I finally get out of bed for the night and begin to get ready for the bonfire. Earlier today someone on my hall yelled out that we should all try to attend the bonfire near the train tracks and it was actually in the morning paper so it must be pretty big. I get dress and stare at myself in the mirror as I always do as I think of my sister. My big dark hazel eyes stare back at me. Soon a girl with a new found confidence is in my reflection. I look pretty tonight with this coral shirt that brings out my eyes and these new leather pants I bought. I look vibrant. Something catches my attention at the window in the kitchen. Slowly walking over to check out the startling noise and it is just the wind. And it's also just my nerves. Socializing used to be my strong trait but after the incident with my sister I isolated myself.
Sooner or later I grabbed my jacket and headed out of my door. As soon as I step outside the crisp cold air reaches the skin on my face first. It's dark and mysterious tonight. The clouds are present overhead and everything seems to be absolutely still. I must have imagined the wind earlier. I already see the fire. Am I late? Can someone even be late for a bonfire? Taking a deep breath I continue walking towards the light. The small town of Dreamwood was asleep at this late hour and the glowing fire ahead may have been the heart. I begin to approach the train tracks and there is a silhouette of a man walking in the same direction as I. I pretty much pick up my paste. I do not know what is coming over me but I really want to say something to this mystery man just for the fun of it.
Walking up next to him I said "Hey, you going to the bonfire? By the way I'm Carmen". At this point I am flirting because in the light of the nearby fire his face is quite appealing and striking if I say so myself.
He's tall and slim. My heart begins to skip a beat as he speaks to me.
"I'm Rick. I didn't actually know that there was a bond fire going on."
"It was in this morning paper, third page it's an annual event. At least that's what I read." I said as I began watching him a bit more. I turn around and begin to lead the way the burning fire ahead and Rick follows. We continue to talk to each other on the way. This is going so well actually. I normally don't get sentimental but I think we have a connection. Our small talk progresses to talking about our past and how we ended up at Dreamwood. It is quite lovely talking Rick, it's like this guy has a mind of his own and I am drinking it all in. We are finally present at the bonfire where there are about 25 people standing around. It is not that many people as I expected but then again this is Dreamwood. Rick and I seem to drift apart at the fire and I begin to walk around to mingle with some other people.
Tonight feels different so I am going to do something different. I walk up to a small puppy that looks like an Akita. While petting the animal I feel a sense of calm wash over and vulnerability.
"Okay so...I know you're just a puppy but I feel comfortable talking to you." I sigh and begin to spill out my neglected secret. "So me and my sister were close at one point but now not so much. You see there was out aunt who we were both extremely close to but I was having a bad day and just did not want to be bothered. She was texting me and calling but I refused to reply. My sister had just graduated the day before and had found so much happiness. My aunt ended up dying of a heart attack and she was calling on me for help. My sister blames me for taking away her best friend, her second mom and now she has joined the military recklessly. I know it's all my fault but she will never let it go and never forgive me." I am feeling like a burden has been lifted for this short period of time. I get up as the puppy trots away probably in utter confusion.
I am able to spot Rick as he moves towards my direction. He sits next to me and begins to say "I am just going to be upfront about this. I think you're pretty and I would like your number." I am taken aback by his forwardness but I end up giving him my number anyway. "Sure" I say as I begin searching for a place to write the number on. "Here just put it in my phone" I start to blush as I put my number in his phone. We talk a bit more about the people and the town. The conversation lulls and we stare at the fire. Rick speaks up.
"Have you ever noticed that there are so many new people in this small town. I swear all of the people I meet here are all new and all came here for some weird half baked idea". I think for a second before I reply. "
I think for a second before I reply "You know I never thought of that."
The fired dies out and we head home. As I sleep tonight a smile creeps up on my face. I cannot wait until I talk to Rick again. But I fall asleep before I have the chance.