Authors: Stassi Evers
She wanted him to be there. She
was aroused by the smooth skin of his naked body touching hers, warmly pressing up against her in the early hours of that balmy spring morning. The intoxicating smell of his cologne mixed with his natural scent caressed her nose until she could take it no longer.
“I love that you’re here.” Her
words were barely audible as her thoughts went to the night before. Her senses were quickly awakening from a few hours of blissful sleep and she eagerly turned to face her new husband, ready and willing to submit to him again. As her eyes opened she sadly realized her thoughts and feelings were imagined, phantom feelings left over from their passion filled wedding night. He was already gone and the only thing she had left of him or so she thought was his scent on her skin from the night before.
remembered when it all began for her - when he came into her life.
He was that guy. The one she dreamt about when she first started imagining herself with someone. The closest to perfect any human could ever hope to be. He had it all, and she had a physical, emotional, and intellectual connection with him unlike anything she’d ever thought possible.
she closed her eyes the first thing she saw was his physical presence. To describe him to her friends, she would tell them to picture John Cena or the guy in a Calvin Klein ad, wearing only boxer briefs. Flexing his tan muscles with slightly parted lips on a chiseled jaw, his eyes giving that I want you gaze. He rivaled any body builder, or the best leading men Hollywood had to offer.
The Greek and Roman gods had
nothing on him. Adonis would’ve been jealous. Every single one of her senses was awakened with the mere thought of him. It was impossible to miss his tall, tan, completely toned hard body, two hundred thirty pounds of muscle covered with flawless smooth skin. His soft, wavy, dark brown hair was cut in that ivy-league style. Cropped short on the sides and back with a little length on top, it was so great for running her fingers through whenever he was near. His long thick dark eyelashes playfully danced around his light green soulful eyes. Oh baby his eyes! One look and she was caught – sucked in before she’d ever had a chance to look away. But she wanted to be caught by him. She didn’t want to look away. Ever.
always calm and in total control of his thoughts and actions. He seemed to know exactly what was going to happen and what to do next. He always said the right things. He guided the situation at hand but at the same time let her be her own person. He was genuinely interested in what she thought and felt. He was confident and poised and knew what he wanted.
in-depth intelligent conversations ranging in topic from how much money should professional athletes be paid to whether peace was possible in the Middle East. He was a guy’s guy but would pitch in to help no matter what the task, be it cooking dinner or doing laundry. He could hold his own in a crowd of people or one on one whether he knew them or not. Her family and friends loved him as did his large circle of friends. She felt completely safe with him like nothing could hurt her.
hen she described him to people who had yet to meet him, she knew what they were thinking.
“You have to be making this up
because this guy only exists in movies, fairytales, dreams, and in our minds.”
he told them he was real, that she’d been lucky enough to have met this fairytale guy and was still living the dream.
It had been
a long journey that tested their resolve on many occasions but God willing, it would continue on, with no end in sight.
It was hard for her to
remember what life was like before she met him but she couldn’t forget anything since that day.
name was Hannah Perry and her story began eleven years ago. She said that the day she met him was the day she truly started living. Little did she know it was to be the beginning of a journey that nearly changed whether human life would continue to exist on Earth.
nose was about an inch from the water. At this point there was little Hannah could do except close her eyes and hold her breath. Nothing could stop her from falling head first into the Hudson on that cool spring morning of April 16, 1999.
mind raced at the thought of being immersed in the filthy river, soaking up the cold, rank, sewage-laden water, while her classmates looked on. She could hear and see it now. The laughing and pointing would begin with one person and then it would spread through the crowd like “the wave” at a baseball game or worse, like a virus in a kindergarten class. Of course, no good laugh at someone else’s expense was complete without a few well-placed taunting words.
“loser girl,” came to mind along with the sneering, disgusted looks on their faces.
closest friends might try to distance themselves from her drowned appearance rather than risk embarrassment as they carried on with their day. She certainly didn’t need to bring any more attention to herself, especially of the negative kind.
For the life of her she couldn’t figure out whether it wa
s better to be noticed or ignored. On this particular day, she was thinking ignored. Maybe they wouldn’t see her take the plunge or better yet maybe she would drown and not have to face another day of being the most picked on geek in junior high school. Her crime? As far as she could tell it was for being an under-developed, intelligent, wide-eyed, innocent, ninth grade girl with glasses and braces to match. The usual stuff that lent itself to taunting by those fortunate souls whose worst misfortune in life so far was a hangnail. It wasn’t enough that the early bloomers seemed to have everything and received all the good attention from anyone who crossed their path. For reasons unknown, or maybe for no reason at all, they had to make a regular concerted effort to inflict as much pain on the as yet to come of age types like Hannah.
day would offer no exception. She was undoubtedly just seconds away from having the worst field trip and day of her life. She wished she’d faked being sick that morning and had begged her mom to let her stay home. As she was putting in her new contact lenses, her intuition told her something crazy and maybe not so good was going to happen that day. She shrugged it off as usual, hoping she was wrong. She put her long blond hair in a ponytail and secured it with a hair tie. As a last thought, she grabbed a hair ribbon with her name stamped all over it that her grandparents had given her years ago. She tied it in a bow around her ponytail over the hair tie and she was on her way.
