You stood in the middle of the living room while he waited there patiently. He looked into your eyes as if he was reading your mind, you knew he wasn't because then he'd know the answer.
It felt as if millions of years had passed by, you kept replaying in your head the first day you met him. You were just little kids back then, so childish and immature. You just promoted from elementary, and learned that you no longer have sand boxes or basketball courts to do granny shots with friends. Even your moms won’t be packing your lunches anymore. You were both so filled with excitement and curiosity the first day of middle school. It felt like it would be the best times of your lives. You both knew that wasn’t true.
There was something about meeting him in that hallway, he wore the same confused face as you, trying to figure out where to go. You both had the same second period, but were going the complete opposite directions down the hall. You both finally made it to your classrooms, and soon enough, into each other’s lives. Never in a million years would you have thought that boy in your third period was going to be your forever, but now you wear on your finger, a ring. You now possess a secret that only you know, and soon enough, he will too.
He stares at you, eager to know what the answer is. His wide brown eyes were filled with impatience. His hands begin to shake as you can see the small crystals of sweat forming on his forehead and small beads grabbing onto his facial hair. He wore this exact face on your wedding day while you walked down that aisle. You can see them up ahead with that little smile of his and the smallest shimmer of light, glistening against his eyes. You were so worried that day, you felt as if you might trip while walking, or something wrong with your makeup, or that maybe you forgot to shave your legs. My God that would’ve been a disaster. You kept thinking that there should be at least something wrong at weddings, like a crazy ex showing up, or some kind of clown shows up ready to kill. Are you just that crazy or does that stuff never happen? Yet nothing stood in the way, it was almost too perfect.
You brought yourself back to earth, looking once more into his eyes, those crystals of sweat drops increased in size and you can almost feel the impatience vibrating off his body. He stared harder into your eyes, searching for answers. Instead, he just grabbed you by the face, softly. The way his hands touched your face brought you back to just months ago when he punched a hole in the wall and threw his glass against the door. You managed to cover up the hole with a picture, but there was no way you could get rid of the burn you felt when he slapped you across the face before punching that hole. He knew you would forgive him, but he was never okay with the way he had treated you. Ever since that night, he has only grabbed you softly.
“Tell me what it is” he pleaded.
Then he kissed you. He kissed you like he's never kissed you before, as if there just might be answers, waiting to be set free, but you kept them hidden. Knowing that his rage could reach at any minute, you still kept him waiting. You can see it in his eyes, trying to keep it together and knowing that if his anger broke through, you could calm him down. It’s one of the reasons why you are so strong together, you can handle each other. He has been broken before in the past so you’ve always told them that it took the earth 4.54 billion years to form together, so his broken heart may take what feels like a million years to be put back together.
You can still tell his past haunts him. You remember the way his face twisted in pain as tears fell from his face while telling you the story. His story was so vivid, it was like you were living it yourself. The way he explained how his parents screamed in his face, telling him he's no good. Kicking him out of the house after shoving the report card in his face. All he had to live off of was the bag of clothes that was thrown at him after being kicked out, and the countless amounts of bruises that remained from his parent’s disapproval. He was lucky he had you during Junior year, no one knew how to help him get through it the way you did. But aggression got to him.
Sometimes during the nights when you shiver in pain. You tell him it’s fine because you know his anger consumed him, but you know it hurts him to see you like this. Sometimes, when the nights go silent, it’s almost as if you can hear his heart tearing, all the more pieces to add to his pile.
So you’ll admit, you’re a little scared of what will happen if you wait too long, but you did it anyway. You watched as you felt his palms become sweaty. He still held your face, waiting for you to just tell him already. His eyes screamed at you, Tell me! Tell me woman! So this time you took his hands, placed them on your waist, and grabbed his face to kiss him so gently on his lips. You felt every inch of you get lighter, you knew you could trust him.
You pulled away just enough to look once more into his eyes, they still screamed at you because your lips weren’t enough to find the answer.
You slowly brought your lips to his ear like a kid once more, ready to tell a secret that the whole school would eventually find out. His beard brushed against your cheeks, sending goosebumps across your face. You heard his breathing get less intense, almost completely stopped for fear he wouldn’t hear the words you were about to say.
What if you regret it? What if he doesn't take it well? What if you just whisper something like I love you instead? Or something like what’s for dinner? What if the life you’re about to have gets ruined?
“Just say it” you silently remind yourself. You knew you’d regret it if you didn’t. It would be so cruel of you to leave his questions unanswered and turn his eagerness into anger. Would it be worth it? Would it be worth just living on your own? No no, you couldn’t think like that, what’s wrong with you? You need to be here for him. “Just say it” your head chanted again.
So you did, you brought your lips closer to his ear. You felt the world stop around you, his heart stopped beating and his breathing paused. The world was silent for the news, so you opened your mouth and watched the words dance into his ears.
And in that moment, the world started up again, his heart began beating, his breathing heightened as his lungs began to work. You’ve withheld this secret for ten seconds, but in that ten seconds, it felt as if it was a million years. So just in that ten seconds, happiness took over him. You can finally hear each piece of his broken heart being put back together.