Precious Memories~~Chapter 1

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<P>Chapter 1</P><I>

<P>July 3, 2003, Paterson, New Jersey</P></I>

<P>"Layla... Layla, wake up!" </P><I>

<P>Who in the name of the Devil is touching me?</P></I>

<P>"I'm awake," I said sluggish. I recognized the voice and turned over on my side so I could see in their direction. "What Derrick?" I opened my eyes and looked my brother in the eyes. "Are you okay? Is everything okay?"</P>

<P>"Oh, yeah I'm fine. It's just that I was looking through the mail and I got my letter from Harvard. I wanted you to open it for me. You know, since you're my good luck charm, I need you to give me luck." Derrick said in the sweetest voice ever. He was the hardest working man I've ever known.</P>

<P>"Derrick what time is it?" I asked with a little frustration in my voice. I then looked at the clock and realized that it was already one o'clock in the afternoon. "Why didn't anyone wake me?" the frustration passed when I saw him lower his head because he knew that I didn't want to hear the answer.</P>

<P>"So, are you going to open it or not?" he lifted his head a little, and I noticed the smirk on his face and couldn't help but smile.</P>

<P>Derrick was 18 turning 19 in January of the next year. He wanted to take a brake in between high school and college to "find him self".</P>

<P>Since we were apart in age about a year, give or take, that's means he's been out of school for an entire year. He also wanted to get into a perfect school. Harvard was <I>his</I>. "You know you're accepted, so what's the point of making yourself crazy? It's just a waste of time and energy. You're the smartest person I know-"</P>

<P>"Well you're the smartest person <I>I</I> know." He said it so low I almost didn't hear him. </P>

<P>I thought I heard his voice crack. I thought I saw a tear in his eye. I also thought he was going to break down and cry. But again, of course, I was wrong. I just tried to change the subject as soon as possible. The thought of him crying was heartbreaking.</P>

<P>I ripped open the envelope, pulled the letter out, and read it carefully. I looked up and said, "You see, I told you, you wouldn't have to wait for a letter." I thought about his happiness and couldn't help but smile but at that moment I frowned and thought about <I>my</I> future, I wasn't even sure how long my future would last.</P>

<P>"I really wish things were different. You know, with you and all. I sometimes wish it was me instead of you." Derrick said seriously with wretchedness in his voice.</P>

<P>"That can't be possible, considering you have no breast to get cancer in." I tried to lighten the mood with a joke; I knew it worked when he giggled a little</P>

<P>"Layla maybe you shouldn't say anything like that around mom or dad okay?" He paused and then finished "Just promise me that you will enjoy life while you can and do everything you want and laugh all the time. Do something unexpected. Dance! "</P>

<P>I laughed so hard I couldn't breathe. "DANCE" I said in between pants. "Are you going nuts? We all know that I can't dance to save my life! Ha, you get it? ...To save my life. I find that so funny."</P>

<P>He went from happy, to sad, straight to angry when the last statement was spoken aloud.</P>

<P>"I don't think that's funny."</P>

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