As They Say

by D K Daniels

Entry 38

Loving Him

11th July 1991

Reality has set in about yesterday. I can't believe I jerked off in front of Ross. I even rubbed my eyes raw today to make sure I had correctly got out of bed. I've no notion as to why I'd imagine this to have been a dream for some bizarre reason. Although when I met Ross today, it was apparent that what had happened yesterday did in fact transpire. That didn't stop me from contemplating about it all day; making reruns of the entire scenario in my head. Not because it was totally hot and the significance was exceptionally well-timed when I think of it now. The other was something in the mutual exhibit that has alerted me to the plausible fact. I'm sincerely in love. I mean it wasn't just a quick jerk off stanza and then nothing else, I exhibited an emotional connection with Ross when I was doing it. I'm not sure if Ross underwent the same thing, though I hope he does because it meant more to me than only having fun. Don't get me wrong I did like the fun bit of what we did, except there was something deep-rooted that was more meaningful to me anyway.

I whole gang assembled today. Everyone was in high spirits; Ross was there too. The way he displayed his affections towards me has become increasingly alarming. Perhaps with what occurred yesterday then I'm genuinely not going stir crazy from being cooped up too long.

In all truth, today Ross secretly persisted glancing over at me and then anytime I'd make eye contact with him he would get all bashful and cute. Suddenly I'd get these little fuzzy feelings inside my stomach and then it was all game over. I attempted to maintain my focus and listen to what the boys were saying, only anytime I glanced over at Ross he just made my emotions run wild. It was like one of those moments where you want to do something, and the only thing you can do is chase after it with all you've got. It's hard to explain how my emotions appear; all I know is that they want to leap out of my body and guide me, or at least that's how it suggests. Each time I looked over at him, I'd get all shy and bashful too. Ultimately, Eli picked up on it, and he questioned us about it. He inquired, "are you going to let us in on the inside joke?"

I was anxious, petrified more like at the assumption of everyone discovering what Ross and I had today in the group. When I saw the irony in Eli's inquiry; given the fact that we were giggling like a couple of little schoolgirls, then obviously something was inherently funny. I grasp it's a little bit selfless and stupid to display my feelings like that, however, I couldn't help it, all I wanted to do was get shy.

Solely I told Eli that there was nothing to it actually; all we were doing was laughing. It was one of those times when you look across at another person, and that person is beaming. Then giggling becomes contagious, and you start reverting into a hyena too. Eli, of course, understood this, but he gave me sceptical eyes as if he wasn't that stupid. I'm still not too sure whether Eli realises the full extent of Ross and I. Reasonably he does, I don't feel comfortable discussing that sort of information with him. Can you imagine it, trying to explain that Ross and I are hot for each other and that I pulled at myself while I was looking at him? Of course, you wouldn't tell him any of that... you'd brush over the details. And give him the bigger picture except leave out the tiny details or at least that's how I'd picture it to be.

We all went into town around noon, and we had a late brunch then decided to play some pool. At first, it was Carl and I. The two of us were playing pool. Moreover, I was winning for the first time in god knows how long. Next Eli came over with Ross and said that the two of them would like the join in as well. So, inevitably we ended up playing doubles. Connor and Thomas were too busy stuffing their faces with food to care; therefore they simply sat out and watched us.

From the corner of my eye, I could get a vibe coming off Thomas. It's extra visible now that I took the time actually to regard it. Anytime I peeped across at him he came across a little girly to me. I don't think it was intentional it just materialised out of thin air. And it's not obnoxious either it's not like I'm totally a girl like' type of deal. The way Thomas was presenting himself, it was more like I know I'm cute kind of deal. Which in retrospect Thomas is cute. I don't want to exactly commit to that because I'll probably end up plaguing myself over it in the future. Not that I didn't want to show some interest in him. I figured that it would be hard to show him that sort of affection considering he's been one of my friends for a couple of years.

