Status: on hiatus. got other things to manage, not sure when i'll continue this, though. sorry guys. ;L

Beneath Summer Skies and Four Letter Lies


I shuffled through the open beach gates with gelatin knees, eyes scanning around the whole place, blurry as the sun's nine o'clock rays kept on battling with my eyelids. I found him soon enough though - he's the kind that wasn't that hard to find - lying on one of the white benches, near the shops with his hands folded at the back of his cup-covered face, his legs danggling about on the handle.

"Where have you been?" I heard him speak with an unmoving body after I greeted a nice, warm 'hey'. "I was so worried."

"Woke up late, sorry. And I can't get a single ride—"

"I really thought something happened to you." He removed the cup and turned it backwards on top of his longish tangles of hair, and slowly stood up to watch me catch pea-sized breaths. "And I don't need excuses...since you obviously just don't wanna go out with me."

"I didn't mean to come late." Hell, I didn't mean to come in the first place. And I only did come in evidence that I'm true to my words. I mean, he asked for a date. I'm his...ugh. Still can't bring myself to say it. I'm his...his girlfriend now.

But I knew that telling it to his face would only wreck both our mornings, fully collapse the towers of my already-ruined summer, and I really did decide to arrive early anyway. "I just forgot to set my a—"

"Don't worry, I...I get it."

"But I—"

He shook his seemingly-disappointed head. "No more excuses, love. Hurting a person's feelings then bottling it up with lies doesn't help the situation."

I could've taken it, I could; but he was already dramatically looking up at the sun-soaked sky like heaven had suddenly bestowed a curse upon him or something, perhaps questioning himself what he had done to deserve this kind of punishment—he even probably calls it that. I pushed him on his broad shoulder by a tired hand.

"The hell is wrong with you?! I didn't mean to be late!"

"You so did mean to," he replied, beginning to seem amused. He tapped my head. "And for that, you're going to have to follow everything I have to say today."

An eye-pop-and-roll. "In your unicorn dreams, pal!"

He was chuckling now, and swaying his pointer finger from left to right. "Na-uh. Boyfriend. Not 'pal'." Then moved the said finger at the front lane of his lips. "And now I give you the right to shh. Latecomers are not allowed to talk."

And with that and a quick 'follow' hand gesture, he walked away and I guess I got no choice but to toddle on behind him. We headed towards the back, somewhere near the end of the huge parking lot, and I was silent as I watched his hands squander down his pockets and got a set of keys, all stuck together by a weird and pink and rugged little doll keychain. I could've remarked on how girly his keychain was, but my attention swiftly focused on the door of a slick red-trimmed-and-black car he's opening.

My eyes just popped and rolled down the ground. "You have a car?"

"Latecomer, I have many stuff you don't know about," he said, and flashed a grin that whispered something cold against the summer morning.

* * *

"Oh, and add this one. Thanks,"

"Easy now, there's still tomorrow."

He laughed at me and I glared, seemingly the customary tradition between us since we met. I handed the menu back to the waiter, and, thinking this could not get worse, continued my evil gaze on him, and then heard the waiter snicker at us before shuffling away.

"I forgot to tell you you look pretty today."

And that totally caught me off of my guard. Once again, The Great Wayde had confounded us all. More specifically - me, myself and I. I could barely recall picking up one of my favorite blouses this morning, as I was in a hurry that it seemed like a blur in my head now. I didn't mean to present nicely for him. He wish.

He smiled darkly. "Why so quiet, love? Too flattered?"

"Am not!" But I totally felt the warmth creeping beneath my cheek bones. Of course he's kidding.

He looked at me with knotted eyes when he seemed to have noticed something in my features. "I'm not kidding, you know."

Ha. He's a mind-reader now. What's next? I still flushed vehemently, though. Which is not good. Must change the subject, must change the subject— "Nice keychain, by the way."

I snickered, pointing at the danggling piece that appeared once again a few minutes after we ordered, being played by his fingers.

"Oh," he said, with a little emphasis of surprise, and smiled at the thing. "It's my little sister's."

"Oh." My turn to say it, with the same kind of surprise. I don't know why I suddenly felt so curious. "Why is it...with you?"

"She gave it to me." He looked away, his smile hanging loosely, and it didn't quite reach his eyes, as usual. "Before she went away with my dad."


He noticed me staring. And lightly said, "My parents divorced. I'm staying with my mom."


And more stinging silence, until the waiter said 'here's your order, sir, ma'am', and placed our food on the wide table.

He's right. There are many, many things, I don' know about him.

* * *

"Yes! Take that, you! You totally don't deserve to have a soul!"

Wayde had been screaming and cursing for about half an hour now, eyes intently focused, as if the fate of the entire universe depends solely in his game. We were just walking round the mall when we got bored (meaning more awkward and quiet since this morning) when we stopped at the arcade for a break. And I was beside him, catching the noise of the people and their machines even if didn't want to, when we heard a mountain of cries beside us. I looked around.

It was a girl beside the tiny basketball arcade area. A little girl. Crying.

I've always loved children. I never had a little brother or sister, and just looking at kids makes we want to pinch their cheeks and cuddle them and stuff.

I bowed down. "What's wrong, darling?"

She looked at me then, eyes puffy and little lips quivering.

"My big brother said I can get the doll if I play," she explained between sobs, a finger arrowing at the chubby boy with laughing friends from across the end of the massive room, and then at the counter where you exchange tickets with prizes and cash with tokens and everything. "N-no money. Can't shoot anymore...can't play anymore. Can't get the doll anymore."

Wayde heard her cry.


