* * *
LSD Trilogy – Part 2: how to fix the cut
Finished September 8th, 2009
because this world hasn't been fair to her
* * *
„Attention, please. Take-off Lufthansa 5738. All passengers are requested to betake to Gate B. This is the last call. Attention, please. Take-off Lufthansa 5738. All passengers are requested to betake to Gate B.”
The tower hall was filled with a great crowd of people, who were either walking around hectically or busy with their flight plans. Announcements pervaded the mass loudly, yet they were difficult to understand. A little boy ran among the people, pretending to be a plane. His mother called after him angrily. Somewhere in the corner, a couple was saying goodbye to each other under tears.
The scene Serena and David were in was similar, but not quite the same. They weren’t involved with each other romantically, instead they were more like brother and sister – though not related by blood. David turned his head down to look at his friend, who tried her best not to cry. Her gaze was averted, but he could tell from her slightly trembling lip.
„I have to go now. They’re announcing my flight.” He said casually and picked up his suitcase. Serena didn’t make any attempt to look at him. Moisture gathered in her eyes and she refused to let the tears fall. She had already been crying like mad at Lucas’ departure and it clearly wasn’t her intention to do it again. The tears brought these feelings of helplessness and loneliness along. Feelings, she hadn’t experienced for a long time after she had grown to know her boys, Lucas and David.
David put his suitcase down again. „Come here, sister.” He smiled sadly and stretched his arms out. She had been doing so well, but when she looked up and saw him, it all came down onto her. Broken sobs escaped her mouth, as she rushed into the boy’s arms. „I don’t want you to go”, she cried into his jacket. „I know”, he answered and gently stroked her hair. „We’ll see each other again. You know, we all made a promise on that particular afternoon. Remember?”
The intention had been to cheer her up, but now the tears rushed even faster, when she nodded her head. This wasn’t fair. About a year ago, they had been all together, celebrating Lucas’ birthday and now, shortly after his 17th birthday, they all left her. David slowly loosened the embrace and pulled out of it. „It’ll be alright, you’ll see”, he grabbed his case and bent down to give her a quick kiss on the forehead. „I love you, sister.”
David walked away and Serena stood behind, watching him leave with salty liquid blurring her sight. And just like that, he was gone. A strong wind was blowing on the outside of the airport.
It was September 2006.
* * *
Spring was showing its first clues and little by little it was getting warmer, leaving the horrible period of winter behind. Serena didn’t like winter. It was always dark and cold. Besides, the snow made your feet all wet and you could catch a cold so quickly. Of course, those weren’t the real reasons she hated that season. It was the fact that her boyfriend, her only love, Lucas had died on January 8th – the date of her birthday. A few weeks ago, she had been at his grave for the first time after his funeral because his family had invited her to the one-year commemoration. She hadn’t seen David since that funeral and that fateful night afterwards, but she was fine with it. It gave her a chance to start again and forget the terrible incident of the past. Now, she was 16 and on her way to start a normal life again. After one year of mourning, it was definitely time for that. After all this time of depression, she was far behind the school material needed to be learned. That’s why a boy, who was two grades ahead of her, had offered her to help. And slowly, but steadily, her marks were improving. She had never told Adam about her past with Lucas and David or anything which belonged to this chapter of her life and she had absolutely no intention to. Life had treated her badly, but right now, life was good again. And that was mainly on Adam’s part. The two teenagers hung out often and enjoyed simple things together, like swimming, listening to music and jogging. Serena was really glad to have him. Without him, she would have sunk into a deep hole of sadness and remorse. On top of that, she didn’t have to justify herself and her actions to him, since he didn’t know the story of passed days. Serena could be carefree in his company and didn’t have to fear any uncomfortable questions. Looking up from the maths book, she gazed at his outward appearance. Adam had short blond hair and blue eyes. There were blue – real blue – and not that whitish-bright blue David’s eyes were. Additionally, Adam was slim and almost skinny. His shoulders were almost as small as her own, nothing like the broad shoulders of David. He was shorter than both Lucas and David, but still taller than her. Which wasn’t exactly a challenge, with her only being 5’35’’ high. He was almost the exact opposite of Lucas, because he was such a bright type, while Lucas had many dark colours in his look. There was only one thing about Adam which reminded her of her deceased boyfriend. His arms. They were long and thin, just like Lucas’, and always there for her, if she needed a hug. And after all that happened in her life, she needed lots of hugs.
„Are you listening? Serena?”
Adam’s rough voice pulled her out of her train of thoughts. He didn’t say it mean or unfriendly, his tone was nice, just his voice was pretty deep and manly.
„S-Sorry”, Serena stuttered and observed the book in front of her. „Could you explain the arithmetic problem again, please?”
„You okay?” Adam gave her a strange look and she blushed. „Were you just staring at me?”
Serena’s face turned the colour of an overripe tomato. „I-I…” She was at a loss of words.
He began laughing loudly and heartedly. „Don’t deny it, Serena, you were! Though, I can’t hold it against you, I am a beautiful man!”
„Shut up”, she answered and put her hands into her face, while he kept laughing. This had to be the most embarrassing moment ever. Because truth to be told, Serena really liked Adam, in more than just a friendly way. She had been very careful with boys in the past year, but she didn’t want to stay alone forever. But she hadn’t settled to like Adam that much. At first, they had purely been friends, but the more they got to know each other, the more Serena realized what she was missing in her life. Though, in the end she wasn’t sure if she wanted Adam or a replacement for Lucas. After all, her heart still was with Lucas and a part of it would always be. How could she tangle herself out of her emotional mess? Deep inside her, there was the fear of ruining the friendship with Adam by telling him the truth – the whole truth – and by confessing some kinds of non-platonic feelings to him. It was so confusing that she wanted to cry. Tears burnt in her eyes and she had to tear her gaze away, so Adam would dismiss them.
„Hey there”, he softly said as he noticed the glimmering moisture in her green eyes, „I’m sorry. I didn’t want to make fun of you.” When she didn’t react, he wrapped his long arms around her crouching form. „Please don’t cry, Serena. It wasn’t right to say that.”
A warm feeling flooded her body as his arms made contact with her skin. She chuckled. „I wasn’t staring at you because you were beautiful”, she joked and looked at his expression turning to a playful pout. „Come on”, he replied with a boyish grin, „let’s finish our maths homework, so we can take a stroll in the park.”
It was March 2008.
* * *
Walking through the park was kind of a surreal feeling for Serena. Just two years ago, this had been the place where she used to meet her two best friends at that time. It was the place where Lucas and she had become a couple and moreover, it was the place where the three of them had made their weighty promise. Serena felt the emotions rising in her chest, as she remembered the scene. „Let’s promise we’ll never let anything take away our happiness together.”
She shook her head slightly to get rid of the mental image of David, Lucas and her sitting in the grass.
„You okay?” Adam asked and looked at her concerned.
The brunette giggled at his words. „Why do you always ask that?”
„I care about you, that’s all.” His honest answer was. „So I have to make sure, nothing bad happens to you.”
