I’ve been sitting on this sofa for days. I feel like the worst person ever. It’s been a week. We’ve been waiting for the hearing. Just a few more weeks and then they’ll be gone. For good. I looked at Xander, he was still unconscious. The door opened, it was Alex 1.1. “Sky...you’re still here?”
“I’m not leaving until he wakes up.” I said looking at him.
“You’ve spent everyday sitting here. You’ve spent ages in here! Go outside, enjoy the fun--”
“I am not going to enjoy my life. Not after what happened.”
“It’s not your fault Sky.” She said sitting beside me. “It’s not your fault.”
“It is Alex. If it wasn’t for me complaining and crying and screams, it’ll all have been over!”
“He saved me. I saw the pain he was in. He’d gotten stabbed twice and shot. Alex he’s been unconscious for a week. I miss him and it’s all my fault.”
“How on earth is this your fault?”
“I shouldn’t have let him--”
“Xander did the right thing. Any of us would’ve done the same. Sky you’ve been through so much. You need to understand that.”
“I wish I could. He shouldn’t have...he really shouldn’t have...”
“Skylar...listen to me. He’s fine now. They’ve fixed him up...let’s just wait for him to wake up.”
“He’ll be able to walk soon...well in a few weeks.” Then she paused. “Sky you need to sleep.”
“I can’t. I need to do his school work and my school work--”
“Sky that’s too much. When was the last time you’ve watched anything in YouTube? Or played anything in Roblox? Or Call of duty? Or...Sky you need to take a break.”
“I can’t can I...he risked himself for me. What have I ever done for him?! Nothing! Absolutely nothing!”
“Sky, you have given him the sister he always wanted. To be honest that’s really hurtful to me and Lexi but it’s true. You’ve brought him joy every time you’re with him. You’ve been with him throughout his life. You’ve been there. That’s all that’s important. Nothing else.” She smiled at me. “He knows you love him more than anything. Don’t tell Noah that but it’s true. You mean the world to him. You know. You’re just convincing yourself the wrong stuff.”
I looked at the window for a while. “I haven’t really left this place for ages.”
“And that’s an example of your love for him.” She said getting up. “Just try and relax.” Then she walked out the room.
I sighed and looked at the dark sky. It must be around eleven or something. I looked at the time. 11:27. I sighed and closed my eyes. I fell asleep right away and woke up in the middle of the night. I looked around and then at Xander. I put the flash light on and saw his hands moving and then suddenly his eyes slowly opened. He looked around for a while. Then his eyes landed on me. “Why am I here?” He crocked.
“You’ve been in a coma for a week now.” I said walking over to him. Then I hugged him and burst out crying. “And it’s all my stupid fault.” I whispered tears rolling down my eyes. He pulled out and held onto my hands. “What happened?”
“You don’t remember?”
“No.” He said. Then he cleared his throat. “My voice sounds weird.”
“Yeah. How are you feeling?”
Then he wiped my tears with his right arm. “A bit sore.”
“I’m sorry.” I said hugging him again.
Then he pulled out again. “Have you been living here?”
“I’ve been doing all your school work and mines. And also keeping an eye on you.” I said smiling.
“That’s a lot. You really did all my school work and yours?”
“Yeah. But are you sure you’re okay?”
Then he looked at his shoulder...confused. Then took his blanket off and saw his thigh bandaged up. “Sky what happened?”
“They were going to stab me and shoot me but you decided to save me. So you got stabbed and shot instead of me.”
“Thank god.” He exhaled. I looked at him confused. “Xander did you hear what I just said?”
“I did.” He said.
“But it’s my fault--”
“I don’t really care if it or not so long as you’re not hurt.” He smiled. “I can’t believe you’ve been here this whole time.”
“I can’t believe you’re awake.”
“Is Alex here?”
“Well she doesn’t work in here, as you’re an adult now. But she does come here every now and then. I should call a nurse.” I pressed the emergency button. The nurses and doctors rushed in and found Xander awake.
“And feeling better than ever.” He said sarcastically. “When can I go?”
“Not yet. We need to discuss.” A doctor said checking his blood pressure. Another nurse started doing physical tests on him. I quickly got up and went out the room. I texted Gemma.
“Have you told anyone yet?”
“No. But can you?”
“Yeah, I’m on it.”
I closed my phone and went back in. The doctors and nurses were still there but after a while, they left. I walked over to Xander and hugged him again. “I am so sorry. I should’ve gotten--”
“No. I should’ve and I did. I need to look out for you, not the wrong way round.” He whispered in my ear. “Stop blaming yourself.”
“Do you not remember what happened?”
“I remember now.” He said rubbing the back of his neck. “I did the right thing.”
“I still feel responsible.” I sighed. “You were in so much pain and you looked so scared, I can’t even sleep. I’ve been distracting myself with so much work...I haven’t even been outside since we arrived.”
