A Stellar Flare of Young Adult Writing and Visual Art
She stared into his eyes, watching as they sizzled with intensity. Holding back a snarl, she shot him a glare. “No.”
“What?” His disbelief was a mixture of something serious, humorous, and deadly. “Come on, Sam. You know you want to.”
She shook her head. “You’re wrong.” Eyeing the phone he held and averting her eyes from the excitement in his gaze, she snatched the device from his hand. “Not here. Not with you.”
She watched him gasp, only for a grin to shoot across his face. Sam saw him reach for the phone that she held, his hand on hers. Her eyes shot up to his, but he was only focused on the phone, gingerly pulling the device from her hands. Sam watched as his eyes flew up to meet hers with him moving a pale finger to tap on his phone’s screen. Sam sucked in a quick breath as music began to play, blasting in their ears and through the crowded room. She could barely respond, barely explain to all of the bystanders around them when he grabbed her hand, pulling her into the middle of the space. He pulled her into his arms, his voice no more than a whisper when he said, “I’m sorry.”
She scoffed, the sound of their song trailing out of the phone in his hand. “You think this will make up for that?” She listened to him inhale, feeling him take in a shaky breath.
Sam flipped around, twisting in his arms. Everyone watched as they swayed in the middle of the room, the instrumental music transitioning to song.
“You’re insane,” she said, looking into his eyes. They glimmered with a devilish spark, the same spark that had made her fall in love with him in the first place. She watched him grin, his sunken gaze burning onto her lips. Watching his stare, Sam shook her head. She was about to pull out of his grasp when—
“I’m sorry,” he said, his voice quiet and deep beside the music. His eye twitched, his gaze flickering as it moved to meet her eyes. “I wanted to be there, I really did.”
She sighed, pulling herself from his arms. “I’m sure you did.”
He groaned, anguish overtaking on his face. “Sam, please. It was just a stupid school dance—”
Sam scoffed, shaking her arm from his grip. “Are you kidding me, Jay? You think this is about the dance?” She laughed, her anger radiant. It took everything for her to fight back tears, her wrath volatile as she stared daggers into his eyes. “I trusted you. You gave me your word—”
“Sam, you know it’s not that easy—”
“Of course it isn’t!” she bellowed, grabbing the phone from his hand. “But do you know what it’s like to get a school-wide message that you might have just lost the one person that—”
He bit his lip, his eyes as molten as they were gray. “Sam, I didn’t mean for that to happen—”
“But it did!” she cried, his phone shaking in her right hand. Sam quickly thrusted the phone toward his chest, her eyes clouding over in the process. She couldn’t stop thinking about him, how he had looked that night, how gone he had looked, too far gone that—
“I can’t keep doing this anymore,” she choked, holding her voice as it broke. She watched his shoulders drop, his every day long-sleeve sweater sagging as he balled his fists. His brows were pinched, his knuckles white as his gaze drifted up to meet hers. She wished he would push her, hit her, tell her that this wasn’t his plan. She wished he would slap her across the face, or at least scream at her in anger that she wasn’t being fair. But instead, his eyes were lost, his devilish spark gone as he told her that he understood.
Aybala Turkarslan is a young, dedicated high school writer from Washington. She is extremely passionate about short story and essay writing, and has previously been published by the IYNA Journal. In her spare time Aybala loves watching reality TV and spending time with her younger brother, and she lives with her family in Seattle surrounded by art, coffee, and the best cafes in which to sit down and write.