Serena felt nostalgic at his statement, but stayed silent. It was nice to hear such things, but the fear of losing everything close to her again made her heart clench. To her luck, Adam didn’t push the subject and wandered off to something else. „So what are you going to do tomorrow?”
She beamed a smile at him. „I’m going to visit Sebastian. It’s been a long time since I have seen him.”
„He was with that youth camp in Croatia, right?”
„Yes, he was their team leader. I hope he’s taken some good photos from there.” Sebastian had hadn’t finished his study yet, but in his holidays he now worked for youth travelling organizations.
„So, you don’t have any time tomorrow?” Adam’s eyes looked down at her begging.
The girl couldn’t help but to keep smiling at him. He was so cute, when he was trying to convince her to come over. „I’ll be at yours at seven. Will that be alright?”
„Sure”, he exclaimed enthusiastically before she took his hand and pulled him towards the playground. „Come on, Adam”, she told him, „let’s take a ride on the swings!”
It was true, Serena was becoming a woman, yet she had her moments of childishness. And she loved it. She had experienced so much bad so far, that she sometimes just needed to enjoy the moment and the smallest piece of happiness.
* * *
„Serena, it’s so good to see you again!” The 23-year-old man pulled her into a tight embrace.
„How has it been in Croatia, Bastian?” She replied with a smile on her lips.
„Fantastic. It was a great way to escape all this university stress. I’m glad I took the opportunity.”
Sebastian had returned to his home town for the last days of his holidays and for the time being he lived with his parents again. „Would you like to drink something?”
„Some juice would be nice. Thank you.”
„Alright”, the blonde replied and turned towards the kitchen, „just go ahead and take a seat in the living room. Make yourself at home.”
Her eyes sparkled, as she walked down the corridor. It had been a few months since she had been in this house, but of course she still knew everything around here. It felt good to talk to Sebastian. Unlike Adam, he had witnessed her terrible past and everything that had happened to her, Lucas and David. Well, maybe not everything, but enough to understand how her feelings were.
Serena was startled, when she entered the living room. She hadn’t expected anyone else in here, not even his parents, because she knew they were at work. So when a young man – at the age of 19, she guessed – looked back her, she was slightly taken aback. Said man who had been sitting on the couch rose and faced her. His face was strong and manly, the hair chocolate brown. The stranger’s form was skinny, like you could almost see his bones sticking out of his pale skin. Deep circles ran beneath his bright blue eyes, making him look tired and drained. Somehow, this person seemed familiar to her, but she couldn’t quite make out who it was. Searching through her memory, she couldn’t recall knowing someone who appeared so…sick. His thin lips were pulled into a smirk.
„Hi”, Serena said a little confused, „I didn’t know that Sebastian had been expecting another visitor.”
The man looked like he was trying hard to suppress a chuckle. He took a step forwards and held out his long, bony arms in front of him. „Serena”, he said in voice so familiar that Serena didn’t even question why this man knew her name, „do you really not recognize me?”
Her eyes met his and she felt herself instantly dragged into a pool of memories. Could it be…? Just hearing this voice left no room for doubt, but still…if this was really him, then he must have changed dramatically, his outward appearance, that was.
Not even having finished thinking, her mouth opened to answer. „David, is that you?”
The man laughed, as he pulled her into a hug. Serena couldn’t help but breathe in his scent. Yes, it was definitely David. But what had him turned into this? Back then, David had been a strong boy, slim, but muscular. His skin had always been pale, but now it was white. She actually feared crushing his bones, when she returned the embrace. Pulling away a little, she saw right into these blue-whitish eyes, which were glowing with joy and happiness. Despite the dark circles beneath them, they were radiating now with energy and…hope?
Even if she didn’t mean to, Serena smiled back at him. No matter how messed up their past had been, she was so excited to see David again.
She hadn’t realized that the two of them had been standing in front of each other for a long moment, until Sebastian came in and snapped them out of it.
„I see, you two still know each other. Take a seat”, the blonde said and his guests did as he said. With shaking knees, Serena sat down next to David, of whom she couldn’t seem to keep her eyes of. She blushed, as she realized she was staring and turned her face towards the coffee table.
When the silence continued, Sebastian took the word. „David was with me in Croatia. And now he’s here in Germany to visit his father and his friends, of course.”
„Is that so?” Serena asked, a hint of curiosity spreading out in her voice. She didn’t quite believe that he was here because of his family. Maybe he’d come back to clear things. Or to make peace with the past. She wanted to be angry at him for coming over so sudden and unannounced, but couldn’t bring herself to be that way. It was nice of him, if not brave, to meet her again and she was willing to give him a second chance. What had happened about a year ago wasn’t his fault. It had taken two. She was just as guilty as him.
David nodded and a mysterious glimmer appeared in his eyes. His gaze made her nervous, yet she kept looking into his eyes. „That’s good to hear, Davy
* * *
„Adam, I’m here!” Serena shouted as entered through the back door. „Adam, hello?”
„Who are you and what do you want?” A grumpy voice answered and Serena was startled. She saw Adam’s parents sitting on the couch.
„G-Good evening, sir, ma’am”, Serena stuttered politely. „My name’s Serena Morgan. I’m looking for your son. Adam.”
His mother spoke up. Her voice was high-pitched and horrible to listen to. „And what makes you think it’s okay to come in all by yourself through the back door?”
Serena attempted an apologetic smile and failed. One thing was clear, Adam’s parents didn’t like her. But at least that was vice versa. Should she tell them that Adam had actually allowed her to come in that way? Would they even believe her? Well, it was at least worth a try.
„I told her to do so.” The firm reply was, before Serena couldn’t even open her mouth. Adam was walking down the stairs. „Let’s go to the park.”
„Your parents hate me”, she huffed, when they had finally left the house.
Adam chuckled. „They don’t. They’re always like that. I have to admit, a bit psycho.”
„What a relief then”, Serena commented sarcastically, „how do you live with them?”
„You get used to it, believe me. My parents’ relationship had always been bad. But let’s talks about something else. How was your visit at Sebastian’s?“
„Great“, Serena answered now happily. She was glad fort he topic switch. Adam didn’t seem to like to speak about his parents and she found that this was yet another thing they had in common. She told him about Sebastian’s experiences and his plans for the future. Adam appeared to be a good listener and was all ears for the younger girl, only interfering with some questions here and then. When the two teenagers approached the playground, they sat down in the grass. The older boy lay down on his back and Serena leaned herself gently onto his chest. She could feel his heart beating beneath her. It was a nice sensation. It didn’t beat too fast or too slow, it kept a perfect rhythm. Closing her eyes, she snuggled up into his sweater. Adam reached his hand down to smooth over her long, brown hair.
After some minutes, Serena opened her eyes again. „Adam?“ She asked insecurely. When he answered with an ’hm’, she kept on speaking. „Do you know this fuzzy, exciting feeling you get, when you meet someone you haven’t seen for a long, long time?”
