Copyright 2006 by Emily Anthony
I wrote this when I was a sophmore for my English class. I love to write. I've been writing since seventh grade. My favorite books are . . . numerous, so I won't bore you with them. I usually only allow my friends to read what I write, so this is a big step for me. I get really excited over things and this is the worst sounding paragraph I've ever written.
I walked forlornly down the halls of my high school, dragging my feet. I walked slowly so I would not arrive at my locker at the same time as my best friend; we always met at my locker. I couldn’t face her yet. It was too soon. I couldn’t tell Kelly about this. Even if I were allowed to tell her, I wouldn’t be able to form the words I would need to tell her.
I slowly walked up the maroon colored stairs of Collierville High School as others shoved passed me in order to catch up with their friends, not caring at all about what I was dealing with. I walked up to my locker, turning the numbers to the thirty-two, twenty-six, and then six. I pulled out my first and third period books and pulled out the books from my backpack and put them into my locker. After placing my backpack into my locker, I headed downstairs for my first period class.
I still had fifteen minutes before school started, but I didn’t feel like socializing. I would rather spend that time reading my book and blocking out the horrible fact that my life would drastically change once again.
I sat down in my seat and opened my book. I hadn’t even finished the first paragraph when I saw two hands placed on my desk.
“Hey! Whatcha reading?”
I looked up into the joyful eyes that belonged to Kelly Baldwin. Her hair was pulled back into a ponytail and her round glasses sat eloquently on her nose.
“Hey,” I said, trying to sound cheerful. “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
“How far are you?
“Not as far as I should be. We have a quiz today on chapters five through eight.”
“You’d better get reading then!” Kelly said cheerfully. “I’m already done with that part.” I smiled and closed the book, knowing she was waiting for me to walk with her around school before the first bell rang. I got up and followed Kelly out of the room.
“Did you see Smallville on Friday?” I asked, looking at the ground but looked at Kelly when she laughed.
“I watched it with you, remember?”
Oh, yeah. I had slept over at her house and we had watched the television show together. We always watched it together, even if it was over the phone. I smiled sheepishly and put my hands in the pouch of my sweatshirt and looked at the floor.
“So,” Kelly said trying to break the silence. “Has Jason emailed you lately?”
My heart stopped. Jason. No! I couldn’t tell him! I couldn’t tell him about this horrible, inevitable fate that was lurking around the corner! I hadn’t even thought of telling him. How could I have forgotten!
“You okay?” Kelly asked, looking at me with concern. I shook my head dismissively. “I’m fine.”
“You sure?” I remained silent. I wanted to scream. I wanted to tell her everything. I would not be able to keep this a secret for long.
The silence between us was deafening. I could tell Kelly was worried, but there was nothing I could say.
The bell startled us out of our daze and we walked back towards our classes. We arrived at Kelly’s first. She said good-bye and I waved behind me and headed on towards my class. I sat down right before the late bell rang and tuned out my teacher immediately. Geometry was a useless subject anyway.
The day passed slowly. I participated in what I was required to do, but nothing was comprehended the entire day.
The entire week passed like that. Nothing but a numb going-through-the-motions week...church was the worst part, though.
Sunday morning I went to my youth group at Central Church. I was not excited about standing next to the ever perceptive Jason Andrews. He always knew what I was feeling. That’s part of why I like him so much. It was like he was psychic. His brown hair was always slightly messy and his glasses were always smudged, but I still liked him. I was so excited when I found out he liked me back. It’s all thanks to Tyler for that. He asked Jason if he liked me; he already knew I liked Jason. It was actually a pretty humorous event. Tyler told Jason I liked him and that’s how it all started.
“Hey!” Jason greeted. I smiled in response, not trusting my voice to stay steady.
“How are you?”
“Pretty good,” I lied, causing myself to flinch inwardly for lying to Jason.
Youth group started soon after that. My friends and I went to the back of the room like we normally did for worship time.
One song we sang...it brought up all the feelings I had about the monster in my path. Hatred, anger, fear, worry, regret. It brought tears down my cheeks. Not wanting Jason to see, I slowly stepped backwards so I was behind him. I couldn’t let him know...
I wiped my eyes at the end of the song and tried to compose myself during the next song, but found I couldn’t. The monster was too strong. I accidentally called Jason’s attention to me when I breathed inward a bit loudly. I quickly looked away, purposely letting my hair fall over my face.
“Tori,” I heard him whisper. I felt his gentle hand on my shoulder and turned to look at him.
