His eyes hardened. “I had hoped I’d mean more to you by now. I can understand you’re afraid, but I don’t understand how you can be so self-absorbed. You can’t just blow us off telling me that we’re a game. What do you think happens when you’re not here? Do you think we disappear?”
“I don’t know,” I stammered, staring at him.
“Let me tell you, we don’t. This is not a game. This is a rebellion to reclaim our heritage, our queen. I don’t know why you were sent as our hero. You certainly don’t act like one. And honestly, if you can’t find a way to put someone ahead of yourself, I don’t know what good you’d be. This is the hope of our future, not a childhood game to be played for fun. I’m done humoring you. You want to go home - go home. I’ll take you to the highway tomorrow morning.”
“Now you’re not being fair. You're twisting my words to make me look bad.”
“Goldy, I don't need to twist anything to do that.”
I slapped him, and then balled my fist to my mouth, cringing as I waited for his reaction.
He rubbed his cheek and turned back to me with a crooked grin. I held my breath as he came closer. “Did that feel real enough for you? What about this?” He reached behind me and pulled me near.
My protests stopped as his lips covered mine. My heart jumped, stirring my earlier feelings to their boiling point. My knees weakened, my lips softened against his, and my mind quieted to everything except the hammering of my heart. I grabbed his sleeves, pulling him closer, feeling my greediness surface. And then he pulled back, and unhooked my hands from his sleeves.
“Was that real enough for you?” He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, and retreated back into the dusty town.
I watched him leave, feeling a pang of longing with every step he took. My chest heaved, refusing to hold anything but my shattered heart.
“Yes,” I whispered, feeling the linger of his lips, and the burn of regret.
Dreamscape: Saving Alex
-unedited text copyright Kirstin Pulioff