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Chapter 7: The decision

Mia wiped the tears on her cheeks off and stepped into the shower. She quickly threw some clothes in a travel bag and grabbed the money she had with her. She waited till her parents went off to their bedroom. She quietly made her way out of the mansion, called a cab and went over to Lara’s. She knocked and not long after she saw some lights turning on.

“Sorry to bother you this late but I need your help.” Mia said while stepping inside.

“Yes dear anything. And please tell me why you look worse than before.” Her theía replied. Mia told her everything. She was a sobbing mess again. Her theía held her in a hug till she calmed down a little.

“So I can’t stay here anymore, I need to leave. Is your offer of Greece still open?” Lara looked at the broken child in front of her. She loves this girl and she knows how lonely she really is. The only thing Lara could do for her is help her and hope that things will turn out for the better. She knows this precious girl deserves every happiness given to her, she just needs to find that happiness.

“Yes. I’ll call my sister. She’ll receive you and take you to the house. I hope this will help you.” Lara kissed Mia’s forehead and then she left for the airport. Before leaving the mansion she already purchased a ticket online, so she knew when the right time to leave would be.

Mia was constantly tormented by her thoughts. Even on the flight she couldn’t keep her mind off the events that happened these past days, she couldn’t focus. Before she knew it she was in Greece. The air here is so different then back home. When she walked out Mia saw a woman hold up a piece of paper with my name. She looks a lot like her theía Lara.

“Hello you must be Lara’s sister. I’m Mia Bennett.” Mia waved at her but the woman pulled her in a hug.

“Aahh yes welcome Mia” she said with her Greek accent. Lara’s sister introduced herself, her name is Mara and led Mia outside of the airport.

This is the Kavala International Airport “Alexander the Great”. They got into a taxi and reached a street called drakontos. The taxi stopped in front of a house. She paid the cab fare before Mia had the chance to.

“We used to live here but because of my son’s work we had to move. So it stays empty most of the time.” The two women walked up the stairs, Mia waited in the balcony as Mara opened the door. It was a nice change of scenery. Lara was right maybe I needed this. Mia thought to herself. Mara showed her the house. It’s small and comfortable. There were no groceries in the house, so they went to the store to pick some up. The streets here are narrower then Mia is used to and the houses are so close to each other. The store was not too far from there, it was a nice walk to the store. When they got back Mara helped Mia tidy up the place a bit and left after a while.

“Thank you so much for this.” Mia said as she was seeing Mara off.

“Don’t mention it child. If you need anything you can call me.” Her smile is just like Lara’s it warms you up.

Mia walked to the balcony and smiled. After a really long time she smiled willingly. She walked back in and was so tired that she fell asleep.

When Mia woke up it was around 4 p.m. She remembered that she had to call Lara. “Hey Lara I’m just calling to say I’ve landed safely.”

“I know. Mara already informed me. How are you holding up?” Lara asked with a concerned voice. She was worried about Mia.

“One day at a time I guess.” Mia said sighing.

“Don’t worry too much dear it will turn out for the best. Try to enjoy it. I have to go see Hugo now. And take care of yourself.”

“I will. Bye. Say hi to uncle Hugo for me.”

How can Mia not worry? It’s all she’s been doing for so long. How will she enjoy when all she can see is darkness surrounding her. How? She stared blankly at the room. What now? She wondered.

It’s been a week since Mia arrived here and she’s been cooped up in the house. The dreams keep appearing, but with more. Sometimes the dream is about that night with Hayden in the balcony what he would have done if no one intervened. And it was worse then what Nathan did. Some dreams were about her parents who would scold and hit her. The nightmares never stop neither do the screaming nor crying awake. Maybe it’s time to start exploring Kavala with the intention of taking her mind off of things.

She readied herself, locked up the house and roamed the streets. Looking around trying to take everything in. After some time she reached a beautiful cafe. She walked in with aching feet and tiredness in her body. A waitress came and handed Mia a menu card it was all in Greek. She looked so confused at it that it made the waitress laugh.

“Tourist?” She asked in a Greek accent.

Mia nodded.

“That’s okay. Welcome to Kavala Greece. What would you like to have?” She said while taking back the menu card and explaining what they had to offer. It was difficult to understand her at first but Mia got used to the way she spoke and could understand her better.

“Uhm actually I’m not that hungry can I just get a drink? What would you recommend?” Mia asked.