“You okay?” he asked, concern leaking out of his eyes. I smiled a very unconvincing smile and said, “Yeah, I’m fine.” My voice totally gave me away if my smile hadn’t.
“You don’t look like it.” I just smiled and walked towards my seat, as the song was over and worship time had ended.
I hated ignoring his attention and not giving him answers as to why I was so upset. I avoided Jason the rest of the time I was at church; I even avoided him during Sunday night church. This was not working. Darn you, monster!
It was now Wednesday afternoon a few weeks later. Kelly knew for a fact something was wrong with me but never pressed the matter. I thanked her for that. I had just finished my homework, though I’m not sure how much I comprehended. I grabbed my sweatshirt off my bed and my Bible off my nightstand and walked downstairs. Wednesday night church. Jason...
Another day of lying to Jason. Oh, I hated that!
We arrived soon enough and I walked up the blue stairwell and turned right and bumped into someone.
“Sorry!” I said hurriedly. I looked up into the smiling face of Jason.
“You don’t have to apologize.”
I smiled, actually slightly happy. Being around him recently had taken away all thoughts of that horrible monster intent on taking everything away from me.
“Follow me,” he said suddenly.
“What?” I asked, a bit startled.
“Follow me,” he repeated, smiling a big, mischievous smile.
I grinned back and followed him down the stairs, my heart in my throat and thoughts running laps in my head trying to figure out what we were doing. He led me to the gym and pulled me into a corner. He looked at me and held up his finger in a gesture of hold on, and reached into his jacket and pulled out a clear rectangular box. Jason handed it to me and I looked through the top, my curious eyes brimming with excitement.
I gasped. It was a beautiful, silver necklace with a triangular purple stone on the end of it. It had one white spot on the side that gave the stone a swirled look.
“It’s beautiful,” I said as I opened the box.
“I’m glad you like it. I made it.”
“You made this?” I asked in amazement. Jason nodded sheepishly, pleased with himself for successfully pleasing me.
We started walking as I tried to clasp the necklace around my neck.
“The stone’s an amethyst,” he said.
“Really?” he nodded.
“I was trying to decide whether to use a sapphire or this.”
“I’m glad you chose this. Purple is my favorite color.” Jason beamed as we walked inside the Sr. High room. We arrived just in time. Worship had just begun. That night was the first night I had ever made it through the night without thinking about the beast hiding in the dark.
Thursday morning, my joyful mood continued. Kelly definitely noticed and she took full advantage of it. The first thing I did was show her my necklace.
“He made that for you?” she asked in awe.
“Uh-huh! Isn’t it pretty? I love it!”
Kelly beamed and we walked around the school and we talked about last nights Smallville.
Sunday afternoon, my mother was in the kitchen making diner. It was then that she noticed my necklace.
“Did Grandma give it to you?”
“No,” I mumbled.
“Oh? Who gave it to you then? Where did you get it?”
“Jason,” I whispered.
“A boy!” He said the last word as if it were vile and poisonous. It made me angry. Jason was not vile.
“When did he give it to you?”
An awkward silence filled the room and I made a quick exit. I ran up the stairs and sat in my room, playing my Casting Crowns CD and sat against my bed and looked out the window.
Sunday night at church I wore my sweatshirt again, as I had returned to my foul, depressing mood that afternoon. I couldn’t wait to see Jason and get rid of it.
But it didn’t happen.
Jason had finally gotten up the courage to ask me again what was wrong.
“I’m fine, really. Well, I guess I’m not, but I can’t tell you why I’m not okay. My parents don’t want anyone to know yet.” I figured I would just tell him that. I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of it sooner. I was finally admitting it to someone, even if it was only part of it.
“You’ll live through it right?” he asked worriedly. I gave a small laugh at his concern. Did I really make it seem like it was a life or death situation?
“No, I’ll live.”
“Good. Uh, so how are your sisters taking...whatever it is?”
“Oh, they’re excited, happy, and any
other adjective that fits into that category.” Jason looked at
me, confused. “How could something that makes you so miserable
make your sisters happy?” I shrugged and changed the subject.
The next Sunday shocked me. I was not ready for the question that Jason asked me. Again, the all-knowing, ever perceptive Jason Andrews shows just how perceptive he is. When he opened his mouth to ask the question, I knew something wasn’t right. My blood froze and my heart stopped when he asked...
“Are you moving?” I did nothing. I just stood there in stunned silence, staring into Jason’s searching eyes. How had he figured it out? How had he known? I was afraid, scared, angry, and hurt. The silence was broken an eternity later when Jason said, “Please, tell me.”
