Till There Was You [ 1 ]

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© 2012 Choi Ji-hye. All Rights Reserved.


Three words. Eight letters.

Today is the day I will finally say it: I love you.

Never in my twenty-one years have I ever stumbled across a girl like her. She is 'the one' I've been searching for; I am sure of it. Sigh. If only I'd realized it sooner . . .

"So, you're finally going to say it, huh?" a familiar voice calls out.

Peering into the mirror before me, I immediately spot my best friend, Claire, sitting at the edge of my bed. "Yeah," I tell her, a faint smile curving at my lips. My answer is beyond simple, sure, but in my defense, the reality of the situation is just as straightforward. I, James Montoya, am in love and she is finally going to know it.

"It's kind of weird, don't ya' think?"

Meeting Claire's gaze through the reflection, I raise a brow at her. "Weird?" I repeat. She nods with a swift bob of her head, and I go on, "No, not really."

Claire isn't the type of person to allow such a plain response keep her curiosity at bay though, and rather than let the entire thing slide, she winds up resorting to what she always does: she tries to make me see things her way. "Think about it, Jay," she says, her dark irises training solely on me. "You've managed to go your entire life without saying those words to anyone—"

"My entire life?" I cut in, quickly spinning around to face her. 

She shoots me a look like 'uh-duh?' and I roll my eyes.

"¡No mames, Claire! Le digo a mi familia que los amo todos los días!"

She casts me a sharp glare. "I'm talking about the people you aren't related to, smartass."


"And I'm not talking about your bromance with Pierce or Elliot either," she clarifies. "Now quit butting in and let me finish. 알았어?"

I cross my arms and turn back around. "Alright! Alright! I'll shut up."

"Good," she says proudly before resuming her lecture. "Okay, so where was I before I was so rudely interrupted?" A pause. "Oh, yeah— so, up until today, you've never told anyone those words. But now, for some odd reason that I can't even begin to fathom, after meeting some chick —who, BTW, you have yet to introduce me to— you've decided to completely jump off the deep end and shatter your twenty-one-year streak by professing your love for her."

I laugh. "You say that like it's a bad thing."

"I'm not saying it's bad per se, it's just, um— how do I go about it in a nice way? I guess, you could say that it's uh . . . it's just very out of character for you."

I shrug. "People change."

"Yeah, but c'mon, you honestly want me to believe that none of it is in a lease bit strange? I mean, like, given your track record and all, you telling a girl you're in love with her is pretty bizarre."

Well, when she puts it like that . . . "I suppose it is."

Through the mirror's reflection, I see Claire rear her head back. "You suppose?" she repeats, almost as if my words had offended her. "Jay . . . telling someone you love them is a big fucking deal! You can't just confess out of the blue and expect them to take it lightly. Before you take the next step, you have to be sure. And I mean sure sure."