Lana

Saturday, July 24

By Lane Bashline

Lana's shiny braids dropped down her back as she untied the scarf keeping them together. Ally couldn’t help but stare as Lana's hair fell down her glazed skin. Lana turned around, gripping her towel, as she turned ally left her daze and slammed her locker, turning away from Lana. 

“Hey, we have Chem together right,” Lana said letting the grasp of her towel get a bit lighter. She puts her leg up onto the damp wooden bench and pats a glittery lotion onto her dark glowing skin. 

Ally turns back around, pulling her back closer to her body and looking down at her Raggedy running shoes. 

“Um yeah, you sit in the third row and always have that butterfly pin in your hair that makes the room smell like lemons, right?”I stutter while looking down at her shoes. And then I said. ”Sorry, I pay attention to things. I should go.” I walk out but Lana follows after her and grabs her arm.

“No, chem doesn’t start for another,'' Lana looks over at the rusted clock inside of a metal cage, “like 15 minutes. Don't leave, it's so creepy in here alone.” Lana looked at me, as she put her bookbag down on the bench. “You don't talk much, do you?” 

“Sorry I just, um get, um sorry. I get a little nervous around new people, and old people. I actually get super nervous around old people, something about their skin or their love of war, I'm not sure.`` I  sit and push my hair behind her ears as Lana laughs. A bubbling feeling starts to spread around her body. Oh god, she ruined it, she talked too much and ruined it.

“You’re funny. And I think you're right, their fascination with war is a bit peculiar. But who am I to judge, my interest in things lingers between Zendaya projects and books about lesbians.” Lana goes behind the locker to change, she begins to hum a sweet tune, a tune with warm feelings that seemed to calm the molten bubble in ally’s stomach. 

“Oh yeah, um have you read” suddenly every thought she ever had became a blur. She read so much but couldn't remember a thing, somewhere between call me by your name and the age of innocence lies the encyclopedia of sapphic fiction that she read in her lifetime.

“Have I read what? Sorry I didn't hear you.” Lana gave me a second chance, hoping it would get better.

“The lesbian one.”Ally blurted out, way too fast for it to be considered normal, way too staggered for her to seem mentally competent. 

Then the next morning I was excited about chem, and I got to class and she wasn't there. She wasn't there and nobody knew why, nobody. 

She never texted me back, nothing she just, I didn't know where she went. Until a week later, our parents talked to us, and my mom didn't talk to me because she was at work. She was busy at work so I came to your office and, well I'm sitting in your office and you're asking me about her. 

“I’m gonna stop you there,” the guidance counsellor, ms. Duval puts her feet on the ground. “Unfortunately Lana is no longer with us,” she says, pushing a box of tissues towards me. “She took her own life three nights ago, and she wrote.”

“No,” I say, cutting off Ms Duval.

“I’m a sorry sweetheart but there's something you need to read.” ms. Duval says, passing me a note.

I look down at the lemon-scented post-it, reading through the tear ridden paper, smudged by a thumbprint. 

“Holy shit”

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