January 27, 2009
First Creative Writing Piece

I woke up from sleep with a start. Tiny fragments of my dream littered my mind but I couldn't string them together to remember a plot. All I knew is that I had been dreaming and something about it had electrified me.

Looking around the room I realized I'd been sleeping on the couch and it was still dark. Through the window I could deduce that it was the peak of the night, one, or maybe two, in the morning. The clock three feet from me agreed. I didn't remember how I'd fallen asleep on this lumpy couch. I felt springs lodging themselves into my shoulder blades and the crease on my cheek from lying on fabric for a few hours

I knew I hadn't slept much but at least I had slept. Lately, it's like biting into a cactus just to get myself ready for bed. It's become standard to start my day before four. Or I just don't sleep at all and then crash like I did five hours ago in an unusual place for two or three winks. I again state my gratefulness for being able to get some rest.

I continued to lay unmoving on the couch, willing myself to fall back asleep but it was no use. I was up, I was ready to roll.

Waking up before sunrise is a pain because my house is replete with light sleepers. Making a snack was out, music and television were downright impossible, and doing nothing was boring. It isn't even my house; otherwise I would've done all of these without a care in the world. But morals had been inscribed into my being and so I respected the wishes of the family giving me a roof.

Very carefully, I rose from the couch, stretched with some difficulty, and began my blind maze to the door. I knew the layout like I knew the ABCs and walked straight to the coat rack, feeling for my jacket. My only issue was that my keys weren't in the right pocket like I had left them. I sighed silently and figured Jaclyn had taken them to her room. This is the second trial of her experiment to see if I had enough guts to walk past her parents' room to retrieve them. I had only attempted once, in an effort to show her I was not, by any circumstances, intimidated by a girl, and had tripped over her little cousin's toy on the way. I might as well have tripped an alarm and sent the whole place into chaos. I was escorted back to my bed by her mother with Jaclyn peeking around her door frame, a smile stretching her lips.

Soughing again, I reckoned that I'd rather waste time out of the house instead of risking a sympathetic look over my breakfast in the morning. Seeing as I had no way of locking the front door, I figured I'd stay close to the house in case someone decided to take a chance. Not that Jaclyn's mother couldn't detect a threat against her family within three seconds of the criminal breaking in; it's quite a skill.

I tried with all my might to shut the door soundlessly but, like I mentioned, someone had to have stirred from the reticent click. Hopefully, whoever it was muttered something in his or her sleep, rolled over, and renewed their dream.

As I stepped off the rickety porch, I felt a chilled breeze cut through my clothes and slither down my back. "Stupid winter," I murmured and continued on my way. The neighborhood was hushed with only the occasional ribbon of wind wheezing around my ears. My steps were absorbed into the asphalt; the chafing of my jeans' legs was stolen by the deep trees protecting the houses; my rhythmic breath virtually dissipated above me to join the clouds.

Reaching my destination, I knew it was about two-thirty or so. The moon wasn't out tonight; the clouds were too thick to even see a ghost of its light. It's a wonder I arrived at the cliff. But I had made it and now I could sit on the boulder jutting out from the earth and do anything I felt like. The wind, rather than glaciating me, gave me a sense of freedom that was rare. It should have made me feel like going back to the house and at least snatching a thicker jacket; but alas, all it'd done was given me hope. That's not too bad of a thing, right?

I spent the rest of the night sitting on the boulder on the cliff overlooking some kind of sea. I had no idea which it was. I was only sure that when the sky opened up a bit more, it was the best view of anywhere I had ever seen. The moon's splendor could be seen on the water's reflective surface and stars danced alongside. The wind helped the water's waves shatter against the rocks below and their jostle was melodic. I was doing nothing but I felt as though if I did do something—yell, talk, move—I would ruin it. I'm not sure what I would ruin, but I would destroy something. I read in a book once that the character had had a moment with a certain truck with a certain song and certain friends where he could only describe it as infinite. He hadn't depicted specifics such as the song or exactly what "infinite" meant to him, only that he would let the reader figure it out for themselves. When I spend these nights out here, I think that it's safe to say these moments are infinite for me.

The sun soon enough started to sprout from the horizon with a prequel of purples and pinks, the clouds quickly parting like a curtain. I sat there, thinking that I should start heading back after the sun had completely disconnected from the water. When it was less than half above the world, I sensed Jaclyn. She was coming up behind me probably already dressed in her school uniform and ready to go. I should've known that she'd come out looking for me when I didn't venture to claim my keys. I should've known that she'd known I'd left as soon as I'd shut the door, that she wasn't the one to stir, mutter, roll over and renew her dream.

She leaned against the boulder with her back to me, the sunrise on her left. I slid to the side and she moved to stand next to me. The sky was a show of reds, oranges, and pinks and the wind rustled and reveled in Jaclyn's long curly hair. I was surprised she hadn't tied it up as she usually did and more so perplexed when I didn't see the green collar of her uniform over the neck of her coat.

"You're lucky today's Sunday," she announced. So much for my sense of time.

"You mean, you're lucky," I retorted. Jaclyn turned toward me for the first time with a wondering expression. I didn't look back at her as I replied. "Your mom would scream if you were out here on a school day." I faced her and smirked at my correct assumption.

"Shut up," she mumbled and watched the sun's ascent. It was past halfway full now and the sky was clearing up from the array of colors it'd once had. The wind had picked up a little and seemed to be erasing the hues every time it blew.

I hadn't turned back to the show and watched as Jaclyn lightly sucked her bottom lip into her mouth before she took a breath to speak. "Why didn't you get your keys?"

I looked back at the horizon and hesitated before answering, trying to choose the most honest of responses. "I didn't want to wake your mom up." I glanced at Jaclyn but looked away before she said anything.

After a few moments of silence from her end, I stopped wondering what she would say. The best thing that was going through my head was that, even though Jaclyn had never been here and I prided myself in finding this spot for myself and my own thoughts, it didn't feel as if Jaclyn was encroaching on something of mine that I labeled sacred. I hadn't felt like anything was missing before she'd arrived, far from it. But it didn't feel wrong to have her there at all. So I stopped worrying whether or not I'd offended her by not taking the chance of recovering my keys or that I should've known she'd find me either way.

I leaned back, relaxed my eyes, and followed the climb the sun made every day of its existence and enjoyed the company I had to watch history in the making.