June 04, 2020, 11:45:18 AM

Author Topic: In the Woods Somewhere (2/3)  (Read 208 times)

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Bryan Williams

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In the Woods Somewhere (2/3)
« on: May 09, 2019, 01:35:45 AM »
She woke in the morn, fallen leaves her hair adorned.
The sun tickled her eyes and cheeks, suddenly she felt the need to seek.
Climbing up to her feet, couldn’t shake that there was someone to meet.
She walked out of the wooded land, when she found a house that was proud to stand.

“A new person is what we need most.” It groaned, “for I am filled with nothing but ghosts.”

They look at each other.
One of them smiles.

Levi has been missing, for the last couple of days.

She picks off the green.
“Lemme get the leaves off your hair.”
“Do I luck like uh lil twee?”
“Hahaha! Yeah! A little bit, is that where you live?”
“No, I live in uh howse.”
“That’s good! Me too! We’re standing in it! Hahahaha.”
The girls laugh together.

As a matter of fact, it has been almost three days since Olivia has seen her last. Three days, filled with searching and asking around. The gas station, the woods area near their apartment, the Goodwill, the diners, Levi’s aunt and Olivia’s own father. Cousins. Brothers. Mutual friends. Rhett. Jackson. She’s covered all the bases. Nothing. Three days. Three days with worrying and training and panicking. Three days with her snapping at Jackson, finding him to be an easy target for her frustration and finding it even simpler to blame him.

Three days.

What would Levi do in three days? Where would she go for three days? And the worst and only answer is, she would do anything and go anywhere.

“Ugh, where did you go, Levi?” Olivia rubs at her eyes in the early morning. The slight hope that Levi has returned sticking to her bones bitterly as she opened the door to the empty, messy room. Nothing taken, nothing added. Olivia groans and turns away. She shuffled her feet toward the living room.

Three days.

Three days with her calling and trying to get a hold of someone who just, well, vanished. Levi is so good at it. In their youth, teenage Levi would go off somewhere, sometimes for a week or two at a time and the location changed always. However, she always came back home. She always came back with a story. She always came back before something important, for her obligations, for her family. For Olivia, who is prone to worry for the other girl.
She always came back. Usually. Mostly. Except for the time where she dropped everything.

They eat.
“When my daddy comes home, we’re gonna find where you live and take you home, okay?”
“But if we can’t where you live, maybe you can stay here forever! I’ve always wanted a little sister. And I think I’m the best at taking care of you, what do you think?”
“Yea, I tink so. Dats okee too if I stay fowever.”
This time they both smile.

Which is what makes Olivia worried. Not exactly the usual reasons that come with someone just going with the wind. Levi has done this once before; gathered whatever she could carry in her hands and ran away from everything that overwhelmed her. Selfishly, despite Levi destructively putting her own own life on its head, Olivia has been happy. She hadn’t been one of the many that had been left behind.

Her and Levi, were solidified from childhood. Promised to each other for life. Levi is her best friend, like a little sister. She never considered that maybe, one day, Levi would leave her behind as well and run off, as is her nature.

She never considered that, because it was impossible.

For as long as she could remember, Levi has always been there. They’ve looked out for each other, taken care of one another. They’ve been inseparable since meeting, so much so that their family met halfway and mixed fully for Holidays and events. Levi is a heartfelt thinker, not exactly as logical as Olivia. She believes in adventures, she’s romantic and heroic. Her mind lives in a world of placed fantasy and recess tactics. She believes in fate and she believes her and Olivia were meant to meet and be friends forever.

“You couldn’t get rid of me if you tried!” Levi has told her on many occasions. It’s true. Olivia can’t. And, she’s not afraid to admit that she has tried a few times before, when angry and frustrated and annoyed and Levi always forced her way back.

Levi always comes back. Except for when she doesn’t. But she always comes back for Olivia.

“I can’t believe you don’t have a TV in your house! Cartoons are the best.”
“I want uh TV, can I ave yours?”
“Nope! But you can come over and watch stuff whenever you want!”

Levi would never leave her behind, no matter what they argue about. No matter how different their beliefs are. Olivia sits alone on their couch as the realization relaxes her and everything becomes slightly annoying. They weren’t children anymore, but telling Levi to grow up is asking too much of her. Her tilted innocence, her naivety.