Then after Ross arrived, Thomas suddenly changed the anticipation to a point where I feel like I'm almost drowning in it. I know I shouldn't complain at the fact that I had three people chasing after me all at the same time is comforting. I'm not sure why it makes me feel confident in a way that I don't think I could be in any other. That leaves me to defer the question. How many people are chasing after Thomas and Ross? Exactly how many people are hunting for anybody, how many people stay unnoticed, silent and dare to dream? I'd imagine the numbers and statistics are a lot higher than the people who evidently acted and took what they want. Only now do I see what action does and how beneficial taking action is. Words are the mindless jumble of unassorted emotions; doing something worthwhile to get you ahead is everyone's ideal goal when only a fraction are willing to do it.

I can't believe how lucky I got with Ross. I mean he's perfect in every sense of the word, and I love him. I promised myself that I'd take up any summer jobs I can get my hands on and save all my allowance so that I will have enough to see him. I'll take my action so I can be with the one I want to be with. That sounds like a pretty good plan, and I promise it's not going to be plain words directly written in here. I'm going to get up off my ass and work so that I can get to see Ross again.

To make the matter worse while we were playing pool the conversations shifted to the topic of Ross's departure. I mean why did everyone have to talk about that. Again, they don't know how I'm feeling about the entire situation. As far as everyone else is concerned Ross is just another friend who's coming and going in my life, except to me he's much more than that. Ross is something I can't explain. It feels like the inside of my chest is hollow, it seems full when Ross is around. At the same time, I'm still happy, and I can't understand why. If I'm feeling this way shouldn't I be sad?

Anyway, the exchange carried on for the entire pool game, and everyone was slightly disappointed that Ross had to go back home. Which surprised me; here I thought that Ross didn't mean all that much to my friends. Sure they like him but not as much as to warrant an emotional response to his departure. I assumed I was the only one that was going to be in that boat but it made it comforting to know that Ross had a supplementary cause and effect on everyone in the group. Thomas even showed signs of anguish. It's funny to think that one person has the power to change and alter everyone else's universes. Only a month and 1/2 ago when Ross arrived clean and fresh, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. Now one look at him and its evidence to see that he has made everyone's life so much warmer by his presence.

Regardless after a bit, the talk died out about Ross leaving everyone returned to standard conversation tactics. After the pool, we decided to get more food because why not we were hungry. And Ross said that he had run out of money so he couldn't buy any food. So I bought him a burger and chips, and he seemed genuinely content with that. Once I glanced across at Thomas and saw the hurt in his eyes. I couldn't figure out for the life of me what I had done to him to dispense this hurt, though I felt guilty after a little bit; therefore I got up and ordered him a burger and chips too. And his mood slightly shifted.

Ross looked funny as if to say ' okay... I'm not sure what that was for.' I don't think Ross was jealous or anything or if he was I didn't get a hint of it. I hope I didn't offend anybody by doing it. I just that I felt sorry for Thomas and I'm still trying to make it up to him although I'm not too sure if I'm doing it correctly. Perhaps it was the fact that Thomas knows that I am gay without me having to state the obvious. I hope I'm not displaying my gayness out in the open and everyone understands that, and no one is saying anything. That would be embarrassing, anyway I think it was the fact that I turned Thomas down and that I bought Ross food. Isn't that what the boy-girl relationship has to do? The boy has to buy the girls food because it's customary. Maybe that's why he was a little bit hurt, and I'm still sorry about it. I never even given a chance to explain himself and well I suppose I can't now anyway.

Oh, and before forget; Carl asked us if we could help him on his farm tomorrow. His dad is harvesting turf, and Ross has been given a rather large section of land to cultivate and dig up. So, all the boys offered to help him tomorrow so that should be fun. I'll come home tomorrow covered in turf and mud. I happened to be surprised when Ross said that he'd help out too; therefore I guess that will be fun to see. Right… I should be off; I'll talk to you later…

Yep, I'm doing it again. Talking to a fricking book… Any-who - night Adam.

12th July 1991

Well, I am beat… I'm only out of the shower and let me tell you this… turf is superbly messy. I agreed to help out Carl today because his father wanted all the dead vegetation in the field uprooted. Not only was the experience painfully uncomfortable considering my hands are still red and slightly blistered from the wooden handle of the shovel that I was using for the majority of the day. But also, from the sweltering sun that was beaming down on me. I considered at one point I was going to pass out from the heat because I was working pretty goddamn hard at that too. No matter how many times I've run cold water on my hands to cool them down, it's not working. It's irritating. Even holding this pencil in my hand is a challenge. Anytime I grip the shaft a little bit tighter it does a slight twinge with the loose skin at the top of my palm. Now mind you it's not painful it's durable it's just... Ah nevermind.

