Status: in progress/frequent updates

You Haunt Me

vii. September 15, 2011

"Happy birthday to you," everyone sang, clapping as Rae covered her face with her hands. She hated being the center of attention, and she hated even more that Stella had dragged her out and made her do this. She had rented out a hall and invited a bunch of people, which Rae wasn't exactly impressed with. She knew it was just Stella's way of trying to get her to socialize more, but she just thought it was all too much.

"You have to make a wish," John whispered in her ear, putting his arm around her. She was glad he was there; he made her feel a lot better.

She moved her hands, her face feeling hot. She knew she was probably a deep shade of red at this point. Closing her eyes, she blew out the candles. Stella came over, cutting the cake.

"What did you wish for?" John asked Rae once the slices of cake were distributed, leaning in close.

"Do you not understand the rules of wish-making?" she responded jokingly. "It won't come true if I tell you.”

"Oh, alright," he laughed, taking a forkful of the cake and shoving it into his mouth.

"Birthday shots for the birthday girl!" Stella called out, holding up a tray.

"Oh my god," Rae shook her head.

"Come on, Rae," Stella pleaded. "Just one? It's your birthday!"

Rae sighed, taking two off the tray and handing one to John.

Stella grabbed her own, holding it up. "To the best fucking person on this planet. I love you, Rae."

The rest of the people cheered in unison.

John turned to Rae, tapping his shot glass on hers. "Cheers."

Rae looked down at the shot, slightly disgusted. She had never been one to drink at all, really, let alone straight liquor. She brought it to her lips anyways, downing it. "Ugh."

"It gets better the more you drink," John chuckled.

Rae shrugged. "Maybe."

The minutes seemed to drag on, and Rae wanted nothing more than to get out of there.


Miraculously, Rae somehow made it through the whole party. She and John left the hall, his hand gripping her waist.

“What do you want to do now?” he had asked her as they got to his truck.

“Try not to have too much fun!” Stella yelled at them, winking as Garrett laughed beside her.

Rae just shook her head. “I kind of just want to go to bed, to be honest.”

He laughed, putting the car in drive. "How about we go to my place? I've got something for you."

She shook her head. "I told you not to get me anything."

"It's nothing big," he reassured her, beginning the drive to his apartment.

She sighed. "Fine."

Once they arrived, he handed her a box. She opened it, seeing a Polaroid camera nestled in some tissue paper. There was also a note, and she picked it up so she could read it: Hope you get to take lots of cool photos with this –O’Callaghan

She laughed a bit to herself when she noticed he had signed it as O’Callaghan. It was the nickname she had called him since they were young. He used to hate it, but he grew to enjoy hearing it come from
her lips as time went on.

“I know you love taking pictures, and you were talking about wanting one of these. I was going to get something nicer...”

She laughed, kissing him. “Thank you, John. It’s amazing.” She always had dreamed of becoming a professional photographer, but life always seemed to get in the way.

He smiled, taking out the camera. "Here, let's take a picture."

She shook her head as he wrapped his arm around her.

"One, two, three, smile," he turned at the last second, kissing her cheek.

A huge smile broke out on her face as she took out the picture.

"You are such a goof," she laughed as they waited for the picture to form on the film.

"Yeah, but look at how cute we are," he responded, grinning as he took the picture out of her hand.

She shook her head, grabbing his face and kissing his lips.

"What was that for?" he mumbled against her lips.

She shrugged, kissing him again. "You make me so happy."

"Well, that's good, because you make me so happy too," he pulled away so he could kiss her forehead.