The Writers Voice
Favourite Literary Website
A Rose For Marly
It was one
week before high school graduation when I found the
note. I didnít know it then, but by the end of that
week, my life would be changed forever.
I had been cleaning out my locker, looking through
old papers and taking down all the pictures I had
taped to the door. Everything seemed to hold
memories from the past year, so I was careful not
to throw away anything with sentimental value. I
found the note on the top shelf of my locker,
laying on top of my biology book. It had my name ,
Marly, printed neatly at the top, and though I
didnít recognize the handwriting, I thought that it
was probably from one of my friends. But as I read
it, I realized that it couldnít be. It was signed,
'from a secret admirer.' I knew I shouldnít take
it seriously, but I couldnít stop my heart from
beating fast or my face from turning red.
I kept thinking that it was just a prank. But who
couldíve written something so sweet and touching
just for a good laugh? I heard laughter from the
end of the hall, but when I looked down there I saw
that those laughing were paying no attention to me.
That evening I kept replaying the words of the note
in my head. I reread it so many times during my
last hour class, I almost had it memorized.
We never spent any time together, it said,
in my mind we did... In my mind we shared so
much... from our first kiss to popcorn at the movie theater on our first date. We laughed at inside
jokes that no one else got, you taught me how to
dance in my backyard. Of course, none of those
things really happened... I only imagined them.
Outside of my mind we never existed as a couple,
you never even knew my true feelings for you. And
Iím afraid you never will if I donít tell you now.
Please meet me Friday night after the prom, in the
I spent that entire evening thinking about the note
and who couldíve written it. It wasnít every day I
got a note from someone who had been admiring me
The next day at school, I showed the note to my
best friend, Christy. We sat down by our lockers,
musing over who the mysterious person could be.
Every time a boy walked by I contemplated the
question: Could it be him? I tried to act like it
wasnít important to me. After all, it could just be
a cruel joke someone was playing on me and I would
look stupid if I made a big deal out of it.
By the end of third hour, everyone knew about the
note I had received. At noon, a crowd had gathered
around my locker. Some wanted to see the note but I
was cautious of who I let read it. I guarded it as
if it were some great treasure, and to me, it was.
"What if its him?" Diane Johansen said, pointing in
his direction and laughing. She started doing a
dead-on impersonation of Jimmy. I couldnít help but
laugh as Diane talked with a stutter and shook, as
Jimmy often did. I instantly regretted it. I looked at him. I didnít see love or admiration in his
eyes, I saw pain.
Throughout the rest of the day I kept thinking
about Jimmy. He had lived across the street from me
for years, yet I knew so little about him. I
remembered my mother telling me to be nice to him
when I was younger. She said that he needed a
friend. When I asked her why he acted so different,
she told me that his mother had done bad things
when she was pregnant with him. It wasnít until I
was older that I really understood this. I would
occasionally wave at him on the street, but not if
my friends were with me. I tried to make myself
feel better by thinking that I had at least treated
him better than others had.
Jimmy was pleasantly interesting. Sometimes I could
see in his room through his window as I passed by.
He was often playing his guitar, or sitting at his
desk writing. After I got the note, I wondered if
he had been writing things for me. From then on I
tried to see Jimmy through the window. It was my
only way of looking into his world. I wondered if
my admirer had ever done the same.
One evening, I got a call from Christy.
"I think I know who your admirer is!" she shrieked.
My heart pounded. "Who?"
"Youíre not going to believe this, but I think its
Russell Moore! At church I overheard him say you
were cute! Can you believe it?"
There was a long silence.
"Well, arenít you excited?" she asked.
"I guess," I said.
"Who do you want it to be?" she asked.
I couldnít think of anyone but Jimmy so I said that
I didnít know.
Later that evening, I considered writing Jimmy a
letter. I thought I could be an 'admirer' myself.
He thinks I hate him. He thinks Iím like everyone
else. What if I donít get the chance to tell him
different? But I decided against it. I guess I
wasnít as brave as my secret admirer was. It was
strange. I wondered if I was falling in love with
him. All of a sudden I wanted to see him, talk to
him, hear his voice. I wondered why I felt that
The next day was the day of the prom. I woke up
that morning feeling nervous. I couldíve cared less
about the dance, it was where I was going
afterwards that I was thinking of.
The decorations at the dance were beautiful. The
music was great. But I couldnít enjoy myself. I was
restless up until I left at 11:45. I began walking
towards the park. Although it was May, it was a
cool evening. A breeze stirred the branches of the
trees. I wrapped my jacket tight around me. Then I
spotted a small park bench where I decided to wait.
Thirty minutes passed and he still hadnít arrived.
Maybe no one was coming in the first place, I
thought, maybe he doesnít exist. I let a few tears
slip out, then told myself I wouldnít cry.
Just then I got a call on my cell phone from
Christy. She sounded upset.
"Marly!" she shouted, "Jimmy McAllister was in an
accident by the school! Heís hurt really bad!"
"Oh my God!" I exclaimed choking on tears. "Iíll be
I tried to run, blinded by tears. I tripped a few
times but finally made it back to the school. I saw
that his truck had slid into a ditch alongside the
school. They were carrying Jimmy into the ambulance
on a stretcher. I donít know what made me do it,
but I looked inside his badly damaged truck. Laying
on the seat was a red rose. Attached to the rose
was a card that read, 'for Marly.'
Critique this work
Click on the book to leave a comment about this work