It could've not completely surprise me if he did something like hand a few tokens to the little girl - I mean, any person with a nice-enough heart inside their ribcage would probably do that. I would. Maybe even Melody would.

But instead, he put all his tokens into the slot, leaving him with an empty pocket as he said, "Help me shoot, alright, sweetheart?"

The girl passed a ball as he shot them in the net, and it took a few tries to let a ball wound straight to the basket.

I watched them. 

For the first time I found myself looking at his smiling lips; I never really paid attention to it before, perhaps because only whenever I'm irritated does he show it as a sign of amusement. It was bright beneath the colorful lights and sounds of the place, but all I could feel was the fast thumpings inside of me that made me feel a bit nausicious.

And it didn't help when he looked at me. It didn't help at all. A perfectly-shaped smile could be traced not just across that curved lips, but across his whole features.

I was the one who looked away then; trying to get away from the strange feeling of blood blossoming up the surface of my cheeks, and focused instead on the little kid complaining to his company beside me, telling how the game he was playing sucked, and explained through his snack-filled mouth that he's only trying to play so he can prove how easy and lame it is.

Several shots later (while missing a few points along the way), I saw Wayde's pocket brim with tickets. The little girl watched him exchange it to the ticket booth with the thing she'd been craving for, clapping and yelling as he did. He patted her braided hair and handed her the doll.

For a moment, right there, I wondered if its the arcade lights that lit up his eyes.

The girl gave him a gentle hug and ran across the room with the prize, racing to various machines and getting lost in the frenzy.

"Jo-han-na," I murmured.

Wayde looked at me, an eyebrow raised up. 

"My name," I said, biting my lip.

Not a pinch of surprise or any kind of emotion dripped out of him, leaving me the one with the jigsaw-puzzled face. "I already know your name. Your friends have been screaming their throats out when you were unconscious at the beach."


"Just thought you don't know," I mumbled. "It's just you never called me by my name."

Wayde smiled slightly. "You never called me by my name either."

A lip-bite and a blush—all I could reply him with. And then it came to me. I never did realize how I treated him since we met. Well, he started it, but still.

He held out his hand and bored his happy eyes on mine. "Let's start over? Hi. I'm Wayde."

I let myself release a smile and accepted his hand, soft and wintry against my skin. "Johanna."

"Is it okay if I don't call you that? I want to call you something else."


And of course, his mishievous smirk completed the showcase.

"I prefer to call you 'My Lovely Bride'. Let's get married, Johanna."

I shove his hand away and laughed. "Know what?"


"I've been noticing something. About you."

"What is it?"

"You're always in a hurry about everything. I mean, you tend to rush on things. Why is that?"

He shrugged it off, smiling as he did. "There just come's a time when we all just have to, you know, before we couldn't anymore."

A poker-face. "Huh. And what you mean by that is...?"

And before I knew it he held my wrist again and rushed me to another game in the noisy place, as if I never said a thing. Didn't mind it much after though - he's just weird like that.

* * *

The long drive wasn't as awkward like earlier. Turns out everything Wayde seemed to be before I knew him was a total stranger now - fine, he's still touchy and overconfident and overdramatic, and I knew I shouldn't be changing my opinion about him too soon, but still. Gotta admit he turns out quite to be more than that. Something different. I knew him better than before now. I can't believe I'm saying this, but...I felt not-so-irritated-anymore that day. Happy, even. Safe.

Thousand city lights and confusing turns later, he stopped his car. I was about to scurry on out, when he opened the door and tugged me lightly by the hand. I didn't budge. I let him cover my eyes.

"Where are we, Wayde?"

"Shh. Latecomers are not allowed to ask questions."

When my millions of protests and questions where in the gutters of hell he was taking me ended, he finally removed his hands on my eyes, and it was one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen...

...if I had problems with my eyes, perhaps. Because what was infront of me was...nothing. Na-da. Just the plain green head of a hill, nothing more worth mindblowingly interesting to me.

I was about to say something, but I forgot what it was, because he suddenly interrupted my train of thoughts. A hand that had just been covering my eyes was now under my jaw, gently helping it to be lifted up, as if it needed help.

And now all I could say was, "Wow."

I can hear the smile on his voice. "Nice, isn't it?"

Nice is a severe understatement. The sky—full of stars twinkling the nightfall away, filled my vision, a shooting star or two descending down, and for a moment I felt like catching one by a hand. I can't believe my eyes.

"I knew they'd come tonight," he said, looking heavenwards, too. "So I brought you here."

And then we just sat there, in the clear carpet of grass, while I blushed once again. I can't count how many times I've done that today. To be completely honest with myself, I think it can't be helped, since he's been, well, kind of...


And after a few minutes—awkwardness and silence. Oh, how these things come in pairs.

"Can I hug you?" he suddenly asked.

"You wouldn't take advantage of me, would you?" I asked as I turned around, laughing.

He snorted, probably amused at the idea that I was even thinking about it at all. "Don't worry. Today, I just realized you're not my type after all," he said, chuckling. "Nothing more. Just a hug."

The world felt like the quietest place at the moment, feeling him behind me and the touch of his fingertips as they slowly encase my arms, down to my waist, and their warmth comforted me for a little while. He put his head tenderly on my shoulders, and I stiffened a bit as he gave in gentle breaths on my neck.

I could feel him smile. "I want to tell you something. You know...before this summer ends."

"Tell me then."

"You can keep secrets, don't you?"


A chuckle played inside his lips, I could tell.

I was expecting his words to be something else, something Wayde would usually say. But this time, his grip got tighter as a tear that dripped down on my sleeve brought a completely different shock to me, hitting me deeply, right down to my very core.

"Johanna...I'm dying."