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↠ t w o ↞

The first person awake was Lucas. He didn’t have much memory of the night before and immediately starting panicking when he didn’t recognise where he was. Looking around the room he noticed his clothes in a pile on the floor beside the lounge, he hadn’t even realised he was only in his boxers and jumped straight into getting changed.

Satori woke up to the sound of someone falling over and sat up to see who it was, only to find Lucas tangled in his clothes. “Are you okay?”

Luke pulled down his top to see the girl he was talking to sitting up and watching him, amused. “Uh- we didn’t... We didn’t do anything, did we?” He asked, pointing towards Satori and himself.

“No, I let you crash the night so you wouldn’t get in trouble from mother dearest.” She giggled, looking at the mess he had gotten himself into.

“Oh... Well, thank you.” He mumbled, scratching the back of his neck awkwardly before standing up and getting dressed properly. “So do you live by yourself?”

Shaking her head she replied. “Nah, I live with my parents. They travel a lot for work so a lot of the time I get the house to myself.”

“They just let you throw parties like you did last night?” Lucas was gobsmacked, but understanding soon washed over him.

“Hell no!” She laughed. “They get our neighbour Mrs Giovanna to look after me and the house. But she’s like eighty and falls asleep at eight every night without fail. Without her hearing aids, she sleeps through the night not even knowing what’s going on... Poor lady, she’s really nice. Just incredibly stupid.”

“Fair enough. Do you have the time by any chance? My phones kinda dead...” Lucas asks, showing Satori his dead phone.

Lifting up her own phone she saw that it was midday. “Uh, it’s twelve-thirty.”

“Shit.” Luke raced to collect his things.

“What?” Tori asked, pushing some hair behind her ears.

“I need to go home, my mums going to kill me!”

Satori didn’t say anything. She just watched as he scrambled around collecting his wallet and car keys from her drawers before walking to her door. Turning to face the brunette sitting in her bed scrolling through her phone he muttered a quick thank you before racing out of the house and driving home.

After sitting in her bed for almost half an hour after Lucas left, she decided she better get out of bed to start the cleaning process. Her parents were due to come home that night. She hasn’t been caught throwing a party, she didn’t want that day to be today.

Walking down the stairs she saw people still passed out on the floor. Groaning to herself she woke them all up telling them to leave before seeing how much damage was caused before diving in and picking up the red cups that were littered everywhere. There wasn’t too much destruction done to the house compared to previous parties that she had thrown. It was mostly just rubbish and broken alcohol bottles.

Once she had finished cleaning every aspect of the house the clock was nearing five and Satori was feeling dirty so she went upstairs to have a shower. While she waited for the water to heat up her mind kept going back to the tall blonde she allowed to stay over. She was never one to let people stay in her room unless they were her friends, everyone else who stayed the night usually slept where they dropped and she was fine with that. Her room was her haven and she never let very many people in there.

Why was he so different?

Maybe it was because Lucas had reminded her of herself before everything happened. The Satori who was innocent to the world and wouldn’t dare touch drugs or alcohol let alone both in the same night. But things can change a person, and unfortunately, a certain incident changed her; and not for the better.

It’s been three years and those three years were definitely a bumpy one.

None of her current friends were friends that she used to have. She spiralled and the friends she loves and adores now we’re just people she met along the way who introduced her to the things she was doing. But she wouldn’t change it. The alcohol helps her forget, and weed relaxes her. They’re very bad coping mechanisms, but there’s also a lot worse, and she’s been there.

↠ three months before the incident ↞

Two girls sat in a very pink and very messy bedroom giggling amongst themselves. They had their pyjamas on and were talking about their current crushes. A typical 15-year-old sleepover. Satori had braided Maisey’s hair, and now Maisey was doing hers back while the gossiped to each other. “Tors, do you reckon we’ll be best friends forever?” Maisey, the button-nosed redhead asked quietly, dropping her hands from Satori’s head to her lap.

Satori turned around, the smile wiped off her face as she sees the solemn look on her best friend- no, sisters face. “Of course, Mase, why wouldn’t we be?” She quipped her head to the side and observed her friend closely.

“No reason. I was just thinking.” She shrugs. “Now, tell me about Joey Morano, since when did you have a crush on him?” She giggled, basically any and every trace of her previous question was erased from both of their memories as the dived further into ‘boy talk’.

“We were in maths, now you know how much I despise maths but I’m pretty good at it. He sits in front of me and when we were working out and solving algebra questions he turned around and asked me for help... I don’t know Mase, it’s such a stupid puppy crush. I’ll probably be over it tomorrow.” Tori giggles as Mase just stares at her best friend before nodding.

“You’s would be cute, and your babies would be adorable and I swear to the big man himself upstairs that if I’m not your Maid of Honour then I’m never talking to you again.” She said with all seriousness.

