# Tell him I said Yes.


It was almost sunset when Haley and Jeremy left Haley's apartment downtown. It had been a wonderful day together, they had stayed indoor all day and thought it be a wonderful idea to see the sun set from the lake a few miles away. The scene would be a perfect way to end the evening. Jeremy thought it the perfect time to finally ask Haley out. 


They had been great friends since their sophomore year in college and he had fallen in love with her right then in psychology class as he watched the brown skinned pettite lady walk in. The lecture had been a borehole and when she walked in, she had the sun behind her. 


Talking to her had been easy, getting her attention was harder than Sisyphus's curse to roll a boulder uphill for eternity. But now here they are, holding hands, she giggled at a joke he made and he grinned like a teenager reading his first love letter. He loved her with all of his heart and was sure there was nothing he wouldn't do to protect her. He had found her crying one evening as he took a late stroll in the park. He later found out she just got out of an abusive relationship. It had taken him what seemed like infinity to earn her trust. 


Jeremy sighed and smiled. It's no use thinking about the past now. He rehearsed his words again in his head, it had to be perfect. Haley was the first to break the silence. 


"I think I left my phone at home and I'm expecting an important phone call".


"It's alright. I'll go get it for you".


"It's ok. I'll be fine".


"No really. It'll quick. I could run and be back in ten minutes".


"No pea-head. What are you? Universal Soldier? You'll miss the sight".


"No pike-nose. I'm Jeremy Armstrong".


"It says 'Armstrong, not 'Legstrong', top that!"


"Oh no, you didn't just say that Haley Gingereyes".


"Come on Legstrong I'll race you to the top."


Two minutes of running, another minute of panting later, the pair were seated on the grass and watched as the sun kissed the lake. It was delicate, almost sensual. They both imagined the water hiss and laughed as the yellow sun disappeared on the horizon. 


"Haley Gingereyes?". Jeremy cleared his throat.


"Hmmhmm, Jeremy Legstrong". Haley stretched out her legs and laid back down as she watched the first of the stars appear. Jeremy did the same.


"I have something to tell you". Jeremy's brain went into overdrive and his pulse quickened as he tried desperately to control his expression.


"Do you want to return the five hundred dollars you owe..."


Jeremy interjected.


"I love you..."


What followed was quarter of an hour of silence. Their breaths were regular and uniform. Haley stared at the stars, eyes unblinking and soon, tears began to roll down her cheeks. She stood and brushed the dirt off her denims.


"I should go get my phone..."


"No, I'll go get them". He didn't wait for a reply and sprinted off through the woods. He didn't hear her say 'wait'.


Jeremy ran on. Every pace was faster than the previous one. Had he said it wrong? Had he timed it wrong? Did he misread her emotions? Was she still hurting from the last relationship? Maybe she didn't see him that way. His eyes were blinded with sweat and he didn't time his stop right. He tripped on a stone and tumbled onto the main road.  

  He saw the headlights and heard the horn blare but couldn't roll over fast enough as the trailer crushed his skull, splattering grey and white matter all over the tarmac.


Haley couldn't wait any longer. It had been hours since  Jeremy took off. He should know better than to keep a lady waiting, especially one he just asked out.  She decided to walk home alone, perhaps she'll meet him on the way back. As she passed the last of trees obscuring her vision, she saw the accident scene. Being a medical doctor, she naturally walked towards the stretcher to see the victim. A police officer stepped aside as she showed him her I.D. Haley Ginger, M.D. But he shouldn't have. She saw his shirt. His favourite blue shirt. The necklace she had gotten for his twenty-fifth birthday hung around a messy neck with no head. 


The last thing she remembered was that the stars were amazingly beautiful that night and that she had wanted to say 'YES'.

©Richard Adejumola