Chapter 12: Which Doctor?
Nothing is more painful than losing the child you loved... well, except maybe this...
When one lives in a small town, news travels fast. In the first hour of my “birth”, only two dozen people even knew of my new existence. Half an hour after that, all the students’ parents heard the news. And I do mean, all the students’ parents.
My suicide, however, was left overlooked. No papers brought the news out. The event was not broadcast, nor even mentioned once. I knew the day before I died that it would happen. Though, my mindset (at the time) figured the reason was because no one cared about me. Today, I realize that it’s because the Golnar Vermilion Academy Faculty covered it up. A student committing suicide at THE most Prestigious and Elite School of all of Golnar, would be bad publicity not only for the school but everyone who was enrolled there.
In its stead was this:
“You have to be kidding me,” Brandy shouted as he read the latest issue of the Karura Pages (our local paper.)
“What is it,” Karen (after she finally calmed down) peaked over his shoulder.
“Listen to this...,” Brandy read out loud, “’For reasons unknown, Golnar Vermilion Academy was shut down early yesterday afternoon and is not expected to be open again until Monday morning. When asked for the reasoning behind the sudden weekend vacation, the excuses range from a wild Yokai attack to yet another visit from the infamous thieves that struck the month before. The Principle, Manny Bisha, refused to make even a single comment as to what had occurred at...’ The entire article goes on like that, And Look here... John’s not even mentioned in the obituaries.”
“Give me that,” Karen snatched the paper right from Brandy, “Wow, you weren’t kidding. There isn’t a single John mentioned in here.”
“I’m not surprised,” Tyrone said as he finished up his eggs, “Jonathan wasn’t really that special to begin with.”
“Shut it, Tyrone,” Brandy slammed his fists on the table, “Haven’t you insulted him enough for one lifetime!?!”
“Woah, I meant nothing like that. I meant that because he was Lower Class that-”
“So what, if he was Lower Class! It’s not a crime to be poor!”
“You don’t understand, I-”
“Oh, I understand perfectly,” Brandy continued to scream at Tyrone, “How about we go down to the farms and start throwing rocks, Huh? That ought to be fun!”
“Sh-Shut up, you Idiot!”
“You’re the Idiot, so you shut up!”
“Shut up BOTH of you,” Karen corkscrewed the backs of both boys heads, “You’re both idiots!”
“Well, they are boys,” Christen snickered.
“Yeah, they can’t help it,” Kayla agreed with her sister.
“Knock knock,” Ms. Kay entered the house with another woman.
“Hey, Ms. Kay,” everyone welcomed Ms. Kay and her mystery guest.
“You missed some of the greatest eggs in the world,” Karen was cheery-faced, despite the violent action she had taken just moments before, “Who knew Ketchup tasted so great on an omelet. Without any Calamari too!”
“So, who’s your friend,” Kayla inquired. Karen gave her a look, but Kayla didn’t quite catch it.
“This is Mrs. Lawrence,” Ms. Kay introduced, “She’s here to take a look at Milkshake.”
“Oh you’re John’s-,” asked Tyrone before Karen stomped on his foot, “EOW!”
“So where is the newborn, Ms. Kay?” Luckily, Mrs. Lawrence didn’t seem to hear Tyrone.
“Yes, right this way, Mrs. Lawrence,” Ms. Kay led John’s mother through the back door, “I regret not telling you last night but...”
“What did you do that for,” Tyrone asked as he rubbed his sore foot.
“Sorry, thought I saw a spider,” Karen glared, as she continued her metaphor, “I thought that it was going to open its big mouth and hurt someone.”
“She seems oddly calm for someone who’s son just offed himself,” Kayla wondered out loud.
“You’re right, Kayla,” Christen wondered, “You think she’s in denial or something?”
“That’s not like a mother at all, is it?”
“Hey. You two coming,” Tyrone waved from the back door, “everyone else is already out back.”
Something that you should all know: My mother was not in denial.
If my mother was told that I had died, she would snap.
However, if she found out that I even attempted suicide, she wouldn’t have reacted any differently than Brandy did.
Another thing about my mother: she is no idiot.
