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An impromptu short-story inspired by a line from the movie Julian Po

. . I shivered as I read her note. "I will wait for you always, on the other, better, side. Love, Sara."
. . God what has she done? Where is my Sara? Her shoes! Her jacket is gone as well! How long was I asleep? It's only 7:00 AM, not that long then. Where would she have gone if this letter means what I think it does? Why would she choose to end it now of all times?
. . A million thoughts raced through my mind. Why? When? Is it too late? I jumped out of bed and threw my pants back on, stumbling over the dog and his chunk of raw-hide. I always did think it was weird that she liked the dog in the room. Where are my shoes? Fuck my shoes, they were here last night, but my slippers are here. Keys? Where are my keys! Gone, she has them. Fuck. Her keys. Did she take them too? They're not in her purse. Her purse! She never goes anywhere without that damn bag. Her spare keys in the dresser. Shirt. Go!
. . I raced to the bridge down the street, not a quarter mile away. Nothing there. Where else might she have gone. I know! The spot on the hill where we picnicked so many months ago. What am I talking about? It was three months ago. Last October, when the leaves were changing. What did I do to this poor child of a woman? So delicate, so fragile, why did I ever get upset with her? Why was our relationship so volatile? Where the fuck is she?
. . Her dress! On the edge of the wood, but not where we picnicked, I thought there was only a field back there. Question that one later. Focus!! Why do I always hook-up with nut-jobs? Are there any women who don't need a crutch? There, down that path, her bra.
. . I ran. I ran hard. Her love for me, my love for her. I had finally found her. She had found me. The one. We fit. We loved. We fought. We lusted. We ran. We walked. Now I ran. Alone, in the cold January snow. Her tracks veered suddenly off the beaten path, deep into the wood. As did another, larger set of tracks. It had to be eight by now, very light out. I veered off as well, speeding up to a fast jog, wheezing. Blood started showing up. Bad.
. . Worry. Fear. Anger raged through my body. How could she do this? To me of all people. The she loved. The one who loved her twice as much. Why did she do this? Maybe she's still alive.
. . Then I found her. Cold in the snowy depths of winter, laying beside a snow-angel. Separated by nothing but a circle of frozen, red snow. She lay there now, with terror in her eyes, naked, cold and blue. I threw up. I couldn't handle this, my baby, my true love.
. . Why did we spend our last night together in a drunken stupor followed up by a pathetic night in bed? And why are my keys in the snow by the second set of footprints leading away? Then I saw it, in the distance.

“I will wait for you.”

Damn it, why the hell did you have to say that. It was over; the situation would correct itself on its own, why did you have to say that.

“I will wait for you.”

I couldn’t stay. My visa expired, the house was taken by the bank, and my parents were moving. I had to leave. I loved you, you loved me, I was happy. But your world was exploding. Your parents were fighting more and more, you’re brother stopped returning his calls. And I was leaving. I was leaving you to handle that all on your own, I wasn’t able to hold you and make it better anymore.

“I will wait for you.”

How selfish of me to think I could walk out without feeling guilty. I had no choice on whether to leave or not, I wasn’t self sufficient, I couldn’t stay. My life would live on in America, where I would no longer be a foreigner (or so I thought). You and your American boyfriend would be no more.

“I will wait for you.”

She started to ignore her friends in favor of spending all her time with me. I’m not going to lie to anyone, I enjoyed it thoroughly, but my friends didn’t appreciate my being off-limits most days. Her friends realized how it worked, and let her go. I didn’t know what was happening, and before I know it she didn’t have any friends other than me.

“I will wait for you.”

The day before I moved she uttered those words. I cringed, because never in my wildest dreams did I think of coming back. I was leaving, I had left people before, and while no moves were as hard as this, I hadn’t gone back. Never letting yourself imagine you’re coming back makes it hard at first, but easier later. She made it harder, harder than I thought it could be.

“I will wait for you.”

How could I explain to her if she didn’t already understand that I wasn’t coming back! I was leaving for good, leaving the country, leaving her life, and although I loved her, it was time. Her face, pressed hard against my chest, tears streaming, echoed what she felt inside when I told her that I wasn't going to come back.

The next day we left our house at 7 in the morning, got in a van and drove all day. I found out later that she drove to my house at 7:15 looking for me, and collapsed in tears on the driveway when she found I'd gone. That was years ago. The last I heard from her was a Christmas card:

Sam,
    I just wondered how you were doing, as I haven’t heard from you in so long. I’m doing fine, classes are going well. I just wanted you to know that I missed you, and I will wait for you.
        Love, Christy
I never replied. For all I know, she can still be waiting for her American to return, waiting on the cold shores of the Atlantic Ocean . . .

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