“Thank you but you didn’t have to do all my work I mean, you probably spent eight hours a day writing! You shouldn’t have stayed here. Don’t worry...”
“You know I wouldn’t have left you even for a day..no matter how long it took you to wake up. That’s how guilty I feel.”
“I love you so much but never do that again.”
“I knew it was my fault!”
“No, not that. I mean never ever stay here watching me 24/7. You deserve a life. I’d never be mad at you because I know you love me more than Noah.”
“Definitely.” I smiled. “He has been really upset. Everyone has...”
“Not your fault. But Alex 1.2 feels most responsible. He heard noises downstairs but didn’t realise we were in danger. Then he heard a faint gunshot. He called the cops and yeah..he thinks he could’ve came quicker.”
“But he did save us from them.”
“Yeah.” I said sitting next to him.
“What’s on your mind?”
“I don’t know...I really don’t. How about you?”
“I am just completely sore and bored.”
Then something suddenly hit me. I looked like I’d just seen a ghost. How could I forget that moment?!
“Xander, you remember that day in school?”
“Lots of days--”
“The day Noah pushed me off the stairs?”
He fell silent for a while. “I was walking up the stairs and Noah pushed you. I jumped and caught you just in time...”
“You held onto me and we rolled down the stairs and you landed on your head...you saved me. I landed on you...I could’ve landed on the floor...but you sacrificed yourself for me....”
“I know...I couldn’t let go off you even though I could’ve saved myself. You were more important.”
“You were was in a coma for a weeks on end...”
“And when I woke up and went to school, I never let you out of my sight. I’d walk you to your classes...even at break or lunch, I’d always be watching you even if I was with my friends...”
“You’re a hero. Like Mason said, Hero of the century.” I smiled. “I can’t believe we forgot about the incident...I can still remember the blood pouring out of your head and when I told you to wake up. You didn’t. Everyone was crowding around us. Watching in fear...”
“The main thing was you were safe.”
“You risked your life. You could’ve just let go off me...but you didn’t. You held onto me tightly...I can’t believe Noah was that crazy...”
“The stairs were so long. He just had to pick that staircase.”
“That day I thought I was going to lose you. The doctors said you were in critical care, they were all uncertain if you’d ever wake up.”
“And I did. And again, I’m in a coma.” He laughed. “For fuck’s sake our lives are all crazy.”
“We’ve never lived a normal life.” I smiled laying down next to him. “And I have had the most drama ever in the world.”
“You trust Noah a lot.”
“What? Shouldn’t I trust him?”
“No, I mean...you trust people really easily. I’m surprised.”
“I don’t trust people easily.”
“But you trusted Noah. Multiple times.” He said. “Too many times he’s hurt you. And you’re still with him.”
“What is it with you?!” I removed his hand from my shoulder and got up suddenly. “Why don’t you like Noah?!”
“Stop shouting.” He mumbled.
“Why don’t you like him?!”
“I know how he is. I know what makes him tick! I’ve seen him when he’s mad. He doesn’t think!!”
“He promised he’d never hit me again and I know he’s not lying!”
“Go ahead. Be with him.” He crossed his arms.
“What is your problem?”
“I want the best for you. A good person. But you just had to pick Noah who not only tried to kill you but beat the hell out of you. He’s bullied you for sixteen years!”
“Stop making him sound like a bad guy. He promised he’d never loose his temper again. Deal with it.” I said packing my stuff in my rucksack.
“Sky I just want you to be truly happy.”
I started walking away.
“Sky come on.” He called after me.
I slammed the door shut and walked down the hall. I saw Alex running when she suddenly stopped. “Sky what’s up?”
“Nothing.” I mumbled walking off.
She started going after me. “What’s going on? Why are you packed?”
“You ask Xander. Maybe you can put some sense into his thick brain.”
“Hold up. What’s going on between you guys?”
“Alex let go off me. Don’t you have other patients to look after?!” I snapped. “As far as I’m aware, your job has nothing to do with talking to me!!”
She let go off my hand looking hurt. I couldn’t believe I could actually be that mean. She tries so hard to balance everything. She takes her time to visit us regularly. “Alex I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to say that...”
“That’s fine.” She cleared her throat and tucked her hair behind her ear. “Xander needs some rest. Might as well go back and check on my patients.” She walked off not even looking back.
I leaned on the wall feeling the most guilt ever. I’m just as bad as Noah aren’t I? I can’t control my temper. I snap at the most simplest of stuff...I am the female version of Noah--
“Sky? What’s wrong?”
“Nothing.” I smiled wiping my tears. “Xander’s awake.” I changed the topic.
“That’s great but how are YOU?” Noah asked again.
“I’m A-Okay.” I lied.
“And you expect me to believe that?”
“Do you think...I have a short temper?”