“(Now there’s a sight for sore eyes.),” Luighseach bellowed.
“(Mom? What’s she doing here?)”
“(Strange, I’d think that she’d be here to see you.)”
“(Why would she... need... to...),” it slowly dawned on me when I saw what she took out of her bag, “(Is that a rectal thermometer?)”
“(So you have had your check up? Then I wonder why she’s... Milkshake?),” Luighseach blinked, but could only see a cloud of smoke where I used to be, “(Where’d he go?)”
“(Don’t worry. I got him.),” Leo pounced on me.
“(Gah, Get off of me! Let me go!),” I couldn’t move under all that fur.
“Leo, get off of Milkshake!”
Leo grabbed me by the scruff (I still can’t believe I have scruff) and carried me to my mother... My Real mother. She took hold of me and petted the little fur covered traitor.
“Now let’s see about you,” my mother smiled.
With all due respect, I’ll just leave what she did the next few agonizing minutes to myself.
God, it was embarrassing!
Especially, when all those girls got there.
Sigma, I am going to KILL YOU!!!
“There he is. There’s Milkshake,” the blond squealed.
“Um, Jade... what is that thing,” Louis asked me, pointing to the object in question.
“Uh um... Oh, look over there! Bubbles!”
“Wow, really! Where?”
“Over there, behind the barn.”
“Yeah, bubbles!” Louis ran off to chase the imaginary bubbles.
“That was close,” I sighed.
A short time later, I was beginning to wonder why the four of us girls were still in the shadows of this tree. Let alone why we were still watching the things that she was doing to that poor Phoenix.
“Well, he doesn’t seem to have any problems,” the Nurse commented when she was finished, “He’s a healthy Leucitic Phoenix. No irregularities of any kind.”
“That’s good to hear,” Brandy sighed.
“(Mom, how could you?),” the white Phoenix shuttered.
“Well, is he the one,” the dark head asked silently.
“Not sure, we need to have a closer look,” the blond replied.
“Yeah, we don’t want to make another mistake,” the red head whispered a little too loudly, not that I couldn’t hear them all anyways.
“What are you three whispering about?”
“Oh, nothing,” those three girls were acting strangely.
“So Brandy, have you thought of a name for him yet?”
“Well, I didn’t get a chance to, Mrs. Lawrence.”
“That’s Mrs. Lawrence,” I said out loud to myself, “Almost didn’t recognize her.”
“Who’s Mrs. Lawrence,” one of the girls asked me.
“She used to be my history teacher a few months back. If I remember correctly, she was also John’s...” I stopped talking when I noticed that the Medallion around my neck was still out in the open, for everyone to see, “I should probably go find Louis.”
“Right, you better go do that,” the blond didn’t seem to notice it.
“I’ll help you find him,” the red head volunteered.
“No, no. That’s okay,” I assured the group of girls, “He didn’t get too far.”
“So Brandy, have you thought of a name for him yet?”
“Well, I didn’t get a chance to, Mrs. Lawrence,” Brandy tried to explain.
“His name’s Milkshake,” Karen butted in.
“I thought of it,” Tyrone smiled, “Cute right?”
“(I’ll show you cute!),” I shouted as I leaped up to scratch Tyrone’s face off.
“Sit down,” Mom snapped at me. Something inside of me forced me to comply.
“What did I ever do to you,” Tyrone shrieked, clinching the side of his face.
“(Gee, would you like the list in Alphabetical or Annual order.)”
“Milkshake is not an appropriate name for him,” Ms. Kay smiled, “I know that I wouldn’t want it.”
“Is that it?”
I nodded ‘yes’.
“Well, we can’t have that now can we,” Mom patted me on the head, “how about the name Tyler.”
“(What the?),” I swear my eyes nearly popped out of my head. That was my name. My middle name, but still.
... Mom, does she know that it’s me?...... Well, I can’t find out with all my classmates here...... They might find out it’s me too...
“I’m sure that he prefers to be called what his mommy named him,” Karen crossed her arms.
“(I agree.),” I nodded, not even realizing my mistake.
“See Milkshake agrees with me.”
“(No, I don’t!)”