Her childishness. Olivia turns on the television. It’s automatically turned on to Cartoon Network. Flapjack. Adventurer.

All at once, it hits Olivia that Levi wants her to search for her. This isn’t about commonplace, this is about Levi wanting to be found in a rather specific place. This is hide and seek, find where I might be.

And Olivia is stumped. She thought she has looked everywhere and asked everyone important. She huffs out.

“You’re so annoying sometimes, I swear, Levi. Where are you supposed to be? Why do you have to make everything so hard?” Olivia says, to no one. “Why can’t you just make things easy for once?”

Olivia sighs out. “You know, I have a lot on my plate. I have so much to do and so much to train for. We have our tag match, I have King’s Road and I’m just now starting to find my footing. I haven’t even been able to concentrate the last few days because of you.”

No answer. No one else there. Olivia nods. “When I find you, I’m going to kick your butt and I know you know it, so you made it tough, huh?”

Olivia, despite everything, smiles. There’s a huge sense of relief that she feels, knowing her friend is waiting and not missing.

One of them yawns.
“I’m sweepie.”
“Well, if you bumped your head, maybe it’s bad to go to sleep right now.”
“Cause then you might not wake up! Don’t worry, I’ll keep you awake. Let’s play hide and seek!”
“Oh gosh, okee!”
They hold hands and run outside.

By the late afternoon, she still doesn’t figure it out. She looked through everything, she went to a few places and she’s just so tired. It feels like the end of the maze. It feels like she’s going to have to sit and wait for Levi to give up, or to never come back.

Jackson is bothering her again. He’s so good at pretending he’s worried. Olivia doesn’t trust him, she doesn’t like him. She doesn’t think Levi is safe with him. She wishes she would stop talking to him. Then, maybe, he wouldn’t be so caught up.

Olivia has seen it many times before, boys gathering around her young airheaded friend and falling hard. It’s Levi’s attitude, her thoughts, her smooth childish face and unabashedly loving personality. It’s her lack of knowledge in regards to personal space. It’s hugs, piggyback rides, ear pulling and teasing. It’s just. Levi. She saw a friend in everyone and it crushed her every time to realize that, well, most people don’t have the best intentions.

Jackson is most people. Olivia is sure of it.

“Look, I get she’s your best friend, okay? But I care about her too… I care a lot. I’m not going to sit back while she missing.”

He cares. His feelings for Levi were obvious and maybe Levi, as she is known to do, has her schoolgirl crush toward him that comes in flickers like a broken light in her head. But other than that, other than the predatory lust that comes in waves toward her pure friend, what else did he have? What else did he know?


“You say that, but you don’t know her at all. I’ve known her my whole life. I’ve got this.”

Her whole life. Olivia has known Levi her whole life. When did her whole life start? She thinks back to their childhood, to when they first met.

Levi was four years old and Olivia was five.

She thinks of the little girl with dirt on her clothes, knocking on her door one Summer morning when her brothers and father had all scattered for the day. She looked scared, she was lost. That was the day they spent together, when the little girl had half a sleeping head. She thinks of the first thing they said to each other.

One girl titled her head at the other.
“I never saw you before, where ya come from?”
“The woods. I’m lost. I bump muh head.”
“Oh no! Come on in! I’ll take care of you”
“Tank you.”
She shuffles into the house.

It clicks for Olivia then. Every small conversation, every little bonding moment, the exact situation that allowed them to become friends for life. It all happened in one specific place. The home where Olivia grew up, across the home of Levi; the two separated by the woods there. The woods they ended up traveling so much growing up in between houses, a path was created by their shoes.

She knows where to look. She lets Jackson know, she shuts him up on his pushy behavior to somehow be involved in bringing Levi home. It takes a while to push him away through messages as she throws her shoes back on. The sun is setting, she doesn’t trust him. She lets him know. Everything boils over and he gives up beautifully.

“Just make sure she’s okay.”

Olivia rolls her eyes. That’s the plan. This is for her to do. She doesn’t need help. And Levi doesn’t need anyone else, especially when she herself decided it.

“I’m glad we met today!”
“Me too. We fwends now!”
“That’s cool with me!”
« Last Edit: May 09, 2019, 02:12:52 AM by Bryan Williams »