“Of course Mase, although I don’t think I’ll be marrying Joey Morano...” Satori paused. “But! You’ll definitely be my Maid of Honour. No, if, buts or maybes about it.” She smiled happily as her slightly taller friend tackled her in a hug that ended up with the both of them laying on the floor in bursts of laughter.

“You’re practically my sister Mase, you’re irreplaceable to me and I don’t know what I’d do without you.” Tori smiled at her blue-eyed friend.

Tiredness struck her like a bag of bricks. But just before she fell asleep she heard Maisey whisper back, sleepiness in her own voice she said. “You’re my sister too, Tors. I love you. Always.”

Stepping out of the shower she wrapped herself up in a towel and walked into her room to change into an oversized sweater and booty shorts before grabbing her phone and walking downstairs and sitting on the lounge.

Scrolling through her Instagram feed she saw some of the photos people had posted from the night before. She smiled, glad that people had fun. It was one of the main reasons she threw them. Satori stopped scrolling when she saw a photo one of the boys posted, it was a photo of her leaning against the tree with a very drunk Luke leaning against her shoulder. They were both smiling at each other. If she didn’t know any better you’d think they had either known each other for a long time, or they were dating. Neither of them was true.

She saw that they were both tagged and went onto Lucas’ page and started looking at the photos he had posted. There weren’t many and there was a lot of time between each post. He clearly doesn’t use this app much.

Closing Instagram and locking her phone she grabbed the remote for the television and turned it on before putting Netflix on and scrolling through everything not knowing what she wanted to watch.

Deciding that she didn’t really care what was on she just put some random murder documentary on, half watching it and half using it as background noise while she got lost in her own thoughts again.

Even when her parents were away, she was never normally home by herself. She’d have one of the girls over if not both but tonight she didn’t know where they were. She hadn’t heard from them all day. She hated being by herself, her thoughts scared her. She hated the memories that would come up because they just made her feel guilty like she could’ve done more. That she could’ve done something.

The sound of the front door slamming shut made her jump before she stood up and slowly walked towards the door to see who the intruder was, but smiled widely when she saw the backs of her parents as they took their shoes off and hung their jackets on the coat rack.

“Mum! Dad!” She walked to them and gave them a hug, they’d been gone for almost three weeks.

“Hey Tors, how are you?” Her dad asked, giving her a hug.

“Yeah, I’m good. How was the trip?” She questioned, following them into the kitchen where they poured themselves some water.

“Business as usual, but we’re home for a couple of weeks before we’re going to Chicago for another business meeting.” Her mother said, watching her reaction.

Satori was used to them being home for a couples weeks before leaving again, so she wasn’t really bothered by it. Sure it hurt her, but work is work and she understands that. “That’s okay.”

“Your mother and I decided that we’re just going to order pizza for dinner, you want your usual?” Her father asked, digging through the pamphlet draw to find the pizza menu.

“Yes please!” She said with a big grin. Her usual was her favourite, and she was always very offended when people didn’t like it. She was also confused, like who doesn’t love pepperoni pizza?

It wasn’t long until the pizza was delivered and they sat around the table stuffing their faces while catching up before watching a movie. Collectively they decided to watch ‘Step Brothers’, they were always one to watch comedies.

When the movie ended, Satori decided that she should probably head to bed, she wasn’t a fan of school, but she had to go.

Bidding her parents goodnight, she climbed the stairs and trudged to her room only to flop on her bed and scroll through Facebook for a minute before passing out.

Curling her hair the next morning, she hated waking up so early. She was wearing the three-sizes-too-big school jacket with a pair of ordinary black sweatpants which definitely weren’t part of the uniform but Satori didn’t care. Finishing the last curl and brushing it out a bit, she slipped on a pair of black flats before grabbing her school bag and walking out the front where Chloe and Meghan were waiting in the car.

Chucking her back into the back before sliding in she said hello to the girls who replied with a good morning. With Meghan driving, Chloe blared the music as soon as they left the street.

“You got me so high, pull me closer into you and watch our bodies intertwine!” They all scream the lyrics of Demi Lovato’s ‘Sexy Dirty Love’ as they rounded the corner and parked in the school parking lot.

The music cut out as Meghan turned the car off. The girls were all laughing at the hideous singing as they walked into the school and towards their roll call rooms. The girls weren’t in the same roll call class, but they were in the same hall. Which was convenient for them. They would talk right up until just before the warning bell and then make their way into the rooms.

Satori entered the threshold of her classroom probably five seconds before the second bell rang. “Satori Campbell, nice of you to join us!” Mr Johnson said, sarcasm dripping from every word. Satori just rolled her eyes. “Those pants are not school uniform, I hope you enjoy Lab Detentions during your lunchtime because that’s where you’ll be today.”

Satori paid him no mind, she never went to detention, especially Lab Detentions. Who’d willingly sit in a science room for half an hour and right lines about why they were there? She had far better things to do in that half an hour than that.

