No one’s listening to me again, they never listen. "You need to see a psychologist Olivia; you’re just an emotional volcano waiting to erupt! You need someone to talk to about this", my aunt Mae was a very persistent woman, she always believed she knew what was best, and sometimes she did.
I held the phone away from my ear not wanting to hear the 17th reason why I needed guidance through my time of grief, yes I was grieving, but no one could help. How could reliving the night my mother died and the pain I was feeling help me through this?, in the end I would still be the one heartbroken and feeling lost and I would have to go through the cold nights alone in my bed crying myself to sleep.
I put the phone back up to my ear, "I’ll be ok, trust me", and I smiled even though she could not see my face. "I’ll talk to you later", I replied then hung up.
I was on my way to the middle of the school, but instead I turned around heading back to 'Spirits blowing West', that was the name of my flat at Compass University, Massachusetts, ‘We’ll guide you through life' was their motto and the programs and lecturers seemed to genuinely want that for all their students.
I didn't feel like going to class today and this wasn't a first, not that it was a habit either…well not really. I sat in my room deciding that getting lost in a good book would help to take my mind off the conversation my aunt and I just had.
I just needed a break from everyone telling me what to do and assuming how I was feeling. I no longer felt like reading. Instead, I decided to try and figure out my future what I wanted to be in life, it was such a hard thing for me knowing what I wanted to become I felt comfortable in everything but still I needed to choose.
My fear of choosing a single career path lay in the fact that I got bored easily and if I wasn't truly passionate about something I could never continue with it, I didn't want to be a quitter, I wanted to find something I was passionate about even if there wasn't much money involved.
I sighed, passion… I needed it. My phone rang again and as I turned to my backpack to search for it, I whispered a short prayer in my head hoping it wasn't my aunt, it wasn't.
"Hey Leah", she was my best friend since my first teenage year and even now. Sometimes I didn’t feel as if I were such a good friend anymore we spoke maybe once or twice a week at least which was mostly my fault for pulling out of every occasion to meet up.
I could hear her breathing heavily on the other end I assumed she was at practice. Leah was the most athletic person I had ever met and I wouldn’t have survived volleyball and fencing if it weren’t for her putting in the extra time to help me get better and pass my Physical Education classes in high school.
"Hey Oli", Oli was Leah’s nickname for me; it was strange because normal people would say Liv or Livy but Leah called me Oli and I didn’t mind it in the least. "I was wondering if you would like to come to my block party tomorrow night I just want to see you and talk if you like we don't have to party really, just a place to meet", she wasn't really asking and I didn't wrong her I owed her that much.
"Sure I’d love to, should I bring anything?” I asked hoping that I didn't have to, "no you don't, I know you don't have anything to bring anyway".
I chuckled, she knew me too well, “ok, I’ll see you tomorrow".
"See ya!” she replied obviously happy then hung up. I sat down on my bed thinking of what to do next; I always seemed to be thinking that a lot lately. I finally decided to continue with pursuing options for my career path.
I went outside to take a walk just to clear my head and because I couldn't sleep, Compass University was a beautiful place it had everything like a small island and it seemed so different from the town beyond it like a whole different world.
It had such beautiful Sugar Maple trees and the scent of pine cones filled the cold night air. All the halls were circular and the stepping stones formed arrows leading to the centre of the school where all classes were kept.
My most favourite place was the bridge where I would sit on the top of the wooden railings losing myself in the beauty of sunsets, sunrises or just the beautiful moonlight.
I was always drawn to this place, it gave me the feeling that it would take me away where everything would make sense and life wouldn't feel so lonely. Tonight the pull was different like someone was dragging me carelessly towards the railings; I suddenly tripped on one of the wooden tracks losing my balance.
I grabbed the railing trying to steady myself because I no longer felt like I was in control of my own body. I looked up, the sky seemed darker and there were no stars present, it was as if a storm was about to hit and I was frightened.
It started to rain, softly at first and the wind stirred up the leaves around me, I whipped my head to the side trying to get my hair out of my eyes, I was afraid of letting go of the railings and some part of me knew why. A part of me knew that it would take me away to a truth I wasn’t sure I was ready for.
I would be flung over, my heart was beating faster and the wind was blowing even harder as if it wanted to lift me up and carry me away and I suddenly thought why don't I let it? isn't that what I've always wanted? To be taken away. I looked down at the water beneath the bridge and it was dark and still, like a mirror and even in the midst of the soft rain and the wind the water was still.
My reflection caught my eyes, I had chocolate brown skin and shoulder length dark brown hair which now looked black because of the rain and my usually dark brown eyes were grey and my face was wet not from the rain, but tears silently running down my face.
I was crying and I felt so lost and alone, realizing this, more tears fell down my face and the rain began to pour heavier, the river beneath me was still as motionless as ever.
