Healing Hands

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Chapter 27 | Release

“Dallas, I don’t appreciate your behavior.” My dad scolds.

“What behavior would that be?” I raise an eyebrow as I sit at the island in the kitchen.

“Cutting class, missing exams, smoking marijuana at school. I just don’t understand, I thought things were going okay, I thought you were thriving with Lori.” He frowns.

There goes that familiar feeling of guilt.

“Dad, I’m sorry. I’m not doing all of this to hurt anyone.” I sigh.

“Then why are you doing it?”

His stern look is very intimidating.

“I honestly don’t know.” I shrug. “It seemed like a good idea at the time?” I more so say as a question than anything.

He shakes his head. “Not good enough.”

“I promise, I won’t smoke pot at school ever again.” I finally agree. “Am I grounded or something?”

“Yes, a week.”

“A week? Are you kidding me? I’m almost eighteen! I’m not a child!” I protest immediately.

“Then maybe, and this is just a suggestion,” I don’t miss the sarcasm in his voice, “You should stop acting like one.”

My eyes widen at him. “Smoking pot is hardly something a child would do.” I retort, crossing my arms over my chest.

“Well it certainly isn’t something an adult would do.” He challenges, crossing his arms as well.

We have a three second staring contest, before I audibly sigh.

“Whatever.” I mumble.

“Good, now, eat your dinner and go to bed. I’m also setting up an appointment tomorrow with Lori.”

“Fine.” I glare before turning and grabbing my dinner from the oven. I put the plate of food into the microwave and heat it up. Dad leaves the kitchen to go upstairs, so I sit and eat alone.

This day has been complete shit. The only upside was meeting Blake and his friends.

“So, learned your lesson yet?” Liam smiles as he enters the kitchen and sits opposite of me.

“You have literally two seconds, to leave my space.” I glare as I look up at his smug face.

“Or what? I only told dad because I’m concerned about you. You’ve never touched pot before in your entire life, and now it’s just something you do casually at school? By the way, I’m still mad that you went to see Jeremy. I didn’t tell dad, but I wanted to. I just honestly didn’t want to set him off.” Liam explains.

“Gee, thanks, you’re so kind.” I smile sarcastically.

“I didn’t tell him for him, Dallas, not for you. What the hell is up with you?”

“Why do you care?” I almost shout.

“Because believe it or not, I actually care about you. You’re my sister Dallas, my twin for fuck sake! I’m allowed to be concerned about your life.” He retorts angrily.

“Well I don’t need anyone to be concerned. I’m fine.” I lie.

“No the fuck you’re not.” Liam says simply.

“You know what, I think I just need my space from you.” I say slowly.

“W-What?” Liam’s eyes widen.

“I think we should have separate birthday parties this year.” I blurt.

“Dal, we celebrate our birthday together every year.” His voice falters.

“Well not this year. We’re going to be eighteen, not eight. We need to start acting like adults.” I shrug. “You have your thing, and I’ll have mine.”

Liam stares at me until his frown turns into a scowl.

“Fine then Dallas, we’ll celebrate our birthday separate this year. I hope your party fucking blows.”

He doesn’t give me a chance to reply before he grabs his keys and storms out of the house. I hear the jeep start up, and before I know it, the jeep is speeding down the street.

Why the hell did I just do that? I don’t want to celebrate my birthday without Liam. We have spent every single birthday together since birth. Our mom used to get us each our own cake every year, each with its own theme. Half the room would be decorated for my theme, and the other half for Liam’s. At the end of the day it didn’t matter though, because all the kids would end up together in the same room by the end of the night.

I completely hate the place Liam and I are in, and it’s completely my fault. I keep lashing out at everyone I care about, and for what? Because I can’t deal with my own emotions? Because all I think about on a regular basis is what Jeremy did to me, and how I did nothing to stop it?

I hate myself, more than I ever have before.

I slowly throw the rest of my dinner away, before rinsing my plate. Once I make it upstairs, I lock my bedroom door and head straight for my bathroom. I close the bathroom door, and lock it as well, for good measure.

I eye my medicine cabinet.

No, Dallas, don’t do this again.

It’s not worth it.

I shake my mind of those thoughts, and reach for the cabinet. I pull it open, and stare at the small silver blade resting inside. It’s waiting for me. It knows what I want it to do. It’s calling for me. Pleading for me.

My skin burns, and I haven’t even touched it yet.

I push my sweatpants down and take the small silver blade into my hand. I slowly touch the blade to the surface of my skin.

Just one more time.

This is the last time, I swear.

I need to release my pain. My guilt. My regret.

I just want a release.

| Liam’s POV |

I can’t believe Dallas said that to me. We’ve never celebrated our birthday separately.

As I speed down the street, I come to an abrupt stop outside of Ethan’s house.

I storm up the steps to his front door, and knock loudly.

“Liam, what is it? It’s late.” Mr. Hart answers the door after a minute.

“Is Ethan awake? I just need to talk to him about something.” I try to smile. “Won’t take long.”

Mr. Hart sighs, but eventually steps aside to let me in. Once I step around Mr. Hart, I trudge up the stairs and bang on Ethan’s bedroom door.

After a second, the door opens, revealing a tired looking Ethan in nothing but boxers.

“The hell do you want?”

“Put some pants on, asshole.” I roll my eyes as I push past him to walk inside his bedroom.

“You do realize it’s after eleven.” He states dryly, closing his door and turning to grab a pair of sweatpants off his floor.

