Saturday, February 28, 2015

Popcorn

We all stood there, watching her back as she walked away from us. She wore a black coat, her blond hair was draped down her back. And she was carrying a brown suitcase, walking toward the plane, walking away from me.

"I'm really going to miss her," Jenna said as she hugged her boyfriend, Nick.

"I know. We all are," Nick replied. He clapped me on the shoulder. "Let's go home, buddy." Nick and Jen turned around, walking in the opposite direction of Megan. I couldn't move. I just stood there and listened to the voice on the intercom, calling for the passengers of the flight she was going to be on. I turned and saw Nick kiss Jen on her forehead. I knew then that they're feelings for each other were much stronger than any reality. I wasn't sure what that meant exactly... until this moment. When I saw her walking away from me.

She had just turned the corner when I regained control of my limbs. "Catch you guys later," I muttered. Then I ran. I flat out ran after Megan. As my legs carried me, I thought about everything we had ever been through. All the times we ate popcorn while watching movies, walked on the beach and talked about what might be, the time I taught her how to surf and how many times she failed to pick up on my lessons. I thought of the time my mother passed away and I cried tears I didn't even know I had within me. And how she was there, making it better by letting me feel that I wasn't alone. It wasn't worth giving up. We only meet several people that rock us to our cores.

"Megan!" I called as loudly as I could. A few people turned to look at me but I ignored them. She turned around, surprised. "Megan. Don't go, please," I said, half breathless.

"Sam, what are you doing?" she asked.

"Do you remember the first time we went out together? That first date where we said we'd see that new blockbuster movie that was showing in the movie theater?"

"Sure. The concession stand had run out of popcorn," she said, smiling nostalgically.

"Yeah and the movie turned out to be terrible. And then we went for a walk down the street but then it started to rain. You had reminded me to bring the umbrella before we went out but I forgot."

"I was wearing that new cashmere sweater my dad sent me from God knows where. And I was so mad that it got so ruined."

"Right. It was the worst of first dates. Like in the entire history of the world. Am I right?"

"I don't see your point. Are you proving that we just don't work out? Because you don't have anything to worry about. I'll be in LA and you'll be in New York and even the time zones are different. We don't have to be together."

"You're not getting it," I said, bowing my head to catch my breath for a second. When I raised my head, I noticed a tear trail on her face. She was crying.

"What are you doing, Sam?" she repeated, this time, her voice was sad. I could see in her blue eyes that she remembered everything, that our memories were playing in her mind again and again as well. Like a song on repeat.

"What happened at the end of the date? I walked you up to your door and-"

"I asked you to come in."

"I did. Then we sat by the fireplace, eating gelato. And do you remember what you said?"

She thought for a moment as another tear fell. "I said, 'As long as there's us and gelato and a fireplace, everything else doesn't matter'."

I took a step closer to her and put my hand on her cheek. "Maybe this is just another minor setback. Maybe this is just the concession stand running out of popcorn. And tonight it won't matter anymore. Stay. Please. I know that you're afraid here and that you don't have much family here. But you have me and I don't want to spend the rest of my life looking back at this moment and regretting not finding out what we might've had."

"Sam...," she said, indecision in her eyes.

"I'm in love with you," I whispered, leaning in to kiss her.