Though Aimee's scars are healing, her wounds are still open and raw on the inside.
He had plotted this whilst in hospital, and knew that he needed to track down Jackson and make him pay. He would wait until Aimee was slightly better, though she was now out of the hospital, he would wait until they were fully settled in school life as seniors; Aimee was still adjusting to school after all. Then he would find Jackson wherever he was hiding and make him suffer as Aimee had.
Aimee knew nothing of these plans, nor did she want to. She just concentrated on getting through the day, each day her skin grew a little more, soon, she knew that she would be ‘healed’ and the hospital would cut ties with her. For now, she complained of the pain and stored up the opiates they gave her. She wanted to be prepared. For what, she didn’t really know, but if she ever needed to escape, she wanted to know that she had the means.
Everyone was worried about her, Aimee could tell, but no one wanted to say anything, she was steadily losing weight, she only spoke when asked a direct question, and was a shadow of her former vivacious self. Her mum continued her sessions with her old counsellor, though it was yielding no results and she only went to appease her mother. She often found herself looking at her face; the dark scars and grooves carved her features in half, the skin across her forehead was stretched and shiny, her scalp had undergone a lot of reconstruction in order for her hair to start growing back, as it was now, creating a downy fluff on her crown, jet black and about an inch long. The skin on her hands was tight and it was painful to hold a pen, but she did anyway, locking herself away in her room and scribbling furiously in her notebook until her fist seized up.
One afternoon, after a snack, Aimee was in the bathroom, and Gerard took the opportunity to read her poetry book which she had jealously gaurded.
This is my greatest role
The execution of which
I feel the hunger,
The vibration that rattles my ribs
Giving me a dark thrill
Smiling with dead eyes while a lady
Probes into my past
My inner psyche
What does she think she will find?
I am like everyone else, after all
Under the skin, we are made of the same thing
Am trying to change.
Dumbfounded, he read it again, and then noticed the date above the poem; October 21st. A week before her burning. What was going on? He flicked a few pages ahead
The scars on my body are nothing
In comparison to the scars inside…
The bathroom door opened, and Gerard slammed the book shut just as Aimee entered the room; a fleeting expression of fear passed her face as she saw the book in the wrong place and Gerard’s guilty expression, then
“Let’s go down to the park, it’s warm enough.”
Like cowards, both of us, thought Gerard, both of us too afraid to say anything.
Down at the park, they met up with Mikey, now a sophomore and his new friend, Frank, a freshman. Frank was a short kid, with spiky red hair and so much black eyeliner on that Aimee at first thought that he just never slept and had dark circles around his eyes.
He seemed nice, if a little overenthusiastic.
“Did you bring candy, you did? Oh-my-gosh, skittles? Are you kidding! Yus! Skittles are my favourite! Yum yum! Do you want some? Here? Aimee?”
Aimee shook her head with a smile
“Go on, Aimee, eat a skittle.” Gerard said, his eyes holding her own relentlessly
“Wha...no, thanks I’m not hungry”
“It’s just a skittle, it won’t hurt”
“No, I’m really fine thanks”
“Have a fucking skittle!”
“No, now why don’t you just fuck off Gerard!” with that Aimee stormed away into the brush surrounding the park. Frank and Mikey looked stunned as Gerard ran after her; frank broke the awkward silence;
“So, umm, your brother seems nice… and Aimee, well, she really doesn’t like skittles, does she?”