I wrote this short, flash fiction a while ago. It was originally published in fanfiction, as well as one of the shorts in a book I released called Five Fingers of a Hand. It’s one of my early works, which I edited for grammar and punctuation, but really didn’t change much more. It’s always a reminder of how we grow as authors over time.

Michelle awoke from a foggy daze as she sat behind her favorite blonde in Spanish class, whom she knew as Melanie. Her best friend, Jason, had accidentally knocked over a vase of flowers that were resting on the edge of the professor’s desk. The flowers had been a birthday gift from the teacher’s husband that morning. Jason was clumsier than anyone she knew, always running into things. Water trickled between the broken pieces of glass on the floor, and a small stream headed Michelle’s way. She watched as the water approached, forgetting everything, even herself. Lost in a dream…

Once again, Michelle was jolted out of her reverie by another student in her Spanish class, Joanie, who harbored dislike for Michelle. Without a word of apology, Joanie pushed Michelle’s body sideways, bringing her closer to the water. Michelle felt as though she were falling overboard, on the verge of drowning in her thoughts about the blonde girl in front of her. Michelle heard a slow, deep, and quiet whisper from in front of her.

“Hey, meet me at my locker after class.”

She looked up from the floor; the water was gone. Jason had cleaned up the mess he had made, and Michelle wished he could also take care of the turmoil growing in her stomach. But that was something only one person could soothe. Michelle’s eyes fixated on Melanie’s lips, amidst the silent room except for her voice. Michelle barely heard the words, but she understood their meaning. Yearning to reach out, Michelle suffered because she felt that this passionate ache inside her was not mutual.

Nevertheless, between the day and the night, Melanie was her twilight—a blend of darkness yet a glimmer of light at the end of her tunnel. Lost in her thoughts, Michelle leaned forward, staring at Melanie’s strawberry-glossed lips. She couldn’t control herself. Michelle hoped that Melanie would be there to catch her. Michelle snapped back to reality, restraining herself. As she focused her eyes on Melanie’s captivating smile, Michelle knew in that moment that she was falling, falling for Melanie. What had Melanie done to make her feel this way? In her mind, Michelle begged for help. She was losing everything she knew and everything she was. Dammit, Melanie. What did you do to me?

After class, Michelle lingered behind. She allowed Melanie, Jason, and her classmates to go ahead, needing a moment to collect herself. This was not a sudden occurrence; the feelings had been growing over months. Perhaps it was that lingering hug they shared when she won an award for a paper she had written. Maybe it was when Melanie helped wipe off the spilled cocoa from the front of her shirt. Or perhaps it was when they both chased after Melanie’s cell phone, collided, and fell to the floor, taking their time to get back up. A lingering, affectionate gaze? Michelle was certain that Melanie must have sensed her feelings.

As she stepped out the door, a direct path lay before her, leading to Melanie and her locker. Michelle paused, waiting… anticipating. She yearned to be next to her, to catch a whiff of her perfume, but there was no safety in that desire. There was only one road to take, and Michelle’s inner turmoil was driving her to the brink.

Once again, Michelle heard that sweet whisper. Melanie’s voice echoed in her mind, calling out to her. She read Melanie’s lips, “Michelle, come here.”

Michelle wondered what it would be like if their lips were near. Could she feel Melanie’s breath right before their lips met? Once more, Michelle experienced that overwhelming sensation of falling, falling for the girl who had been her friend forever and a day. What was Melanie doing to her?

Locker doors slammed shut around her. Michelle had lost herself again; she was frozen, afraid that if she were to open her mouth, nothing would come out. In another whisper, Michelle saw Melanie say something to Jason, but she couldn’t hear a thing.

A hand pressed against Michelle’s back, Jason’s strength propelling her toward Melanie. The push halted once Michelle stood in front of Melanie. “Do not open your mouth,” Michelle thought to herself. Melanie handed Michelle an envelope as Jason walked away. Michelle stared at it, afraid that it might contain a letter beginning with “Dear Michelle.” She hesitantly handed it back to Melanie. “No, silly, open it,” Melanie said with a smile, encouraging Michelle to proceed. Michelle felt as if she were drowning again. She noticed the water on the floor, slowly approaching her, as her finger glided along the edge of the envelope, inadvertently tearing the top of the letter in two. With the top now open, Michelle reached inside and pulled out a card adorned with hearts, bears, and rainbows. The words “Happy Valentine’s Day” greeted her at the top.

She opened the card and saw ink swirled on the inside, forming words. Melanie smiled with a shy, almost worried look. Michelle read to herself, “I don’t know what you did, but catch me, darling. I have fallen for you. Love, Your Melanie.” Michelle smiled, at a loss for words. The bell rang, but Michelle did not hear it. There was another whisper, but it was loud, strong; it traveled down her body and stung her heart. “I love you too, Melanie,” Melanie said, helping guide Michelle to form a sentence.

Michelle’s heart beat in unison with Melanie’s, for the same purpose, the same reason.

With a laugh, Melanie pushed Michelle down the hall. “Get going to class, we’ll talk at lunch.” Just before Melanie turned the corner of the school hallway, Michelle hollered out, “I love you too, Melanie.” No need for help, Michelle had fallen… and would be relishing the crash!

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