The sounds of people clambering around, going about their business, overpowers Luke and Noah’s subconscious as they wait in line for security. Neither man speaks as the words they should say cloud the space between them. Luke looks down at his feet somberly, the past month’s events swimming around in his brain. The pain of his thoughts seeps through into his eyes. After all eyes are the windows to our souls.
Noah reaches out and gently touches Luke’s bicep. The touch causes Luke to look up at Noah. If Noah was hoping for a positive reaction; he was about to be disappointed. Luke gives Noah a glaring but morose look before shrugging out of the touch.
In Luke’s hand he clutches his ticket to a new life. A new life he was embarking on alone. Alone. Luke was doing a lot of things alone since Dr. Reid Oliver. Gosh if any name could cause innumerous amounts of pain it was definitely Reid Oliver. Thinking of the pompous doctor, who came off as an asshole, makes Luke want to cry.
“Luke, you are not alone.” Noah whispers, reading Luke’s thoughts like always.
Luke doesn’t say a word; instead he steps forward and shows his ticket and ID to the security checkpoint. The man marks Luke’s ticket and sends him forward. While waiting for the next security guy, Luke’s thoughts wander.
Why is life so hard? Why’d Reid have to die? Why does Noah choose now to act like he cares? God why is Noah always there at the least convenient moment? How am I supposed to get over him if he’s always there?
“You are cleared sir” the gruff voiced security guy says, swiping Luke one last time with his wand.
Luke forces a smile and steps forward. Grabbing his stuff and shoes, Luke rushes away from security. Stopping a few feet away, from the checkpoint, Luke wipes away the stray tears. He’d been doing a lot of crying in the past few weeks, ever since losing Dr. Reid in an unceremonious fashion. Now he also cried because the man he loved the hardest and the fullest wasn’t making life easy.
Glancing down at his plane ticket, Luke wonders how he ever got the strength to move. Sure living in New York City had been a dream of his, but he had been putting it off for over a year. Thinking of his new destination takes Luke back; into memories he had forgotten he had, to a time when he and Noah had the world.
Noah gets through security and begins looking for Luke. His biggest fear is that Luke will already be long gone. Fortunately, Noah finds Luke a mere five feet from security. Noah begins to approach him, but a few feet away he stops. Luke is silently crying.
Seeing Luke in so much pain, with no way of helping him, makes Noah’s heart break. Luke is and always has been the love of Noah’s life. Thinking back on all the times Luke helped him, Noah wishes even more that he could help Luke. Noah clutches his ticket tighter in his grip, as if the death grip will change his destination from LA to New York.
Suddenly, Luke opens his eyes and his gaze meets Noah’s dead on. The fear and anger in Luke’s eyes shock Noah. Noah expected there to be immense pain reflected in the hazel orbs, not fear and anger. Noah’s death grip on his ticket slackens once he realizes who the anger is directed at. In a matter of seconds Noah is situated right next to Luke.
“Luke, I’m sorry.” Noah whispers as he touches Luke’s hand ever so gently. Noah’s whole heart went into those two little words.
Luke pulls his hand out from under Noah’s continues staring straight ahead. Noah gently reaches out and turns Luke’s head so that their eyes meet once more. Noah gazes imploringly, silently begging Luke for some sort of reaction. Luke grabs Noah’s hand and shoves it away before giving a little sigh.
“I wish that were enough.” Luke mutters softly as he stands up to leave.
“Luke, we just have to keep trying.” Noah pleads, not wanting to let things go.
“Noah, we’ve tried everything and still nothing changes.” Luke cries, still not looking at Noah.
“We’re not the same people we were almost three years ago. We’ve changed.” Noah argues desperately.
“At least we finally agree on one thing. We have changed. Noah, we can’t just stay in the same cycle because it’s easy.” Luke mutters.
“It’s not the same if we are different, Luke. We can make another go at this.” Noah grabs Luke and spins him around so they are face to face once more.
“What so we can break up again in a few months? Noah, it’s not worth the pain. We both need to move on with our lives.” Luke says, placing a hand on Noah’s cheek as he gives a sad smile.
“I guess you’re right.” Noah concedes, moving past Luke and in the direction of his terminal.
Luke watches Noah’s receding body and silently begs him to turn for one last look. Noah’s dark head never turns back before going out of Luke’s line of vision. Little did either man know a lone tear was streaming down each of their cheeks. For the third time in the last six months Luke felt like his heart was being ripped to pieces. Who knew love was so painful?
Noah sat in his terminal waiting for his flight. His thoughts centered on the love of his life, the man who taught him what true love meant. He hated himself for agreeing with Luke about moving on, he didn’t want to move on. Suddenly, his cell phone rings bringing him out of his thoughts.
H-hello. Noah chokes out.
Hey Mayer. It’s me Casey. A jovial voice comes through.
I know, caller ID. What do you need? Noah sighs.
You left Chicago yet? Casey asks.
No, still waiting. Noah responds, on the verge of annoyance.
Well don’t leave. Casey states matter-of-factly.
Why not? I’ve already put off leaving once. Noah sighs.
What you’re seeking isn’t in LA. Casey says philosophically.
Well thanks for the advice but, he doesn’t want me around. He said so himself. Noah replies before hanging up.
Luke sat waiting for his flight; in his hands he held two totally different things. His left hand holds a knight chess piece; his right hand holds a watch. In between his hands sits his heart, torn. He loved both men, but in different ways. Reid was new and exciting and challenged his every thought. Noah was his first love and by far his greatest love. Both men made him feel good, but only one knew him better than himself. Noah Mayer. Unfortunately it was too late for both of them. Reid was dead and Noah was in LA. Luke was alone, just as he’d always feared.
Luke boards his plane with a heavy heart. He stares out the window not seeing, just looking. A stranger sits down next to him; Luke turns and gives the young man a smile.
The young man forces a smile in return before he pulls a camera out of his carry on. Luke turns back to looking out the window. A few seconds later the man beside him catches his attention again by accidentally bumping Luke’s arm. Luke glares at his seat partner. The young man’s camera catches Luke off guard.
The camera is a medium sized digital video similar to one Luke used to see all the time. Seeing the small flip view screen, Luke is taken back to a time when he and Noah still talked to each other. Luke remembers Noah always lugging his camera with him. He always claimed it was so he could capture the true essence of life. Lately, Luke hadn’t seen Noah carrying the camera.
As the plane takes off, Luke wonders if Noah still wished to catch the essence of life. There now seemed to be many things Luke didn’t know about Noah. It is as if the last three years didn’t happen. Maybe that was fate’s way of giving them a do-over.
Luke shakes his head, attempting to wake up fully. During the one hour flight, Luke had dozed off. Now he was in the terminal gate at JFK Airport. People hurriedly shove past him in their rush to get where they needed to go. Luke gives a sigh and moves forward, towards the unknown, his future a blank expanse before him.