“How about some white wine? Retsina, Retsina has been something like the national beverage for Greeks since the 1960′s.” She answered smiling. A white wine did sound appealing to Mia. Maybe a slight buzz will push the darkness away a little bit. So she smiled back and agreed with the waitress’s recommendation. “Oh and maybe some kind of pastry with it.”

“That sounds good. Thank you.” Mia responded.

After some time the waitress came with a wine and a plate of something she called Baklava. The wine and the pastry were both delicious. After enjoying her meal Mia paid and left. As she was walking back towards the house, she heard someone calling her. She turned around and saw the same waitress walking towards her.

“Hi. You forgot your phone.” she handed Mia her phone.

“Ow thank you” Mia said smiling, she slid the phone in her pocket.

“By the way I’m Aria Walters.” She extends her hand.

“Mia Bennett.” Mia introduced herself and shakes her hand. “Hey can I ask you something. Where can I buy a simcard around here?”

“There is a shop two streets away. Come on I’ll show you.”

“Don’t you have to get back to work or something?”

“No I just finished my shift.” Aria said smiling.

They walked to the shop and talked nonstop. For some reason it was really easy for Mia to talk to her.

“So for how long are you staying in Greece?” Aria asked.

“I don’t know exactly. I didn’t exactly plan it.”

“Hhmm unplanned trips.. Those are the best.” She said while giving Mia a wink. “So what are your plans? Checking those boxes off you bucket list?”

“Bucket list? No I don’t really have one.” Mia responded shyly.

“Oh come on don’t lie. Everyone has one.”

Mia looked at her. And she finally realized that Mia wasn’t joking.

“Okay you have to make one and start with it on this trip.” Aria said in a complete serious voice.

“Do you have one?” Mia asked when curiosity won over.

“Yeah I make them throughout the year then on my summer vacations I try to complete as much as I can. So I already have like 5 or 6. I’ll help you get started on yours. What do you say?”

“Wow. uuhhmm Okay. But what do I put on it?”

“Anything… and everything you heart desires. Like sky diving or deep sea diving or flying a plane.” As she was talking they passed a stall. She stopped and looked at something. Then she bought a notebook. It had a black cover. She handed it over to Mia.

Aria was a very outgoing and energy filled person. When she talked to Mia there was something about the girl that intrigued Aria. She saw this unexplored potential in this girl waiting to be let out. There was this aura around the girl that made Aria want to befriend her. Aria didn’t lack friends but she loved meeting new people and learning about them. It’s always been like that for her. She was all about the new experiences and unknown things that were waiting to be discovered by her. Aria was very young when her father helped her with her first bucket list. They bounded thanks to that and it had been something Aria kept doing after her father passed away. It helped her feel close to her father.

“Here start with your list tonight. And come by the cafe tomorrow.” Mia looked at the notebook Aria handed her wondering what she should write in it. “Thank you” she responded a little absentmindedly.

After that they talked and walked a little more. And went their separate ways. When Mia was back at the house she showered and sat on the bed. She was so tired that she fell asleep. The nightmares started. Her brain knew the exact way to torment her. The sentences kept replaying in her dreams till she suddenly woke up.

“You don’t deserve to be loved.”

“You were practically begging for it dressed as a slut.”

“Come on baby I know you will enjoy it.”

“Be a good girl and give him what he wants.”

It was around 4 a.m. She couldn’t sleep anymore. Mia dragged herself out of the bed and into the shower, she took a shower and sat down on the bed. Mia stared at the note book that Aria gave her for a while. What do I want? Not to be lonely. To be loved. To be happy. Not to feel empty. For the nightmares to stop. Mia asked herself. She thought and thought but her mind was completely blank even though it was filled with a whole mess of thoughts. She kept staring at the note book when she noticed the time, she changed her clothes and went to the café, Aria was already there waiting for her.

“So let’s see what you have.” She grabbed the note book and opened it excited. She was eager to see what the shy girl in front of her wrote in it. “Mia you didn’t write anything?” Aria said disappointed.

“Don’t know what to write.” Mia shrugged.

“Okay why don’t you take a look at mine then? Maybe you’ll get some ideas from that.” She fished a brown leather covered book out of her bag and handed it to Mia. She has so many things written down and so many crossed off.

Mia’s fingers trace the writing on the page till she saw something that peeked her interest a little.

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