“No.” He lied. He blushed clearly knowing he was lying as it was so obvious.
“Noah I do have a short temper.” I complained. “I’m just like you aren’t I?”
“I don’t have a short temper.” He lied.
“Okay, Xander told me I should break up with you and find a new guy, a nicer and kinder guy.”
“I told you.” I said getting up.
“No.” I lied. “Just checking.”
“Sky but why were you crying.”
“That’s none of your business.” I said walking off. He ran in front of me, blocking my way.
“Noah, move. Now.” I hissed.
“Not until you tell me.”
“No. I can’t. No.”
“Is it bad?”
“No...but you might get a tiny bit annoyed. Not a big deal.”
“Then tell me.”
“I need to go. Move before I call a nurse on you.” I muttered. “I told you to move Noah.”
“I won’t until you tell me.” He said pulling me into a bathroom. “Tell me. Please. I promise I won’t get mad.”
“I won’t. Just please leave it and let me out!”
“No can do. Now tell me.” He said locking the door.
“I’m not going to tell you!”
“Then you’re not leaving.”
“Noah you are completely mad.”
“I’m mad? You sure about that?”
“I did nothing wrong--”
“You are the one who’s stupid enough to let my brother get the...” He paused. “You let my brother get into a coma.”
“What?! So it’s my fault?!!”
“Stop shouting. It’s...just...”
“I know you hate me for it! I told him not to take the punishment but he didn’t listen to me. I tried to stop him!!”
He fell silent. Then I realised what he meant. “You’d rather I be in that coma than your stupid brother?!”
“No.” He lied.
“You probably wanted to kill me. Didn’t you?!”
“Hurt me isn’t it?!”
“No that’s not true--”
“Well you managed to, multiple times with your so called friends.”
“Don’t speak about them like that and I let you go.”
“I can’t believe I’m still with you.” I scoffed. “I’m nothing like you.”
“Yes you are. Don’t deny it.”
“What?! I don’t go around people’s rooms and crowd them and beat the shit out of them. Twice and then strangle your girlfriend millions of times and beat the hell out of her?!”
“That was a mistake!”
“A mistake that happened too many times. You wanted to beat me up again. I over heard the conversation. Don’t act dumb. It wasn’t a fucking mistake. You’re sick!!”
“I’m not sick! You are!!”
“No, you are the one beating his girlfriend to death. I should’ve grassed you up. You deserve to be locked away.” I said about to open the door when he pulled me back.
“You’re not serious...right?”
“I’m not laughing am I?!”
“So you’re going to the police?!”
“Don’t you think everyone should know the whole truth?!”
“Don’t you dare even think for a second.” He pushed me to the wall. “You are not going to the police. You hear me?!”
“What? Are you going to beat me again?! Threaten to kill my sister and brother?!”
He glared at me. “You think this is funny?!”
I could see he was about to punch me at any point. He grabbed me by the neck. “I’m sorry. Please don’t hit me. I’m sorry!” I burst out crying. “I’m sorry! Don’t hurt me! I’m sorry!”
He kept glaring at me. “You always have to push someone.”
“I’m sorry! Please don’t punch me! Please! I’m sorry. I swear I am. I’m sorry. Please let go.” I burst out crying. “I swear I’m sorry!”
He raised his arm about to punch me.
“I swear I won’t go to the police. Don’t punch me! Please let go off me. I swear I won’t tell the police!”
He let go off my neck and I fell on the floor. I felt my neck. There were finger marks around me. I looked at him in shock. He looked at me as if he’d just seen a ghost and then opened the door and rushed out. I kept touching my neck. It was throbbing so much. Then the door opened. “Sky?”
“Yeah?” I wiped my tears.
“You okay?” Xander sat next to me and looked at my throat. “Who did this to you?”
“Myself.” I lied avoiding his eyes. He believed me for a second then suddenly froze. “It was Noah wasn’t it?!”
“No it wasn’t.” I burst out crying.
“He did this.”
I shook my head and he hugged me. “He’s pure trouble.”
“No he’s not.”
“Sky what the fuck is wrong with you?!!”
“Xander stop screaming.”
“What the fuck!? He just strangled you! Are you still in love with him?!?!”
“I am. Get over it!!” I stormed out the bathroom. While I was walking I saw Noah sitting on the floor crying. I walked over to him.
“Go tell the cops or I will. I’m dangerous.”
I sat next to him. “It’s my fault. I shouldn’t have--”
“It’s not your fault it’s mine!”
“Noah what are you playing at?!” Xander pulled him up and pushed him to the wall. “I’m sorry.”
Then Xander grabbed him by the throat. “Do you like that?! How does it fucking feel?!” He kept punching him on the face and I saw blood and I could see purple bruises all around his face just like me.
