He turns up the radio and all we can hear is static. The signal always starts to fade when we get close to my house. It's like I live in some secluded area, roped off from anything and anyone.
"I like this song."
He turns it up louder. I laugh and I look at him from the passenger seat. Hunter Edwards. I could say his name over and over without getting tired of it. That combination of letters is the only one that has ever had meaning to me. Not only are we dating but he is my best friend, and I'm not just saying that. I know the title gets thrown around, but it's true with him, it's real. His shy character, quirky yet genius mind, restless soul, and loving touch all wrapped up and tied in a bow of tanned skin with veins as blue as the night sky, perfect strands of dark brown hair, and brown eyes the size of the moon. I'm in love with him.
He reaches across the seat to mine and searches for my hand. He grasps it tightly and rubs my thumb with his in smooth, slow strokes. I feel it coming. I stare out the window and try to distract myself with counting the cars that pass by and keeping my gaze in one consistent path, never shifting my eyes. But it's still coming.
"What are you looking at, Anna?" he says.
I swallow hard, thinking that for some reason that might hold my tears back and keep them from falling, and it does for a while.
"I'm just watching."
I said that a lot when he asked me, and I don't think he ever quite understood. It was true though, I always was, just watching. Watching us get closer and closer to my home. A home that didn't feel like home, because he felt like home.
I heard the clicking of the turn signal and I knew we were coming up to the driveway. We pulled up and he parked sideways like he always does, almost running into the bushes. He turned off the car and it all went dark and quiet. No more green light from the digital clock or static from the radio.
"I like this song" I said.
He laughed and I looked at him. This time I couldn't help but cry. I tasted the salty tears as they ran down my cheek to my lips.
"It's okay Anna, please don't cry, it's okay. I'll see you tomorrow" he said as he pulled me into his arms.
"I just like spending time with you" I whimpered.
That wasn't even the half of it, but if I were to tell him everything I wanted to say, it might scare him off. I get sad because I hate being alone. He's all I really have. It's just that I don't like being apart from people. Because being alone, it sucks. Especially here. It's always hard when he drives me home because I don't like being home. That's why I try my best to never be there. It's lonely and the only other person is my mom. We don't speak much, and I don't think she cares, as long as she's got a bottle. I know it's impractical and I know I shouldn't get sad about things I can't change, but it's just that I try to spend as much time as I can with him. He probably gets sick of me, but I never do. He's my escape. Being with him is the one chance I have where I'm happy and where I can be myself and I don't have to worry about things. So I try to extend that as long as possible. That's why I never want to let him go when we say goodbye, and it just makes me sad sometimes because I know I have to.
We only have three more months. On July 14th he'll be on a plane headed thousands of miles away from this place. He's going away for college, and I'm staying here.
He walks me to my front door and kisses me goodbye. He holds me in his arms and I try my hardest not to cry. I guess him leaving is something I'll have to get used to, and being alone, I guess that's inevitable.