Atticus | Teen Ink


May 20, 2022
By Anonymous

Author's note:

this is just a prompt from school :) 

  It had been 7 months since mom and nothing had gotten better. Dad was never home. River could barely talk to me let alone look at me. Days were blending together, feeling more and more detached from everything. I was losing track of the days for life felt like a loop I was stuck in. I would wake up, hate everything, go to school, hate everyone, get home, lock myself in my room and if my body was lucky it would get a handful of grapes or if really lucky a whole apple. I could feel River going through the same thing he had basically moved into the library never letting anyone in it was his saft space. Mom had gifted it to him; she had renovated it from her office to his personal library. It held meaning to him that he was not letting go of. I missed him.

“moms going to pull through”

“you don't know that”

“She is i know it” that was the last conversation we had but soon after nurses were rushing in knocking us out of the room. I remember us standing there side by side frozen as they tried for 5 minutes to revive her. I remember looking up to River, his face cold and emotionless. I remember looking back as the nurses stood around her until one switched off the machines. I watched as dad pushed them out of the way cradling her lifeless body. Dad was a man who showed no emotion. That was the first time I had ever seen him cry. I turned and watched as River walked down the hall, no tears, no trembling, no emotion. He went missing for 3 days while dad did the same telling my uncle he couldn't be in the house from the moment those machines turned off. I was alone. I cried and mourned alone that night and ever since then the 3 of us had barely spoken a word to each other. 

       I watched the ceiling fan rock as it spun counting each round hoping it would help me fall asleep but like usual it didn't. I looked over to the clock that read 3:34 I tossed and turned until finally getting up and leaving my room. I stood in front of my door leaning to see inside River's room as if I was going to see him. His room had been untouched for a while now it almost looked abandoned. I walked down the hall passing the stairs, the light coming from under the library doors catching my eye seeing he was awake. I continued down the hall until I reached their door. I hadn't heard the stumbling and clanking of bottles so I knew dad had not come home yet. Times like this I would go into their room and lay in their bed fitting into the impression on her side of the bed. There were times I swore I could still smell her. She would wear this fruity hypnotizing perfume that left a stain everywhere she went so it was hard to not smell her everywhere. But as time went on the smell began to fade. There were only faint times I could smell her which would leave me frozen. As I closed my eyes I searched for her. I could see her opening up the windows, something she did every morning like clock work. It was her way of waking us up without literally doing it. I remember her black zenith she would blast while cooking. She was a terrible dancer but that didn’t stop her. That thought led to the memory of her and dad. I remembered me and River watching as they slowly danced in the kitchen as she baked, which was one of her hobbies. Because of this the house was forever filled with the smell of cakes and pies. And for a second I could feel and smell everything. I could smell the outside air that would move through the rooms. I could smell the pies and the clash of mom's perfume and dad's collage. I could feel the warm sun hitting me from bed waking me up to the curtains waving at me. But it wasn't real. I opened my eyes, laying on my back. I could feel the pillow soaked in tears. None of it was real, not anymore at least.

       "Hey" I shot up "what" whipping all the tears that were blinding me I saw River standing in the doorway "he’s home" he said in a low voice. With that he left I quickly fixed the bed and left as I walked back to my room I watched him go back down stairs sliding the library doors open. But before he went in he looked up at me making me pause and my heart jump. Was he about to say something?  But as quick as he looked at me he looked away walking back into the room. I scoffed, feeling like a fool. I didn't go to sleep that night just like most nights reaching the school we walked down the hall side by side yet feeling we were miles apart. I noticed as teachers looked at us with pity like we were made of glass while students looked at us like freaks. Thankfully it went by quickly and we were in our last class gym. “We are going out to the track today, you can sit out with your brother if you want ok” coach young would always tell me once again made of glass “ok”. We would then sit on the same bench only a few feet from each other, him reading while I just watched the kids. We got side comments and dirty looks from the other kids, some saying we were lazy, some saying we were faking being sad. This day was different however. Jackie Green and her followers this day got done with her laps early which resorted to them being able to sit on the bleachers. They ended up sitting closest to me and their low conversations were not as low as they thought. 

“God i hate track days they always make me so sweaty and gross” 

“i know and coach doesnt even let us shower” 

“She is just lazy and doesn't want to turn the knobs on for us” 

“Some people are lucky though” at this moment i knew we were about to hear the endless rant of jackie due to the reason we were her favorite topic. “Honestly i mean i get it there mom died and what ever but i mean come on it's been like what a year or something”

 I felt my stomach twist. Her bickering was always about us, only us never once did she ever bring up mom until today. 

“Jackie there right there” one of the girls whispered 

 i had been staring straight but in the corner of my eye i saw all of them turn to look at us 

“Oh please they both look dead half of the time. I bet they're not all there if you know what I mean” she said laughing. 

“So do you know what happened to their mom anyway?” a girl asked if I could hear their voices lower but not enough to make a difference. 

“Apparently there mom got like really sick and you know bit the dust sucks really i mean she was a ok lady i guess despite her whole oh look at me in the most beautiful richest lady in town” i felt a heat wave that ran over my body my fist balled and for a second i began to stand. 

“Stop” i herd river whisper i lowered my self 

“shes talking about us shes talking about mo-” 

“I know what she's talking about just leave it alone” he said practically unbothered as he flipped his page.

“I mean i get it she married the town's surgeon but come on like she dressed them up like dolls and forced such a perfect family image i mean come on it was so fake”. 

“I don't know Jackie, she seemed generally nice and they never act stuck up i don't really understand what you saying”.

“What i'm saying is i dont think her death was such a big deal and their perfect little family act they used to put on was such a fake i mean look at them now their dad is like a drunk and is on the verge of losing his job. Their perfect little kids are just freaks that walk around looking sad for attention if you are so sad then just go kil-” and just like that her world was finished i balled my fist and jumped down until i was on their row. “Rue stop” River yelled but it was too late. I had already plowed through her friends and was now on the ground with her under me. I couldn't see or remember too much due to the rage and tears that blinded me. Everything I had been feeling anger, depression, sadness was coming out and I was not holding it in any more. I could hear yelling and screaming as I hit her repeatedly. I started to see blood. I told myself to stop but i didnt i couldnt i yelled and begged myself but it was no use everything needed to be let out it just happened to be now and on her. I remember feeling numb everywhere so the hits she tried to throw as well as her friends didn't phase me and as quick as it started it ended.

         I remember being pulled off by one of the coaches. Laying on the ground while Jackie was carried away due to her being unconscious. Her nose and lip busted up. I looked down at my knuckles that were bleeding as well although I couldn't tell which blood was mine or hers. My face was hot with tears. 

“God what is wrong with you!”

“You freak!”

I felt like I was going to pass out. I laid there staring at the sky that looked to be spinning. I didn't know what to say or what to think. My brain was empty, everything felt like it was going to shut down. I wanted everything to go back to normal. I just wanted mom. The last thing I remembered was pulling my head up and looking up at the bleachers seeing River just looking at me with the same cold look he had given mom's body. I closed my eyes hearing the sound of crying and yelling fade,the heat from the sun beating down on me comforted me as well as the breeze that cooled my damp face. I began to hear her voice talking to me. A faint memory played of me and her. She was showing me how to bake it played like a movie and with time I felt myself slip away into a sleep I hoped I wouldn't wake from.                                  

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