“I’m sorry. I swear just..” He started heaving and trying to gasp for air. Xander kept squeezing him tighter and tighter. I could see the tears rolling down his eyes. Xander kept squeezing his neck until he had passed out.
“Xander let go.” I pushed him away. Noah fell on the floor unconscious. “Xander how hard did you squeeze him?!”
“Hard enough for him to die!” Xander hissed. And kicked him hard a couple times. A nurse walked up to us and saw Noah unconscious.
“Is he okay? What happened.” She rushed over to Noah. Then she froze as she saw two massive bruises on his face. Then looked at Xander’s knuckles which had blood. “Xander did you do that to him?”
“I did. He deserved it.” Xander said going back to his room.
“Is he okay?” The nurse looked at me worried.
“He’s fine...he kind of did deserve it.”
“He’s passed out. I’m going to speak to a doctor.” She waited until she saw Alex.
“Sky?!” She rushed over to us. “What happened?!”
I looked at her and then at nurse. “Do you mind?”
“I’ll go call someone.” She said leaving.
Alex looked at my neck. “Did he do that to you?!”
“Yeah.” I said as she touched it.
“I can’t believe him.”
“Xander beat him up.”
“Serves him right.”
“But he’s also mad at me. Do you think I’m mad?”
She looked at me confused. “Did he say that?”
“I’m still in love with Noah.” I looked at her waiting for her to shout at me or scold me...but nothing.
“You don’t think I’m mad?”
“I’m mad at Noah but not at you. You can love you you like but I don’t think Noah’s the best choice but...if he makes you happy then I support you.” She said and hugged me. “I’m also going to give him a good beating. He will never touch you again.”
“Don’t do that to him. Xander’s already done so.”
“He’s done a good job. But he’s still got to pay.” She said in a tone which I know too well. Noah’s dead. For good.
“He’s over there.” The nurse said. Dr Lilith and another doctor went up to him and checked him. “He’s fine just a bit bruised.” One of the doctors said. Then Dr Lilith crossed her arms. “Lunar Skylar. Who did this?”
I panicked. The nurse winked at me. “No. I don’t know.” I lied. “I just saw him lying over here.”
“Okay.” Dr Lilith sighed. “Let’s put him on a bed.” She said. Then called a few nurses. Alex grabbed me by the arm and pulled me into Xander’s room. “Xander you are in trouble. The nurse didn’t tell the doctors you did it but they’re bound to know sooner or later.”
“Tell them. Don’t give a fuck. He doesn’t ever touch you like that.”
“Xander why would you beat him like that?!”
“Sky, he just strangled you. He’s crazy but you’re too stupid to know.”
“Hold on, Xander don’t speak to her like that!” Alex walked up to him. “You better change the way you speak or you too are getting beaten up.”
“I’m way stronger than you.”
“Don’t think do.” She twisted his arm.
She let go off his arm. He started rubbing it. “Damn you really had to go that far!”
“Xander don’t hit him again. He regrets it.”
“Sky, you need to stop being...just think about what type of future you’ll have with him. Do you really want to live in the same roof as him? Have kids with him--”
“Xander stop. You’re stressing me out!” I started panicking. “I can’t have kids. I can’t move in with him. I can’t do this. It’s all too much. I can’t--”
“I’m not scaring you. Sooner or later you’ll have to.”
“Xander don’t. You’re scaring her. Sky calm down. You don’t have to do all that. Actually you do have to move in with the person you love.”
“But I can’t. I can’t do this. I can’t.” I burst out crying. “I can’t move house and live with him. I can’t do this. I love him but this is all too much.”
“Sky calm down, he doesn’t mean now.” Alex hugged me. “Don’t panic. You have time. Calm down. He doesn’t mean now. Look at Xander. He’s too scared to move in with Neha.”
“I’m not scared. I’m just not ready. It’s a big step.”
“And he’s eighteen now okay? He’s a big boy that can’t even get an apartment for himself.”
“Alex that’s not true.”
“Come on Sky. He doesn’t even have a proper flat.”
“But how about his apartment? He wants to move in with me.”
“He does. But he hasn’t asked her yet. And I think it’s a horrible idea. Watch when he looses it.”
“It was my fault. He didn’t want to hurt me.” I mumbled.
“What?” Xander and Alex said at the same time.
“He wished it was me in the coma instead of Xander even if he didn’t say it out loud. I could see it in his eyes. And then I got angry and so did he. But then I completely lost it and said I was going to the police station.
“But then he pushed me to the wall and strangled me saying that I need to keep my mouth shut and if I say anything he’s going to kill me for good.”
Alex and Xander looked like they wanted to murder him. Don’t blame them.
“But he apologised and told me if I don’t go to the police station and report about what happened, he’ll turn himself in.”
“He did?” Xander asked confused.
“Yeah. He does regret it. So he’s not as bad as he sounds. He’s a good guy.”