I felt my head slowly nodding up and down and felt the air surrounding us turn cold as Jason let the news sink into him. I was moving. The knowledge of the monster had been leaked. He was spreading his misery and it was my fault. I couldn’t take it. I turned around and left, ignoring Jason’s calls. I skipped the rest of church and just wandered the halls not caring. I didn’t want to face him any time soon, but I also felt drawn to him. My feelings were becoming so cloudy. I couldn’t make sense of anything. I just wanted to stop thinking!
Jason’s mom made my guilt much worse when she came up to me that night. She told me she had sat with Jason for hours after church because he was so upset. ‘Hey, thanks for telling me that! I always want to know when I hurt my friends that badly!’ I know she didn’t mean to make me feel bad. I just didn’t want to hear that.
I’m not sure how or when I made it back to the Sr. High room, but I did. Jason asked me where I was moving and I told him I was moving to California for my dad’s job.
Again, during worship, I had a little “crying session” and as usual, Jason was there.
A song was played that reminded me of the last time the monster had threatened my life. I remembered how awful it was. I didn’t want to do it again. I fell to the floor, and cried to my knees. I felt Jason slide down next to me. He didn’t say anything; neither did I. I have no clue why I did this, but I placed my head on his shoulder. Surprise and happiness filled me when he placed his arm over my shoulders. I grabbed his hand with my right hand and he sat there, comforting me with his presence. When we were forced to move, I noticed I had gotten his shirt wet. It was his superman shirt. His favorite shirt. I smiled sheepishly and walked with him towards our seats. My Superman.
The next Saturday, I went with my youth group to a haunted hayride. It was so much fun. I love being scared, which is a good thing because I get scared real easily.
On our way down a hill towards the Haunted Trail, Jason walked beside me. I nearly jumped when he grabbed my hand and closed my fingers around a velvet package into my hand. “Don’t open it until you get home, okay?”
I nodded and placed the package in my pocket.
Excitement and curiosity filled my body. What was it? Why did I have
to wait until I went home?
That night was the longest time I had ever held his hand. I really didn’t mind if others saw, but at the same time, I hoped they wouldn’t. They did. They all saw. I had so many people come up to me during church telling they saw Jason and me holding hands. It was quite embarrassing with all the attention they were giving me.
When I got home after the haunted hayride, I opened the velvet package and pulled out a silver ring. Engraved on the ring were the words True Love Waits. A promise ring.
I checked my email the next day after church and had found Jason had emailed me. Inside, there was a phrase that wasn’t English. It said, Lla naa vanima. I emailed him back and asked him what it said. Jason wouldn’t tell me, but he did tell me what language it was and it was the last language I would expect anyone to know. J.R.R. Tolkein’s Lord of the Rings Elvish.
He spoke Elvish!
After a couple of hours of searching online, I found out what it meant. On a Lord of the Rings website, near the middle of a long list of Elvish phrases, I found what I was looking for. Lla naa vanima - You are beautiful.
Once again, Jason had found a way to make me happier
than I ever imagined I could be. I couldn’t believe it. He
thought I was beautiful. Someone thought I was beautiful and had told
me. Jason thought I was beautiful. My Superman thought I was
My youth group was planning a trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee on the week after Christmas. My family and I were going to move the day after they were scheduled to come back. I wanted to go so badly, but I couldn’t go. Do you want to know why? It wasn’t because of the price, the location, or when they were going, but because Jason was going. That’s why I couldn’t go. How could my parent’s do that to me? This would be the last time I would see him or anyone else and they say I can’t go! It would be my last chance to say I was a part of the Central Church youth group! It would be the last time I would be able to go on a Sr. High trip. And they said no.
And as usual, Jason figured out why I couldn’t
go. Now, Jason hates my parents. I couldn’t exactly say I was
mad at him for that, because I wasn’t too fond of them right
During worship Wednesday night, I had yet another breakdown and Jason was there to comfort me. My Superman was there to comfort me and, yet again, displayed how strong he was.
After church that night, Jason pulled me over to an empty stairwell so we could talk. I was cold. Very cold. I was wearing a sweatshirt and still, I was cold. Jason offered me his jacket, but I refused it. He ignored my refusal and placed it around me anyway.
“I don’t want you to be uncomfortable.” I smiled at his courtesy and hugged him. We stood there for...I don’t know how long. I held my Superman tightly and he held me. I wanted nothing more than to stay with him, be with him, hold on to him.