Adam’s chest shook slightly as he chuckled. „Yeah, I guess. But you know, Sebastian had only been gone for a few months. He always does so. Shouldn’t you be used to it by now?”
Serena blushed. Of course, her statement must have led him to think she was talking about Sebastian, when in reality she wasn’t. She stayed silent for a moment, trying to decide whether or not she should tell him about David. In the end, she decided that Adam didn’t need to know. It would only make him curious for her past and she really wasn’t eager to tell anyone about that. Besides, it wasn’t like there was still something going on between her David and her. Not like there ever was, but talking about her previous best friend might indicate something else. So why bother with the past, when the present was so much better?
Serena closed her eyes and giggled. „You’re right. But I can’t help feeling happy, when I see my friends. No matter how long we’ve been separated.”
„Does that mean you’re happy to see me, too?” Adam’s response was. It held some kind of hope and expectation.
„Of course, silly”, she smiled, unaware that he was watching her beautiful face, „I’m always happy to see you.”
He didn’t reply, but he put his arm around her shoulders, closed his eyes as well and smiled.
* * *
She checked herself in the mirror for the fifth time now. The simple red shirt was tight and showed off her grown curves. It was hard to dismiss Serena’s more and more female becoming body. The short, black trousers complimented her long legs, even though she was still not nearly as tall as her male friends. Why did she care so much about what to wear tonight anyway? David had told her it would be a small party, more likely to be an evening with a few friends, to celebrate his return. So now Serena felt overdressed. To make that up, she decided against her high-heeled boots and went for her plain chucks. Yes, that should compensate the sensuality of her low-cut shirt, which dared to expose not enough cleavage to see, but enough to imagine. It was still too early for her to head off and she wondered why she was so nervous. Breathing calmly, she tried to get her nerves down. Tonight would be just a comfortable being-together with no stress at all. Or drama for that matter.
Serena felt a wave of nice – yet strange – memories rushing over her mind, as she entered the Newton mansion. Not so long ago, this house had been her home. Now the place was filled with a mass of people, bottles of beer were standing everywhere and music, so loud you couldn’t figure out what was played, numbed Serena’s ears. For a moment, her senses couldn’t make out what she was looking for until a hand touched her shoulder. Surprised, she swirled around to see David’s grinning face. She wasn’t exactly able to hear his words, but she tried to understand by reading his lips. „Glad you could make it here”, they said. He rushed to embrace her. Her breasts were pressed down against his chest, covered only in a thin black t-shirt, allowing her to feel his skinny ribcage. Slowly, Serena had accustomed herself to the loud music and shouted back, „I thought this would be some simple friends meeting, not a huge party.”
David laughed embarrassed. „That’s what I said, wasn’t it?” He led her through the hallway to the living room, where the noise amplitude wasn’t quite as big. The living room, Serena’s favourite room, was still the way she used to remember it. Large, with a high ceiling and white leather furniture. Even the chandelier was still in place, though it wasn’t the source of light now. The dim illumination came from a standard lamp and some candles. Touched in a dizzy way, Serena looked around. This was the place where she had stayed up with her brother David some sleepless nights to talk, tease or to simply watch TV. Other times, Lucas had been here with them, cuddling with her beneath the soft white blankets. And then, Christmas and Hanukah had been celebrated in this room, too. She sighed, lost in nostalgic thoughts, and took the beer David offered her.
A few hours and beers later, she found herself again in the living room, sitting on the couch next to David. They were laughing and talking the whole time. She didn’t know if it was the alcohol or her real feelings, but somehow she gained the courage to tell him how much she had actually missed him. When she talked, her voice was slurring slightly and chuckles broke down her sentences. She didn’t realize how drunk she was. Everything seemed funny to her. It was so relieving, Serena had to giggle.
At first, David’s attitude had been similar to hers, all easy-going and happy. But when she looked at him, she saw that his smile was gone. Insecurely, she tore her gaze away to see dim light flooding the room and making the contours of the people appear softer. In the frame of the balcony door the smokers were standing, the others were sitting around or moving along the heavy Placebo – sounds.
Serena’s eyes found their way back to David’s, whose gaze was serious.
„I left because I had Leukaemia.”
He said it so casually that it appeared to be something unnecessary speaking about. But the words still didn’t lose their effect. Suddenly, a long silence stretched out between the reunited friends. All the noises and the music had faded away. The warm feeling inside of Serena was gone and made room for an icy cold. The already large room widened more and more, everything pulled away from her till Serena felt like the only one being left.
David had Leukaemia? Why had he never mentioned it? Wasn’t she his best friend? He could have been dying and she would have never known…why did he do that? Everything made sense now, his sudden departure, his strange appearance when she had met him at the funeral and his now skinny and sick look.
Slowly, David’s words trickled away in her whirlpool of thoughts. Her brain stopped, it couldn’t handle the information overload. She took her beer and began to grin. As if someone had pushed a ‘Reverse’-Button in her, she kept going like she had been before. The room turned louder again.
Serena leaned against David’s shoulder and laughed.
* * *
Sunlight reached her closed eyes, causing Serena to stir. Reluctantly, her eyes fluttered open just enough to take in her surroundings. She recognized where she was right away. She lay in the bed in the guest room of the Newton mansion. The guest room had been her room all that time ago. For a moment it felt like time hadn’t passed by and she still lived here with David and Lucas around. To her disappointment, realization set in soon as she remembered the last night’s happenings. She closed her eyes in shame as the words echoed in her mind.
„I left because I had Leukaemia.”
The bed was as soft and nice as ever and her body tried to fight her weak intent to stand up. After some minutes, she finally sat up and rubbed her head. She must have had way too many drinks yesterday. She couldn’t even recall how she had gotten into this bed, let alone into the guest room. Had she walked up the stairs on her own? Out of habit? Or had anyone carried her? She stretched silently, before she stood up and left the room. As she walked along the hallway, she passed the mirror and took a look. Her hair was in a mess and her clothes were wrinkled. She took the hem of her shirt and pulled it towards her face. My goodness, she smelled like expired beer! She looked down at her feet. Her shoes weren’t there. She must have taken them off then. Or somebody else had.
„You look like hell”, a familiar voice said, when she went down into the kitchen. David was wearing some new, fresh clothes, though you could see in his face how tired he really was. He was already cleaning up and Serena would have even helped him, if she hadn’t been feeling this nauseous. Before she could even wish him a good morning, she stuttered „bathroom” and left quickly to empty her stomach contents into the toilet. Dammit, she had really drunk too much last night! Angry with herself for losing control, she wiped her mouth and took a gulp of water. She closed the door and turned on the shower. The talk with David would have to wait, until she was at least clean again.
„You’ve never been a heavy drinker”, David mocked her, as she returned to the kitchen, „Want some breakfast?”
Serena wanted to kick him for his smart-ass comments, but decided to just leave it at that. She certainly felt better after the shower, but she was still exhausted. Nodding, she sat down at the table.
„Been a long time since we had breakfast in here”, David said as he approached her, carrying a tray with coffee and rolls. Serena silently took one and ripped down a bite to eat.
