This post is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, organisations, places, events, and incidents either are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
Sam was mesmerised by the colours of the carnival at Coney Island. It had been too long since she had been to a carnival, and she had forgotten how happy the sights and sounds of it all felt.
‘Where shall we start?’ Wes was clearly as excited as her. His dark brown eyes twinkled like they were filled with a million stars and the warmth in his palms warmed her hands right to her heart.
‘What about we go shoot some hoops?’
Sam’s head was spinning with such joy that she could only nod and follow his lead.
They shot hoops, played slings, hit soda bottles, and had ice-cream for lunch. She laughed as he got chocolate fudge on his nose. He smiled when she wiped the chocolate fudge from his nose. He had not felt such warmth since summer. She had not felt such warmth in like ever.
‘I think we still have time for one last ride, what do you say?’
Time flew by and it was already 3:00pm, thought Sam. ‘Won’t you be late for your flight?’
‘Nah, I think I’m good. Shall we go to the haunted house?’
Wes thought about how cliché it all sounded but the haunted house was a no fail and he decided to give it a shot.
Sam thought about how terrified she was of haunted houses but thought about those strong arms that would protect her from the terrors and agreed. Well, falling in love was probably more terrifying than the stupid haunted house anyway, she thought.
Sam could not be more wrong. She was petrified in the haunted house. It began when the woman with the long black hair started following them quietly behind, then the scratching sounds that had no source. Sam was scared out of her wits when the antagonist of the horror short they were made to watch jumped out of the screen and started chasing them through the house.
It did not help that Sam and Wes were the only ones in the haunted house. Sam tried having her palms over her eyes the whole time though curiosity got the better of her at times but it was definitely a relief for Sam to have Wes’ hands on her shoulders throughout the ride as his palms exuded such warmth and security which assured her that everything would be ok.
‘Look, open your eyes. There’s nothing scary here, I assure you. It’s really beautiful.’ They were standing in the middle of a room and everything was quiet except for the faint sounds coming from the carnival outside.
‘No, something is going to pop down as soon as I open my eyes,’ Sam whined.
Wes whirled Sam to face him, gently holding on to her wrists and whispered. ‘I’m here. Just open your eyes and if you’re still scared, my extremely well-built chest would come to good use then.’
Sam giggled at the thought of his words. Wes gently peeled her hands from her eyes and whispered, ‘open your eyes.’
Sam took a deep breath and opened her eyes. She was taken aback by the sight around her. They were in the hall of mirrors and even though she knew there were probably only six mirrors in all, the placement of the mirrors made it look like there were a million of them.
The room was pitch dark except for tiny dots of light that when reflected in the mirrors looked like a gazillion stars. They were supposed to be in a sort of twilight zone to match the haunted house theme but Sam thought about how much it had looked like Wes’ eyes when they twinkled with joy. She was mesmerised by the sight, mesmerised by him.
Wes looked down at Sam. She was at the perfect height, just slightly taller than his shoulders which made leaning on his chest just nice, she thought. He looked at her eyes, the joy at seeing this sight in front of him, at her soft lips, at his thumping heart. How much he wanted to feel those soft lips on his.
Sam felt Wes’ eyes on her, his palms gently placed on the small of her back. She looked up to face him, their eyes locked in an embrace. Wes leaned forward ever so softly, ever so slowly. She could feel his thumping heart and hers sped up to match his pace. Their lips closed, thirsty for each other.
Just at this precise moment, a dummy clown dropped from above their heads, out of nowhere, hanging by its neck, laughing hysterically. Both Sam and Wes screamed their lungs out and at this same moment, the exit out of the haunted house was revealed and out they ran.
Sam and Wes could not stop laughing even when they were back out in the open. ‘OMG! That stupid clown thing sure made me squeal like a girl,’ Wes said in between breaths of laughter.
‘I know right, and to think you were all macho before the clown came down,’ Sam retorted.
They looked at each other and burst out laughing again. It took them a whole five minutes before they could calm down, their hands locked throughout the whole time. Sam was the first to notice her hand in his even though there was no reason to anymore. She looked at her watch, 3:30pm, she thought to herself, it had only seemed like an hour had gone by but it had already been three.
Wes saw Sam looking at her watch and knew it was time too. He was already cutting it very close and may even miss his flight. But he was reluctant to go and wished that time would just pause and that he could be in this moment with her forever.
‘It’s about time, isn’t it?’ Sam asked.
Wes nodded, the twinkle in his eyes gone.
‘I guess this is goodbye then?’ Wes’ world crushed when he heard those words. Did she not like the time they had spent together? Why did she feel so eager to get rid of him?
‘For now?’ The sparkle came back to Wes’ eyes. He was like a child at Christmas, thought Sam.
‘I’ll see you in a couple of months’ time then,’ added Wes. He was tempted to kiss Sam right there and then but his courage from earlier on was gone.
‘Yes, I look forward to it,’ replied Sam, wondering the whole time why Wes did not attempt at completing what he had tried to do in the hall of mirrors.
They lingered a moment too long, hands still in each other’s until Sam let go and they parted ways.