September 5, 2013
Note: This entry is from Leah’s Brother, Seth’s, perspective and is a continued entry to the previous one.
I laugh, “Well I guess those two hit it off.”
Ann laughs too and turns to me with a spark in her eyes.
“Do you mind if I ask how old you are?” She asks casually.
I shake my head as I reply. “Fourteen. But I’ll be fifteen next month.”
She laughs, “I’ll be fifteen in two months. I was afraid you were going to be way older than me.”
I smile, “So you like the beach?”
“Yeah, I love it, ” She says turning toward the ocean again.
“My sister’s graduating this year, and I’ve been trying to find a Christmas present for her that will remind her of the land here for months. I haven’t found anything yet though. She loves the beach and I think she wishes she could stay here forever, if things were different,” I tell her as we watch the waves.
“I can see why. Do you want to look for something now? I could help.”
We begin walking with our eyes sweeping the ground. I spot several pretty shells, but none of them are right. As we hunt, I listen to Ann talk about her family, her life.
Ann pauses, “What about you? I’m the only one talking. What’s your family like?” She’s paused in her walking too and is watching me.
I keep my eyes on the ground, and quickly return to where I had seen a sand dollar a moment before. I crouch down and pick it up. I walk to where Ann is standing, “For you, ” I say and hold the dollar out in my hand.
“Thanks, ” she says taking it. She examines it closely and slides it carefully into her pocket.
I wasn’t planning to answer her question before but guilt overpowers and I do. Bravely, I reach for her hand and we walk closely for awhile, only letting go to grab a shell, which she pockets several of.
The sun soon begins to slowly droop in the sky and the clouds that were on the horizon before sneak closer and closer. Ann and I have given up our search and now sit with Cody and Cally, helping Andrew build a sandcastle. I love the feeling of her hand, still gently resting in mine.
“Sorry we didn’t find anything for your sister, ” Ann says when Cally says something about heading back soon.
“That’s alright, ” I say, although I am a little disappointed.
We say goodbye to Cody and Andrew and begin walking back to Emily’s. Just as we reach the edge of the beach, Ann runs back before the shore.
“What are you doing?” Cally asks.
Ann reaches down and picks up something that looks like a big rock. She brings it close to her face and turns it over in her hands. “Finding this, ” she answers after running back.
She hold the object out to me, “Will an oyster with the pearl still in it do?”
My jaw drops, “Really?”
She nods, “Yeah. See?”
She shows me where to peer in and I do, she still holds it in her hands.
She takes it back, close to her side. “I’ll trade you for your phone number.
My jaw drops again. Cally laughs, “Well, say yes to her already!”
I just nod. We continue walking, and we are over halfway there when I finally get over my astonishment.
“So, uh, do you guys want to come down again for my birthday next month?” I ask.
“Sure. Hopefully we can come,” Ann says and Cally nods.
We reach Emily’s house, and I walk the girls to the porch. I’m about to open the door for them, when Cally stops.
“Listen, ” She says and we quiet down.
I can hear Emily and Luke talking inside.
“I just don’t know what to do, Emily. She’s never home. And when she is, she just sleeps. It’s like they don’t even have a mother. They love her though and I don’t want to have to take that away, ” Luke says. I glance at Cally’s face. She has the same sad look on her face as Luke did earlier.
“They could still see her, Luke. And if she just sleeps when she’s at home, then how will it be any different?”
“I guess it’s not. She’d have to make an effort though. I don’t think she will.”
“Okay, that’s enough, ” Ann says taking charge. She takes Cally’s arm and goes inside.
I wait outside with the oyster in my hand. Ann comes back out and hands me a paper and a pen. I scribble my number down and she does the same, then we trade. I am hating this moment and loving it at the same time. I don’t want her to leave, but I’m loving spending this time with her. I silently wish I could hug her.
“Thanks, Seth. For everything—it’s been a great day.”
“Yeah, it has, ” I agree. “You have to come back soon.”
“I will, ” she promises.
I get up my courage then and we both seem to go for a hug at the same time. Our hands end up hitting each other, and we laugh and move our arms. The hug is over way too soon. We say goodbye and I get on my bike to head home while she goes back inside.
At dinner, Mom and Dad both notice the grin that seems to be glued to my face.
“So what’d you do at Emily’s today, Seth? You were gone long enough, ” Mom says to me.
I feel the smile on my face grow even larger and recount the details of the day for them. They don’t seem very surprised and I tell myself to remember later to thank Leah for being born first. Telling my parents about a girl would probably be a lot harder, if I was the one always teased instead of Leah.
That night, I lie in bed, waiting for sleep to come. The day was pretty much perfect. The only thing that would make it better would be to know Leah was safe at home in the other room, even if she was keeping me awake like she does so often with her crying.
I think back to the last time I saw her and she gave me the phone. In her eyes, she carried the visible weight of a secret. One I didn’t know until over twelve hours later. Maybe I still didn’t know all of it.
The phone. I can’t believe none of us, even Charlie, have gone this long without think to check it. I hurriedly grab it from my desk and go to the messages. They’ve all been erased. Calls. Gone.
I sigh, of course she would erase them.It’s not until I’ve laid down again that I think to check the notes. I do, and my heart skips a beat when I see the most recent one.
Seth, I have to tell someone. I just can’t stand to have Christmas without him.I hope you never have to have the pain of getting your heart broke. Please don’t tell. I’ll be back. I promise. Thanks. -L
I turn onto my side with a smile permanently painted on my face. With the promises of Leah’s note, an oyster, and a new phone number, the day has been perfect.
Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoy Leah’s Diary as much as I love to share it with you! Like us on Facebook here because I love to hear from you!