“Don’t let go,” I whispered, eyes closed tightly.
My back was pressed against the door to our classroom. My heart was racing, but I wasn’t frightened. I was in love with my best friend. That was all I wanted to cling on to.
Desperate, naïve, and confused—maybe I was all three combined. It was simple-minded of me to think that our love could last throughout time and space. That was an idea we had hung on to so tightly. But Cole was forbidden, and I knew that. His body language spoke volumes.
As our chests collapsed into one another, our eyes opened. The sun was shining through the window, but the room seemed pitch-black at that moment. The truth was that both of our hearts were far away, deep in the fact that our families would never accept us as lovers.
I had never seen Cole’s eyes like this before. His dark brows creased downward, and the look of complete sorrow seemed to overtake him. “Piper, what are we going to do?” Cole asked me, fingers dragging down my biceps.
Cole finally let go and took a step back. I dropped my head and felt the pang of grief push me toward the ground. The tears came soon after, and then the rushing, burning intensity brought my arms back around him.
“Please don’t leave me,” I begged.
“I have to… I have to go,” Cole whispered, lips against the tender spots of my ear.
Cole placed his palm against my chest. He could feel my heartbeat and the alarm that only furthered our demise. “Don’t. Please stay,” I whispered.
“If they find out, they’ll ruin us,” Cole said. “The betas hate us now, Piper. You know the rules.”
He was wrong, so fucking wrong. They wouldn’t do half of the things he thought they would. There were no set laws, only guidelines. But sometimes, it felt like we were growing up in a prison. It was a risk to be openly in love, alpha or omega, despite all of the progress we had made over the years. It was better to pretend to be a beta or to elope in a non-passionate or sexual manner.
“Screw our families. We’re almost eighteen. We can move. There are other cities,” I said. “We’ll go to the north or further east. Anywhere, but here.”
Cole sighed. The passion that rested within his heart had reached its limit. It was time to part ways. I knew the separation would come sooner, rather than later. “Fuck you,” I whispered, as tears flooded down my cheeks. “I hate you.”
That time, I really did fall to the floor. I curled up into a ball and wept silently. I wasn’t trying to make a scene, but I partly was trying to hurt Cole as much as he hurt me. I regretted those words almost instantly, but there was nothing I could say to make him stay with me.
Nothing could hurt Cole anymore. No words could shake his foundations. I wasn’t his important someone, and it was gut-wrenching. “I’m going,” Cole said after clearing his throat.
“Wait,” I cried.
But Cole never waited. I watched as he left the room, never to return again.
I thought about that moment every single day of my life. Could I have said anything different? Could I have convinced him to stay? Even though it had been ten years, I still held onto the hope that he’d walk back through those doors, that he’d prop me up against his muscular body, and that he’d ask me to run away with him.
I was such an idiot.
Cole never came back. And I had to move on.