Take this

Take this

A Story by DaughterNature

Don’t take this the wrong way, but were you ever going to ask me out? I wonder about this, sometimes, when I think about you. I think about you at weird, random times when I’m driving down the highway. I think about you when I pass a truck, a big rig who’s not driving well, and I start to get mad at trucks that drive poorly. And then I think about how bad I would feel if I were thinking like that and looked up into the cab as I passed and it was your face I saw in the window behind the wheel.


Because - don’t take this the wrong way - it makes me sad to think about you driving trucks. I know you’ve been doing it for a while now, but it still makes me sad. Even though we haven’t actually seen each other in eight years or more, I still think about you sometimes. I like to wonder what would have happened if you had ever asked me out, and how funny it would have been considering how we met.


I mean, don’t take this the wrong way, but when I first saw you I wasn’t really sure what to think. There you were: this big, kind of overweight guy with no shirt on, your absolutely crazy white boy ‘fro bouncing around on top of your head like some sort of autonomous being, and I was supposed to get in a canoe with you? To be honest, I really wasn’t sure what to think. But you were so nice, and so funny, and we clicked so instantly. So what was I supposed to think when you never asked me out?


And I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but it felt really weird to me, the way we always seemed to be missing each other. First I was dating someone and you were single, then you found a girl and I was single. Back and forth, on and off, the two of us rocking like that, but never in sync. I always wondered what it would have been like if one time, just once, we’d landed on the same beat.


You know, I definitely took it the wrong way, that one day when your girl interrupted us. You’d invited me down to the lounge to watch “Sweeney Todd” with you. Just the two of us, on the couch, singing along to the songs and laughing together. I almost felt like something would happen between us, right there in the dark. But the movie was close to over, and this girl walked in. I didn’t know her, but it wasn’t too hard for me to figure out that she was your girl. Boy, did that take all of the air out of my balloon.

I mean, I guess I could have said something, though I was worried you might have taken it the wrong way. There was that night, when we were fooling around on my roommate’s computer. You were using the “I’m feeling lucky” button, goofing off and typing in random words to see what would happen. We must have been at it for almost an hour, when you typed in the word “love.” I think my heart stopped. I had this crazy urge to kiss you.


Ugh, PLEASE don’t take that the wrong way! But I did. I had this crazy, out-of-nowhere urge to reach down and kiss you under that improbable mop of hair. But I didn’t. And I don’t really know why. Was I too shy? Was it because there was already this other guy in my life, and my heart was ramping up to turn that relationship into a full-time, long-term, never-gonna-give-you-up kind of thing?


I worried that you took it the wrong way when I started hanging out with him that semester. I felt responsible for what happened to you. I had already known you weren’t happy with your program, and I should have seen what would happen to you. I feel responsible that I wasn’t there, that I didn’t hold on and stay with you and try to help you push through. I wish I would have stayed with you, helped you get to classes, helped you do your work, helped you. I wish I had helped. But by that point, because we’d never landed on the same beat, I was on to a new song.


I think I may have taken it the wrong way, the night I came into your room and saw you drunk for the first time. I saw the strange deadness in your eyes, and your voice wasn’t yours, and it wasn’t you I was looking at, and I lost you. We drifted so much farther apart in that moment. I lost you. I wish that I had realized what was in your eyes and turned around to help. But I didn’t.


So you took the wrong way. I mean, maybe the major you’d been studying wasn’t the best thing for you, but neither was dropping out! And I know you’re so much smarter than this. When you called me on New Year’s Eve from a Cracker Barrel in Denver because the roads were too snowy and you couldn’t drive your truck, I heard the sadness in your voice. I can tell that you’re lonely. I can tell you took the wrong way. But I don’t know how to help you get back.


It feels wrong that you’re so far away. 1300 miles when you’re not on the road. But we’re so much farther apart than that now. I’m still with that guy, the one I fell into because neither of us was ever brave enough to start something. So I can’t do much to help you, now. And I still feel responsible. I guess the closest I am to you is every time I pass a big rig on the highway. And it never has been you in the window.

© 2017 DaughterNature

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Added on August 8, 2017
Last Updated on September 4, 2017
Tags: romance, love, lost, friend, friendship, college, young, man, school, fail, sad, bitter



Chicago, IL

I know I'll always be learning, but ready and willing to read and review! I have been writing for about 14 years, and I have had one short story published in a magazine. I love experimenting with diff.. more..