“Don’t be a pussy. What happened at the prison?” I ask immediately.

Ethan rolls his eyes. “Didn’t Dallas tell you?”

“No actually, she told me to just ask you. Apparently she was in no mood to have a decent conversation with me. Although I can’t be too surprised, she hasn’t really said anything to me these last couple weeks.” I say angrily, almost as if I’m trying to blame Ethan.

“Dude, honestly, I know she’s been acting different. Today confirmed as much. I tried to ask her about Blake, but she wouldn’t say anything. She says he’s just a new friend and that nobody should worry about her.” Ethan explains calmly.

“You still didn’t answer my question.” I raise an eyebrow.

“I let it slip that Dallas was waiting out in the car. Jeremy freaked the fuck out. He kept saying that I should go get her and bring her inside so that he could apologize to her, but there was no way in hell I was allowing that to happen. I got up to try to leave, but he attacked me and we fell to the floor, both of us landing on my wrist.” He explains, while holding up his new, dark blue cast.

“After that I was escorted out and we left to go to the nearest hospital. I honestly didn’t see that coming at all. At first, he seemed as though he was a little better. Said he was seeing a therapist, which made me laugh.”

I watch as Ethan sits on the edge of his bed. “I already told Dallas she’s never going there with me again, and she agreed, so you don’t have to give me more shit about it. I already feel bad enough.”

I frown as I slowly sit down on Ethan’s computer chair.

“I don’t know what’s happening with her, Eth. She’s never acted this way toward me before. She’s always been able to come to me with anything, and now it’s like she’s just shutting me out completely.” I begin to ramble. “She even told me she didn’t want to have our birthday parties together this year.”

“Wow, you’ve never celebrated your birthday separately.” Ethan frowns.

“No shit.” I sigh. “Can you try to talk to her again?”

“I can try, but I don’t know what good it’ll do. I don’t want to start another fight with her.” He admits with a grimace.

“I’m not trying to start problems between you and Dallas, I know you love her. I just honestly don’t know what else to do here. She isn’t telling anyone anything, other than maybe Lori, but even that doesn’t seem to be helping all that much.” I say while running my hand through my hair.

“I know what you mean.” Ethan agrees with a nod. “And I’m sorry about taking her with me tonight in the first place, I know that wasn’t cool to you.”

I nod. “It’s alright man. I know there is no arguing with a stubborn Dallas.” I finally laugh.

“Amen. Oh, and I’ll try to talk to her about the birthday party thing. I can’t believe it’s already this weekend.”

“Yep, and so far I’ve planned nothing. I was waiting to plan with Dallas, but that didn’t go so well.” I say with a glare.

“Don’t worry, I’ll help.” Ethan smiles. “What are best buds for?”

“Thanks. I really appreciate it.” I smile back. “I’ll get going though, I know it’s late. See you tomorrow.”

“See ya… Hey Liam?”

I turn to look back at Ethan as I grab the doorknob and pull it open, “Yeah?”

“She’ll be alright eventually, won’t she?”

I don’t miss the sad hope in his voice.

I nod with a smile, “I know she will.”

After that, I finally leave and go back home. I don’t bother trying to talk to Dallas again, who’s lying on the couch watching TV. Instead, I go right upstairs and try to get some sleep.

Hopefully Ethan can talk to her tomorrow and get through to her. If not Ethan, hopefully Lori can knock some sense into her. I just hate who she’s becoming, and I feel so guilty because I know it also isn’t entirely her fault.

I just want things to go back to how they were before, if that’s even possible.

| Dallas’ POV |

The next morning I wake up and reach down to itch my leg. My old cut from before is slowly starting to heal, but I’m careful not to bother the fresh one from last night.

After I get up and shower, I pull on a regular pair of jeans and a T-shirt, not caring at all about my hair. After I brush it out, I tie it up in a tight bun, which is easy since it’s still wet.

I slip on my sandals and grab my bag before shoving my phone into my back pocket, and heading down the stairs.

Once I reach the kitchen, I see dad and Liam casually eating breakfast at the table.

“Good morning sweetie.” Dad smiles while glancing at me from over the top of his newspaper.

“Uh, morning.” I say, eyeing him warily.

“Sleep well?” He asks before taking a sip of his coffee.

“Sure.” I lie. “What’s going on?”

“Why do you ask that?” Dad chuckles.

“Well, you were angry with me last night. What changed overnight?” I raise an eyebrow, grabbing a plate of already made eggs and bacon, and heading over to sit at the table.

“Today is a new day. We should leave the past in the past.” He hums happily.

“Okay then.” I furrow my brows, before beginning to eat.

I glance over at Liam, who is only focused on his food.

“Well at least he’s acting normal.” I mumble to myself.

“I’m going over to Lexi’s after school.” I announce.

“I don’t think so, you’re grounded for a week, remember?” Dad says calmly.

“You mean grounded, grounded? As in school, then home, then nothing?” I glare.

“Precisely.” Dad nods with a grin. “See you kiddos later.”

I watch as he gets up and places his dishes into the sink. He walks over and kisses the top of Liam and I’s head, before leaving the house.

“Odd.” I comment.

“You’re tellin’ me. Dad hasn’t kissed me since I was a baby.” Liam finally speaks.

I can’t help but laugh, and soon Liam joins me.

“Ride to school?” He asks hesitantly.

I nod. “Let’s go.”

And just like that we act as if everything is alright again.

Although, I know it’ll never last.

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