56 comments

Submitted on 10/21/2020

Categories: Romance Sad

Do you remember that day?


The one where you almost died? I remember very clearly what I said to you as you told me to run; to save myself.


"If you die, I die."


That brought tears to your eyes. Your beautiful eyes.


Blue as a clear sky on a summer day. Your blonde hair was turned black with soot and ash, your throat was clogged with smoke as you tried to cough it out.


But you will always be beautiful, inside or out, no matter what you look like, where you are, or what you do. And as I saw you trapped, mouth open in a silent scream of plea that nobody heard, I knew, at that moment, I would do anything for you.


I knew that I loved you.


And the saddest part of all is, you blame yourself for the fire.


Please don't.


It's over now. Move on. Things happen, but they happen for a reason. Please understand this.


Don't keep yourself in the past; You're missing out on your future.


Don't remember the blinding red and blue lights that sped up your driveway, sirens wailing and people screaming. Don't remember the smoke that billowed in the sky, diminishing the stars' glimmer in the night. Don't remember the jets of water that attempted to put out the raging fire. Don't remember the pain you felt as the ceiling crashed down on you, trapping you and threatening your life.


Because guess what?


I will always be there to block out every noise, to blow away the smoke, to shelter you from the frigid water. To save you.


And then instead, you can remember your new baby sister, her eyes as beautiful as yours, twinkling with joy and beaming with life. Remember that sunrise in Colorado your brother drove you seventeen hours to see. Remember the feeling of pride and achievement as you shook Mr. White's hand and accepted your high school diploma.


Focus on the little things.


That baby bird that you helped get back to its nest, that perfect day in fall where the sun dipped below the horizon as you sat on your porch with your rottweiler, Buster. The layered cake you attempted to make, and as you huffed dramatically and burst out in laughter with your dad.


You are so much happier when you live in the present, and sometimes, it's as if you had forgotten what happened that night for a few short moments. And that's when your eyes truly sparkle, when they fully glow with youth and energy, forgetting about all the hatred and pain in the world.


But that pain is always going to be there. No matter what, there will always be one baby bird that isn't helped into its nest, one day where the clouds block the sunrise, one cake fail that won't be so hilarious.


There will always be death, pain, and hatred.


It doesn't mean that you have to be afraid of it, but you shouldn't try to avoid it, either. Mother Nature has her own flow, her own way of doing things; it's the circle of life.


Let it happen.


Everything, every event, every new life, and every death has a purpose. Don't be afraid of it, don't dwell on the past, and don't shy away from it. Let it come; embrace it. There will be sadness, my love, and you will mourn, but that's when you need to pick yourself up and keep going.


Live your life to the fullest. Go skydive, go climb mountains, go scuba diving. Get that motorcycle you've always wanted, and ride it. Feel the breeze run through your hair, let the adrenaline course through your veins. Fly. You want it so much.


And yet you don't go do it. You have enough money, and you know how to operate one, but you haven't bought that motorcycle. You tell me that it's because you're saving your earnings for college and that you want to support your family. I don't believe you; I know the real reason you haven't bought yourself one yet.


You're afraid of what could go wrong.


What happens when a car doesn't see you? What happens if the brakes don't work, or if you lose control?


You're afraid of dying.


My dear Katie, don't be. Death will find you one day, but it won't come to you as you're flying on the road. Don't hold back because of your fear.


Whenever death does knock on your door, embrace it. You will not leave this Earth until you have served your purpose, and believe me, you're destined for great things in life.


So go live it.


Live life on the edge. Be yourself, and don't be afraid to try new things every now and then. The Katie I know is always begging for adventure, open to trying everything.


But then the fire happened.


Now you aren't the same. What happened?


Oh.


Don't focus on that. You need to live your life, as I've said many times already. You didn't die in that fire for a reason. I was there to save you. That can't be a coincidence.


You may feel as though all of the world is against you, but please, I beg of you, move on. Don't live in fear. Don't let it control your life. Your life is yours, and yours only. Nothing can take it from you because you are in charge of what you do.


Don't remember the stretcher you were strapped onto as they rushed you to the hospital. Don't remember the slurred, hurried words that tumbled out of your family's mouths. Don't remember the white room with the white bed and the white curtains that you healed in for months. Forget it all.


That is your past now. History. Gone.


I know I rushed to tell you all of this, but please, take heed to my advice. Because I'm not going to be there to support you, to care for you, and to love you. Do you see this ring included with this letter? That's what I had planned for us.


