“So what you’re suggesting is…we were soul mates. But then external influences ruined us as people and we fell out of love?”
“Yeah. Maybe. I think so.”
“And it’ll keep happening until we set things right again?”
I shrug, because I’m not sure. It’s just a theory. But it makes more sense than anything else we’ve come up with.
Five minutes pass while neither of us says a single word. She finally falls back onto the bed with a heavy sigh and says, “You know what this means?”
She pulls up onto her elbows and looks at me. “If this is true…you only have thirty-six hours to make me fall in love with you.”
I don’t know if we’re on to something, or if we’re about to spend the remainder of our time chasing a dead end, but I smile, because I’m willing to sacrifice the next thirty-six hours for this theory. I walk over to the bed and fall onto it beside her. We’re both staring up at the ceiling when I say, “Well, Charlie Baby. We better get started.”
She throws an arm over her eyes and groans. “I don’t know you very well, but I can already tell you’re gonna have fun with this.”
I smile, because she’s right.
“It’s late,” I tell her. “We should try to get some sleep, because your heart is going to get a serious workout tomorrow.”
I set my alarm for 6:00 a.m. so that we can be up and out of the house before anyone else wakes up. Charlie sleeps closest to the wall and is out cold in a matter of minutes. I don’t feel like I’ll be able to fall asleep anytime soon, so I pluck one of her journals from the backpack and decide to read some before I fall asleep.
Silas is crazy.
Like…legit crazy. But my god, I have so much fun with him. He started a game he forces me to play sometimes called Silas Says. It’s exactly the same as Simon Says, but...you know. With his name instead of Simon’s. Whatever. He’s way cooler than Simon.
We were on Bourbon Street today and it was so hot and we were both sweating and miserable. We had no idea where our friends had gone off to and we weren’t supposed to meet them for another hour. When it comes to me and Silas, I’m always the whiney one, but it was so hot this time, even he was whining a little.
Anyway, we walked past this guy who was propped up on a stool and he had painted himself silver, like a robot. There was a sign leaning against his stool that said, “Ask me a question. Get a real answer. Only 25 cents.”
Silas handed me a quarter, so I dropped it in the bucket. “What’s the meaning of life?” I asked the silver man.
He made a stiff turn of his head and looked me square in the eye. In a very impressive robot voice, he said, “That depends on the life of which you search for meaning.”
I rolled my eyes at Silas. Just another hack job scamming the tourists. I clarified my question so that at least the quarter wouldn’t go to complete waste. “Fine,” I said. “What’s the meaning of my life?”
He took a rickety step down from his stool and bent at a ninety-degree angle. With his silver robot fingers, he plucked my quarter out of the bucket and placed it in my palm. He glanced at Silas and then to me and smiled. “You, my dear, have already found your meaning. All there is left to do now…is dance.”
Then the silver dude started dancing. Like…legit dancing. Not even in a robot style. He just had this big, goofy grin on his face and held his hands up like a ballerina and danced like no one was watching him.
At that point, Silas grabbed my hands and said in mock-robot voice, “Dance. With. Me.” He tried to pull me into the street to dance with him, but hell no. Embarrassing. I pulled away from him, but he wrapped his arms around me and did that thing where he puts his mouth right on my ear. He knows I freaking love that, so it was really unfair. He whispered, “Silas says dance.”
I don’t know what it was about him in that moment. I don’t know if it was because he honestly didn’t care that anyone was watching us, or if it was because he was still talking to me in that silly robot voice. Whatever it was, I’m pretty sure I fell in love with him today.
All over again. For like the tenth time.
So I did what Silas said. I danced. And you know what? It was fun. So much fun. We danced all around Jackson square and we were still dancing when our friends found us. We were covered in sweat and out of breath, and if I were watching us from the sidewalk, I would probably be the girl crinkling up my nose, muttering “gross” under my breath.
But I’m not that girl. I never want to be that girl. For the rest of my life, I want to be the girl dancing with Silas in the street.
Because he’s crazy. That’s why I love him.
I close the journal. Did that really happen? I want to read more, but I’m afraid if I keep going, I’ll come across things I don’t want to remember.
I set the journal on my nightstand and roll over so that I can wrap my arm around her. When we wake up tomorrow, we’ll only have one day left. I want her to be able to let go of everything that’s going on between us so that she can genuinely focus on me and our connection and nothing else.
Knowing Charlie…that’s going to be hard. It’ll take some crazy skills to be able to accomplish that.
But luckily…I’m crazy. That’s why she used to love me.
“Okay, so how does this work exactly?” I ask as we walk toward his car. “Do we float down the bayou in a rowboat while little critters sing ‘Kiss the Girl’?”
“Don’t be a smartass.” Silas grins. Then he stops me before I reach the car, grabbing my hand and pulling me back. I look up at him in surprise. “Charlize,” he says, looking first at my lips, and then in my eyes. “If you give me half a chance I can make you fall in love with me.”
I clear my throat and try not to look away even though I want to. “Well…you’re off to a good start. So there’s that.”
He laughs. I feel so awkward, I don’t know what to do with myself, so I pretend to sneeze. He doesn’t even say bless you. He just smiles at me, like he knows it was a fake sneeze.
“Stop it,” I say. “You’re staring at me.”
“That’s the point, Charlie. Look into my eyes.”
I burst into laughter. “You’ve got game, Silas Nash,” I say, walking toward my side of the car.