Watching him work on his car, as with everything else, was so much more than that to me...
|After school let out and we got back to my house, he went straight to his stranded car on the curb, threw off his shirt, and got to work. I went inside and got us both a cup of water, and took his out to him. He still seemed sort of distant, so I tried not to bother him. I watched under the hood as he worked for a few minutes, asking him about what was wrong and how he'd fix it, when he told me, "My dad would kill me if he knew I was doing this. He doesn't think I know how to do anything." He just seemed to pour his heart out when he said that, and I felt it in my heart, too. It hurt. I hurt for him, for how I knew what he felt, for how much I wanted to scream, "Your dad doesn't even know how wonderful his son is, does he?!" I just felt like he was trusting me with his thoughts again, and it felt good. Even though it was a painful thought, I felt good to be a part of it - hurting with him instead of because of him, and it was that sharing of feelings that brought back the bond. It wasn't back enough to be talked about, but I could feel it.
After a minute, I went and sat on the sidewalk on the other side of the car to make sure I wasn't bugging him or anything, but I really didn't feel like I was. He didn't act like it, either, and just a few minutes later, he walked around to where I was sitting.
"This is what's wrong!" he told me, waving a cable in front of my face.
"What's wrong with it?" I asked, and he went on to tell me. Suddenly we were talking together, working together, feeling together again, and everything seemed to fit into place. When he asked if we had any black electrical tape, I ran to look, feeling wanted and needed once more. It felt so good, too!! I had to borrow some from the neighbor's, but I loved the feeling that he needed me again. Especially when he said, "There's a rag in the car behind the driver's seat - would you get it for me, please?"
I hoped my "Sure!" didn't sound too enthusiastic, but then, maybe I was glad if it did. Now I knew I wasn't in his way - he had asked for my help. I gave him the rag and stood beside him, watching him loosen and tighten wires and get grease all over his hands and arms. He looked really adorable. His darkly-tanned back was covered with sweat, and there was a drop of it on the end of his nose. The heat was making me dizzy as I traced the lines of the Mustang emblem with my fingers and the lines of his body with my eyes, loving the way the veins stood out in his arms and how his ribs curved. He seemed so small and precious, yet also so strong. He knew what he was doing. He had said so himself, after what he told me about his dad thinking he didn't know how to do anything. As I watched his face, the soft boyish seventeen-year-old would sometimes disappear long enough for me to get a glimpse of the man he was becoming, and my heart surged through the distance, as if I could become a part of him and reach his deepest soul. The sweat glistened on his back as he worked. I shivered, even though it was nearly 100 degrees outside. Some things are just too wonderful for words.