I closed my eyes as I felt tears threatening to fall. Jason held me tighter. I didn’t want this to end. I needed him. I wanted him.
“Tori, I don’t want you to go. I need you so much. I won’t let you go. Melin ceni hin lin sila i’eladhach. Arwenamen, lla naa vanima. Melamin, amin khiluva lle a’gurtha ar’thar.” He stopped. “I love you.”
I looked up into his eyes. Shocked though I was that he had just said that, I was happier than I had ever been. He said it. He told me he loved me. The joy that filled me was indescribable. My Superman had taken me flying through the stars with him. I could feel the corners of my mouth going towards my ears and forming the largest smile I had ever sported.
“I love you too, Jason Andrews.” I
wrapped my arms around him once more and rested my head against his
On Saturday, I checked my email and opened one from
Jason. He had put the most beautiful song in it that fit our
Melamin, I shall see you Tarion. Hey, I’ve got a song for you.
your sweet and weary head.
Night is falling.
You have come to journey’s end.
Sleep now, dream
of ones who came before.
They are calling,
from across the distant shore.
Why do you weep?
What are these tears upon your face?
Soon you will see.
All of your fears will pass away.
Safe in my arms,
you’re only sleeping.
What can you see,
on the horizon?
Why do the white gulls call?
Across the sea,
a pale moon rises.
The ships have come,
to carry you home.
And all will turn,
to silver glass.
A light on the water.
All souls pass.
Into the world of night.
Through shadows falling,
Out of memory and time.
We have come now to the end.
White shores are calling.
You and I will meet again.
And you’ll be here in my arms,
What can you see,
on the horizon?
Why do the white gulls call?
Across the sea,
a pale moon rises.
The ships have come,
to carry you home.
And all will turn,
to silver glass.
A light on the water.
Grey ships pass
Into the west.
Amin khiluva lle a’gurtha ar’thar
I Love You
I called Kelly after that and read the first few lines when she exclaimed, “I know that song!”
“It’s at the end of the third Lord of the Rings movie! Do you want to hear it?”
As Kelly sang, I followed her words with the words on
the computer screen. It was amazing. Kelly’s voice really
helped the song too. She had a beautiful voice.
It was now the end of December. Only a few more weeks
until we left. We had gone to my cousin’s house and had an
early Christmas. I received the last three Harry Potter books. I had
started reading them last summer and soon figured out that reading
those books was the only thing that could keep my mind off the
monster now. When the movers came into my room to take my furniture,
I’d be reading my Harry Potter book. I hated myself for liking
something that was so filled with things I didn’t believe
myself, but it was the only thing that got me through the night
It was now December twenty-sixth—the day the kids in my youth group were going to leave for Gatlinburg. My dad drove me up to the church to say goodbye to everyone up there. I immediately went and found Jason.
“I thought you weren’t coming,” he said, trying to keep his excitement down.
“I’m not coming. I’m just here to say goodbye.”
“Oh,” he said, looking at the ground. I sighed and hugged him. He returned the embrace and we just stood there, uninterrupted. I thought about everything that had happened between us ever since we started to like each other. I thought about what kind of a person he was. I hoped with all my might that this was not going to be the last time I ever saw him. I cried. I cried and didn’t hold back. I felt Jason rub my back in a comforting motion, but I knew he was crying too. I didn’t care who saw. I just wanted to stand next to him for the rest of eternity. I didn’t want to leave. I couldn’t leave. We didn’t move until the youth pastor came out and told everyone to come into the sanctuary. I looked up into his eyes.
“Goodbye.” I whispered and turned around and left. I walked quickly out of the room and towards the doors without looking back.
“Wait!” I heard someone call. I didn’t stop. I couldn’t stay. I had to leave...
I felt someone grab my arm. I turned around and looked up into Jason’s beautiful eyes.
“Don’t leave yet.” Tears were threatening to fall out of his eyes. Seeing that, I let mine fall again and collapsed into him. My Superman. My Superman. He’s not supposed to cry. He has no weakness. It was then that I realized that I was my Superman’s kryptonite. I cried even harder. Why did this monster not only have to affect me? Wasn’t it content with destroying my life? Did it have to hurt Jason too? It wasn’t fair! It wasn’t fair!
“Melamin, Cormainin mauve tenna’ta etea lle au. I will weep until I see you again.”
“I will too,” I whispered as a let him
go. I turned around and walked out of Central Church for the last
in the subject line of the message.)