Erasing Christian Bay

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Chapter 18

The music is loud, rattling the walls and shaking the floor. I feel the vibrations against my skull as I lie on the floor. My parents aren't home and I took the liberty of blasting my music for the world to hear, so wherever they are, I hope they can hear the music. The Vaccines self-titled album fills me something fierce; I just wish to contain the feeling within me at all times.

I close my eyes. I feel nothing but the tremors coursing in my skull. My whole body feels as if it's on a high, as if I'm disconnected from the earth. I don't even hear the knock on the door downstairs until it turns into a desperate banging, threatening to break wood. I turn off the music a run downstairs. Who could it be? Kelsey is at home, busy with homework as said via text, and Cole is spending time with his parents on the other side of town.

The banging continues as I run down the stairs. I pull it open and a figure stumbles through the threshold, panting and cringing at my feet. It's Christian, his eyes wild.

"Shut the fucking door!" he screams, his voice cracking on 'door.' He kicks it closed with his foot. His breathing is heavy, irregular, as if he just sprinted five miles without a break. He lies here at my feet, shaking, his top half bare of clothing. I bend down and run my fingers over his scarred back. I gasp; it's a terrifying sight. There are dark, sickly looking bruises tattooing his skin, scars from previous wounds, and fresh, bleeding gashes, too. They reach his arms and curve around to his chest. The wounds are long as if he were beat with a yard stick, but it looks worse than that.

"Christian you're bleeding!" I say. I'm starting to panic. Who would do this to him? I try to pick him up from under his arms but his body is limp so I drag him to the living room and lay him on the carpet. I grab towels from the bathroom upstairs and wet a cloth with warm water and rubbing alcohol. When I return I tuck one of the towels underneath him as best I can so as to not get blood on the rug. His chest is oozing blood too, but not as much as his back.

I press the wet cloths to his wounds and he screams, swinging at me with a fist. I duck back and he misses by just an inch. "Don't touch me!" he says through gritted teeth.

"Christian you have to let me help you," I plea. "Please—"

"I'm fine—" He lets out another cry as I press the cloth to his skin. He puts his fist into his mouth and bites down on his knuckles to suppress the pain as I wipe the blood clean as best I can. The blood smears over his skin and I dab it so I won't make a mess. The bleeding won't stop and I realize that as I try to nurse him I'm crying. The tears are hot against my cheeks and my nose is dribbling. How pathetic am I?

It's awful to see Christian in so much pain. I go back to the bathroom to get another cloth and painkillers. I give them to him with a glass of water and he downs them. He seems to be losing consciousness by the minute from the blood loss. Is he going to die?

"Christian, try to stay awake, please," I snivel, trying to talk past my tears. They clog my throat and when I talk it just makes them flow faster.

His eyelids flutter and within seconds they're fully closed. I shake him lightly, calling out to him, to wherever he has gone, but I can't seem to reach him. He's still breathing, so that's a good sign. I finish cleaning him up and do my best as to get him up on the couch. I lie him on his stomach so he won't irritate his injuries. When I know he's in a comfortable position I place new cloths over his skin and head into the kitchen to wait for whatever is next.

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