I woke early this morning to get a few things done before I went over to Carl's to do hard manual labour. Once I finished breakfast, I knocked into Ross, and the two us hiked to Carl's. When we got there we were the first two to arrive, funnily enough, Carl wasn't even out of bed. I guess me and Ross have a thing at rising early. Though he didn't complain he just got dressed, and we waited around for the other boys to show up. As we sat out on the front porch, the conversation dabbled in a bit of all areas. At one time we were talking about what was in the media before changing to Ross and Carl's display each other's cuts and scars. I don't know how the conversation got started. Although I didn't think Ross would have a wound. I never honestly noticed it when I was looking at him. It's well confined that if you weren't studying him intently, you wouldn't see it. Of course, stating the obvious Carl has more cuts and scrapes than anybody else in the gang. Ross lifted his fringe out of the way, and where his hairline meets the top of his forehead, sure enough, there was a small scar. When I asked him how he got it, Ross said that when he was a kid, he liked to climb.

All I could do was smirk at him because I don't think climbing has ever left him. So, as I continued to listen Ross eventually got to the point. He said that he had ascended over the safety gate at the bottom of the stairs in his parents' house hundreds of times. Then all of a sudden one morning Ross clambered up an over it and fell off the other side and hit his head on a chair at the bottom of the stairs. Resulting in him needing to get five stitches and a lot of crying as he recalled. I would be lying if I said that that didn't bother me in the slightest bit, I mean I strive to find out every single detail about Ross; however, I missed this one. The most obvious of places it could be, then again, his hairline was covering it so... Yeah. Most importantly he is okay.

Thomas was next to arrive and then not long after that Eli and Connor strolled up the driveway. It wasn't far of a stroll away from the house; we went to the left of the residence and jumped the fence before strolling down a small bit of a hill, and eventually voilà we found the bogland. We all got to work remarkably without asking any questions. We knew what we had to do and the trailer was already set up in the field from the night before. All we had to do was hurl it into the back of the container. Around noon we stopped for lunch when his mother came down to was with a load of drinks and freshly baked cookies with a side of sandwiches.

Carl's mam is friendly; as she was heading on back up to the house, she was saying, "growing boys need their grub." And subconsciously we all just agreed and practically tore away at the contents that were on the plates between all of us. Nobody was left out of course, but the way we all dove in for the food would suggest that we were like cannibals or hadn't eaten in a very long time. It was amusing to see the expression on Ross's face after he saw everyone snapping for food, to be honest, I even found it funny. Subsequently, a hard day's work came to an end and because Carl's dad asked us to do one last thing and that was to move the trailer up into the garden.

Carl disappeared for about five minutes and came back with a tractor; he had to drive all the way around the long way into the field. Before we knew it, we had the container hooked up, and we had carted it all the way back to the turf shed as Carl calls it and left it there. We were all offered a dinner: something just to fill the gap but not enough to put us off our meals our mothers would cook. When he came back out Carl's dad had tipped the entire cart into a barn shaped structure right next to the peat shed. All the construction had was a roof and all four walls around it were completely missing; inevitability us boys with some playful energy to burn off we started sloping all over the small mountain of sod. It was quite fun I didn't think I'd get amusement out of climbing a hill worth of fuel for the fire. Of course, after a bit, we grew tired because after all, we had such a labour-intensive day that we resorted to talking.

The topic of discussion about going to the mountains came up when Ross let it slip out a little more enthusiastically than expected. The way he did it to made me feel all gooey inside. Ross sat at the peak of the hill glancing down at me. The way he casually let the conversation slip and slide into each other made me all that more appreciative of his diverse social skills. One second Ross is reserved and then the next he is exuberant in the amount of energy he wants to display. Following the news, he let drop: of what we intended to do on Saturday, everyone seemed to have been given the notion that it would be a good outing for everybody.

