfect smile, or your
endlessly flawed personality, but what I love about
you the most is the way you make me feel about myself.
When I'm with you, I'm not pretending. I'm just me.
Honestly, the future freaks me out, but if I could
only face it with you, that would make things so
much easier. I want you. I need you.
Tears streaked down my face as I finished reading his entry. He gave me a chance. And I ruined it. If I had read this 5 years ago, the day he wrote it, than I could have been his. My baby could truly have been his. I tried to stop my crying but it only became worse. I don't know how long I cried for until I fell asleep.
I woke up from being shaken, to my annoyance, and opened my eyes to find myself lying in my bed. "Sara, honey, it's time to get up. We have to leave to catch the plane in forty minutes." Tim sat down on the bed beside me and brushed my hair off my face. "Morning beautiful."
"Morning" I grumbled, my head slightly pounding.
"What happened yesterday?" he asked, one I was sitting up.
"What do you mean?" I asked, a bit confused.
"Last night your dad found you in the basement, lying on the floor. What happened?"
And then I remembered. Gerard. "Um, I was going through some old things. I must've fell asleep."
"Okay, well you should start getting ready. I don't want to miss the flight." He got up and left the room, leaving me with my ever so dangerous thoughts.
20 minutes later, I took a seat at the kitchen table, joining my parents for breakfast. I was helping clear the table when the doorbell rang. My dad got up to get it, and a minute he returned followed my Mikey, Gerard and their parents.
"We just wanted to say goodbye to you two before you left" said Donna.
"Thanks. It was great to see you again," I said, giving her a hug.
"So will we be invited to your wedding?" she asked, expectantly.
"Of course. As soon as the invitations are done, I'll be sure to send on to you."
"Oh that's great!" She went over to take with my mother, which left me facing Gerard and Mikey.
"Well kiddo, it's been a slice. I hope I see you again sometime soon." Mikey gave me a hug and ruffled my hair.
"Who are you calling kiddo? You're younger than I am."
"True. I'll be right back." He left, and now it was Gerard's turn.
"It really has been nice to see you again, you know? I just hope that we can see more of each other in the future. Even if you are on tour."
He smiled, dimples forming in his cheeks. "Don't worry. I'll be sure to call." He wrapped his arms around me, and rubbed my back. "Take care of yourself."