Maybe I should let it take me away… I finally stopped fighting against the wind and loosened my grip on the railings and instead of fighting against the gusts of the wind that pushed me forward, I put my foot up on the railing hauling myself up steadily and soon realized the wind was not fighting against me, it was blowing wickedly around me in a sort of caress and I was in the midst of it all.
I inhaled deeply and lifted my face to the smell of the rain, the tears stopped, my heart stopped racing and the storm slowly subsided, “you are ready”, a voice whispered and then, I jumped, it was my destiny I could feel it, shattering the still river beneath me like glass and then it was all gone as my alarm played the most annoying tune I could find on my phone and woke me up.
Maybe I should find a psychologist I thought; I was having the same strange dream more often than usual but this time a voice one I had never heard before but trusted spoke.
I was hunched over my laptop, its battery now dead. It would be too strange telling anyone about something like this, but they were becoming more frequent. I’m sure my aunt would be happy for another reason to get guidance.
What now? Sleep was definitely out of the picture. I walked over to my closet to pick out what I would wear to the party later with Leah and then I’d make sure I went to my classes. Even if I refused help from others I had to at least help myself
"No I don't need a drink, I have a horrible headache remember", this was the third time I had refused a drink from Leah and I began to feel frustrated, I was usually good at events like these, but tonight was just not my night.
The party that we were supposed to be attending got shut down because of the noise so she decided to go with Mark her ‘sweetheart’ who was way too old for her by the way. We were currently rammed at his parent’s boat house about five blocks away from the bridge and it was jam packed with university students from Compass.
I had the worst headache and the night was so cold I was getting more irritated by the minute. I sighed looking at my phone ‘1:43’. “Hey watch it!” I yelled at the moppy brown haired boy who seemed complete out of place, he scowled, narrowing his dirty green eyes as if he had finally found what he was looking for, branding me with his glare then disappearing into the crowd.
I turned away feeling somewhat violated by this angry looking kid and glancing down at my phone I saw that the screen was drenched in vodka. “Ugh, why me?” I asked even more annoyed throwing my hands up, looking to the sky as if expecting an answer to my question.
It even seemed as if it was going to rain, I should have expected it, and after all, Massachusetts had such bad fall weather. "Hey Oli, seems like it’s going to rain, maybe even worse than last night’s thunderstorm", she took another swig before holding her drink up to my face offering once again, I pushed it, away her comment instantly grabbing my attention.
"There was a thunderstorm last night? Are there any storm warnings out?" I asked her trying not to get drunk off her liquored breath.
"Not that I know of but the weather is unpredictable as usual it's normal", she leaned forward as if to tell me something more but then her drink leaked onto my grey polka dot chiffon blouse, I sighed. “I think you’ve had enough” swiping her drink and her pizza napkin dabbing at uselessly at the wet spot on my blouse “I’m going to the bathroom then I’m going home".
"I'm coming! I'm sorry", she yelled a little too loudly and hurried after me.
Even though the stain seemed to disappear the scent of liquor stuck to me and no one would've believed that I wasn't drinking, Leah obviously felt bad about it, I turned to her "I'm leaving now and no thanks I’ll walk", I said, before she could offer to take me home with her overly touchy ‘sweetheart’ Mark, she seemed to be enjoying the party more than I was anyway.
I hugged her not wanting to feel as if I didn’t appreciate her trying to distract me from the sour rat I had become “please don't stain that beautiful green dress", she smiled. I walked away struggling through the crowd, wanting to get out as quickly as possible, I wouldn’t mind if it rained, the night air was cool and fresh and it cleared my head.
My mind wandered to the dream I had last night and I wondered if I was becoming suicidal, I shook my head slightly banishing the thought, leaving Leah to fend for herself, no way.
I decided to stop at the bridge and as I came closer to my special place I saw a figure standing on top of the wooden railing with arms outstretched and head turned up to the sky, like me in my dream, I thought. I tried as much as possible to quiet my steps and thought of what action to take next.
My mind was frantic with worry should I try and call someone or try and persuade them down myself. I had a feeling that the person was intent on jumping and he or she didn't turn as I neared the railings.
Suddenly the person turned their face to me revealing that it was a boy, probably the same age as I was, he smiled as if he knew what I was thinking. He turned now his back facing the river and I felt relieved that he had come to his senses.
We stared at each other for a while, there was something compelling about his smoky dark eyes that I couldn’t turn away from. I was afraid of saying anything that would probably give him reason to jump and so I just stared. He was in a black leather jacket with a grey shirt, black jeans and sneakers and suddenly I seemed to notice how handsome he looked with his curly dark hair and his skin was caramel he seemed much taller than my 5"5".
"Um-", I began breathlessly, the hairs on the back of my neck stood up the air vibrated making my heart speed up as if that wasn’t enough he was suddenly falling his eyes closed into the water, I became petrified, was it two? five? Ten seconds passed before I mentally shook myself and ran to the edge of the railing, I was even more worried when I got there.
The water stood still, like a mirror and I wonder if I was frozen longer than I had expected.