She rushed and cut through traffics after hearing the panicked voice and news from her daughter’s teammate. Immediately after arriving at her destination, she bolted out of her car and zoomed through the dark alleys. As she gets closer, she heard yelling and screaming, followed by the wicked laughs of teenage boys.
“You kids were so desperately to win huh”
“Stop, please! My friend didn’t do anything” a familiar voice said. She then soon realized it was her daughter’s voice. She panicked even more when she heard a girl scream. Diana started running towards their direction while yelling her daughter’s name.
“Mom! Help me” Jessica cried, trying to grip the older boy from touching her.
Her eyes widened when she sees her daughter slowly turned to look at her eyes. Like in a slow motion, Jessica’s body fell in the ground while blood poured out of her side. Diana quickly recognized the sharp blade that one of the teenager boys were holding.
“Shit” the guy mumbled. “Run!”
The teenagers started running away but Diana wasted no time to yank the boy’s back. He fell into his back and feared flashed into his eyes as the older woman looked at him.
“Why” was all she could say to the boy. There was nothing she could do. She couldn’t possibly hurt him. The boy’s eyes started shifted around, avoiding the mother’s gaze. But when the sirens started getting nearer, his eyes landed on the pocket knife on the floor. In a flash, he had it in his hands and quickly stood up and shoved the woman away. Diana fell just right beside her unconscious daughter. The boy looked at Diana as if apologizing before mounting the knife into her abdomen.
The police and the ambulance came right after the boys escaped.
“Please get my daughter to the hospital quick” Diana pleaded as soon as the paramedics came to her aid.
“Ma’am we need to get you as well. You’re hurt” The paramedic said. He started asking questions about who is she and what happened or what so ever but the only thing that was in her mind was her daughter’s safety.
“I don’t care about me. Just please save my daughter” she cried. They all looked at her before nodding.
“The others will assist your daughter right away” Looking at her right, she prayed that her daughter will survive through the night. The other two kids that were beaten up were taken as well. Diana was taken into a separate ambulance while the younger kids stayed in one.
On the way to the hospital, unexpectedly and unfortunately, another accident took Diana’s life. A drunk driver crashed head-on into the ambulance which caused severe injuries to all of the passengers inside. Diana was declared dead upon arriving at the hospital, along with the other 3 paramedics with her. The last thing that was on her mind was her family.
“Mom! Mom, wake up please!”
Jessica had woken up after arriving at the hospital. She overheard a call from another nurse hearing that the other ambulance that was with them got into an accident. She very well heard the name of her mother, Diana Francis. After hearing the words – accident, car crash, and died, she started trashing and demanded every nurse to get her to her mother right away.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t listen to you. It’s my fault. Just please mommy, wake up!”
“I won’t ever do it again. I’ll go home right after practice”
“I’ll even quit soccer if you want me too!” she tried again.
Again, no answer.
Now she stood in front of her lifeless mother. Her beautiful light brown skin color, now pale. Her mother’s eyes now closed. Worse, the heart has stopped beating. Jessica didn’t care nor feel about now open wound in her side. The cuts in her arms weren’t as worse as the pain in her heart. Because right now she’s looking at the woman who has raised and loved her – now dead. Why? Because of her stupid mistakes. Because of her, she’s dead.
The doctor and nurse behind her watched the younger girl in pity as she started sobbing. Until then did they realize that they really had to get the young girl to surgery because her wound is worsening. The doctor nodded towards the nurse, signaling her that it was time.
“Jessica” The nurse called. The sobbing girl turned to look at the older woman. “We have to get your wound close, alright?”
Jessica didn’t have the time to respond. She wouldn’t find it anyway. The nurse had injected her already, which caused her to lose consciousness. And the dark days started after that, not remembering a single thing. Not entirely, but she pretended to lose it.
That’s all she could see.
She tried to voice out anything but her throat was too busy. After she heard a creaking sound, followed by a gasp and more shuffling sound.
She tried opening her eyes but everything was still a blur.
“Honey, are you awake?”
She moved her arms to her face and felt wet tears. Why has she cried?
“You’re awake! Dear, stay still I’ll go get the doctor right away” Jessica’s father kissed her daughter’s forehead before leaving to get Dr. Williams.
After her vision fully recovered, she sat up and wondered why everything had to happen. Why must her brain always remind her of the past? Why is it like a nightmare, remembering her every time that it was her fault? The guilt already punished her for the past years. Is it because she hasn’t learned to forgive herself?
Jessica sighed. She fully remembered what happened during that day. She started remembering months after she woke up from her coma. But the odd thing was she couldn’t remember anything about the incident. She couldn’t quite remember her elementary classmates, teachers, and teammates. It was just the incident. It’s the only thing she remembered. Not the time where she actually made friends before they moved or when she celebrated her first birthday in Disney. None of those memories stayed. It was just the accident.
Of course, she still hasn’t remembered anything. Her thoughts got interrupted when one by one her family members started entering her room. She didn’t even recognize she was in a hospital.
