Sebastian The Traveler

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Chapter 15 - Sebastian

Two weeks flew by.

Avery was all consumed in this move. She was excited and I was happy for her. She told me she felt as if Colorado was where she was meant to be. I smiled, hoping she was right. Hoping beyond hope it was the right decision for her.

She really committed when she made the decision. In two days, she had found a place. A day after that, she had a job waiting for her. Her eyes were always bright and cheery. They sparkled with anticipation of a new life. A carefree one. Her mood was contagious as I was soon consumed with joy as well.

The movers had taken all most everything and were headed to Colorado now. All she had left was a couple boxes, travel bags and Milo, in his carrier.

And me.

She insisted on driving as she wanted to take in the views. I didnt think it was the greatest idea... a young girl, traveling by herself. It was dangerous now and days. I knew I could protect her but if she got into a car accident... well, I could only do so much.

She loaded her rental and handed her keys to the Super. And just like that, we were leaving New York in the rear view.

***

It was almost 28 hours from New York to Colorado Springs. An exhausting drive for one person. And that was only if we drove straight through, which wasn't going to happen. She would need to stop frequently and she would need to get a hotel room for the night. Maybe two nights, depending upon weather. The plains were dangerous this time of year, producing severe storms and some tornadoes. But she wasnt phased. She was stubborn and determined.

I knew I was in love with her. I knew from the first day I saw her. But our relationship was unrealistic and the closer we got to Colorado, the more anxious I became as I remembered I would have to make a decision soon.

She sang along with the radio.

I was a bit unnerved with the lyrics.

"I keep going to the river to pray
'Cause I need something that can wash out the pain
And at most
I'm sleeping all these demons away
But your ghost, the ghost of you
It keeps me awake..."

I watched as she smiled through the song. I wasnt sure what was behind the meaning, as the song sounded like a bad relationship, yet she was happy. When the melody came over the radio she had squealed, "LOVE this song!" And cranked up the volume.

"...I had to go through hell to prove I'm not insane
Had to meet the devil just to know his name
And that's when my love was burning
Yeah it's still burning..."

Maybe I was reading too much into it. It was a nice song. It's possible there was no underlying meaning to her singing. And yet...

"Give up the ghost
Give up the ghost
Give up the ghost
No more haunting baby..."

Nope. I did not like this song. Not at all.

***

"What's Colorado like?" She asks, sitting beside me in the field of flowers. We were always here. It must be her favorite place.

I smiled, remembering the mountains. I loved the mountains. "Greener than you would think. Mountainous and beautiful. The sunsets are the most breathtaking you will ever see," I turned to her and smiled, "Theres a lot of inspiration there for you." She smiled back, satisfied.

I playfully poked her in her side, "And I expect more paintings from you when we get there." We. I really needed to reframe from using that word. Knowing I might leave her hurt me more than anything I could ever remember and I couldn't lead her on.

But try as I might, I couldnt stop from using that stupid word. Like we had a future together. Like we were a unit--a "thing." It was unreasonable. Impossible. I knew that. I know she did too but I didnt ever stop.

She laughed and swatted my hand away. I wrapped my arms around her and brought her to the ground with me. Hovering over her, I felt there was one thing I hadnt yet done. One thing I had been attempting to do for the last two weeks and always failed before she awoke. The one thing I needed from her and hadnt yet recieved.

I caressed her face and ran my fingers through her blonde hair. Leaning in close, I needed to kiss her. I had to. I had to know what that felt like. And though I was torn, knowing that it was what I shouldn't do, I couldnt stop myself. As stupid as it was, I felt as if just one kiss would fix everything. What exactly, I wasnt sure but I felt it.

But once again, like every other time, before I could actually touch her lips with mine, she faded within my arms, leaving my staring down at only empty air, my hand grasping the grass beneath me.

I swore under my breath, frustrated.

Why did this keep happening?
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