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When Zeke opened his eyes that morning all he saw was green, lots and lots of green. He blinked a few times trying to remember where he was. There was a warm bed underneath him, but it wasn’t his bed, or his room. As he scanned the walls he saw diplomas, sport awards and trophies and he realized it must have been Marty’s brother’s room.
He wondered where Ollie Gradle woke up that morning feeling guilty he usurped the young man’s room. His memories of last night were rather foggy, he couldn’t believe he had gotten drunk again… But it was hard to say no to Marty’s father who kept passing him the beers and patting his back. He groaned loudly as he tried to get up. His head didn’t hurt as badly as the other day but his throat was parched.
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Days and weeks passed and autumn took hold of Sunset Valley and still Zeke hadn’t heard from Marty. She texted him, that same night at the waterfall, the night she ran away from him and his bright plans for their future. I am sorry. She had said. Zeke wanted to reply, he really did but what could he have said? He was hurt. Deeply terribly hurt. He couldn’t make sense of anything any more… He had never felt so hopeless before.
Were he and Marty still together? He didn’t know. Did she realize she doesn’t want to marry him, or be with him at all? He didn’t know. Had she met someone during filming this summer? Was that it? Did she love someone else? He didn’t know…
Nothing made sense in this Marty-less world. He missed her every single day. He was used to talking to her, hearing her laugh, seeing her smile. It was weird to imagine that this could be his life now. A life without Martha Gradle in it… The thought was awful and painful.
In stead Zeke thought about the lovely moments he and Marty had… He thought about the day he proposed to her, how spontaneous and wonderful that had been…