A Trans Boy, a Girl, a Magical Bonfire, and Realization of Love
Thawing hearts on a firelit night.
I saw her one winter morning. Sitting on the floor, leaning against the door, yellow boots muddy from the football practice she’d just come from. She looked at me and smiled. And that one smile on that one winter morning managed to steal my heart.
I would sometimes get a glimpse of her in the halls in between classes, or in the dining hall chatting with her friends. I never talked to her. She was quiet, and I was too shy to approach her. But there were a few times when I’d gather the courage to wave and she’d smile at me, a small crooked smile that never failed to make my heart flutter.
The day we talked, it happened all of a sudden. It was bonfire night. Burning woods ascending up the black skies like fireflies fading into stars as people sat around it, sharing jokes, strumming a guitar. She was sitting all alone, listening to people singing. We shared stories, as I rambled on about my life, and she occasionally shared snippets of herself with me. Her eyes twinkled in the firelight.
“Your eyes are beautiful.”
She smiled shyly. “I know.”
And then even before we knew it, we were leaning forward, lips brushing against each other. The cold of the night forgotten in the warmth of sweet whispers, sparkling eyes and clasped hands under the star-embossed black sky. The fire had almost burned out, leaving a beautiful artwork of burnt black and orange-yellow and a comforting chilliness in the air. The place was almost abandoned, save a few drunken teenagers laughing in the distance. Nobody noticed us.
After such a long while of fighting to accept myself, feeling my insides get frozen like shards of ice, that night with her felt like being cocooned in a favourite blanket on a cold winter’s night.
For once, I felt myself worthy of being loved.
For once, I didn’t worry about disappointing my family, about people judging me.
It was just me and her. And under the starry night, I finally felt my heart thawing.
For now, it is spring.