Xander and Alex looked at me as if I was an alien. I took a step back. “Hello? You okay?” I laughed weakly.
“You are still with him?!”
“He strangled you and told you to keep your mouth shut.”
“But he regrets it.”
“Okay, Sky. You need to see a psychologist. I’m going to speak to the doctors and tell them you’re being delusional and absolutely retarded. Maybe there’s something wrong that we haven’t diagnosed.”
“But don’t tell them about the accidents and what just happened.” Xander said.
“I won’t.” She said exiting the room.
“Sky you are psychologically mad.”
“No I’m not. You guys just expect the worst from him.”
“Sky come here.” He pulled me in. “You look me in the eye and tell me you still love Noah.”
I looked him in the eye and said. “I love him and he’s a good person but just has a bad temper. He didn’t punch me. He was about to but let go off me and he was crying. He regrets it.”
Xander pushed me away. “You are mentally ill. You need a therapist. This isn’t even funny. Not anymore. You’ve got serious issues.”
Then Dr Lilith walked into the room. “Is it true she’s becoming a bit...psycho?”
“Yes. She’s absolutely gone mental.” Xander said letting go off me.
“Maybe she does need to see a therapist.”
“My guess is she’s got antisocial personality disorder.”
“Woah. Are you sure?” Dr Lilith raised her eyebrows looking shocked.
“I am not a psychopath!” I argued.
“Dr Lilith if only you knew exactly what she’s capable of doing. She is in love with a sociopath! And she’s a psychopath!!”
“Nurse Alex I’m sure you might be misunderstanding--”
She reached into her pocket and took out her phone. “I’m calling every single one of her friends.”
“Okay then.” Dr Lilith said.
Alex called Gemma. “Hi--”
“Describe Skylar in a bad way.”
“Well she does be a little...blind at times and short tempered and dangerous and--”
Then she cut the call. Then she called Mason. “Hi--”
“Describe Sky in a bad way.”
“Okay, erm...she’s a bit over the top at times..like crazy in the worst scenarios. Mad I guess...blind..she’s dating Noah! The guy’s pure danger! And she’s so in love with him ever after he--”
She cut the call and phoned Lucas. “Hi--”
“Describe Sky in a bad way.”
“That’s going to take a long time but...she’s mad...like psychologically. She’s crazy. She’s dating an idiot who bullied her for sixteen years and lately beat--”
Then she called Aiden. “Hi--”
“Describe Skylar in a bad way.”
“Well...she’s a bit..extra..she doesn’t see the problem..she keeps doing the wrong thing and doesn’t realise. Even if she is...being kind...she’s really crazy..I don’t want to be mean but she’s got serious problems. She’s doing the wrong thing forgiving the guys. But she's really kind and thoughtful and a joy to be around. It's not nice that you ask about bad--”
Then she cut the call and snatched my phone. She called Miles. “Hi--”
“This is Alex. Can you describe Sky in a bad way.”
“I mean I don’t know her but...she’s really weird. I mean not that it’s my business but she is really hard to figure out but from the bottom of my heart, she’s amazing...but she needs to realise what she’s hiding from the p--”
She cut the call. Then looked at my contacts. “Victoria!”
She called her before I can object.
“It’s Alex. Describe Sky in a bad way.”
“Okay..she doesn’t think before she speaks, That's why I fell in love with her, she doesn’t understand she’s doing something wrong even if people tell her. And she is absolutely weird, mad and psycho and dangerous--”
She cut the call. "A few more friends left. But not now." Then passed the phone back to me. Then looked at Dr Lilith. “She needs immediate help.”
“I mean...I’ll speak to my colleague and we’ll arrange her to--”
“NO!!” I shouted. “I’m not mad!!!”
“Skylar don’t worry. You’ll be fine in no time!” She smiled.
“You are a fucking disgusting little brat.” I screamed at Alex. “I am not mad!!!”
“You’re in love with Noah even after...and it’s not just that...Sky you don’t realise what’s happening to you. But we all do.” She said in a soft tone.
I screamed. She tried to calm me down. “Sky I know it's hard--”
“Alex I just want to bash you head on the wall until you bleed and then throw you out the window and light you up and watch you burn in fire!!” I screamed at her. Everyone looked at me as if I was a psychopath.
“She really needs help.” Dr Lilith said as she left the room. “Nurse Alex come on.”
They both left the room and my heart sank. “Am I crazy?”
Xander looked at me full of guilt. “Sky...stop crying...”
“You haven’t answered my question have you?!”
“Sky calm down. You just keep forgiving everyone. You keep thinking different from people...”
“But that’s how I’ve always been.” I burst out crying. “And you of all people should know I’m not crazy. Just because I forgive people and believe in second chances, or just because I have a creative imagination or just because you’re jealous I’m dating your brother--”
“Hold on, I am not jealous. I’ve got Neha.”