Don't get me wrong; I don't mind people tagging along with us, except I was rather hoping that the outing would've been just for Ross and me only. I guess I'm going for the hopeless romantic sort of type deal. And now though it seems apparent that everyone would like to go considering we've lived here our entire life and not once have, we decided to climb that mountain range. Then all of a sudden when Ross comes along and then lets everyone knows that that's what we intend to do; suddenly entire gang wants to do it. Consequently, I caved in and relented. I figured what's the worst that could happen if I let every else go. I mean it would be sorta selfish to exclude everyone else just for the sake of having some alone time with Ross before he is to leave.

Eli asked, "are you sure?" Following the idea of the boys tagging along for the day. At first, I was hesitant even to consider it, but now that I think about it I suppose it would be a nice day out. Or if I can get all the boys to lay off then perhaps that could be an excellent way to go about it too. Is it selfish of me that I want to go here on my own with Ross? If so how do I get rid of the boys, I've never wanted to get discard of people so much, but I can't help but imagine that this is incredibly important.

So, I said, "well... Yeah, it'd be great if you could come along." I determined the best course of action at the time was to stop thinking of my foolish desires. Maybe this could be the last day that any of us will have a memorable moment. Perhaps it will be the pinnacle of Ross's time spent here, and if Ross wants everyone to go which apparently it seems so, then I want what's best for Ross.

Subsequently, Eli didn't know if I was genuine or not so he just gave me a sheepish expression and then reverted to compose stature. He appeared to be thinking now. Eli gave me no indication that he liked the idea. He mumbled, "hmmm…" And that was it he didn't say anything else for a couple of seconds until Carl broke the silence.

Carl who sat up at the top of the heap with Ross was cradling a piece of turf between his two hands, playing with it. Carl appeared to be rooted in thought and then he broke a joke, "why? You afraid of heights…" The lads in the group immediately began to start sniggering, and I guess I even cut a bit of a smile. The meagre amount of stick that was generated was apparently aimed at Eli who didn't give much of an indication.

Of course, knowing Eli, he didn't wait very long to back up his front. Eli gave a bemused grin, and sarcastically stated, "psh… nawh… more like Adam." I have no idea why I was dragged into the topic of discussion. Then again when I realistically study it, considering I was petrified of climbing a radio tower, I wonder how I'll hold up climbing the highest mountain range in Ireland.

Surely it can't be that high, can it? It will be like never leaving the ground only; you're a couple of thousand feet in the sky. Inevitably would that place me in the air or am I still on the ground. I'm not sure, but all I can think about is how steep the sheer drop of the cliff might look like on one side. I'm not sure why I got myself into this now, but I'm starting to panic slightly. What if I can't complete the entire trial for the sake of Ross. That would make me a pussy; if I can't make it to the top of a mountain range then what would Ross think. I guess I'm slightly a little bit more determined to see this exact the only the notion of climbing the side of the mountain for hours is a little bit scarier. Do I necessarily have to climb the mountain because does it still account if I attach a camera to someone's head and let them document it for me and then when they come back down I can watch the video? Yeah, perhaps that's a stupid idea.

Alternatively of finding something incentive to say I just leaned over and gave Eli a playful shove and he shouldered back. And then Eli said something that I didn't expect him to say at all. Considering he knows about my secret the way he tried to persuade the boys to take a step down today was admirable. Eli has grown so much over the last month or two, and I believe I like it. He doesn't seem to be as harsh with people, and god knows Jonathan didn't deserve to be bullied by Eli. Though since Ross's arrival Eli has backed down on his sometimes-domineering antics. Eli said, "besides I think Adam and Ross should go. Climbing mountains, trees and radio towers from what I hear are hobbies of theirs."

I glanced across at him in part alarm. I was wondering what he was trying to get out. Sceptically I quizzed my brain as to how he knew about the radio tower. I don't recall telling him, and he seems to have picked up on this weird idea that Ross and I have an obsession with climbing things. I don't inherently have an obsession scaling things; it's Ross who likes mounting massive structures. That sounded wrong... you know what I mean. Perhaps that's something I need to look into because I don't remember letting him in on that sort of gossip.

