“Answer me!” He demanded, snatching her wrist and staring at her intently. “Do you have the time?”
“Let go of me!” She shouted, struggling in his grasp. He was scaring her. Ever since he returned, his entire attitude toward her changed. “You’re hurting me!”
Shock seemed to register on his face then. Just as quickly as his anger came, it dispersed. Immediately, he released his hold, his arm falling back to his side. A look of regret and apology appeared briefly on his face, before it darkened, seemingly cursing at his arm’s actions. It was as if he wasn’t the one in control of its movements.
“I’m sorry.” He said without emotion, before turning to leave.
“Wait!” She shouted, watching his shoulders slump in despair. “I have time.”
She had to comfort him. Perhaps there was still a way for him to return to being that kind and innocent boy that she once knew. Perhaps, if she just yielded him a little more, the person that she’d come to love would return. If his reaction to her pain were anything to judge from, he was still in there.
He stopped in his steps, before turning to draw her into a hug. Burying his face in her shoulder, he began to shake. The wetness that accompanied the warmth of his face told her that he was crying. She put a hand to his back. He’d never cried before. At least, not since his Kindergarten years.
Tears came to her face then too, as she suddenly understood. He must’ve suffered a lot in those years at war. Placing a hand on the back of his head and pressing him closer, she looked up at the sky. If only she could share some of that burden. If only she could take some of that pain, he buried deep inside. But at the moment, his trust in her, his willingness to reveal to her the raw truth of his emotions, was enough. She wrapped her other arm around him. She’d stand by him for as long as he needed her.
This story was inspired by the writing prompt from the “Promptly Written” Publication.
Answer Me This
“_Can you provide the answer to this question?”
_Do you have the time?