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Full excerpt Pages 113-116
“Just spit it out, Nat,” I urge, still holding her cold hand.
“I know you don’t like me, but I feel this connection between us. I’d rather be friends than nothing at all. I don’t even know what we are right now, but it’s killing me. I like hanging out with you, and I don’t want things to be awkward.” She lets out one long, labored breath. “So, I won’t try anything again. We’ll be completely platonic.” She crosses her hand over her chest in such an honest way that it squeezes my heart like a grapefruit.
“What if I don’t want to be friends?” I stare through the darkness at her.
“So what? You just never want to see me again. Am I really that off base? You feel nothing when we’re together?” Her voice breaks, and I know that my words are hurting her. I can’t believe I’m even thinking this, but I want to tell her what I’m feeling. I want her to know the effect she has on me.
“I feel everything when we’re together. I feel my heart start to beat. My blood starts to pump. It’s like when you aren’t around the lights are dimmed, and the second you walk in, the sun shines just for you. You bring life to my death.
“I could never be just friends with you, because I would always want more. I can imagine kissing you and spending every second of every day with you. That’s why we have to be nothing. I can’t have you near me. That kind of temptation would burn me at the stake. It would kill me,” I reveal to her, chalking it up to the location we’re at and the insane hour. This place always makes me think and reflect on life.
“Why can’t you just be with me then? As more? You know that’s what I want, too. I want to at least try.” She leans towards me like she wants to kiss me. I counter her and lean back, using all of my strength to deny her.
“Because I don’t deserve it. I can’t do it. I can’t let myself be happy here. My plans are set, and I’m leaving as soon as I graduate and never coming back. Our relationship would be short lived at best. You deserve someone who can give you it all, and that’s not me, Nathalie.”
“I’d rather have a month or even a single day than nothing at all. I don’t expect you to marry me, but you can’t deny the chemistry we have. It’s right here.” She grabs my hand and pulls it to her. She places my hand right over her chest where her heart threatens to escape.
“I promised myself I wouldn’t be like this.”
“Please, Sam. I know you feel it, too. Just let me in. Please.”