Anyhow as the day drew to a close, we all decided the entire team would accompany us up the side of the mountain. Eli said that he could get his mam to drive the rest of the stragglers along for the ride. I suppose now that what had been initially intended as a romantic get-away on my behalf for Ross on Sunday has turned into an extravaganza for the entire crew. In all I think today went pretty well actually, I enjoyed the simplicity of it all. The weather was perfect, the conversation was awesome, and I got to spend it with the most amazing people in the world.

Anyway, I should be off the bed it's been a long day, and I'm spent. Tomorrow should be good, and a lot is going to happen tomorrow. Night – Adam.

13th July 1991

My legs are killing me; I don't think I'll ever walk again. Every part of my body is in agony; not because I fell or was in a fight. All that uphill walking was intense; my ankles keep cracking every time I rotate them. The sound emanating from them every time I do it sounds like cement mixers lopping with every rotational turn. I'm not sure if that is okay or not but they're not pain, so that's something. Though I think I will be out of action tomorrow from walking for a little bit. Either that or I'll probably spend most of the day sitting down. Today was terrific a matter of fact. I don't think I could've asked for a more incredible day. The best part of it all was that everyone was in high spirits and the sun was high in the sky, and Ross smiled so goddamn much that I thought, an impermanent smile would be embedded into his face. There's nothing more pleasing and aesthetic than watching that cutie smile.

When I woke this morning, I made sure I had everything packed up for the journey ahead. I made sure I had some extra water, and some appropriate clothes in case of rain started to fall during our descent up. I even went as far as to check the weather forecast on RTE; I didn't want a shower to sweep over the lands and put a damper on anything. Thankfully there was no rainfall in sight, and our whole race to the finish point at the top of the mountain was done in under seven hours. When I started this morning, I didn't conclude that it would take that long to walk the range. Seven hours seems like a prominent number now when you're only halfway up the mountain, and I'll get to that in a minute.

First thing I did when I got up this morning was I had a shower, followed by a phone call to Eli to make sure that he was still coming along. Everything seemed to be in working order, and everyone was going to be picked up. It was arranged that my dad would take me, Ross and Carl. While Eli's Mother Would drive, Eli, Thomas, Conor. Everything was set, and all we had to do was make it to the base of the mountain around 9 AM. As I sat down to breakfast at 8 AM, I had this tingle of excitement erupting in my stomach. I was about to start eating my meal when Ross came in exuberant, full of life and raring to go. It was adorable to watch as I was scarfing down my breakfast with him directly sitting across from me rambling on animatedly. I'm glad to see that I could have that sort of effect on Ross, that he is looking forward to something that I planned and that made my heart feel full.

When we loaded into the car the drive over to Carl's is legendary. I've never seen Ross talkative so, soo… urgh… Perfect. Everything about him this morning was radiant. How the light shone through his window, the way, he'd tilt his head to glance out the window, the sparkle in his eye. I so badly wanted to lean in and kiss him, and though I didn't because of course, my dad was in the car. I don't think I was smiling I was just transfixed. When we pulled up aside Carl's house, Ross glanced across at me as my dad honked the horn and I think he saw something in me that I wasn't even aware that I was giving off. Being truthful right about now seems to be the most logical aspect of what is essential. I'm going to miss that quirky, foolish excitement coming from Ross. I love that about him how he seems to take everything in his stride and makes the best of an unfortunate situation. Being able to sit there next to him and admire all he is made time slow for me. I wouldn't change a thing, not even the little scar that he has on his forehead… It adds authenticity and makes him real and exciting to be around. The quiet boy act was alluring for a time the now since I see past the shy boy premise all I can conclude is everything that I'm going to miss.

On the drive to the drop off point, all I could imagine was everything that made Ross's existence extraordinary. How I love the sound of his voice, the way it fluctuates when he's happy and how it falls to faint whisper when he is sad; the sheer audacity of the silence would be enough that you would be able to hear a deadened dried leaf crackle. How his eyelashes waver seductively without him realising it. Or when one corner of his mount always seems to smirk up when he's grinning higher than the other. The little shimmer of light in his eyes or the little shy bow of the head he does.

