Submitted into Contest #140 in response to: Write a story inspired by a memory of yours.... view prompt


Sad Romance

In Memory Of My Uncle Randy

I was fifteen when I heard the news. I came out of the locker room at my school after my soccer practice, happy that I was getting better at soccer, learning tricks, harder ones, ones that my friends would be impressed with. My mom was waiting outside and led me and my two siblings to the car. She looked sad; something was in her expression that I couldn’t read. But at the moment I was so into my tricks that I didn’t pay attention to it. Not until she brought it up. 

“Hey, guys, please be really kind to your dad today, we found out your uncle died today,” my mom said, her voice shaking slightly. We hadn’t even started driving yet. 

My heart must have stopped literally for a moment. I was shocked. Was it Uncle Phillip? I prayed not. We always saw him when we went to visit my grandparents in Georgia, but we weren't going to see him again? Ever? At the moment I was sucked into that spiral of grief. I was dizzy. Nothing made sense. How did he die so suddenly? I realized I was gasping and stopped. My older brother put his hand over mine. I unbuckled and lurched out of the car. 

“I’m going to see Jake,” I called over my shoulder. They didn’t call me. They knew I needed to see him. 

I pulled out my phone and called him. “Jake, can I come over? I need-I need someone right now…”

“Of course, come on over. Or do you want me to pick you up?”

“I can walk. I’m at school.” and with that I hung up.

Jake’s my boyfriend, and he somehow makes everything better. Just knowing I can be with him makes me calmer, but I’m still fighting to hold back the tears. If Uncle Phillip is really dead, then I don’t know what I’ll do. I don’t realize I’ve stumbled into the road until I hear the blaring horn and I stumble out of the way just in time. I realize I probably look like I’m drunk, and I pull myself together. Then Jake’s house is in view, and I start running. The tears are really fighting to come now. But I fight harder. I don’t want to cry. I really don’t want to cry. I stumble up to the door and knock, the second my hand leaves the door it’s flung open and Jake’s there, pulling me in by my waist and wrapping me in a hug. He doesn’t know what’s wrong, but he heard in my voice when I called that SOMETHING was wrong. I clutch him like he’s a life line. He leads me up to his room, and he sits me down on his bed.

“What happened?” he asked, stroking my hair.

“My Uncle died. I don’t know if it was Phillip, or someone else, but either way someone’s dead. I just- this is the first time someone’s died in my family that I know of and I-” I broke down, unable to finish my sentence. He understood and pulled me to his chest, holding me tight, as though I’d fly into pieces if he loosened his grip. Who knew, I might. 

I sobbed freely into his chest, clutching him tight. I felt so broken at that moment it was unbelievable. I’d never felt anything like this. After a few minutes I pulled away. 

“I’m so sorry,” Jake whispered into my hair, and I could hear the lump in his voice. 

“I want to forget for a moment,” I pleaded, and he kissed me, without hesitation. And I kissed him back. I wanted something that would take away the pain for a moment, and Jake was that. Not only was he my boyfriend, but he was also my best friend, and the person I confided in. and he knew it too. He took great pride in that. And I loved that about him. I loved him more than he knew. Well, maybe he knew. When I pulled away he was teary eyed, and one tear slipped down his cheek. I brushed it away with a small smile. He was so sweet.

“What’s wrong?” I asked gently. I knew he was worried about me, but I asked anyway.

“I hate seeing you like this, knowing that I can’t fix it… I’m so so sorry. I’m so sorry Eli,” he whispered, stroking my cheek.

“It’s not your fault, did you kill him? No.” 


Turns out it was my Uncle Ralph, and he’d died falling off a bridge into shallow water. Someone bumped him and the railings were so low that he just fell over. To think that something like that could just happen is… terrifying. Jake has been the best boyfriend of all boyfriends, he’s been so sweet, bringing me things when he doesn’t need to, taking me out on more dates, hanging out with my younger siblings. I couldn’t ask for anyone better. It’s about 9 days until Christmas now, and my parents are getting ready to go to Uncle Ralph’s funeral. I wish I could go with them, but I can’t. Jake is taking me to my grandparent’s house, and my brother will meet us there with my younger siblings. But at least Jake gets to spend Christmas with me. He asked his parents, and knowing that I’d lost someone, they said he could. I’m not sure how much Jake loves me, but at least he doesn’t not love me. I’m working up the courage to ask him on the drive, hopefully I’ll be able to do it. 


My back hurts. I’m tired of sitting in the car, and it’s only been 3 hours, 6 left. I look at Jake, his short, smooth brown hair, and his brown/green eyes. And I realize I really don’t want to lose him. I think that if I do, it’ll probably break me more than anything. I take a deep breath, bite my lip, turn to him, and speak.

“Jake, I was wondering…” my voice trailed off.

“Yeah?” he asked, turning to glance at me. 

“Do you love me?” I blurted out, wanting to get it over with. He blinked at me, then a smile spread across his face. 

“I was going to ask you the same thing,” he said, laughing.

“Well, I do. I really really do. I think that if I lost you it’d really hurt me, but I don’t want false love, so if you don’t love me then-”

“I do love you, I just feel bad that I clearly don’t show it well enough, ‘cause you had to ask that.”

I breathed a sigh of relief, my shoulders relaxing. Suddenly the grief and the long drive ahead didn’t seem so bad. I mean, I would still miss Uncle Phillip, I would, but knowing that Jake DID love me made it a little better. I smiled at him.

“You know,” he said, smiling at me. “I was thinking about when we’re older, I might like to get married, maybe have some kids. We’d have to adopt though, don’t want kids being left without parents…” 

April 08, 2022 19:24

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Felice Noelle
01:51 May 19, 2022

Jenna: I saw that you read my one semi-romantic story and I always try to return the favor. You wrote such a touching story of innocent young love, beginning to go through some of the first growing pains and then coming up against some of the challenges that life throws. It was sweet and tender, contrasted against the specter of death; I do remember those feelings from many years ago. Contrast that with the less innocent feelings conjured up in my story. And always remember, IMO, love is a decision, a decision you make to act in a lovin...


18:54 Feb 22, 2024

Thank you so much for telling me this, congratulations on fifty years(I guess its more at this point lol)! I'm so glad you like my story. I will say, this one is not as good as I had hoped, but at least I put it out there. Thanks again! :)


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Katie Bennett
13:58 Apr 20, 2022

Beautiful story, it captures the shock and pain of loss so we’ll and the feeling of young love


18:52 Feb 22, 2024

Thank you so much! That means a lot <3


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Danny -
03:01 Apr 09, 2022

I just noticedd you posted a new story, thought I might check it out. Andd lemme just say- you write romance so well, great job on this one! Now i know which account to go to for all the good romance stories ;o


18:51 Feb 22, 2024

I'm sorry that I didn't reply sooner! Thank you so much! That means a lot <3. I absolutely love your writing as well! I've been debating writing another story, but I'm not quite sure. :)


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