This story is by Gigi Guan and was part of our 10th Anniversary Writing Contest. You can find all the writing contest stories here.
“Say yes, say yes.” The crowd surrounded a man and a woman.
The woman smiled and nodded.
Michelle watched them as Nathan went to get drinks.
“Let’s go, babe.” Nathan grabbed Michelle’s hand and walked forward.
“Do you remember what day is it tomorrow?” She asked.
“Of course, it’s our fifth anniversary.” He answered.
“Do you know what I want?”
“Yes. The silver necklace you stared for a long time at that store yesterday.”
“I do like that necklace a lot. But that’s not what I really want. At least not for our fifth anniversary.” Michelle forced a smiled shook her head. She wanted Nathan to propose to her since last year. She hinted to him many times, but he seemed to avoid it.
“What do you want, babe?” He asked.
“We have been together for almost five years now, don’t you think we should take our relationship to the next level?”
“We should live together?”
“Don’t you think we should do something before that?” Michelle took a sip of her drink.
Nathan put his hand under his chin and asked, “Buy a house or an apartment?”
Michelle looked at him with her mouth slightly opened. “Yeah, yeah, you are right.” Then she turned her head to the side.
Nathan knew Michelle was mad. He was walking behind her silently like every time she gets mad.
“When are you and Nathan getting married?” Michelle’s mom, Joyce, asked.
“Soon, mom.” Michelle said impatiently and threw her shoes on the rack.
“Hey, I care about you. Please don’t be like that. You’ve been telling me that since last year. When is soon?” Joyce flipped the magazine. “I was a mother when I was your age. If he’s not going to marry you, break up. Aunt Patty’s son Jason is pretty good.”
“Mom, what are you talking about? I promise you we’ll get married this year.”
“Keep your word.” Joyce pushed her glasses up. “Even your best friend Elaine got married last year.”
“That’s because she got pregnant.”
“How about your other friend Kristen? She’s not pregnant.”
Michelle rolled her eyes.
“Oh no, you don’t get a chance now. Jason is getting married next month.” Joyce just got a text message.
“That’s great.” Michelle murmured.
“Has Nathan ever… proposed to you?”
“Soon.” Michelle ran her fingers through her hair.
“Soon again.” Joyce sighed and shook her head.
Michelle went to her room and closed the door. She turned on her laptop and played loud music; it’s a way to clam herself down. She was laying the bed and looking at the photo of her and Nathan. She smiled; it reminded her of how she asked Nathan to be her boyfriend.
When Michelle just started university, she was overweight and dressed a bit tacky. She fell in love with Nathan at first sight on orientation day; he was a handsome guy wearing checkered shirt with shorts. She spent a year running around park and she turned into a fit girl; she also changed her dressing style, but she still didn’t have the courage to confess her feelings to him.
It was finally summer, and Joyce was driving Michelle to dinner. Michelle was looking out the window and saw Nathan was walking with his friend – What a coincidence.
“Mom, drop me off.”
“Why? We’re just one block away from the restaurant.”
“I saw my crush, and I am going to tell him I like him”
“Oh, are you serious?” Joyce giggled.
Michelle ran down the sidewalk. There he was, walking towards her. Her heart started beeping fast and her face blushed. She took a step back and calm herself down.
“Hey Nathan, do you remember me?” Michelle shivered.
“Yes, you’re Michelle right?” Nathan said.
“Yes. Nathan, I’ve liked you for a year. Because of you, I ran to lose weight. Because of you, I change the way I dress.” Michelle took a deep breath and asked, “Can you be my boyfriend?”
Nathan held her hands and smiled. “Yes.”
They bussed home from school almost everyday, and hung out every week since then.
Nathan brought Michelle to the restaurant where they had dinner at for their first date on their fifth anniversary.
“You still remember this restaurant?” Michelle asked.
“Of course.” Nathan answered.
Michelle took a gift from her bag and gave it to Nathan. “Happy fifth anniversary.”
“Thank you, babe. I’ll give you a gift later.”
“What? You wanna surprise me?”
“You’ll see.” He said mysteriously.
“Hi, are you ready to order?” A waitress came and asked.
“Babe, you want medium top sirloin steak with mashed potatoes. Right?” He asked her.
“Yes.” She said.
“Thank you.” The waitress said.
“Wow, you still remember what I ordered.”
“Of course. Babe, there’s fireworks at Limber Beach tonight, wanna go see it afterwards?” He asked excitedly.
“How come there’s nobody here?” Michelle asked.
“Oh yeah, there’s weird.” Nathan said.
“Watch the fireworks.” Nathan said.
It was spectacular.
“Where’s my gift?” Michelle poked Nathan on the hand.
“Hold your horses.” Nathan said.
After one minute, the fireworks made “Michelle”, “I love you” and a picture of them.
Michelle looked at Nathan. He already went down on one knee. “Michelle, will you marry me?” He took out a ring.
“Say yes, Michelle.” Voices came from the side.
She turned around and saw five of their friends were standing behind them. They made a heart shape with their hands.
“Nathan wants to give you a surprise, so he told us not to tell you.” One of their friends said.
Michelle put her hand on her mouth. “Wow, Nathan.” Her eyes were filled with tears of joy.
“Nathan, my mom was pressuring me to get married last night. She told me to break up with you if you aren’t going to marry me. Now I am telling you this is not going to happen no matter what happens, because I know I’ve chosen the right person.”
“I know I’ve been a coward for a year. But from now on, please let me take care of you for the rest of your life.”
Michelle nodded. Nathan hugged and kissed her.