Lost in Life: Chapter One *edited* *PG-13, trigger warning, swearing*
Posted March 5th, 2013 by Lily09
AN: force yourself to write, even if it turns out really crappy, it's better than nothing xD
It’s not unusual for Dad to be passed out with a hangover in his room every morning instead of joining Hanna and me at the table. It’s March 20th , though, and although this happens every year since he started drinking, I still hope to find Dad at the table. It’s a stupid wish, a hope that is destroyed so easily.
Hanna smiles weakly from the table across from me. I look down. I can’t face her today, can’t face anyone. We used to speak more frequently, when Dad picked up his habit, when all we had was each other. Now, we don’t speak to each other that much, not since she saw the lighter and the scars that decorated on my skin. A part of me is angry that she left when I needed her most, but I know it can’t be easy for her. She’s got an alcoholic father and a screwed-up sister, how can it be easy? I don’t blame her. She didn’t ask for this, all she wanted was a happy life. If all she can do for herself is stay away from us, then I’ll let that be.
After a few minutes of staring and poking at my food, I give up on trying to summon up any appetite. I wait for Hanna to finish, tugging at my sleeves every now on then. I can’t help but think of the event, and think of how much our lives have changed.
“Hanna. We should go,” I say, wanting to get out of this hellhole as soon as possible. Of course, the next hellhole isn’t much better, but it’s starting to feel like anywhere is better than here. Hanna nods and quickly but quietly cleans up. Everything must be done quietly. Neither of us want to wake up Dad, who knows what kind of shit he’ll be dishing out once he’s awake?
As I reach my locker, my phone vibrates in my pocket. No one texts me, so who's texting me now? I unlock my phone, to see Hanna's name flashing on the screen. Of course.
'Hey. Stay strong (:'
She doesn't care, I tell myself. If she really cared, she would have been there for you when you needed to her most. She wasn't.
It's not her fault you're a wreck, Leah. She's got an alcoholic dad and a selfish sister, how did you expect her to cope with it?
But she could have been there.
Stop being so selfish.
I decide to forget about the text completely and shut off the two sides of me that are arguing. I don't need this, not today. I just need to get through this day to get to the next. Nothing extra.
School is a hellhole of its own kind, completely different from the one at home. At school, silence follows me everywhere. It's an unsettling silence. It's the kind of silence that feels like it's set up to protect others from you, as if you're a disease. It's the kind of silence that swallows you whole and isolates you from anyone else. It makes you invisible and unnoticeable and alone. It's one of the worst kinds of silence.
I make sure that I have the lighter in my pocket before closing my locker. Like always, there’s a fleeting moment where I feel pathetic for needing it, but I know it’s the only way I’ll get through the day. It's how I've gotten through life in the past 4 years. With my hand gripping tightly onto the lighter in my hoodie pocket, my feet move on their own through the halls, stopping only so I can collapse into my chair.
I pull out my notebook along with a pen. Naturally, my hand moves across the blank page, slowly creating a picture. There are two things that come effortlessly to me, two things i have not abandoned: running and drawing. Both are my escape and I need both more than the people I live with.
When the bell rings signaling the start of my first class, I barely notice it. My mind is elsewhere as I raise my hand when the teacher calls out my name. However, I snap up as the teacher starts to introduce the lesson. Although it is difficult, I try as hard as I can to pay attention and struggle to grasp the words she is saying. Eventually, I give up, disappointed with myself for not understanding what everyone else seems to understand so easily. Instead, my hand curves over the smooth, thin page, resuming where it left off.It washes out every negative feeling, and I sink back into the details and precision of the drawing.
By the time lunch rolls around, my hand is itching for the lighter. I’m on the verge of a breakdown when my phone vibrates again.
‘hey, you holding up ok? she loved you, you know.’
I’m not holding up okay. Despite Hanna’s attempts at making me feel better, I’m not okay. Maybe she loved me, but it never stopped whatever happened from happening. It doesn’t mean a thing, because she’ll never know how much I loved her, and how I much I still do love her. And it hurts. No matter how much Hanna tries, there’s still the empty feeling in my chest. No matter how much Hanna tries, the thought of putting a gun to my head is still appealing.
I ignore the texts and look over to Hanna. She’s laughing with her friends and smiling, but I don’t know how she can. Maybe she just isn’t as fucked up as Dad and I. I avert my gaze from her and decide to continue with my drawing, ignoring my lunch. Halfway through, I hear someone sit next to me.
“I’m fine, Hanna,” I mutter, expecting my sister.
“Hanna? Isn’t that your sister? ” I hear a familiar voice say. I look up, to see green eyes and blonde hair.
“I think you’re at the wrong table, Ashlie,” I sigh, wishing she’d leave. Although talking with most people is a rarity, an encounter with Ashlie Evans is not. I wish it weren’t so.
“Just need to ask something,” she says. I look over at her, with a doubtful face. What could she possibly be so curious about that includes me?
“Go on,” I say, sketching at my paper.
“Okay. So,” she says, pausing dramatically to think. “Okay. Yeah. No offense, but if you’re so emo or depressed then why don’t you just go to the counselor?”
“That’s what you want to know?” I ask. I’m not sure if she’s genuinely curious or just mocking me now.
“Yep. Counselors are there to help, they are there to help freaks, you know? Not saying that you’re a freak but you seem kind of emo, so maybe you should see a counselor because you’re not normal,” Ashlie says, smiling. I wonder where she gets this stuff, or why the hell she even says these things.
“Please leave me alone,” I say quietly, trying to keep calm.
"I don't get it," she says.
"Fine, then stop talking to me," I say a bit louder. Without waiting for her response, I toss out my lunch and head to the restroom, holding my notebook and pen in one hand, and gripping the lighter tight in the other.
I wish I was out of school already.
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