Swallowing it down, she asked, „Where’s everyone?”
„At home, apparently”, he answered taking a sip of the hot coffee, „the last ones left two hours ago.”
The strong smell alone made Serena feel awake, but when she actually drank the caffeine containing drink she finally got in the mood to talk.
„Is it true?” She said and both knew she didn’t need to voice what she was referring to.
Blue met green eyes and the answer was as short as simple. „Yes.”
The girl abruptly rose from the chair, hitting the table by accident and leaving it shaking. She wanted to answer, but she had to struggle for words. „Why?” She croaked.
His eyes went wide. He hadn’t been expecting her to burst out like this. „Serena, I couldn’t tell you…”
There was a clear pout on her face now. „I thought we were friends. I thought you would have trusted me then!”
„I did”, David exclaimed helplessly, „I still do. But I....”
„What?” Anger filled her words, her movements. Her fists were clenched so tightly that her knuckles turned white. „How could you do this? You left me, when I could have been there for you!”
„Serena, let me explain” he began, „I need you to understand…”
„Understand what?” She snapped at him. „You could have died, David! You could have died, just like him
.” David was shocked when she brought up Lucas. „How can you be so reckless? So careless towards me?” The fury turned into disappointment. „Don’t you understand how hard it was?” Her shoulders slumped and she shot a dangerous look at him. „And you promised me I wouldn’t lose you. How can you promise such things, when I would have lost you in the end?”
Sorrow threatened to take over her and she decided to leave. Wordlessly, she turned and went for the door before the tears could get to her.
„I wanted to protect you.”
Serena halted in the doorway. He sounded honest, yet his words made her heart clench. „You could have died”, she repeated. She looked over her shoulder to see his face full of desperation. „You could have died and I would never have known. How is that protecting me, David?” He didn’t miss the bitter tone of her voice, when she said his name. It almost made him wince.
Before he got a chance to reply, she was gone.
* * *
„Fuck! Dammit!” Serena cursed out loud, as she fumbled with the fastener of her necklace. Chuckling, Adam sneaked up from behind her. „Here let me help you”, he said in a smooth voice and gently pushed her hands aside.
„I’m sorry”, she said, when she let him take over the ends of the metal chain. Her shoulders sank down, „I know I’m late.”
Adam had asked her to come with him to the cinema, but she just couldn’t get a grip of herself tonight. Maybe it was the fact that she had this argument this morning with David that made her so fidgety.
„Nice necklace”, Adam commented, after he had fastened it and Serena had turned around. „What’s inside that locket?”
She blushed, her hands quickly found the heart-shaped pendant and encircled it. „N-Nothing”, she stuttered and looked to the ground.
Adam didn’t push it, instead he drank in her beauty. „You’re gorgeous”, he told her and her face turned even redder. „If you always dress so pretty to go to the cinema, then maybe I should take you out on a real date.”
Serena thought she would faint. Did he indicate that it was not
a date tonight? What a fool she was then to put on her best dress. The neckholder left her back exposed. The dark red fabric was hugging her slender figure and was cut off just above the knees. „Maybe I should change then…”, she murmured shyly. She turned to go, though Adam’s hand reached out to catch her wrist.
„I’m sorry, Serena. I never meant to embarrass you”, he said. His other hand ran along her cheek gently. „And it is true, you are beautiful.”
The heat was returning to her face and she smiled at him nervously. „Well, let’s go then, okay?”
The evening went by nicely. Thank goodness, they had watched a comedy movie and no romance film. Otherwise, it might have gotten awkward between the two of them. Adam’s hand rested on her waist, as he walked her home. He suddenly stopped and looked at her. „You’re freezing!” He exclaimed, when he noticed the goosebumps on her skin. „Here, let me give you my jacket.”
It was right, Serena had goosebumps, but they didn’t come from the cool air alone. She had felt it this night stronger than ever how deep her feelings had become for Adam. Every time he would brush her skin, she shuddered with excitement. And his care made her heart melt. „Thank you, Adam, but that’s not necessary…”
„Of course, it is”, he said, not taking no for an answer. He pulled out of his jacket and wrapped it around her shoulders. Serena had to admit that it felt good. The item was warm and smelled like him. Adam grabbed her hand and they continued walking. She was blushing like mad and glad that it was too dark for him to see.
„Adam?” She asked self-consciously after some time. „Have you ever been so disappointed by a person and you don’t know how you could ever trust him again?”
Puzzled, Adam answered. „You are hopefully not talking about me, are you?” When she shook her head slightly, he sighed in relief. „No, I don’t think so. Maybe by my parents. Who exactly are you talking about? Is it Sebastian?”
„Oh no”, she replied quickly, „it’s not about Sebastian.” Noticing his questioning gaze, she added, „I told you about that someone, I hadn’t seen for a really long time, didn’t I? Well, I’ve always thought of him as a close friend, but now I’ve got a feeling that our friendship might have been not as strong as I thought it was.”
Adam recognized her apostatizing tone and relented. „You don’t have to tell me who it is. I trust you, Serena. And I won’t disappoint you.” He smiled at her beamingly, but her response looked rather weak.
When they had reached her home, Serena thanked him for the pleasant evening. Adam smiled. She was about to wave him goodbye and go inside, as he bent down and kissed her cheek. It wasn’t even a real kiss, more like a small peck, but it made her all tingly. Blushing again she mumbled something about good night and seeing him soon. All the while he kept grinning. Her hands were shaking, when she tried to open the door with the key. Finally, she pushed it open and hurried inside. Slamming the door shut, she sank down to floor.
Oh no, had she really just closed the door practically right into his face? She was drowned in shame and embarrassment after she had realized that she hadn’t even bid him a good night properly. How could it be that Adam could make her act like a heavy crushed teenager? Or was she actually in love with him?
* * *
She couldn’t be. It was impossible. She was confused. Maybe in need. But definitely not in love. Or in denial after all? Serena sighed and propped herself up onto her elbows to take a glance at the clock. 5 am. Great, she hadn’t slept this night at all. So many things were running through her head. First, there was the fight she had with David and his sudden confession. Serena felt betrayed by him in many ways. She hadn’t forgiven him for what had happened in the night after the funeral and she hadn’t forgiven herself for that matter. And here he was, he came back to her and she had been willing to start new, to make peace with the past…only to have David breaking everything down again.
Second, Adam had kissed her. Right, on her cheek, but it didn’t take a genius to notice what he felt for her. The problem was that she didn’t know how her feelings were towards him. She liked him, for sure. But she didn’t know if there was more. If there was enough to make it work.
The things she had experienced with Lucas were still present and clear in her mind. Serena shook her head and pulled her arm over her eyes. Why did everything have to be so complicated? Adam trusted her. Every time, she was around him, she could sense that fact. And wasn’t it trust, she had expected from David? The answer was yes, although, this time, this case, it was her who lacked being trust-worthy. She hadn’t mentioned her past, Lucas, David or anything else with a single word to Adam. It was hard enough to build a friendship without absolute honesty, how should she keep up to stabilize a romantic relationship that way then?
