By Andrew Pacutho:
I remember the first time we spent the day together. It was kinda awkward because I had never really been close to girls before. In school you fled the moment a girl showed any interest in you. You simply died if she said she liked you and if that did not kill you the incessant teasing would.
But you, being beautiful had dealt with guys before. You must have found my unease rather comical. I swore you could hear my heart beat as you sat close to me that day, on your father's front steps watching the afternoon slowly fade into night.
We spoke about everything and nothing. Our mouths moved but I guess our bodies spoke volumes. You were warm and soft. I remember wrapping my arm around you and thinking how fragile and dainty you seemed, like a diamond in the rough hands of a seasoned miner gleaming white against his sooty calloused hand.
You leaned your head on my shoulder and sighed. Never before have such words been spoken. For long moments we kept silent and just listened to each other's heart beats. It was all perfect.
Then you father came and I freaked. Even I was shocked at my reaction. My hands whipped back to my sides faster than a rubber band and I sat erect. Not even a ruler has ever been that straight. I could hear my heart pounding, not in my chest but in my mouth.
He must have noticed the terror of this little boy and sympathised for he was cordial and nice. Which I think scared me even more.
But more than that was the look in your face. You were hurt and sad. It is then that I realised what I had done. I had revealed myself a charlatan, a hypocrite and less of a man.
How could I say I loved you and yet be so ashamed of being with you? I spewed bravery with my mouth and lived cowardice with my life.
From that moment I watched closely, I learned, and I listened. I determined that I would do everything to prove that I was worthy of your love and the honour of protecting you. I have never stopped. It may have been months since that path was last travelled but for every man or woman that has had me fight for them, let them know that it is you who first taught me about honour.
P.S. I love you.
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