But like I said: I was there to save you for a reason. You begged me to leave, to save my own life, but I knew. Oh, I knew. At that moment, nothing mattered more to me than you. Katie, I won't be on this Earth much longer. As I'm telling the nurse to write this now, I feel my breath becoming more shallow, my heart beginning to fail me.


Saving you from that fire was the best thing I ever did. You may not believe so, but hey.


If you die, I die, right?

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56 comments

(Just a disclaimer, this post is going to be VERY long, so hold on tight!! Also, I am NOT one of those Wednesday critique people, it's just that I LOVE commenting on other people's posts. Now that we got that out of the way, I can actually start writing.) 😁 Hello there!! I just want to say that your story's flow, and the emotion and scene building you did was just absolutely amazing!! I loved how you built all your characters! Trust me, that takes real talent to do that, so kudos on that!! 😊 Another thing which I really want to mention...

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Zea Bowman
23:57 Oct 22, 2020

Wow! I didn't even notice some of those things! Actually, the "every thing" was meant to be like that, if that makes sense. Like every thing, not everything. Gosh, I'm bad at explaining this. I'll definitely fix those up; thank you!

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Zea Bowman
00:03 Oct 23, 2020

I went through and fixed all of those things, and wow! They really did make a difference; I appreciate your help. I did change the "Every thing" to "Everything." I read through the sentence a couple times, but I did notice what I did wrong there. Once again, thank you so much!

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Oh, no problem!! I am just so glad I could help a soul, if you know what I mean! I love connecting with people in Reedsy, so that I can know them better! At least I made a friend! :)

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Zea Bowman
02:27 Oct 23, 2020

Of course! I totally understand. Me too :D

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Clara d Perry
02:45 Nov 15, 2020

Haripriya, are you a native English speaker? I'm looking at your corrections, and I can't really agree with most of them. I just read one of your stories, and it seems like you have a good command of the language. Correct me if I'm wrong, but this is what I think happened: I think you put Zea's story into a grammar editor, such as Grammarly, and then wrote down the edits that were suggested. If this is the case, I recommend trusting your own instincts over what the grammar editor says. Grammarly is great for catching mistakes, but it's a mac...

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Alina Manha
06:03 Nov 01, 2020

Hi Zea. 👋🏻 I wanted to let you know that this story is amazing. 🤯 I totally love the idea that you have used a second person to write this story. It was very interesting and sad too. The ending just went straight to my heart. 😭😭😭😭😭 You have done a great job writing this story. 👌🏻

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Zea Bowman
14:09 Nov 02, 2020

Thank you for your kind words! I appreciate it! :)

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Alina Manha
14:31 Nov 02, 2020

My pleasure!. 😊

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Veron Nebu
02:10 Oct 21, 2020

Woah. This story was wonderful...I don't have the words to describe it. Beautifully done.

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Zea Bowman
02:13 Oct 21, 2020

Thank you so much :)

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Varsha Vimal
19:32 Nov 18, 2020

Wow, it was very touching...I really loved it. Beautiful work Zea! Keep writing!

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Zea Bowman
12:40 Nov 19, 2020

Thanks, Varsha! I appreciate it :)

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Varsha Vimal
15:07 Nov 19, 2020

:) anytime Zea

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20:11 Nov 10, 2020

OMG ZEA!! This was just too good, too amazing, to awesome! The flow of this was just beautiful! The story was so emotional! And the message was just touching! I loved how you wrote this, how you started it, and how you ended this! I loved the little bits of backstory you added in which was not confusing, it was perfectly enough for the reader to go and understand everything. One of my favorite paragraphs from your story was this-- "But that pain is always going to be there. No matter what, there will always be one baby bird that isn't hel...

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Zea Bowman
03:23 Nov 13, 2020

Sorry this took me a little bit to see. I've been pretty busy lately and haven't had time to write. Wow. I'm...speechless. This was so kind of you and I really appreciate this. Really, I don't think you know how much that means to me. Thank you so much. Happy writing :)

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03:39 Nov 13, 2020

Its okay I have been super busy too! And I like to go through my comments and I saw one of the comments you put on mine and it was so sweet! And I knew I just had to rush over to your page! Best choice I have made all week! I'm happy this made you happy! Writing that comment and reading your story filled me with joy because of your creativity! I wish you happy writings too!😊

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Zea Bowman
14:34 Nov 13, 2020

Thanks again! I'll be sure to read a few more of your stories :)

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Diana Monney
19:23 Oct 29, 2020

Hi, I was matched with this story for critique story! I personally love epistolary works because it grants a personal essence and this did it. The story was told in a really warm and gentle style. It allowed you to suffer the tragic ending despite the short period you spent getting to know the characters. Great job!