Serena found herself in a conflict with herself. She had told neither Adam nor David from each other. And if she did, would they approve? She wanted to curl up and cry. Such decisions were hard to make and she certainly wasn’t good at them. If there was anything, she really would have liked now, then it was having Lucas back. She whimpered, as a memory of him rushed through her thoughts. It would be so much easier.
Regaining her self-restraint again, she stood up and went for a shower. She would need to talk to both of them in the end, she figured out. After school, she would meet up with Adam. She didn’t feel the necessity to tell him the whole truth, but maybe a conversation with him would make things clearer. His opinion and feelings came first.
She could still deal with David later.
* * *
The sun shone down onto the grass and most of the flowers were already blooming. Even though, it was April, the weather was quite nice.
„I’m glad you’ve found some time”, Serena said and breathed in, willing to calm herself down. Though, when Adam pressed a light kiss on her cheek, the nervousness crept into her again. Blushing, she began to stroll through the park along side with him. She fidgeted before she began to speak. „Well, about you and us…I-I just wanted to know what you feel for me. Because I’m not sure…” Her face burned with embarrassment, but she had at least gotten the words off her chest. The couple stopped walking and looked at each other. Adam’s expression was surprised, but not shocked or angered. A smile slowly spread over his lips. He gently took her hand and answered with pure sincerity. „Actually, I’m trying to figure out my feelings, as well. You don’t have to be ashamed, Serena. I like you, I really do. Over the past months we’ve grown so close and I-“
Serena had been listening carefully to him, when something or rather someone else caught her attention. Not far from them, she could see a young man approaching them. His chocolate brown hair and tall, now quite thin figure left no mistake. David.
She would have cursed out loud, if she had been alone. Adam’s words were lost on her, while her eyes followed the person, coming closer and closer. She wanted to hide or to run away. This hadn’t been her plan, a confrontation of all three in public. Perhaps it wasn’t too late to leave now. But when David raised his hand called out her name, it was.
Immediately Adam stopped talking and turned around to see the other man. The instant their eyes met, their gazes changed. Serena hadn’t known that the boys obviously knew each other, so when her expressions grew scorning, she stood between them completely confused. She cleared her throat. „Adam, that’s David, an old friend of mine”, she started introducing, „David, this is Adam.”
„How do you know him?” David asked her. He moved in front of her, not breaking the eye contact with the other one. A strangled „what?” escaped her lips, as she noticed David’s attempt to shield her away. „He’s a friend, David. You don’t have to be so overprotecting.”
„He was the disappointing one, right Serena?” Adam said sharply. „I could have told you right away that Newton is a letdown.”
„Shut your mouth, loser”, David shot back, „it’s her decision with whom she is friends.”
„Yes, it is”, she exclaimed and pushed David away from her to stand between the boys again. „What the hell is going on here? How do you know each other?”
„We were classmates”, Adam began, „long, long time ago. I figured out pretty quickly what an arrogant ass he was. Never liked that son of a bitch.”
„Says the crybaby”, David’s voice turned malicious. Serena had never seen either of them this way before. Both of them were filled with so much hate and despise. „Don’t tell me you’re going out with that guy?”
„That’s my business, David!” Serena replied loudly. „And now stop acting all this crazy!”
The men now seemed more like wild animals, fighting for their district or their prey. They dismissed her protests and continued their stupid evil glaring game.
„You’re still the same old selfish bastard. No wonder you make Serena worry so much”, Adam continued. „She’d be better off without you. Anyone would.”
„Watch your mouth! You have no idea what she’s been through and if you knew, you wouldn’t be able to handle it. Or tell me, Serena, does he know about Lucas?”
She flinched, when he spit out his
name. Shaking her head, she pleaded quietly, „Please, stop, David.”
„I don’t believe you, Newton”, Adam now shouted, when he saw the sadness appear in Serena’s eyes. „She’s my friend, not you.”
„Look, boy, I don’t want this to get ugly. Just leave her alone and I’ll leave it at that!” Serena looked up enraged. How did these fools dare to fight over her, her feelings, her life? Had she really been so mistaken in both of them? Hot liquid burned in her eyes, but she didn’t let it spill. She wouldn’t cry. Not in front of them.
Although, she was soon distracted from the tears, when she had to watch Adam’s anger taking over. His fist slammed forward with full force, aiming for David’s face. Latter had fortunately seen that hit coming and dodged it. David’s own hand landed a shot on his opponent’s stomach. Adam yelped in pain, but had the guts to fight back. It took the girl some seconds to realize what was going on before she started yelling and shouting at them. „Stop it! David! Adam! Stop it! Now!” Her cries of concern and fear stayed unnoticed. Blood trickled out of Adam’s nose and David’s right eye wore a heavy bruise. Despite of their increasing injuries, the men didn’t stop. Serena couldn’t stand to watch them another second. She had to interfere somehow, although she did know she wouldn’t stand a chance against either of them. Seriously, they were about to kill each other. Thoughtlessly, she threw herself between them, but she certainly wasn’t an obstacle to their fight. She was pushed aside just as quickly as she had jumped into them. Dammit, they didn’t listen to her, for they were far too wrapped up in their beating and cursing. Anyways, there had to be something Serena could do to end this insanity. And then it hit her.
She lunged forward and grabbed Adam’s shoulders. Before the male fighters could figure out what was happening, Serena’s lips landed on Adam’s. They were warm and bloody, Serena noticed and slowly broke off the kiss.
Now it was their turn to look shocked at her, but at least they had stopped wrestling. David stared at her with a mix of disgust and sadness. She didn’t know if he wanted to apologize to her or to accuse her, when he stuttered her name. „Se-Serena…I…”
„Go, David”, she said in a small voice. „We’ll talk later. Just please go now.”
Surprisingly, he did as she said, without even looking back at them. Serena sighed and the tension left her body slowly. She didn’t realize she was still holding Adam until he said something. „That felt…nice.”
„Don’t you think that this is all over now! I’m still mad at you. What the hell had happened between you and David? Are you completely crazy?” Her voice was dripping with fury and the pressure on his arms increased. „Ouch”, he winced and she let him go.
It was awkward. The sun shone brightly, it was the middle of the day and here they stood. Adam’s face was covered in blood and his clothes all rustled and dirty. „You’ve got blood on your lips”, he suddenly said matter-of-factly. He reached out his hand to brush it away with his thumb. „I’m sorry.”
„You’d better be”, she murmured and let her eyes wander over him, „come on, let me get you fixed up, while you explain this situation to me.”
* * *
Serena and Adam sat on the terrace. She gently wrapped bandages around the bloody gashes and made sure to clean his face. After some silence, he began speaking.
„Newton and I never liked each other”, he huffed, „he was always a spoiled only child, showing off his father’s money.” The 16-year-old girl couldn’t recall any scene that had ever been the case, but she let him continue. „His attitude wore off after some time, but he always stayed distant to the rest of the class. It seemed like he had something better to do in his free time than to hang out with us.” That was because he was with Lucas and me.