Every time Ross enthusiastically scales the side of the tree or radio tower, the confidence and the insurance he adds to such dangerous matters always at a comfortable level of confidentiality. It's as if it's okay to be afraid and he won't judge you regardless of whether you're scared or not. At at the same time, Ross seems to have dismissed it, or somewhere along the line without him having to ask he makes you do something without you having any obligation to say no.

His dress sense, I'll miss the way he dresses everything about his fashion trend is not a carbon copy. He likes to wear what he's comfortable in; his clothing attire is always cute and artsy in some sense or way. Some of it may be loud and bold, but it doesn't represent all of his personality. I will miss his smell, I know it sounds weird when I phrase it like this, but it's an aroma I have gotten so comfortable with. Anytime I catch a whiff of it sends me into the land of crazy and floaty. Lastly, there's something about his touch, gentle and caring. His soft nature but adventurous whim is to be desired, sought-after and never changed. Oh, how I'm going to miss Ross…

Anyway, I should get back to what is talking about. When we arrived at the base of the mountain, we all huddled together. Everyone seemed to be excited about the big climb. The adults wanted to make sure that we took the safest route possible. Eli's mam said that she'd do the mountain with us and my dad was going to climb the beast. We decided to take the slightly longer route rather than Devils Ladder because it is such a steep incline going up the hill that if one of us fell... well... the adult would not be chasing the kids tumbling down a couple of hundred feet onto a narrow ledge.

When I looked up at the obscuring monster a gastric pull of tension gripped me in the lowest pits of my stomach. My first rational thought was what had I gotten myself into, more importantly how the fuck was I going to climb this. Now that I've done it I can proudly say that I rose it. But my god I tell you-you need to have your head tested if you're scaling it. Not because it's dangerous or anything but because the backs of my legs are done for.

When we took off everybody was pacing up the hill at an alarming rate. Everybody had that remarkable, enthusiastic energy and drive just to get to the top. Eventually after about two hours of struggling up-hill that carried energy that once presented itself on the backs of those who are fortunate vanished with each step we grew higher.

All I could do was watch the boys in front of me. Ross, however, was at the front of the pack, he was leaving everybody up the mountain trail. Not once did he tire, he drove forward and about three hours into the journey there was a small soft spot where we decided to stop for about 10 minutes to catch our breath. It even warranted a response from me and a couple of the other boys. We had the shout after Ross who apparently was on his own planet as he walked a reasonable distance before he heard shouting. When Ross turned around he became bashful and coy; though he finally came back down the small stretch that he had climbed all on his own and sat down beside me. There was a refreshing breeze coming from the south, and there was a bit of a cloud coming from the southwest. It appeared to be the only cloud in the sky, but it was quite monstrous; that alarmed the adults. Though it didn't look like a rain cloud or anything, so we decided to push on. Given that the altitude we were at I suppose it was common to see some clouds.

I must say even though we were not at the top, the view from where we were was breathtaking. All I could see was a pale green painted against a blue background. It was like a nostalgic haze, and everything that was below us was unimportant and static. Just the magnificent landscape was domineering everything that humanity had built.

When we decided to take off again, we walked for at least another 2 1/2 hours and then the cloud that had been seen way off in the distance rolled over us. We were blanketed in an entire mist. It was awesome; dangerous but awesome. It's not what I thought it would've been like. All it felt like was cold. It brushed against my cheeks the. We, of course, covered up to protect ourselves from the elements, I recall my cheeks becoming a little damp from the condensation, and at that time I was beginning to sweat something terrible. I couldn't decide which was worst my intensive breeding, the cool brooding air that loomed with the cloud or the backs of my calves.

The illusion of the cloud, however, wore off after about 1/2 an hour of walking and eventually we were clambering up the final descent toward the top. I was a bit disappointed that all I could see was white either side of me. We now were on a more extended small treacherous trail. To the left of me was a subtle but sharp decline, to the right was a sheer drop of death. I didn't dare look down; I just kept marching forward hoping that I'd reach a small bit of land at the very top that I could sit down for a minute and get my bearings. The air felt a slight bit different too, the sensation, clean and crisp on the lungs. I don't think it was from the cloud however because when we got to the point that the trail began to widen out again, we cross the barrier between the cloud in the sky. We were back in the daylight again. I could see the mountaintop and surrounding hills for miles around. The sun was still shining, and all it appeared to be a was that cloud passing over. The delight that was once present floated back, and all I could think about was making it to the summit.