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Maggie Deese
18:04 Oct 22, 2020

Wonderful job, Zea! Tragic and beautifully written. I loved the narrative you used; it made for a creative and interesting read. Well done! :)

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Zea Bowman
00:05 Oct 23, 2020

Thanks, Maggie! Always nice hearing from you :)

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Eden Variss
02:29 Oct 22, 2020

Wow, Zea. I've been following you since I got on here (a week ago)... and this is by far one of the best stories! I love how you incorporate a meaning/message in each of your works of writing. This is amazing work, and I can't wait to read some of your future stories!

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Zea Bowman
04:00 Oct 22, 2020

Woah, thanks! Welcome to Reedsy! Hope to read yours, too ;)

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Eden Variss
02:22 Nov 26, 2020

Hey Zea! Wow. Been a looooong time since we've spoken. I just wanna know if you're going to post any stories (I know what you're blog said, and I totally understand). If so, I look forward to them! Have a happy day/night/evening/you name it! -Eden

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Zea Bowman
18:06 Nov 30, 2020

Oh my gosh, I just realized that you wrote that 3 days ago and that I haven't been on Reedsy for a while. I'm so sorry! I had a busy Thanksgiving...lots of food! I hope you had a good holiday, too! Anyway, I really do want to post more stories...I just haven't had the time to recently. Your comment really motivated me, though, and I'll try to get one or two up this week! I'll be sure to let you know when I do :) Happy writing!

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Zea Bowman
18:07 Nov 30, 2020

I also just realized that I'm in your bio! Thank you so much :) Be sure to look at mine ;)

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Zea Bowman
18:18 Nov 30, 2020

One more thing (sorry for spamming haha!) : I read through your bio....YES, GIRL, YES! I love all of the same books you do: Hunger Games, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Maze Runner, all the good stuff! I would really enjoy reading your fanfiction and learning more about the novels you're writing!

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Molly Leasure
01:45 Oct 22, 2020

Beautiful tragedy. I love the way you describe the little moments, and the small repetitions you included. You ripped into my emotions, wonderful work!

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Zea Bowman
04:00 Oct 22, 2020

Thanks, Molly! :)

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12:02 Oct 21, 2020

What a beautiful and touching story! It almost brought tears to my eyes (I don't cry that often), and it's just so perfect in every way! It's kinda like a letter, and so full of meaning as well, lessons that we can take for life. The ending was perfect, and I was hooked. I truly, truly love this story! If I would rate it, 10/10! You did such an amazing job on it! I'm amazed. I can't come up with any criticism, so just keep up the great work! P.S. Haha I loved the Lion King reference! (Was it supposed to be one? Or am I crazy?)

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Zea Bowman
13:25 Oct 21, 2020

Woah! Thanks! Actually, I didn't specifically refer to the Lion King...but now that you said that and I reread the story, I see you what you mean! You're not crazy 🤪

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13:41 Oct 21, 2020

Oh, okay. Phew! Anyway, great job!

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Leilani Lane
03:23 Oct 21, 2020

Wow! What a beautiful and tragic take on the prompt. Before the "My dear Katie, don't be," I feel like a lot of this could be directed at anyone, lots of great little lessons (Live your life to the fullest. Go skydive, go climb mountains, go scuba diving, etc.). That's what I love about second-person. I'm so glad you did that for this prompt. Loved how you didn't overdo it on explaining the tragedy, which I feel like could be easy to do with this type of story (@ If I Stay lol). A really great read, nice work, Zea!

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Zea Bowman
04:11 Oct 21, 2020

Thanks, Leilani! I appreciate the feedback. Thanks for checking out the story!

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Leilani Lane
21:18 Oct 28, 2020

I got matched with this story on Critique Circle...how funny! :)

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Akshaya Sutrave
04:35 Nov 25, 2020

Hi Zea! Your story was extremely moving! The flow of the story and the message conveyed in it was amazing. I loved the way you wrote it in second person, and developed the characters in this way! Great job!

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Valentina Espino
17:15 Oct 29, 2020

woahh I freaking love this :)

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Kaylee Tinsley
13:14 Oct 29, 2020

Beautiful tragedy.... I really enjoyed it!! Good job!

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Princemark Okibe
23:13 Oct 25, 2020

Immersive true second person is what I thought as I read this. I think you should add the inspirational tag to this story as it is more inspirational (especially the middle part) than any other thing.

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