The buses were scheduled to leave the school parking lot at 7:00 A.M. There were pre-dawn risers everywhere. They exhibited zombie like movements as they boarded, slumping down into the nearest seat yet careful to surround themselves with their closest friends. They were headed first to Ellis Island to visit the Statue of Liberty then on to New York City to see a Broadway show. This field trip was intended to congratulate the entire ninth grade class, 300 students strong, for finally leaving the adolescent world of junior high and entering the high school jungle. Whatever the reason, it was a good way to get out of schoolwork for a day.
trips go, Hannah’s bus was relatively quiet. She was sure the bus driver was glad for the noise reprieve, no doubt due to the early morning start. Most of the students were trying to catch up on much needed sleep, but there was the occasional boisterous morning person who couldn’t resist the opportunity to spread their previous night’s trivial pursuits.
Hands down, Hattie Craig le
d the pack of Chatty Cathy’s.
“So you guys
, I went to the mall last night and bought the most incredible pair of earrings you have ever seen! They’re sterling silver with blue sapphire…,” blah blah blah.
s one of those girls who just liked to hear her self talk. Unfortunately, there were at least ten other girls on the bus exactly like her and of course they were all friends. Maybe it wouldn’t have been so bad if they actually had something important to say - but enough about them.
After falling asleep several miles into the trip, it seemed like only seconds had passed when BMOC Jake Halsey alerted everyone to the approaching
New York City skyline.
“Whoa dude, I think I just saw Godzilla running through those huge buildings up ahead!”
After a huge round of laughter and applause at Jake’s successful attempt to energize the crowd, they studied the horizon in awe. Being from a small city, most of them had never seen so many tall buildings – skyscrapers everywhere.
The excitement wa
s definitely starting to build as they navigated through the city to Battery Park in Manhattan. From there they were supposed to take the Ferry to Ellis Island and The Statue of Liberty. One by one they filed off the buses, eager to get started on what seemed to be shaping up as a great day.
There were hundreds of other students boarding the ferry at the same time
. In typical fashion there was a good amount of struggling for position amongst anyone around the age of fifteen.
Hannah was small for her
age, not so much in height but weight was another story. Her family teased that if she wasn’t anchored down in a stiff wind, she was in danger of being carried off and never seen again. She ate plenty, but good genes coupled with being a competitive U.S.S. swimmer left her in the lean category and that was pushing it.
Never being one to exert her
physical presence on anyone and given her slight build, it was predictable that she’d be the one who ended up getting bowled over. Her notebook and nearly empty backpack were flung away from her. She landed on her hands and knees in the center of the crowd who were bullying and jockeying for position on their way to the main level of the ferry. In her confused state she managed to tilt her head upward. It was then that she saw him, a tall, stunning boy gazing down at her with the gentlest pale green eyes she’d ever seen. Time literally stood still for her as she studied this person in detail through the iconic light around him. She wondered, “Where did that Godlike music come from?”
e was slightly older than Hannah, maybe sixteen. His sandy brown hair with sun-kissed streaks framed his face perfectly as it cascaded downward in wispy curls onto his cheeks, blowing slightly in the water born breeze. Those eyes continued to peer at her through strands of his hair caught in his thick, long, dark eyelashes. His skin was smooth and tan and it pulled across his strong, square jaw ever so slightly to reveal deep dimples as he smiled. His nose rose slightly at the tip and reminded her of the noses seen on the Roman statues they’d studied in art history class. His subtle smile was aided by full, masculine lips that even a novice could see were kissable. It was evident his muscles were starting to emerge from beneath a small amount of residual baby fat. His sense of style was clearly beyond any boys she’d known, bordering on J Crew meets Burberry.
“Take my hand,” he murmured, gr
acefully extending it towards her.
mirrored his gesture and as they locked hands his firm grip began lifting her upward, their eyes still fixed on each other. At that very moment she felt a strong surge of electricity run through her and she was almost certain he felt it too.
“Thank you,” she managed to whisper, their
hands still clasped together, unable or maybe unwilling to let go of the amazing chemistry they’d shared.
When they touched, something happened to Hannah that had never occurred before. She experienced a rapid surge of images in her mind of the two of them – their first date, their first kiss, their first dance, their engagement, their wedding, their first child, their next child.
Every image was interspersed with explosions during war scenes and her job, family, and other life events.
In an instant, their
moment was shattered as yet another wave of passengers began boarding the ferry, pushing and shoving their way through the masses. The Godlike music stopped, the iconic light was gone, and their grip was broken as she was bumped yet again across the deck by someone of greater body mass. They slammed into her from the side. She ended up on the edge of the deck. There was nothing between her and the choppy cold water below, save for a few legs that belonged to people who quickly moved out of her path.