“Jessica!” Kristina sniffed and hurried to hug her younger sister. “You’re awake. You got me worried”
She appreciated the concern of her new siblings. She embraced her sister back while chuckling.
“I’m fine” After she started coughing.
“Or not,” Nat said. “You got me worried”
“Sorry” Jessica mumbled, and then looked away after seeing the concern faces of her family. She didn’t mean to worry them.
Though Caelie knew that Jessica wasn’t still much comfortable with her, she zoomed at her new daughter, while shoving Kristina in the way, and embraced Jessica in a bone-crushing hug.
“Oh Jessica, you got me worried!”
Jessica didn’t know what to say. It was still awkward but it somewhat comforted her. So, she hugged back. Her eyes then landed on her dad. It was filled with concern as well.
She sighed. She knew she had to apologize.
“Sorry for umm… worrying you guys”
“Oh no. It’s not a problem dear” Caelie caressed Jessica’s face while hugging her back again.
Jessica’s dad cleared her throat afterward and said “Honey, can you guys leave for a bit. I need to talk to Jessica… alone”
Caelie looked at her husband. She understood they needed to talk, so she nodded. She got up after kissing Jessica on the cheek.
“Nat and Kris, let’s go”
The two followed their mother out. While walking past her husband, she mumbled a “Don’t be harsh on her”.
As soon as they left, Jessica turned to her dad and apologized again.
“I’m really sorry”
“Honey, it’s not your fault okay? I was just... hmm… curious” he admitted.
“What do you mean?” she asked confused.
“You were moving while you were unconscious. Then, later on, you yelled out “Mom”. I was here the whole time you were passed, Jessica. What did you remember?” He asked. While watching over Jessica, he surely heard the words ‘I’m sorry’ and ‘mom’ most of the time. He knew he was remembering it again and wished that she would already let it go. He also knew what happened during that day but Jessica never really told him. She would just tell him she doesn’t remember. But he knew she knew it very well.
Lies. Jessica knew. Her dad knew.
“Jessica,” he said in a warning voice.
He started to get annoyed and disturbed that her own daughter doesn’t trust her. Because of the years that they were away from each other, the farther they grew apart. She distanced herself away from everybody and locked her feelings inside. He was too worried about what might happen.
“I don’t want to talk about it”
“Look, Jessica, I just want to help you okay? We’ve been at this many times already.”
“Yes. Many times okay? I know that! But haven’t you hinted that I’m sick of you asking many times already? I’ve told you many times I don’t want to talk about it. I don’t.” she snapped back. She was breathing hard. She never gets mad. Especially to her dad. But after the incident that played in her mind not long ago, she was pissed and angry at herself. And at the same time, she was confused because she doesn’t know what to feel anymore.
“Sorry. I didn’t mean to snap.” She sighed and lied down once again while grabbing the sheets to cover her up.
She heard her father sigh before walking out of the room.
Minutes later, the door swung open again.
“Jessica?” the voice came from Kristina. Jessica sighed and peaked out.
“I brought you food. You’ve been out since last night and it’s already night time.” Her sister smiled while placing the tray beside her. Jessica smiled back, thanking her sister with her eyes.
After a while, Jessica’s stomach grumbled which caused Kristina to laugh.
“Your tummy just went guruughhh” Kristina pointed towards Jessica’s stomach while laughing. Jessica blushed in embarrassment and mumbled a sorry before she reached for the bowl into the reach.
“Nuh uh” Kristina pulled the bowl away from her which made Jessica looked at her confusedly. “I’m feeding you”
“Um… I think I could do it by myself” Jessica immediately rejected. The thought of someone spooning her is just way embarrassing. She isn’t some kid or something.
“Um… no? Oh come on, let me act like an older sister to you, will ya? Kristina asked with her twinkling eyes that soon swept Jessica off her feet because all she could do was nod to her sister’s request. Not that she minded, it’s just that she wasn’t good at these good gestures.
It was a comfortable silence when Kristina was feeding Jessica. At first, Jessica was bashful and didn’t open her mouth as wide so that the spoon could go in but after a few ‘Open up, the train is coming in!’ by Kristina, who of course said it out loud enough for the nurse outside their doorway and asked if everything was alright. So instead she behaved like a good little patient so that Kristina wouldn’t embarrass her more.
“See! That wasn’t so bad” The older sister chuckled as she places the bowl and spoon back into the trey and set it aside.
“I’ll be back again tomorrow. Some boy also left this to you” Kristina fished a piece of paper in her pocket and handed it to Jessica. “Sabrina is You should also um see Sabrina. She’s kind of waiting for a long time yesterday. I think she’ll be back, later on, to check on you again.”
“Oh. Um, thanks”
Looking at down at the piece she recognized the boy’s name. She sighed and wondered if it was a good thing to contact him again. But for now, all Jessica wanted to do was lie down and rest. The older sister unhurriedly stood up, watching as many confusing emotions pass through Jessica’s face. All she knew was she wanted to comfort her and make sure she’s feeling better.
“I’m going to go now. Make sure you rest”
Jessica nodded and closed her eyes, drifting off into another restless sleep.