We feel isolated as individuals. We need community in love, unity, and acceptance.
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Number One. February 22.
Oliver stepped down from his white porch, squinting out at the narrow street that spanned from left to right, its black asphalt glinting with the bright light from above. He could almost feel the scorching heat emanating from the ground as the sun beat down on everything exposed to it. He still had his pajamas on him, not bothering to change his clothes before dashing out of his room just a few seconds earlier. He had even forgotten his shoes as he stumbled out onto the steps, yelping as he felt the sudden shock of heat under his feet.
Maybe because today – right now – something was about to happen. He smiled playfully to himself, humming a little tune he had heard from sometime awhile ago.
He turned his head, staring down his small neighborhood street. He blinked. No one was there. He blinked again, with a blank expression on his face.
“Oliver!! The other way, doofus!”
Then he saw her. Dressed in a simple sleeveless white dress that went down to around the top of her kneecaps, she looked like she had aged from the childish girl he knew and into the most gorgeous woman he had ever set his eyes upon. Her hair was short and wavy, and her eyes sparkled with a twinkling spark. She smiled at him, her graceful, slender arm waving at him excitedly. He stood there, dumbfounded, before catching himself and realizing the lump forming in his throat as he stepped down onto the street.
He could feel the tears welling up in his eyes as he was overcome with emotion. He picked up his pace, jogging over to her, fighting to keep himself from breaking into a sob. Charlotte smiled, her eyes glistening with tears streaming down her face as she ran straight into his arms. They had been apart for only a year, but to them, even a day of separation is an eternity. He remembered the times they had spent in their joyous school days – meeting for the first time as Charlotte the popular beauty chose to spend time with Oliver the peculiar kid, gradually spending more time together in and even out of school, like laying together on his roof watching the shining stars of the night sky in silence, or going for a walk in the quiet park while everyone else was at the school dance, or even the graduation party they skipped just to eat at their favourite ice cream shop.
Then she had moved away, and he was deprived of her warm presence and her sweet embrace. He had felt the sorrow of loneliness and the emotion in yearning. Now she was back, and although it was just to visit for a short while, he was glad. He was happy. He gave out a short laugh, letting droplets of tears spill out of his eyes, his arms still locked tightly in passionate embrace around her. And there was only one thing he could say in that moment.
“I love you, Charlotte.”