“Right...is that so? Then why are you so obsessed with me!?”
“Because I care.”
“Look me in the eye and tell me you don’t love me.” I walked up to him.
“Stop being an idiot okay!”
“Answer me Xander! Answer me!!”
“I don’t love you okay!!” He screamed at me. “You’re sick and we’re just trying to help you!!”
I slapped him across the face. “I hate you. I really really hate you.”
He looked at me shocked and then hurt. I saw the pain in his eyes. I saw him trying to fight back tears. He looked like he was about to burst out crying. “You don’t mean that Sky.”
“I really do. I really really hate you.”
“After everything I’ve done for you?!”
“I loved you then. Now...I don’t even like you anymore. You’re not the same brother I thought you were.”
“Sky I’ve sacrificed my life a million times. I’ve been there for you since the beginning. I taught you everything. I helped you in your darkest moments--”
“But never suspected anything did you. Never bothered to ask, what was really going on did you. Never bothered to try and visit me. You didn’t even invite me to your birthday last year December--”
“Sky I know this year hasn’t been great. We’ve had lockdown--”
“Don’t bring that shit up. Don’t act like you didn’t give a damn about me.”
“I did and I still do.”
“Look me in the eye and tell me I’m mad. Tell me the fact that believing in second chances is mad.”
“You...” He looked away. “I love you and you know that but you tried to kill yourself. You joke about serious stuff. You forgive the worst of people.”
“I really really hate you.” I said looking him in the eye. “I hate you.”
“Sky you don’t mean that. Please tell me this is a joke.”
I walked out the room not looking back. I went over to the elevator and then Alex saw me and was about to stop me but the lift doors closed just in time. I know where to go. I need to move far. I phoned Victoria. “I’m moving away from Riverspark. Please tell me you have space for me to stay at...”
“Sky...I don't have much room...”
“It’s fine.” I said and laughed. “I was only joking. I'll stay with my other friend. He's a good guy.” I lied. “I’ve got to go. Have a good day.”
“You too.” Then she cut the call. I went out the hospital and caught the bus. I took my phone out and started looking at the directions.
I went to Hounslow east and took the Piccadilly line towards Cockfosters. After half an hour or so, I got off at Green park. Caught the Victoria line towards Walthamstow Central and got off at Euston. Then went to platform 4. And waited for the train from Avanti West Coasttowards to Birmingham New Street. On the train I met this very kind girl. She looked about Alex's age. She smiled at me as she saw I was watching Hollyoaks on my laptop.
"You like Hollyoaks?" She asked sitting next to me.
"Where are you going?"
"To Birmingham. You?"
"Same. I've just come from a trip."
"How about you."
I smiled at her. This was really uncomfortable. I rubbed the back of my neck and tried to stop the tears. I hung my head back.
"Yes." I lied clearing my throat.
"You running away?"
I looked at her shocked. "Yeah..."
"Aww. Are you like running from the police?"
"I wish. I'm just...going to...I don't know...I just need to get away from there."
"Is it that bad?"
"Apart from loosing your brother and your last words being, I hate you and apart from knowing your whole group of best friends think I'm psycho just because I'm still in love with a guy that brought his nine friends to beat me up and having purple patches all over my body and getting stabbed...and kidnapped..."
"And what's worse is he strangled me, threw a toaster at me and today again he did. Look at my neck."
She winced as she saw the finger marks. "Did you tell the police?"
"I won't. He's family, and if I do, all his friends, including my step brother, will be sent to prison for a minimum of five years." I said clearing my throat. "They all think I'm mad just because I keep forgiving everyone...my boyfriend bashed me to the wall millions of times, and what else? Oh right, he got me in a coma for a whole month isn't it."
"Why don't you go to the police?"
"Because I'm still in love with him and he's sorry. I know he is. I can see it in his eyes. After he strangled me today he kept crying and blaming himself. He wanted to tell the police what he and his friends have done..."
"And you told him not to?"
"I love him. I know he can change...but even his older siblings think he's a failure with no heart. I disagree but then everyone thought I was mad as I kept forgiving everyone that's ever hurt me...now the doctors want to examine me..."
"I'm sorry..." Then she paused. "How old are you?"
"Sixteen. Just started college." I smiled sadly. "But I'm never going back. I need to start fresh."
"Where will you go?"
"I'm staying with my aunty." I lied.
"That's good. What are your future goals?"
I scrunched my nose. "Pediatrician." I said sadly. "You?"
"Pays a lot." I smiled. "I wanted to but I hate blood."
"And how exactly will you be a pediatrician?"
"I had to stitch a stab a month ago. It wasn't that bad as he didn't wince but my heart was beating."
She laughed. "Goodness."
"You're kind." I said. Then my phone started buzzing. I looked at the messages. I read them all. Then put my phone on silence and slipped it back into my pocket.
