❝Let your memories grow louder and louder, until they’re before your eyes.❞
Regina Spektor, The Call.
25th July, 1999. Sunday.
It’s an unreal feeling.
I don’t know her but I am already in love with her. Yes, it’s a her, apparently, much to my disappointment. I can’t believe Richard won the bet because for some weird reason I had seen a little boy in my dreams.
I saw her today, cradled in my stomach, protected by my flesh. Someday, she would grow and be alone in this world without my protection. We couldn’t even see her a few weeks ago but that was because of her protective brother, hiding her behind him. Richard and I haven’t come up with a name for our daughter, yet but we want her to have a unique name, just like her brother’s.
Something happened today. Something which swelled my heart with emotions and clogged my eyes with tears.
I had come home after the appointment when Melissa stood on the porch, little Vincent yawning in her arms. When she came inside, my best friend offered to get me a glass of fresh juice while I held her adorable, now six months old son in my arms, placing him on the couch with me, later. He gazed at my tummy for what seemed a very long time.
Slowly, his little hands placed themselves on my belly as if it was the most natural thing for him to do.
And as if it was an electric current to my babies, they jerked, hitting against Vincent’s palm while he began to frown.
Oh, only if he could have known.
My babies kicked for the first time today, giving a high five to their future best friend.
It’s a gut feeling, but I know Alaric and his sister will grow up to be Vincent’s best friends, very much like their parents.
SHUTTING MY MOTHER’S diary, I let out a tired sigh, almost like a feral growl. I had read the same page almost a gazillion times now but I wanted each and every word etched in my mind until I could imagine it as my own memory, not my mother’s.
❝When did you meet him for the first time?❞ Miss Steele had asked me during one of my sessions and I, had had no answer to her question.
I envy those people who have memories of meeting their best friends. Who know and remember how their friends saved them from bullies in the park or how they met them at a dinner party with their parents. People who go around telling everyone how they met their best friend in the corridors of their first day in high school or elementary school.
Sadly, I don’t remember how I met Vincent. For me, this is the first time we met. This, is the first time, an almost six month old Vincent Hunt attempted to know my twin and I.
I kept the diary back in it’s place, rather too carefully as if every page, every corner of it was my own flesh. Every page held a memory; my mother’s memory. This diary held accounts of all our shenanigans as infants and toddlers, something that was psychologically impossible for me to remember. I wanted to know Vincent, more than ever before when I found this diary. I had known him ever since I began to recall memories, but I wanted every moment of ours - which lay beside me in record, to be with me as I embarked on another journey.
A new beginning awaited me.
Just another month and then I would be out of Miami. Don’t get me wrong, I love Miami as much as the other person who lives to spend their days on it’s beaches and the extravagant parties and night life within its public places. After moving to New York from London, I hadn’t felt much of a change but it was Miami, my second beginning which made me feel alive. The beaches, the sand, the heat, I love it all because of how different it is from home.
Home? I chuckled silently in my mind at that sudden thought. Home was nowhere. I have moved houses, not homes. Nothing has felt homely from the past five years. But Miami could have been my new home if only I had taken this as a fresh start. It was the perfect place because of the contrast it showed me between England and the United States. My love for it and my aunt’s transfer is, what is tearing me away from this city, into the woods of a Washington state’s town.
But then again, it’s another beginning, perhaps my last one. I have been given another chance; again and again and it wasn’t until I began some early packing and discovered my mother’s diary that I wanted to make something else out of this beginning.
It’s my last new beginning, I had realized, soon after we started to pack the house.
I am being sent to an old, posh Academy on the outskirts of some town which ends with Angeles but to my dismay, isn’t Los Angeles; with my brother, who’s finally moving to the States, while my aunt would be working in Seattle. Among-st the nervousness and excitement of finally living with my brother, I had forgotten where I was going.
Alaric Mendes stayed back in England even after everything that had happened there. But that was his decision, and I respect it, to date. We both opted for different methods to take out the despair which had settled within us. He moved to the other side of London with my mother’s brother while I came to the States to live with my father’s sister, who is a freelancing fashion designer. Random calls about pointless topics and forced Skype calls were the only things keeping my brother and I informed about each other. By the third year of living with my aunt, we stopped calling each other every day and by the fourth year, we were barely willing to talk to each other once in a few weeks. Silently, I feel, we had accepted the fact that our individual lives were different. It’s not like we don’t talk when either of us call.
My aunt being on the move gave me the space I had needed but to my disappointment, when you are depressed with four stressful years in high school to get through, you don’t expect space from your guardians and brother. Secretly, I would have wished to have Alec with me any day. Now, that she’s being sent to Seattle, she decided to put me in an Academy, knowing the close watch they would keep and if that wasn’t enough, she convinced my uncle to send Alec to go with me, as if I needed a bodyguard latched on my back. So yes, in a month from the present date, I will be sent to an old boarding school in the humid, inclement and utterly damp town of something Angeles.
Frankly, I don’t even want to know the name of the town or search more about it. I just want to leave before I get attached to another place and it’s people. I want to leave before they leave me.
I have another chance after two long, painful years. This is my chance to be someone; someone better than the person I have been for so long. This is my chance to begin in a place where no one knows me.
And I am not letting this go.