The Last Moment

Submitted into Contest #138 in response to: Write about a character who doesn’t want to go to sleep.... view prompt


Bedtime Sad Happy

I put toothpaste on my toothbrush, ran cool water over it, and started brushing my teeth. It's times like this when my mind starts to wander.

She's always on my mind, but I feel like we're growing apart. I have some apprehension about the future. I was so ready for that future that I've always seen with her, but now I'm not so sure. This feeling makes me physically sick.

Do I need to take a nausea pill?

I try to think back to when we first met. She was wearing a pink sweater, and she was very obviously nervous about meeting me, and I found it very cute. This first date was the most awkward date I think that I've ever been on. We wanted to hold hands but all her roommates were there, and we were very nervous.

I spat into the sink.

I cancelled on our second date, because I was too invested into someone else. She's never let me hear the end of it. Rightfully so. Eventually I came to my senses and asked her back on a second date. It was a challenge to get there, but we got it done eventually.

I walked back to my room and changed into some more comfortable bedtime clothes.

Some of the things that made me fall in love with her was how quickly she accepted me for who I was, flaws and all. She was always easy to be around and always made me feel loved. I know she still loves me, but I don’t know if it's to the level that I deserve.

I got comfortable under my covers and took my melatonin gummy.

I fell in love with her pale green eyes that had rims of brown around her irises. I always found myself getting lost in them, and she would catch me staring.

I stared at the ceiling.

She is so effortlessly beautiful. She can put on some makeup and she's beautiful, or she can just wake up from bed and be just as pretty. I almost preferred her without the makeup because I knew the person I was looking at better.

I started to make imaginary designs out of the popcorn texture on my ceiling.

Our first date we actually went out on was at a soda shop. It was cold and I got a Dr. Pepper and I think she got a Mountain Dew. It was so cold out that when we held each other's hands, we stuffed them into my pocket to keep them warm.

My eyelids started to feel heavy.

We've had some struggles in the past. We've both done some things that we regret, but one of my fondest memories of her is when she looked into my eyes and wiped my tears. She had held my head in her hands and told me with confidence that we were going to get through that challenge. We did, and I fell in love with her resiliency and we grew so much closer as a couple.

I felt like my eyelids were being pulled down, but my thoughts kept me awake.

I remember the first time I told her that I loved her. I didn't even know when I was going to tell her but when I did, it wasn’t planned. I just felt that the moment was right and I said it.

"I love you."

There was a pause, and it terrified me. Eventually she did respond with "I love you too," and I felt relief like I hadn’t felt before.

"Oh, good." I replied, and buried my head in her shoulder.

I was fighting for my life to stay awake.

The only thing that I can compare the relief I felt from hearing her say that she loved me was our first kiss. I remember I leaned in to kiss her and as soon as our lips met, all I felt was a wave of relief, almost as if I knew that we were a complete match. After all of my past relationships falling through and not working out, I felt like I had finally found someone who complemented me. And I didn’t even know her that well, if not at all.

My mind started to wander back from the happy memories.

I haven’t seen her in eight months. It's been such a challenge and I've been incredibly patient. I've supported her every step of the way, but I know she needs to focus on where she is. And as a result, she can't split the difference on me and what she's passionate about. What she's doing requires a 100% effort. Luckily she will be coming back in the future, so at least I know that she's coming back home. The uncertainty scares me though.

I felt my eyes start to well up.

I love this girl with everything I am. She's taught me how it feels to be loved and accepted, and I never want that to go away. The uncertainty just scares the living daylights out of me, because a lot of things change in a person in eighteen months. She's in an excellent environment, and I'm so certain that the changes will be positive, and I've improved myself as a person. But I also need to look out for myself. I want someone who can be 100% invested in me at all times. I love the person I am now, and I'm sure she'll love me when she comes back as well, but the uncertainty scares me.

Hot tears started to fall.

I remembered the last time we talked. I haven’t seen her since last July, and it was over the phone on FaceTime. I took the call in the back of a Denny's bathroom and we said our goodbyes. That's the last time she's verbally told me that she loves me, somewhat to my face.

I want to hold on to the good things. I don’t want to be resentful towards her. I hold on so tight to the way she would look at me and all I would see is love. I hold on to catching myself staring into her amazing eyes. I hold on to her telling me how much she loves me. I hold on to her snoring on my chest. I hold on to her smile. I hold on to being held by her, and the safety I felt in her arms. I hold on to all the good things, because I can't afford to have the Denny's bathroom be the last moment.

My eyes finally closed, and sleep took hold over my body.

March 20, 2022 23:50

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Zelda C. Thorne
08:48 Mar 31, 2022

Hi Brendan! I really liked the way you wrote this. The short lines of the present mixed with longer reflective passages, it worked. I'm guessing she is away at Uni or something? I did expect a reveal at the end as to where she actually is (the vagueness made me think you were building up to something) and consequently felt a bit disappointed. BUT well written, I enjoyed it. Looking forward to reading your next story.


Brendan Prince
20:16 Apr 08, 2022

Dang! Sorry! Yeah it's a nonfiction story for sure, she's away on a mission for my church. I didn't want to stir the pot in that sense, nor did I want to blur the lines about where she is. But thank you for the feedback!


Zelda C. Thorne
20:23 Apr 08, 2022

Oh well in that case bravo for bravely writing nonfiction. It's not easy. I hope she comes back to you soon 🙂


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