What’s stronger? True love, or soulmates?
Strings
CHAPTER
12
The Disguise
“Honey, Leo’s here.” My mother calls from downstairs.
I take a deep breath, I can do this. I don’t want to face him, the idea of it terrifies me. But I can’t live life without him in it. We’ve been friends since the first day of kindergarten when we just clicked. One weirdo to another. And I don’t think I’d make it through the rest of school without him.
Leo is standing in my doorway, he looks different somehow. Maybe it’s the way he stands, maybe it’s the way he looks at me. But what ever it is I’m not entirely sure.
“You ready to go?” He asks, his voice is steady, how? I’m not steady, I feel like I’m about to come crashing down. And here he is, standing up straight, completely alright.
I just nod, because I think that if I try to speak either nothing will come out or everything will. A flood of emotions, a tsunami of tears, and a whirlwind of wishes. Because at the moment that’s all I am, caged in by a feeble fence about to break.
Leo is silent has he leads me down the street, through the warm California October air. Chestnut street leads right down to the beach, and I’ve walked this road with Leo enough times to know that that’s where we’re going.
The beach is deserted, Santa Cruz is a busy place but this specific line of beach is over deserted.
Leo takes my hand and pulls me towards this set of rocks we like to sit on. He gestures for me to sit and I do. Taking a step back he takes a deep breath, it’s oddly shaky.
I can almost see his disguise shredding, his cover of pretending to be alright. I can almost watch as it disintegrates.
“Charlotte Jem Cassidy, I have loved you since we were five.” He says.
I am in shock. Pure, unadulterated shock.
“I never said anything when we were little because we were kids, love was a game back then. I guess I just never knew that love is never a game.”
“Why-“ I start but Leo cuts me off.
“Why didn’t I tell you? Because then you told me about the strings. And you never said anything about a string between us and I know what that meant. So I kept quiet. And I never should’ve. I am so sorry, Charlotte. Because I do love you, and I should’ve said it sooner.”
I open my mouth to speak but nothing comes out. So I stand up and I walk towards him. I wrap my arms around him and kiss him. Because I didn’t kiss him back when he kissed me before.
We spent the rest of night on the beach. Walking, talking, sitting, laughing, doing nothing at all. And it was by far the best day of my life.

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