"You not going to answer?"
"I want to start new." I said going unlocking my phone. Then I wrote in the chat.
Stop sending me messages. I hate you all.
Then I blocked each one of them and now I had no contacts...I even blocked my parents. I had no one now.
"You seem sad. Are you sure you've made the right decision?"
"Yeah." I said smiling. "I've got my aunty."
"That's good." Then she looked at my laptop. "Play it."
I smiled at her and resumed it. We watched Hollyoaks for ages until we reached the stop. I got up and put the laptop back into my bag. I went out the train with the girl by my side. We talked as we went out the station.
"It was good to meet you. What's your name?"
"Laila. But people call me Lae." Then she stopped. "See you someday!" She smiled.
"Hopefully." I said as she walked off. I stood until she was out of sight. I looked around. I was surrounded by beautiful buildings. Then I started walking around. After an hour of walking, I reached a perfect spot and started begging. I watched people just shake their heads at me. After half an hour, I'd made £5. It wasn't a lot but enough. I went to the nearest GP and asked for medication. It took a while as I had moved but after they gave me a prescription and I went to collect it at the pharmacy. After I shoved it in my bag and started walking around, begging people to give me money. No one bothered but then I started lying. "Hi, I need to get home but I've ran out of cash, please help."
"Okay, here you go." A man reached into his pocket and took a twenty pound note. I froze but he smiled. "Safe journey."
I kept doing the same and in a few minutes I'd made forty pounds. I looked around for a place to sit and then sat on the floor seeing people pass by. Occasionally someone will drop fifty pence or a pound. I couldn't believe what was happening...I'd gone homeless. I had no one. Everyone was back home...
"Hey, want me to take you home?" A suspicious lady asked. I quickly got up and I started running with a 10kg bag on my back. I could see people looking at me as if I was a criminal. I ran for about 3 minutes until I was sure I was safe. My heart was beating. I couldn't believe I was here but I couldn't go back home. I hate everyone there. I really do...that's why I feel so guilty. I walked around for a while and caught a bus. I looked at everyone, they looked at me like I was a weirdo but I ignored it. I got off after an hour and started walking around. I found a safe alley and sat there. I burst out crying and cried for a while. Then I got up and started looking for a hotel. I kept walking for hours and hours until my legs finally gave away. I looked for water and realise I didn't have any. I looked around for a shop but realised I'd passed it and it was a good half an hour away. I ate my pills raw and kept walking ignoring the horrible taste. I saw big beautiful houses and remembered Alex's house. I shook the thought away and continued walking. I kept walking around.
"Hello please help me." A guy said sitting on the cold floor. I felt so bad for him.
"I haven't got--"
"It's fine." He lied. I saw the devastation in his eyes. I knelt down beside him and asked him. "Why are you homeless. Be honest."
"My house burnt down. My wife left me and took my daughter, I lost my job because of the pandemic.....my clothes are all burnt and I have no money apart from a few pennies and food I found on the park benches."
"So they just left you like that?!"
"No. She had to take care of her...I still love her...but she had to take care of her. She wanted to stay but I told her not to. Winter needed to be safe."
"That's so brave of you....
He started sobbing. "And now no one will hire me. I've got a job interview at nine today. I look like a cave man. I have got nothing left. I can't go like this....I guess god wants me to be like this but I won't loose faith." He smiled and wiped his tears. "Sorry about that. I just needed to take this off my chest. No one's really spoken to me."
"How long have you been homeless?"
"Yeah. But it's fine. I have food. I'm fine."
"How about when it rains?"
"I bought an umbrella."
"You know what, here you go." I said giving him all the money I had and keeping five pounds. "You get a new suit, and a trim. And go to that interview! You are going to get that job. You hear me?"
He smiled. "Loud and clear. Thank you so much. This is too much--"
"What are you doing at this time?"
"I'm going to my aunty's house." I lied. He looked at me clearly not believing me. "Are you homeless?"
I hesitated. "I'm going to not be. I'm just waiting to get money."
"So you just gave me £80 and kept £5?"
"Not a big deal."
He reached into his bag and took out a piece of paper. He scribbled something down and after a while, he gave me the paper. "Don't read it yet. Read it when you need money and shelter."
"Okay." I said putting the paper inside my hoodie. "Hopefully, I'll see you soon, not in the streets okay?!"
"Yes." He smiled.
I waved goodbye and walked off. I felt happy. Impressed at myself. I did a good job didn't I? I am so proud of myself right now. I can't believe it...you might be shaking your head at me because I just gave all my money to a stranger which might be lying...but either way, I'm proud of myself and don't care if you think I'm mad.
I walked around for ages looking around until I found a hotel. I walked inside and smiled at the warm temperature in the place. I walked to the reception. "Hi, I want a room."
"First class--" The receptionist asked.
