Chapter 41 - keep moving

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POV Ethan


After our date Mao and I went back to her apartment.

Jake wasn't home, he had a plane this afternoon to Miami.
Mao said that she don't care, she is used to be home alone and she knows that her dad loves his job and it makes him happy and it makes him forget a little about the situation.

Mao always see the positive in everything and in every situation.
She don't hate anything and loves everyone.

I wish I could be like her.

We can say that she has one of the shittiest life, yet she always finds the time to laugh and smile.
She never complains, I had to really got on her nerves that day after she stopped her treatment for her to open up to me about her pain and her problems.
She makes the people that surrounds her happy and she don't even care if to do that she has to let her happiness aside.


"Mao ?" I whispered.

She was laying on my chest, her arms wrapped around my torso.

"Mhmm ?"
"Show me your list." I said.

She looked up at me.

"Ethan, it's just a list."
"Come on, show me." I insisted.
"What are you afraid of ? I'm not gonna judge you."
"It's just stupid, e."

I toyed with her hair.

"I'm sure it's not. And I want to help you accomplish everything that is written on it." I told her.

She was hesitant. I could see it. And at one point i kind of felt bad for forcing her to show me her list.
I mean, it's something probably very personal that she don't especially want people to see.

Right when I was about to tell her that I was sorry and that she should not feel pressured to show it to me, she took her phone from the bed side table.

"Okay." She accepted.


I was looking at Mao's list while she was hiding her head on my chest. As she wanted to disappear.

"I don't know why you're ashamed of what you wrote." I said when I finished reading.

She laughed sarcastically.

"I sound like a twelve years old frustrated girl that haven't lived anything."

"Why ?"

She didn't responded.

"Why Mao ? Because you said that you're a virgin ? And you think being 18 years old and being a virgin is shameful ?"
"I didn't said that..."
"Yes you did." I cut her off.

I slowly sat on the bed, forcing her to face me.

"That's not something you do because you feel like you have to, Mao. It's something you do because you feel ready and you want it. You have time. You don't have to do it just because you're afraid to die as a virgin. That should be something special, with someone special, at a special moment. Otherwise you'd feel miserable and ashamed of yourself." I told her.

She looked down.

"You deserve the world." I said, caressing her cheek with my thumb.
"You deserve to be happy and loved for the rest of your life. No matter how long it is going to be. You are way too perfect to be hurt or disappointed."

She let out a small laugh and frowned. I knew she was holding back her tears.

"You can cry. I'm here." I told her, putting her on my laps so I can hug her.

And she cried. Silently.

"I'm here." I whispered.
"I'll always be there..."

And that was true.

No matter how hard it is for me. I can't just avoid her because I'm afraid to be hurt once she dies.
It's too late anyways.
I can distance myself how I want, she already took a place in my life, in my heart. And no matter what I do it's gonna hurt.

So now I have to fight for her. I have to make her happy, help her accomplish her list. Make her smile everyday and let her know that she's not alone.

"Why don't you call your mother, to tell her that you're going to New York to visit her and your brother because your amazing and extremely good looking boyfriend bought you a flight ?" I asked her.

She looked up at me and I could see that she was so happy at that right moment.

"Are you really going to ?" She asked excited.

"Yes. But I come with you. I'm not letting you travel alone."

"Oh my god, Ethan ! Thank you so much !" She said with the biggest smile.

She kissed me and then hugged me. And we stayed in that position for a long time, I could feel her smiling against my bare shoulder. I could feel her fingers tracing invisible lines on my back.

"By the way, since when do we all each other boyfriend and girlfriend ?" She asked me.
"And since when you are good looking ?"

I fake gasped.

"First of all, I'm hurt. And second of all, I've been your boyfriend since the first time i laid my eyes on you, baby girl."

"Ew, never say that again." She said.

I laughed and she laughed along with me.

That was perfect. She was perfect.


This cancer was a tragedy.

That's a thing.
It was sad, and painful and devastating.

Yet Mao kept her smile and her sense of humor. She kept her hopes and dreams.
She kept moving.

That's the key.

Staying in movement.

Wake up every morning. Tell yourself that you're going to make it.
Stand up and walk.
Keep walking.
Keep moving.

Never stop moving and never stop being yourself.

The cancer can kill your body all it wants. But there is something it can't kill. And that is your mind.

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