• Although the sound of the brooms sweeping against the uneven concrete floor of the chapel was abrasive, I found myself entranced by the noise. I was willing to be hypnotized by anything really, as long as it kept my mind off of the boy on the other end of the chapel. Why did I volunteer for this job when I knew he was going to be here? I suppose it might be because the small part of my brain, buried deep within my subconscious, is a sadist. At least, that’s the only reason I can come up with that doesn’t involve the real problem, the problem that involves the boy sweeping up his side of the chapel.

    As I continue to draw dust into my slowly accumulating pile, I think back to the time when I was a janitor at a summer camp. The floors were smoother there, and there wasn’t as much dust… but I suppose none of that matters right now. Not in this time and place. Now all I have to worry about is that blasted fluttering in my stomach and the shaking in my hands that are gripping the wooden broom. It’s all his fault… and all I can think to say is damn him.

    Damn him and his annoying laugh, the one that makes me think he could bite off someone’s head… his mouth is open so wide in a smile. Damn that smile too, it’s far to kind. I glare down at the floor and start to sweep a little harder. Damn him for actually listening to me when I told ridiculous stories. Damn him for laughing at those too. Before realizing it, I take a longer sweep than I meant to and my dust pile that had been so carefully constructed is now sprawled across the floor ahead of me. Letting out a dejected sigh I continue to work, building up what I’ve just destroyed.

    Eventually we make it back to the center of the chapel, and I almost flinch when I catch sight of his broom in my field of vision. Our dust piles are mingling together now and I can’t help but think if it could be some sort of metaphor for something that has yet to pass. I quickly disregard the thought and berate myself for thinking something so absurd. Then suddenly, it happens. Our brooms lightly bump into each other.

    Snapping my gaze upwards, I see that Steven is staring at me. “And then…” his voice trails off and a smile spreads across his face, “our brooms met.” I feel a blush creep up the back of my neck and I think quickly of something to say.
    “That they did,” I say evenly, a small smile playing across my own lips. “That they did.”