“Well, let’s see,” Mom place me down on the ground again, “someone call for him.”
Karen, the twins, and Tyrone were all calling for me to come by the name “Milkshake”, but Brandy called me by my middle name. I’m sure all of you can guess, who I went to. Brandy smiled for the first time in a long time. It almost felt, nice to see him smile.
“Hey, no fair,” Karen huffed.
“Tyler, come here,” one of the twins called me. I went to her, just to deepen the fact that I wanted the name to stick.
“Maybe he just responds to any name,” Karen suggested.
“Well, let’s see. Come here Milkshake,” Tyrone tried.
I Resisted the chance to Scratch him up again and stayed put.
“Fine, his name’s Tyler,” Karen submitted.
“Thank you for your time Mrs. Lawrence,” Ms. Kay opened the back door of her house.
“Mrs. Lawrence, couldn’t you stay for a little bit longer,” Tyrone pleaded.
“No, I better be going now,” Mom said as she headed for the house, “I have four more house calls to get to.”
“(Wait, don’t go!),” I chirped, “(Mom! It’s me!)”
“It was great to see you again Mrs. Lawrence,” the little group of humans waved good-bye, drowning out my cries.
When Mom slipped back through the door, I started to cry.
She was gone.
I finally found Louis. He didn’t just go behind the barn. He had gone much deeper into the forest behind it. He was rolling with that blue ball of his, getting his clothes dirty. When I saw him, I didn’t have time to play “big sister” nice.
“Louis, we have to go.”
“Why Jade,” Louis stood up.
“Don’t ask questions,” I snapped at him, “We have to get you home. Now!”
I grabbed his hand and pulled for him to follow me, but he refused to move.
“No, Jade,” he fought back, “I didn’t get a chance to play with the Phoenix yet.”
“If we don’t go now, you won’t ever change back to normal.”
“What!?! Then change me back now!”
“I can’t,” I tried to explain, “we need to get you somewhere safe. We’re both in danger here.”
“In danger of who,” the red head asked, before it was lights out, “~Wew~ll tak~g~~d car~ of~youtwo.~”
Meanwhile, unaware of what was going on.
“Tyler… That is a decent name,” Ms. Kay commented as she led my mother back towards the Silver Shrine.
“Certainly better than Milkshake.”
“It means ‘Tiler of Roofs’ or something, doesn’t it?”
“It was my husband’s...,” Mom suddenly stopped and sat down on the stone steps.
“Ah, I see,” Ms. Kay smiled slightly before she noticed she was no longer being followed, “Are you alright?”
“Yes. Yes, I’m fine.” she huffed slowly, “It wasn’t easy letting Tyler go.”
“If it helps. I know what it’s like to lose a loved one.”
“I know you do,” Mom chuckled softly to hide her tears, “I guess now we’re even.”
“I guess so,” Ms. Kay’s disguise slowly shimmered away.
She now revealed herself to be a creature with silver fur, ruby red eyes, and nine shimmering tails. Now glowing with a mystic radiance that would make babies fall into a peaceful slumber. Even clean crystal snow could not compare to the beauty of her soft fur.
“Do you regret me telling you,” the fox asked as she circled around the woman and settled down on a higher step. The fox laid her head on the woman’s shoulder to comfort her.
“No, just the opposite,” Mom held back her tears, her hand to her forehead, “I’m happy that you told me.”
“Just remember,” growled Kubbi, “John’s not your son anymore.”
“Yokai or not, he’s still my little boy.”
“Don’t get any ideas,” Kubbi warned, “I could have not told you at all.”
“Right, you did it for the Lawrence family,” Mom smiled a little bit.
“Yes...,” Kubbi lied, even though Mom knew Kubbi’s true intentions, “So do not overstep your bounds. You are not one of their blood.”
“You can’t blame me, Kubbi,” Mom stroked Kubbi’s fur, “I’m not strong like you...”
“Neither am I...,” Kubbi chuckled softly, losing herself to her memories past. Planted deep on the edges of her mind. She remembers the day. She couldn’t let it go, even if she wanted to. The only memory she could not lose after nine years, nor even nine thousand years.
...at least your child is still alive…