When I did, I couldn't be more proud and alive. I was petrified of the height that I was at, but at the same time, I still felt a blanket of security being surrounded by the people I love. Even though my legs felt like jelly and my balance felt off, I took a breeder at the top of Carrauntoohil. You could see everything that was not in hidden; I considered I could see the faint contortion of what Killarney is often the distance. As odd as it may sound I think I'd do it again but then again, I said that when I was at the top of the mountain. However, when I got to the bottom Carrauntoohil, the attitude changed and I thought that that would not happen again.

You should've seen the look on Ross's face it was indescribable, although it appeared to be much more to him than anybody else. All of us were looking off into the distance enjoying the aerial views; then ultimately most people started to retreat over behind the wall for lunch. That left Ross and I standing by the edge glancing out over the sheer beauty of untouched nature of man's deceptive greed. It was at this point that I thought that giving something to Ross that would memorable was a good idea. Like that, I dropped my backpack beside my feet and rummaged through it for the rock from the castle. I had plopped it in earlier, and I figured that if I found the right time, I'd give it to him. I presumed that this would be an ideal place to do it, so I got it out.

I glanced down at it in my hand does Ross still kept his attention drawn to the world beneath us. "I want to give you something," I nervously said.

Ross broke his attention and looked across at me; he waited for me to continue, so I did. I reverted my attention to the stone that was in my hand and lifted it up into view so that he could see it. It was special to me, so I wanted it to be unique to him, and if the timing were right then, this would be a memorable time of when I gave it to him. "I want you to have this so that you will remember me."

Ross pivoted his head toward the rock brushed his hand into mine. We traded the small offering between the two of us, and he glued his eyes to it. He ran his thumb over the edge of the rock and then asked, "what is it?"

"It's a stone…" I joked, and Ross gave a bit of a chuckle. "it's from the castle. I wanted you to take home a piece of the castle."

Ross didn't speak he just kept his attention on the rock, and then after about 10 seconds he closed his fingers and on top of the memento and held it dearly. Ross shifted his focus back to me and beamed that beautiful smile. I took out my piece of the castle and said, "I have a piece to…" He smirked, let his concentration wander back out to the landscape, and the sound of gentle laughter and conversation filled the solitude.

All of us sat around a human-made rock wall which was supposedly built to shelter people for when they reached the peak. We all huddled in close and ate lunch there. We stead at the tip for about another forty minutes taking pictures and resting before decided to head on back down. I thought that when I began to get back up from my sitting position that I wouldn't be able to move, my legs had seized up from all the walking.

When we reached the bottom, I was glad to be on solid ground again. Even though the experience was joyful, I'll never trade it. Everything turned out swell, and everyone enjoyed themselves which is the main thing. I'll remember this day until the end of time. I don't believe I could've done a more memorable moment for Ross. The castle has been present in almost every day of our special friendship. Therefore, it only seemed fitting that Ross takes a piece of it home with him… Anyhow, I guess I'm going to turn in early tonight because I'm exhausted. So, with that, I'm going to sign off now and say good night. Good night Ross…

Night – Adam.

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Authors deserve your feedback. It's the only payment they get. If you go to the top of the page you will find the author's name. Click that and you can email the author easily.* Please take a few moments, if you liked the story, to say so.

[For those who use webmail, or whose regular email client opens when they want to use webmail instead: Please right click the author's name. A menu will open in which you can copy the email address (it goes directly to your clipboard without having the courtesy of mentioning that to you) to paste into your webmail system (Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo etc). Each browser is subtly different, each Webmail system is different, or we'd give fuller instructions here. We trust you to know how to use your own system. Note: If the email address pastes or arrives with %40 in the middle, replace that weird set of characters with an @ sign.]

* Some browsers may require a right click instead