Echo So Sweet

I love him. I hate it, but I do. We can never be, but it's nice to imagine, isn't it? I mean, think about it. He's the headstrong, sardonic, crazy, prideful, and against-love. Me? Poetic, romantic, humble, feminist. The opposite of him.

So what's the appeal? The way he completely stands up for what he believes in. His witty comments that make my heart beat faster. So what if we're only eleven? Does it matter? Love is ageless. Nothing matters.

But I'm only his friend. A close one, at least. I know all about his womanizer brother Zach, his perfect little sister Amanda, and Ham. Ham is Ham. How can you explain him? Their mother and father and the infinite love they share are just common knowledge to me.

I know how much he opposes love. How women are just 'soulless, evil creatures' and how they're 'stupid'. I know how apparently we sap the will out of men. But considering it all…? He's going to fall in love one day so passionately, and so deeply, it will change him completely. Until then, I'm here. An eternal Echo.

"Sarah." He chastised. "Did you not listen to a thing I just said? Honestly, do you have lead for brains?" He rolls his eyes and I know he means it good-naturedly, but god does it sting a little when he does that. But I smile and copy his eye movement, and match his wit precisely.

"If I have lead, what do you have?" We're sitting in the kitchen when Amanda comes in.

"Be nice." I wish. I hope. Please, please, please.

"Now, why would we do that? Being mean is too much fun." Joking, pushing, and horsing around. That's how we spend our time together.

She purses her perfect lips and then turns on her heels and leave us be. Whatever she wanted was forgotten because of our callous behavior. A punch rocked the house moments later. Phil and I share a look and laughter bubbles from our own mouths like a geyser.

"So, any good reads?" I ponder. A common interest. Familiar ground. Perfection. This launches him into a fit about books and comics and their reliance on romance.

"And you?" Honesty or deceit?

"Nah." Lies it is. Many classics were consumed by hungry eyes on late nights before sleep begins to fester. I looked up into his perfect emerald eyes [if my heart beats any faster, it will burst], and I can see he knows I'm lying. The emotions in my golden eyes….? Hard to ignore, Shortman. But thank you for trying.

"What a shame. Hey, but I did read that book you had me borrow." Question marks lighting my eyes, I tilt my head to make the charcoal locks sway. "Hint: A man in possession of a great fortune, must be in want of a wife." His smirk at my shocked expression sends a tingle through my body. /Can I be more pathetic?\\

"Although I have to say, it's a bit overrated. A well standing man being on that girl's leash by the end of it is horrible."

"Oh you know you love it, Mr. Darcy." I tease lightly and bump our shoulders lightly. Wide green eyes show surprise [and maybe, is it, admiration?] before it turns into a scowl.

I think I saw.

I thought I saw.

But did I see?

"What ever you say, Miss Bennet." Mockingly, my hand is grasped and brought to his lips, where they grazed my knuckles. A [dream] of /:epic:\\ proportions. ToO gOoD tO bE tRuE.

His name is called and he winks at me and then moves through the door. "I love you." I whisper despite the better part of my judgment, and my hands clasp my mouth, cutting off the sharp gasp.

"You too!" He calls to me, and I nearly hyperventilate. He was joking, I could tell be his voice. But if only.

If only.

His causal reply repeats through my mind, and the only thought I can form is:

How can an echo sound so sweet?