Martin reached out his hand as Frida turned away. The door closed shut before he could say another word. Should he go after her? Did he want to? Martin knew his instincts were right, but he had to know. Frida had been the only friend he had for as long as he could remember.
He sat on the bench on the edge of the school, lost in thought. There was a soft chime as the school bell rang, and Martin looked up from his thoughts. He took a moment to enjoy a brief moment of freedom from the mind – numbing monotony of school. He needed this break. It was time to let go, to see a smile on his face again. If only…
But no, he thought, she would never understand. He would have to wait a few years, but at the very least, he could be there for her one last time. No matter how long it took, she would always be his everything.
Martin stood up, ready to leave. He had to get home already. He felt like he had been here in the same position for the past three months, just sitting and staring at the same spot. He had been thinking about Frida again. He hadn’t seen her since she moved away with her fianceé a few weeks before. Martin sighed, and headed to his car. As he drove home, he wondered what he should say.
“Hey Frida.” No way.
“How have you been?” She wouldn’t answer.
“Listen, just… Listen.” Again with the sappy lines.
“You know, my friend, at least one of us…” You can do this Martin. You can do this.
“… Had been together for a long time.” You’re gonna do this.
“… Was very close to…” You’re gonna do this.
“Do you wanna know a secret?” Don’t tell her!
Martin pulled up to his house, about a half mile away. He thought about Frida for a moment. She probably didn’t even care about him right now. Did that make her happy? Would she be happy if he just left?
“Hi Martin.” He turned to see Frida walking up to him, smiling at the ground. She kept walking past him, and he stayed frozen in place. “Martin, it’s beautiful out.”
For a moment Martin was filled with overwhelming happiness and joy and love, and he ran toward Frida, throwing his arms around her neck. “Oh my God, Frida. It’s been such a long time! How’ve you been? Are you happy? Do you want to go for a ride?” And without warning, Martin let go and stepped back, taking a step back himself. Suddenly, Martin felt like he was choking. His throat hurt so much all he could smell was the flowers on Frida’s hand. She was holding a bunch.
“Hey Martin, uh… If you don’t like me that much then…” Her voice trailed off and she looked up at Martin with a small grin on her lips. “You could… Uh… Leave me.”
Martin watched her carefully this time. Every little detail was there, every little tear. It all seemed so perfect. He would spend the rest of his days with her just like every other happy memory he had made.
“Yeah, um… That’s fine. That’s a good idea. And um… It looks like there’s a little something in the back seat for you…” He heard a small laugh and knew Frida was happy. He turned and walked back around the car as Frida walked around the side. When he got back in the driver seat, he closed the door and turned the key, turning the engine on.
Martin could see her looking out the window, her hair gently swaying. Her hand that was holding the flower was turning a color Martin has never seen before. A deep, rich red. He reached out and took it. They walked together for a minute, hand in hand, before Frida opened the door. Together, they walked through the house and toward the front door. Martin looked over at where Frida stood. As he turned, he saw a smile, not a smile, but a small smirk. “Martin, thank you for everything…”
Martin turned his head and smiled back. She didn’t know he was going to bring it, but she could still share in his happiness. “Come on, get in.” And she walked ahead, gently swinging her arms as she closed the door behind her.
Martin sat in the passenger seat as his friend walked toward the windshield and shut the door, the blood on her hand covering the flower she held. She turned to face the passenger seats.