I'm practicing my short story fiction writing. Here is a little something/something I just wrote, Enjoy!
She knew she was leaving that town. No matter how much she loved it. With it’s sleepy seaside charm, filled with the quaint everyday people who loved her unconditionally, even though she was so very different from them, the very fact they would gossip about in the bank or the grocery store, right after seeing her walk by.
She knew she was leaving the day she met him. With his smoldering eyes that followed her as she shook her pom-poms for the pep rally, cheering as loud as her booming voice could, which was actually quite loud, as she was constantly being told to lower it by her teachers. No matter how much she loved the idea of him, it would never work out. He was the all-star quarterback and she was the head cheerleader for god sakes, they were crowned homecoming king and queen they were so perfect together. With his tall blond good looks and her mysteriously dark beauty, they radiated sex and youth and talent, everything that the small town hailed as royalty.
She had to leave. It was the life that she knew would be comfortable, the life her family wanted for her. He was good for her, they had said. He was steady. Her father had breathed a sigh of relief knowing that his eccentric daughter, with all of her wild fantasies, would be safe and taken care of. They knew he would go to State and she would too, just to be near him. The young lovers would become engaged in their third year after he accepted the football draft, sealing his deal with the majors. They would marry at a lovely outdoor ceremony on the beach with the entire town as guests and then move, wherever he was going, and she would be pregnant with their first child within the year.
It sounded oh so wonderful and every time he would talk excitedly to her about it, as they lay entwined in each other’s arms in the back seat of his mother’s Corolla, she would smile at him dreamily and in her mind she would pack another item in her suitcase.
As they neared graduation she began to distance herself from him. Her heart physically hurt when she told him that she couldn’t go out that night, or when he passed her a note in the hall, holding his hand out for hers only to come up empty, and especially when she missed his acceptance speech of athlete of the year at the awards assembly. He knew then, she really was leaving.
She had told him many times of her dreams, over the span of their three carefree years together. He would smile and pat her hand, or wink at her as she drove, singing at the top of her lungs, harmonizing perfectly with Tom Petty as he sung his ‘American Girl’. He had even covered her mouth once in jest. That was when she knew, he would never understand her. Never understand that she had a dream too and that her dream wasn’t just… Him.
Everyone thought she was crazy. How could she break up with him that day in their cap and gowns? They were the golden couple. There were rules. They would only leave town for him to be a big professional athlete and her, a wife and mother, and they would surely return years later after he retired from professional football to become the high school coach. That was the way it was supposed to be. They had counted on that story.
Sure, she was a pretty girl, everyone knew that, she had a captivating smile and a quirky way of dressing. What was it she wanted to be? An actress? A model? A singer? It didn’t matter. They all wished her luck as she drove away, then began talking amongst themselves about what a shame it was, and she really thought she was something didn’t she? Well good riddance to her. The big city was a scary place and for her to give up all of this perfection for a silly dream, well, she would learn the hard way wouldn’t she?
The music blared within the shiny red Volkswagen Beatle as the last light turned green and she drove out of that tiny New England town. She saw his mother’s car parked at the last parking lot to ‘their’ beach, with him leaning, arms folded, against it, his smoldering eyes watching and she slowed down to wave as the tears streamed down her smiling face. He waved back as she drove away, and he knew she was turning up her radio again, he knew that she was singing. He would hear her voice forever in his mind, and every time Tom Petty would sing he would close his eyes and remember her... His ‘American Girl’. His ‘American Girl’.
~by: Tommie Vaughn