She silently added to his statement.
„I haven’t seen him for an eternity”, Adam continued. He flinched slightly, when she disinfected his skin. „I really don’t know myself why that just happened. I only realized that he had hurt you and then my emotions took over.” He let his head hung down. „I’m sorry, Serena. I told you, I wouldn’t disappoint you, but I did.”
A faint smile ghosted over her lips. So he had been jealous, or at least overprotective. „I’m not mad anymore”, she told him and his expression lit up. „But David has been my friend for a long time and I need to work out things with him, too.”
Adam’s gaze changed from hopeful to confused. Before he could protest, she added, „Please, Adam. I need to do this. And don’t start fighting with him again. I want neither of you dead.” Too. Her mind said additionally, though she pushed any thoughts of Lucas quickly away.
Suddenly, she stood up and pulled away from him. „I have to go now.”
„To that Newton guy?” He replied and the bitter words were spoken like a matter of fact and not a question.
„Adam”, Serena sighed, „Please don’t be like this.”
„Well”, his tone became flat and almost derogatory, „I’m just telling you what I know. David is an ass.”
Serena didn’t make any comment and left it at that. She simply waved her hand and told him she’d meet up with him soon.
* * *
It was already dark, when she stood in front of the Newton mansion. Serena froze lightly in the chilling air and cursed herself for not bringing a jacket along. After ringing the bell for the third time, she finally heard someone opening the door.
„Oh”, David let out rather unenthusiastically, „it’s you.”
Serena raised an eyebrow and eyed him. What kind of greeting was that? „Yes, it’s me.” He stood there dumbfounded, waiting for her to say something. She had to fight hard against the sudden urge to roll her eyes. „Can I come in?”
She didn’t receive a verbal answer, instead David took a step to the side to let her enter. He closed the door behind them and they walked into the living room. The brunette girl sat down across from her friend onto the couch.
„We need to talk”, she started saying right away, while he continued looking at her apathetically. Green eyes searched blue ones for a sign of relenting, regret or any other kind of emotion. Or will to talk. But there couldn’t be found anything at all. His face was completely blank. „Come on, David, I’ve already heard Adam’s version of the story, but I need to hear yours, too.”
„Oh really?” He failed to bit back the sarcasm. „I thought you and Adam were BFFs now, giving out all their private gossip to each other.”
„Stop it”, Serena spat back. It annoyed her, when he became like this. David had always been a kind person to her, but he seemed to have changed so much during his time in Great Britain.
David couldn’t help, but to rub in further. He actually felt sorry for her that he was treating her this way, but his anger and hate weren’t specifically directed to her. They were meant for that Adam-bastard. „But it’s true, isn’t it? Adam doesn’t know a single thing about Lucas and you, or you and me for that matter.”
Serena clenched her fists. How could he be so mean? Simply mean. Had Adam been right about him after all?
„Why don’t you tell him? What difference would it make if he knew?” He dug in deeper, though this time he sounded more curious than mean.
Tear welled up in her eyes and she was tempted to leave. She dodged David’s sharp gaze and looked down at her shaking hands. The first drop splashed down onto the pale skin. It didn’t take long until it was accompanied by more tears. Broken sobs escaped her mouth, as she put her head into her hands. „How can you be like that?” She whimpered. „I thought…I thought, you’d understand, David. That you were the only one I could trust. Even after all that has happened…” Serena collapsed and her petite form broke down onto the floor.
David was in shock. He hadn’t realized how deep he had cut in with his words and his actions. Seeing her, his sister
, crouching on the ground broke his heart. He had always wanted to protect her and ended up hurting her so much more. He kneeled down beside her and laid his arms around her shivering body. He could feel the cold rising from it and felt even worse for her. Serena flinched at his touch, but didn’t have the strength to brace against it. She immediately gave into that warmth and that smell, which captured so many memories. The tears poured down and no matter how hard she tried, they wouldn’t stop. As they lay there together in each other’s arms, silence only broken by some croaked sobs stretched out between them and made both realize what they both had been missing in their life for more than a year. The connection they had build up so long ago. The share of memories. And their common past and fate.
Finally, the salty drops subsided and Serena returned to normal breathing. Rubbing her eyes, she lifted her head to look at David. His former expression of indifference had vanished, instead his face was signed with worry and care. Despite his skinny and sick appearance, Serena could now see the real
„We both decided not to tell you”, he said suddenly, his bright eyes softening, „Lucas and me, that is. It was shortly after he had told me he had to move that I discovered my disease. I knew how much Lucas’ departure would hurt you and I didn’t want to give you more reasons to worry about us. Maybe I reacted thoughtless, but all I ever wanted was to protect you. We wanted to protect you.”
Hot, fresh tears began to fill Serena’s eyes, but this time, they fell silently. She didn’t even notice them, as she continued to listen carefully. „It doesn’t mean we didn’t trust you. We just feared to break you down again, right after you had found your strength.” They both knew what he was talking about. Serena’s attempted suicides hadn’t been taken unmindfully by the two boys back then. „I guess it wasn’t the best way to reveal the fact I had Leukaemia on this party-thing, but I figured out I’d have to tell you some day. And I didn’t know if I gained the courage ever again, if I hadn’t told you then. Maybe we’ve been fools for not telling you. But all I can say to you now is…I’m sorry.”
Serena sucked a breath in sharply and wiped her face with her hand. „I have to apologize. I laughed, when you told me.” Shame rested on her. „You told me something so private, so intimate and I…I laughed.”
„Hey, Sis, you were drunk”, David smiled weakly, „it’s okay.”
„Oh, brother, I missed you so!” She cried out all of sudden and threw her arms around him. His thin body went rigid, but quickly relaxed and returned the embrace. Serena’s spirits were rising again. She was comfortable.
„About Adam”, he mumbled as he smoothed his hand over her soft, long hair, „do whatever you want and I’ll respect it.”
Serena couldn’t help but smile. Though, David quickly added, „But you know, you’ll have to tell him the truth at one point.”
She sighed against his chest and whispered, „I know.” For the moment, she was happy to have David back and as long as she was friends with Adam, she wouldn’t complain. This night she would finally give her mind a little peace. When the time came, she knew she would find a way to explain Adam her past. Now, all she wanted to do was to sleep, feeling David’s fingers gliding softly through her hair.
* * *
After the talk with David, Serena felt so much better. Yet, something kept tugging on her mind. She opened the thick book and let her finger wander across the table of contents. There it was.
Leukemia (or leukaemia), Greek leukos λευκός, "white"; aima αίμα, "blood", is a cancer of the blood or bone marrow and is characterized by an abnormal proliferation (production by multiplication) of blood cells, usually white blood cells (leukocytes). Leukemia is a broad term covering a spectrum of diseases. In turn, it is part of the even broader group of diseases called hematological neoplasms.
Alright, that was about the amount of what she already knew about the disease. She flipped forward to the chapter dealing with the kind of Leukaemia David had or rather has.
