Somebody to Lean On

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Do You Really Understand?


After a couple weeks, Leo was released from the hospital. April was staying with relatives and suggested that Leo not come because she was well aware that her uncle had a tendency to go out and get drunk.

Leo had moved into Mikey's large home. He had to adjust to the amount of space he had and the comfort he rarely felt.

Mikey walked up to Leo who was asleep on the plush white couch. He pulled a flannel blanket across the teen and smiled sadly. Leo looked so calm like he had no cares in the world. Mikey knew that sleep was one of his very few escapes from pain.

He then dragged himself to bed and fell into a dreamless sleep.

...

Leo woke up to the smell of slightly burnt bacon and scrambled eggs.

He cracked his eyes open to see Mikey on the love seat next to him. His eyes were focused on the TV, a game controller was held tightly in his hands.

"Mikey?" He said groggily.

Mikey spun around and smiled at him, but then turned back to the screen and paused the game.

"Hey, Leo." Mikey walked over to Leo.

"What time is it? And didn't you say that your dad banned you from all video games?" Leo asked, still not fully aware of all going on around him.

"Well, it's about ten in the morning and I got most of my grades up thanks to Donnie, plus it's almost the end of school." Mikey strode into the kitchen. "Do you want breakfast?"

In answer, Leo's stomach made a low growl. "Uh... yeah."

"How many pieces of bacon do you want?" He called.

"Just one," Leo replied before throwing the blanket off himself and walking into the kitchen. "Do you always have nice food like this?"

"Yeah, why?" Mikey asked before piling bacon and eggs onto his plate.

"Well, at my house, a nice breakfast was cereal with fresh milk. My dad never went to the store except for beer and cigarettes and the occasional groceries when he was less drunk. I had to go to the store to buy my own food. It wasn't the best, but it worked well." Leo said, hiding the emotions that rose up.

"Oh... I'm sorry, I didn't know." Mikey muttered, looking down in guilt.

"It's fine, really." Leo plastered a fake smile onto his face and grabbed a plate.

...

After breakfast, Leo sat on the couch and stared at the black television.

Mikey watched Leo, knowing from the lost look in his eyes something was wrong.

"Leo, is something wrong?" Mikey mentally slapped himself at the stupid question.

"What?..." Leo snapped out of his trance, "yeah, I'm just tired."

"Leo, I know that's not what's wrong, now tell me." Mikey persisted. He looked down to see Leo lightly clawing at his arm, blood slowly began to appear where his finger nails dug in.

Mikey slapped Leo's hand off his wrist.

"Leo, stop, I know that you see it as relief, but it's not good. It not only hurts you, but it hurts me to see it."

Leo looked at Mikey with eyes that were glistening with salty tears. "Mikey, it's like life wants me to die. My life has been a ******* hell since I was five. I sometimes feel I'm in too much pain to be alive. When I see the blood, it tells me I'm still in this horror show."

"I understand, but-" Mikey began.

"No, you don't understand. Every **** good thing that is in my life is ripped away in some cruel turn of events. I don't know how 'happy' feels. I'm numb from all the pain. If you understood, you'd have your former abusive dad in jail, your mom a ***** who wasn't there for me, a friend who got drunk before my eyes, and scars on your arms. Now, consider it, do you really understand?" Leo regretted the harsh words, but he had to say it.

Mikey's face flashed a look of hurt and guilt. "I don't understand, but seriously, self harm isn't the answer."

"WHAT ELSE DO I HAVE?!" Leo screamed. "I don't have a dad, I don't have a mom, I lost a friend, I don't have a future, and I don't want your pity!"

Mikey's face formed into a glare. "I understand that you're hurt, but you DO have something, ME! You act like you have nothing, but you have me, Donnie, Splinter, and Raph's been trying to apologize for weeks! You say I don't understand, but it's you who doesn't understand!"

Mikey's hand shot up to his mouth after he realized what he had said. He saw tears fall from Leo's eyes before he sprinted out of the house.

Mikey's dad walked into the room. "Michelangelo, go apologize to Leonardo, NOW. You have no right to yell at him. He's very emotional and that did not help him at all. I thought I had taught you better."

"Sorry, dad." Mikey murmured, hot tears stained his tan cheeks.

"Don't apologize to me, Michelangelo. Go to Leonardo."

Mikey walked out of the house, head hung in shame.

He ran up to Leo, who began to walk faster.

"Leo, I'm sorry, I swear, I didn't mean it." Mikey began to sob.

"Mike, you had the nerve to yell at me when you have a family, a house, and everything you want. You made it clear I am annoying so I will rid this world of this annoyance." Leo said in a monotone voice.

Mikey felt the words sink in and his heart dropped to the pit of his stomach. "Leo, you can't commit-"

"I should have a long time ago. Don't you dare try and stop me, Mike. I want this, I can't take the pain. Please, just do one thing,"

Mikey froze, "what?" He asked tentatively.

"Take care of my dad." He turned and ran, leaving Mikey standing there, still trying to make sense of the fact that his friend had just told him he was going to kill himself.

After a minute, Mikey unfroze and yanked his cellphone out of his pocket. He dialed a number,

"Hello? 911?... look, it's an emergency... my friend just told me he was going to commit suicide."


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