The classroom was pretty ordinary, it was your general geography room, maps of Australia and maps of the globe were strung along the walls, random little details of the Great Mountain Range, volcanos. Nothing that interested Satori though.

Rows of students were sitting in their seats talking to the person next to them while facing the whiteboard, Tori just kept looking straight as she walked to her usual seat in the back right-hand corner of the classroom. She had the table to herself because she didn’t have an interest in anybody in the room. The seat next to hers was Maisey’s and everyone knew not to sit there while Satori was in her seat. It was a very big no-no.

She could hear the teacher talking and introducing someone to the classroom, but she just stared at her phone. New students didn’t phase her. There was plenty of other seats in this room, she doubted that whoever the new student was would sit there.

But she was wrong.

The sounds of the students in the class silenced and footsteps approached her table. She watched the black enclosed shoes as the stopped beside the table and saw the chair be pulled back before someone sat down and moved closer to the table.

Satori froze, she could feel her blood boiling at the point, but she just kept her hard gaze at the table. She was itching to say something, do something anything to the person sitting next to her. But she refrained herself. Instead, she snatched her bag up off the floor and stormed out of the classroom, ignoring the yells from Mr Johnson as she made a run for the back football field. Nobody uses it, it’s very overgrown at this point and it was her go-to spot to have a smoke or more specifically to get away from everything. Even if it was just for a couple minutes.

Too distracted in her thoughts, she ran into something or rather someone.

Stumbling back, she looks at the person in front of her, she was so close to snapping she just needed a cigarette to calm down before her first class. At this point she probably wasn’t going, it was only English. She’s pretty much spoken it her whole life, missing one lesson won’t kill her.

“Satori! Are you okay?” Lucas asks, holding her shoulders to stabilize her so she wouldn’t fall over.

“Uh- yeah, yeah I’m good. Sorry, I wasn’t paying attention to where I was going.” She spoke softly, wrapping her arms around herself.

She was feeling very antsy and just needed to keep moving before she did something she’d regret. “Where are you heading? I could walk you there?”

“Don’t you have a class to get you? The bells going to go for first period in literally a minute.” She was confused, Luke seemed very serious about his schooling and keeping his grades up. Even if she was going to class and he walked her there, he would’ve been late to his own class. Lucas probably has never missed a day or class in his entire schooling life.

“Nah, I’ve got a free period first so it’s cool.” He shrugs, lifting his arms to hold onto the straps of his backpack that hung over his shoulders.

“I’m meant to have English, but I’m going to the old football field. You can come if you want, I don’t want to get you into trouble though.” She spoke, stepping around him and heading past the school hall. Students were already crowding the footpaths and corridors so she walked a little fast than usual.

She looked back and saw Lucas following her, she was surprised. She didn’t think he’d want to go there with her. What because it’s an ‘out-of-bounds’ area and is literally fenced off from the rest of the school’s property.

She approached the fence and threw her back over the top, watching where it landed before pulling the fence so the hole opens up wide enough for Lucas to fit. She looked at him expectantly. “Well? You came this far, are you going in or what?”

Luke reluctantly crouched and walked through the hole, he straightened up and watched as Satori’s small frame navigated through the hole with ease. He could tell she had done this before.

He’d known about the old football field, but he didn’t know it was accessible. Technically it wasn’t, obviously, none of the teachers know about the part of the fence that practically comes off the post. But he wasn’t going to be the one to say anything. Even if he wanted to.

Satori walked forwards and picked up her back, walking a little bit into the overgrown grass. It was slightly taller then her small frame, but Lucas stuck out like a small thumb as the grass only stops at his shoulder.

Satori saw the old bleachers that sat in their old spot before taking a seat and opening her back to grab out her smokes. Taking one out, she fished the lighter out of her bag and lighting it, relief almost instantly taking over her body and she could feel herself calming down. If ever so slightly.

“I’m not going to criticize you for what you do, but smoking literally kills you, you know?“Lucas spoke up, taking a seat behind her.

She chuckled slightly. “You literally just criticized me for it. But I know...” She nods, watching as the hot ember at the end of it slowly ate at the paper making the ash just that little bit longer.

“So why do you do it?” Satori looked up at Lucas, he seemed genuinely interested in what she had to say.

“It’s a very long story, but let’s just say it’s a coping mechanism for me. Granted, it’s a very bad and unhealthy one. But there’s a lot worse that I could be doing.” She shrugs, taking another drag.

“True... I suppose.” Luke mumbled.

“Can I ask you a question?” He asked, turning ever so slightly so he could face her.

“Sure.” Satori nodded, dropping the butt of the smoke and stomping it out with her foot.

“Why were you almost in tears when you ran into me?” Lucas stared straight into Tori’s eyes, he could still see the pain behind them and he hated seeing people upset.

With a heavy sigh, Satori made herself comfortable before speaking. “For me to explain that I have to tell you everything. It started three years ago, on October 15th 2015...”

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