IT WAS 5:15

I pushed myself into a metal side door of the school freeing myself from the walls holding the memories and time of so many like myself. He was by my side.

The sky said it was 5:15.

The wind announced itself to us with that initial breath walking out the doorway. The sky was blue and calming to my eyes. The clouds looked like cotton candy floating around shadows. Hues of pink, purple and blue illuminated the sky.
“It’s beautiful.” I said, looking at him.

His hair was pushed around by the air swirling around us. Wind that declared it’s presence. Warm wind that held your heart up even in the cold.
“This is what living is like. Being able to say, “That’s pretty. I like that.” And take note and move on.”

“I’m glad I’m living then.” I replied.

Then we drove.

The tiny dashboard clock read 5:26. The familiar blocky green glow of that digital clock was always endearing to me in the most unexplainable way.
“Is it time?” He said.
I looked up at him raising a single eyebrow.
“For you to learn stick?”
I smiled. “Why not?”
He explained what each positions significance was and why he would move it. He inched forward to the stop light.
“See that ramp?” I glanced to see the left turn we would be making to lead onto the highway. It was relatively clear of cars.
“We are going to go through every gear going on to the ramp.”
I could hear his smirk without even looking at him.
I placed my hand on the stick and he let go of the clutch. His fingers rested on my hand and locked into mine. My heart stuttered to his touch. The vibration of the stick, his fingers intertwined with mine. The light turned green and he gained speed. With each shift of the gears the pressure of his fingers pushed mine. Within seconds we had exhasted all 5 gears, bolting down the highway. I smiled bigger than I had in a while.
Skimming my thumb against his to try not to lose the moment he let go.

Flying down the interstate into the late January sunset of pink clouds and blue skies, with the one person I seem to be forbidden to love.


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