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), Management of ALL focuses on control of bone marrow and systemic (whole-body) disease. Additionally, treatment must prevent leukemia cells from spreading to other sites, particularly the central nervous system (CNS) e.g. monthly lumbar punctures.
David had told her ‘not to worry too much’ about the whole topic, but she couldn’t give it a rest. She knew David tried to protect her by sparing her that information. A weary smile lay on her lips, as she remembered that he had always put others in front of his own well-being. He could be such a stupid boy sometimes! As if it didn’t matter how his own life was going on. The little sign of happiness soon vanished, as she read on.
The earlier acute lymphocytic leukemia is detected, the more effective the treatment. The aim is to induce a lasting remission, defined as the absence of detectable cancer cells in the body (usually less than 5% blast cells on the bone marrow).
Treatment for acute leukemia can include chemotherapy, steroids, radiation therapy, intensive combined treatments (including bone marrow or stem cell transplants), and growth factors.
Chemotherapy – Serena wasn’t an expert, but she had been taught enough in school about it to know that it was not only very weakening for the body, but also had effects like the loss of hair. David’s hair was way shorter than when he had first departed in 2006. But how had he been looking like at Lucas’ funeral? She had noticed something different about him, though she hadn’t been able to put a finger on it. The funeral had been in January – it meant at that time David had already received three months of therapy! Serena gasped. The signs of change must have been so clearly, so why hadn’t she noticed them? Of course, she herself had been in shock after Lucas’ death, nevertheless it wasn’t an excuse for neglecting the well-being of her best friend completely. Guilt washed over her conscience.
The relative survival rates differ by the person's age at diagnosis, gender, race and the type of leukemia. From 1999 to 2005, the five-year relative survival rates overall were:
Acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL): 66.3 percent overall
Serena froze. 66.3 percent
– two thirds survived. But the other third…with trembling hands she closed the book. It was enough information for now. The new words and numbers were sorted out in her brain, while she waged war with her inner self. All the time she had thought of herself having a hard life, but she felt ashamed now. David had gone and was still going through something more horrible than she could have ever imagined. If she had only known…no, it wasn’t David’s fault for not telling her. After their conversations, she could see his reasons. If she had only realized what was going on, instead of only caring about her own problems. If she had only been there for him. If she…
Serena startled, when her room’s door opened. A blond-haired head appeared in the doorway. „You’re stuck in here when there’s such a sunny day outside?” He asked as he entered the room.
He instantly saw the medical book and pointed towards it. „What’s that?” His gaze grew concerned. „You’re not sick, are you?”
Serena shook her head. „No. I’ve been doing some research on Leukaemia.” Unsure of how to reply, her friend stayed silent. So the girl continued. „Did you know that one third of Leukaemia patients die?”
Adam suppressed the urge to sigh. He didn’t want to appear rude or insensitive, but he had no intention to let David or his disease disturb the friendship with Serena he had built up over such a long time. „You wanna go to the park?”
Her head shot up in irritation. „Don’t you understand? David could be dead now and I would have never known. I’ve never been there for him, when he needed me the most!”
„Well, that’s his fault for not telling you!” Adam countered. „He obviously didn’t want your help, but now he comes back and seeks your pity!”
„Is this how you see it?” Her voice was calm again.
„I”, he gulped, „look, I don’t know why, but for some reason he acted like he did. So what? It’s his business, not yours.” He sat down next to her, but Serena quickly pushed herself of the couch.
„Actually, it is”, she answered, „I care. He is my friend and there’s nothing wrong with caring about a friend!”
„Of course, there’s not”, Adam back-pedalled, „but don’t you see it’s always David who tears us apart? Since he is back in Germany, it’s always him you’re talking about. Thinking about. Even when we’re on a date, he’s the only thing on your mind!”
„Don’t tell me, you’re actually jealous?” A long silence followed her question.
„I’m not jealous, Serena.”
„Yes, you are. Though, there’s no need to be. I’m not confusing sympathy with love.” She tried to give him a possibility to understand her feelings. It obviously failed.
„Then there’s no need for me to stay any longer”, he said and left.
She didn’t know what he meant. „Wait! Adam, what the hell is going on?” Her words hit onto deaf ears as she hard the front door falling into lock.
„Dammit!” She cursed out loud and threw herself on the bed. How could she be in love with such a fool?
* * *
„I’m feeling a little uneasy about leaving you behind with that son of a bi-“
„Hey, hey”, Serena exclaimed and wiggled with her index finger in front of his face, „no more insulting. I thought we had talked about that.”
David’s shoulders slumped down. „Yes, sister
”, he drawled out as he approached her. Her green eyes quickly changed from playful to sad. „Are you sure you’re going to be alright alone by yourself, Serena?”
She gave him a reassuring smile. „I’m all grown up now, Dave. You don’t need to worry about me.” Breathing in deep, she added, „More important, I want to be informed how you are. And how the next exams will turn out.”
„I’ll write. And phone you. Every day if you want.” David was serious. Lovingly he laid his hands onto her shoulder and looked down into her big, hopeful eyes. „Thank you, Serena. Honestly. Without you I wouldn’t feel this happy right now.”
The 16-year-old frowned. „But I haven’t done anything significant for you, why-?”
„Yes, you have”, David told her and pulled her close. „You still do.” He leaned forward to press a chaste kiss on her forehead. When her face came in sight again, he noticed her eyes becoming glassy. „You care.”
A soft sob escaped Serena’s lips. It was followed by uncertain laughter. „No, don’t make me cry”, she answered and the first tear made its way down her cheek, „not again. I don’t want this to be a sad goodbye.”
„We’ll meet again soon”, he replied and embraced her. She stood at the edge of the street and waved till his taxi disappeared behind the corner.
* * *
„A little uneasy, indeed”, Serena breathed out, after she had come to a stop in front of the front door. She stared at the wooden surface for a few seconds, anticipation and a little bit of fear rushing through her. Hesitantly she lifted her arm and pressed the alarm button quickly, before pulling back her hand, as if she had been burnt. Willing herself to come down, she put on a bright smile and folded her hands together in front of her breast.
„Serena”, the young man, who had opened the door, greeted her, „you look lovely.”
A blush crept up her face and she entered. She strolled around the familiar living room and turned around to see him smiling.
„Your family?” She asked curiously.
„So, why did you want to talk to me, Adam?”
He gulped as she moved forward to the point so fast. „Serena, I’ve been a complete idiot the last days. And I’m so sorry I started avoiding you, for I know that you sometimes feel lonely.”
He made a pause and looked at her intently. The blue reminded her for a brief moment of David, but only till she found a flicker of love, romantically love, and even a tiny spot of lust in them.
„It isn’t my place to tell you with whom to be friends with”, he continued, „and you were right. I am jealous.”
Serena watched in awe, how he approached while going on with his apology. „I’m such a fool, aren’t I? “ His lips came close to her skin and she could feel his warm breath against her skin.