"I..." I blushed. What was I thinking. "I'm sorry. Just have a fiver but, I'll just go. Sorry about that...but..can I stay here...it's cold--"
"I'm sorry but if you're not booking anything, then out you go." He said. "I'm really sorry but...yeah. I wish I could help."
"I understand." I said with a faded smile. I walked out the hotel devastated. I saw another person. "You okay?"
"Yeah, just going to my aunt's. I just ran out of money." I lied. It's a half lie.
"Oh, have some here. Where do you need to go?"
"Half an hour from here." I said. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a twenty. "Hope you're not lying."
I bit my tongue trying not to cry and handed the money back to him. "I need to go."
He chased after me and gave me the twenty. "Take it. You lied but then you were honest. Not many people do that. Whatever you're going to do with the money...don't do anything bad." Then he walked off.
"Thank you!" I said. He waved at me and kept walking. I looked behind me and went around. I found the park and sat in the cold. It was really chilly. Then I got a phone call. Victoria.
"Sky, how's it going?"
"I'm doing good actually. Having the most fun without the dick heads." I fake laughed. "How are you?"
"I'm great. Who is the guy you're staying with?"
"Just asking. How's it going with the both of you?"
"Well...he is at work while I'm watching the sky."
"Where are you?!"
"Away from the you guys." I laughed. "I'm really really far. Did you know, Irish people are the loudest? I mean, they were screaming in the pub. Gregor is really kind."
"He does sound kind. You know him?"
"I've known him for a while."
"Oh. Great. So you're in Ireland?"
"Okay, I'll take that as a yes. So...you enjoy being with Gregor right?"
"So much. His sister is an absolute legend. She's super smart." I lied. "I've got to go, she's calling me."
"Are you going to come back?"
"No. I like this place. I need to start fresh and besides, I really hate them. I don't even feel bad and guess what, they like Hollyoaks too!!" I lied. Now I'm starting to believe it.
"You sound like you're having fun."
"The best time of my life."
"Where are you staying?"
"In a small cottage. It's cosy and really warm and...okay I gotta go! Bye." I cut the call. I actually believed my lies. I believed it too much...I sighed and looked around. It just made me sad seeing the opposite of what I was seeing. I really hated everyone apart from Victoria. I wish I was lying.
"Hi young lady." A guy said. He looked drunk. I dashed out the park and kept running around for a minute or so and dropped on my knees. I closed my eyes for a second and then stood up again. Then I felt a drop of water, then another, then another and soon it was raining cats and dogs. I was freezing and the cold atmosphere wasn't helping. I watched around the place, it was early...maybe four or something. I walked around until I found someone. "Hi do you--"
"I don't need money, just directions."
"Oh. To where?"
"Okay, it'a a few minutes from here. I'm going too." She said. "Come on."
I walked beside her and she gave me her umbrella. "You don't have to--"
Then she took off her jacket and gave it to me. I looked at her shocked. "I'm sorry but you don't have to give me this."
"I do. God says to help those in need. Now I've got how much reward?"
"A lot." I smiled at her. "Thank you so much."
I put the coat on and the zip up. Then shared the umbrella with her. She had a cardigan so it wasn't that bad. We walked for a while talking about the weather and where I come from. I did lie half the time. But she bought it. I felt guilty. I felt very guilty. Then we reached the mosque. I looked inside my bag and saw my scarf. I put it on and quickly prayed with the lady beside me. After, I got up and watched her pray.
After she'd finished, she looked at me and smiled. "Take this." She gave me £15.
"Nono, that's not necessary."
"Hey, I said. Now take it." She gave it to me. "You look really nice."
"Thank you." I said still wearing my scarf. I went into the toilet and fixed it up. I looked good. But then I went back. The lady looked at the bruises in my face. "My dear who did this?"
"Some people I know."
"Are they arrested?"
"Yes." I lied. "I need to go to my aunty's house now. It was very nice to meet you." I shook her hand. She game me a pink piece of paper and handed it over to me. "My number. Any problem. I'm here."
"Thank you." I said as I opened my huge bag and slipped it in a pocket, the
"Salamualaykum!" She said as I walked away.
"Walaykumsalam!" I said to her smiling. I walked for twenty minutes until I reached a different park. Beside it was a corner shop. I went inside and bought a lot of food. I wasted £20. So now there's no way, I'll starve.
The guy looked at me concerned. "You in school?"
I looked down. "Yeah. Just going to my aunty's house." I lied.
He looked at me clearly not believing a single word I just said. "You are not a bad kid are you?"
"No. I'm a good person...just don't belong with the people I trusted." I smiled sadly. I gave him £20 but then he looked at me and smiled. "Keep the £20. And here's an extra £20. Be safe and be careful." He said. I smiled at him and thanked him over and over again. Then I left the shop. I looked around for a while and found a safe place where no one would find me.