„Adam, I…”, the young girl was at a loss of words when his lips descended with hers. It had been so long since she had kissed someone, out of love. Adam’s movements became more direct and his long fingers glided over her back. As much as passion was longing inside of her, as burning was the desire to tell him the words she desperately needed to tell him. „I…I have to tell you something”, she murmured in between his kisses and their panting, „you…I…” Her mind was lacking, as his hands found the clasp of her bra. She opened her mouth to begin again, though he quickly silenced her with a long, sensual kiss.
„It’s okay”, he whispered into her ear, „Don’t be afraid.” She looked into his deep blue eyes with excitement and confusion. „I want you to remember this night, Serena.”
* * *
Rays of sunlight shone through the curtain onto her peaceful face. Her eyes were closed and she wasn’t smiling, but one could tell she was deep asleep and at comfort. She was snuggled up in a thin blanket, since the summer nights were quite warm. Her panties were the only thing she wore, but the blanket did enough to cover up her breasts. Serena stirred slightly and her eyes opened. Today felt right. It was the right time to finally tell Adam about her past. She had sensed it last night more clear than ever. She was in love with him. She loved him with all her being. And that fact alone, that he was able to make her feel love again, was enough for him to deserve hearing the truth. She blinked at the alarm clock. A few minutes after 9 am.
Pushing herself into a sitting person, the blanket wrapped around her torso, she let her gaze wander across Adam’s room. It seemed so familiar to her and actually it was a nice feeling waking up in here. Though, she did miss his presence. Was he already up? She shook her head a bit and the messy strays fell down her shoulders. Standing up, she clutched her hands to her cleavage and adjusted the fabric, so it would stay covered.
A little insecure, she sneaked down the stairs. She didn’t feel like calling him, so she went from room to room, just to find those empty. Where was he?
She was about to go upstairs again and to dress herself, as she noticed something shiny on the commode in the living room. Now at full attention she gave it a closer look. It was her necklace with the heart-shaped pendant. How could she have forgotten about that piece of jewellery? She picked it up carefully and the paper lying beneath it, as well. Slowly she opened the paper and read:
I had no idea it was you. I should have known.
Don’t try to look for me. I won’t be coming back soon.
I love you
She stared down at the words and her gem. Running a finger along its side, she had a look at the inside of the locket. Lucas was kissing her cheek on the one side, on the other she was laughing along with her boys, Lucas and David. Her eyes kept staring at the image of herself and her deceased lover. It was so full of love and intimacy. Feelings she had missed for so long and she had begun to believe to have retrieved them. With Adam. And now he was gone, just as Lucas, as David, as Jenny, as Sebastian…why did they all leave her behind? Adam’s smile flashed through her memories. Why did he go? He should have known. What? She was so in love with him. It had taken her so long to open up again and now, when she was ready, he simply broke her heart by leaving. Running away. But of course not before he had had his way with her. I love you – how could he write such words, when he behaved like a fucking bastard? Suddenly she felt dirty that she had let herself be touched by him at all. She tore the blanket away from her skin and sank to her knees, an angry and desperate sob fled from her lips. Lying in a foetal position she let her anguish free. Her breathing was hysterical and her weeping was actually more like screaming. She sounded like a wounded animal. Her naked skin tensed up to goosebumps despite the warm temperatures. The pupils of her emerald eyes remained wide as she stared at the wall. The sheet lay around her ankles, crumpled and messy. It might appear strange, but Serena’s pain wasn’t just mental. She could feel her heart beating fast and faster and the lump in her throat hurt. Holding onto her necklace as if it was life itself she waited, crying and gasping for breath, for the ache to subside. Futilely.
She was so cold. Serena knew she had to get up, she didn’t want any of Adam’s family members to find her here. Naked and all. Slouching back into Adam’s room, she wiped away the last of her tears. Fucking idiot, why did she cry over such an ass? Her grief turned into madness. She threw the blanket onto the bed and dressed herself hectically. Only when it came to her necklace, she slowed down her movements and put it on. Taking a deep breath, Adam’s words echoed in her mind. I should have known. Her fingers encircled the locket, hanging from her slender neck. The solution shot through her and woke her from her state of anger. Adam had known about Lucas and also about his fate. However, he hadn’t realized who she was. In the end, she couldn’t blame him for not-knowing, since she had been the one keeping her true self as a secret. Such irony. She grabbed her bag and glanced at the clock. It was afternoon already. Not even trying to get a look at the mirror – she knew she must be a mess – she smoothed her hair over the back of her head. The letter was crushed in her fist and she left the house in a hurry. The hot sun outside shocked her body with a sudden wave of warmth. She made her way through the park and came to a halt, when she reached the favourite spot of Lucas, David and hers. It was the exact spot, where she had lain with Adam and the place where he and David had beaten each other. It was so paradox that she almost had to smile.
Serena closed her eyes and let herself think about the day of them, LSD and their promise. It was a nice memory, even though both sad and happy. She wanted those times back. She wanted Lucas and David back. She just wanted to stay in the past and forget all this present misery.
A soft breeze brought some cool air along and made the green leaves rustle in the wind. Only a quiet whisper cut through the sound of nature.
„Let’s promise we’ll never let anything take away our happiness together.”
* * *
Green eyes opened and gazed at the bouquet of flowers decorating the grave. Her breath was visible, as she spoke, „I’m glad you could make it.”
„I had wanted to come earlier”, a deep, male voice answered, „I’m sorry I didn’t.”
Serena turned to face him. „You’re here now. That’s all that matters. I don’t think I could have made it on my own today.”
„Jenny and her family understand. It’s hard for you.” David replied and she was captured by his unique eyes.
„It is”, she murmured and pulled her scarf tighter around her neck. Breaking free from his gaze, she reversed and started walking, „let’s go.”
David followed her and they went away from the cemetery in silence. „Go ahead, say it”, bitterness strained her voice. „What do you mean, Serena?” he replied.
„That you were always right about Adam and you’ve told me so”, she muttered annoyed.
„I’m not going to do so”, he said honestly, „you’re my little sister.”
„How did he know?”
„You mean about Lucas?” He didn’t wait for her answer. „Well, the three of us were in the same class and I guess Lucas’ death was known to the students, as well as to Adam.”
„Do you think what he did was right?” Her eyes stared at the snow-covered ground.
„No”, the reply came quickly and firm, „whatever you told him or didn’t, it was your decision to make. It’s not easy to live with such a secret, I know.”
„Thank you”, she smiled weakly and stepped closer to him. „How are you by the way? You had your last exam lately, right?”
„Yes”, he leaned in and lay an arm around her shoulder, „I’m as good as new. The cancer is killed. It may take a while for me to become fit again, but other than that I’m okay.”
„That’s good”, Serena’s head rested at his chest. One arm was slung around his waist for support. She enjoyed the warmth of his body and felt comfortable for a split moment despite the occasion for David’s visit. Today was January 8th. Her birthday and at the same time Lucas’ obit. The last year had been a time full of misery and disappointment. Yet, it didn’t felt wasted totally to her. She had her brother back. Her best friend.
And a piece of the past she missed so desperately.
End of part 2/3
Tag der Veröffentlichung: 09.09.2009
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