Anna slammed the door of the car and walked to the side door of their El Cajon home. It was mid-winter in the San Diego county and she was freezing and all she wanted was to go inside and forget all about what was yet to come. The funeral, the oh I'm so sorry for your lose pity comments, the arguing with her mom. It was all too much.
"Anna Lyerly, what is your problem young lady?!" her mom asked, more so yelled, as she followed Anna inside.
There were so many things she'd kept quiet the past 6 months, the past 3 years. Now was the only time she'd really have to tell her, to let it all out.
It was tell her now, or tell her at the funeral. Either way, it was going to be ugly.
So now was the choice.
Her mom was taking off her jacket when she burst out in yells.
"Do you really want to know what my damn problem is!? Well Mom, I'll tell you! Three damn years, three damn rotten years I had to dread the day my dad, the one person in this family who listened to my opinion, would be fucking buried!"
"Watch your language young lady!"
"No, I won't I'm sick and tired of this! And then what the hell did you do to help? To make sure he'd have just enough time to see me at least graduate but no you were God knows where you fucking were! Probably out whoreing around with that damn Professor from UCSD because he was such a great listener! Well guess what, I had to stay up at night while you were gone making sure my dad didn't die in his sleep, when he had coughing fits, when the coughing ended coming up with blood, when he had night sweats, when he just could not sleep, I was there, not you, me! I'm 17 dammit, I can't have that kind of responsibility but since I was fucking 14 I have! You were his wife, you were supposed to help! But you didn't! Maybe you did at first, but as soon as I hit 16 it was bye bye Chris and Anna, Jess has to go and find a man to fuck me because my husband is terminally ill! Love you! No just no! I'm leaving now," tears were streaming down her face by this point, after so long of holding everything inside it was out in the open, "Don't come looking for me either, I'm going to hang out with people that I call friends, you know those things that you get when your mom doesn't make you watch your sick dad for once."
And with that she walked out in the cold El Cajon weather. It was nearing night and it wasn't the right time to be outside, especially knowing that El Cajon wasn't the nicest part of the San Diego county. But she didn't care. She was going to go and talk to her one friend, Lidia. Maybe she'd help her relax.
Walking away from her house she realized something. Her mom really didn't care, because if she did, she'd run after her. But she didn't.
Frank walked into the small cabin the guys shared. It wasn't bad either. Compared to the rest of the city, it was perfect. It was a surprise how some of the residents just drifted from one buliding to another.
Then again, most of them took up jobs as they were directed to by Mother War to pay for their debt on Earth.
Whether they become a drummer boy, a wolf watcher, a maiden at Mother War's manor, or just a wander, they all had a debt to pay off. And many of them did well enough to leave soon after, to move on to the land above us. For some reason, Frank, Gerard, Ray, Mikey, and Bob just couldn't leave. And to be honest, they didn't want to leave. Except Gerard.
Walking into the small cabin he saw them all sitting around doing nothing in particular. They were out of their uniforms though. For the exception of Gerard. He never got out of the uniform unless it was time to go to bed.
"Frank, you went to see Mother War with out me, why?" Gerard asked Frank before he could even slip off his uniform jacket.
"Um, well I needed to speak to her," Frank said placing the jacket on the hook near the door only wearing his pants and a stripped sweater.
He went to sit by Mikey, Gerard's younger brother, who was playing with the bass Despair had gotten him. For some reason Mikey and Despair got along, maybe a bit too well.
"Did Mama say anything about a parade happening soon?" Mikey asked not paying much attention to the fact that Gerard was staring down Frank in a crude way.
There was that flaw in the small cabin the 5 men shared. Gerard and Mikey had to share a room while Ray, Frank and Bob all slept in the living room, well Mother War referred to the soul room, but after being alive for as long as they had been they were accustom to they normal sayings. With the cabin being so small, they had no choice but to be together all the time.
Ray, Mikey, Frank and Bob loved being together though. It reminded them of the life they had, the life that was cut short. There was always something for them to talk about. A lot of times they were comforting Mikey, sadly. He knew they would've all made it to the land above the city if Despair and Distraught had seduced him in and Gerard, being the big brother he is, had to follow him. And them all being so close just had to follow, but they never blamed Mikey.
Soon after they entered the city they were all entranced by Distraught and Despair, and they were happily, or happily at the time, led to Mother War's manor where she evaluated and inspected every aspect of them. From how they all died, how they all knew one another, how they were even in the city. Mother War, from the very beginning, knew that they didn't belong there. She knew Distraught and Despair had made a mistake by drawing in Mikey who was followed by the rest of them. It was clear that they all had pure souls, they didn't belong but she decided to let them leave if they wished. And they never did. And after some time, they just couldn't.
Gerard wanted to though, more than anything.
"Um, I didn't ask her, I had other more important things to ask her about," Frank replied to Mikey as he motioned for Ray to pass him his guitar.
"I say the wolves dragging out forgotten souls today when I went to check up on the doctors, I doubt we'll be having a parade today," Ray said to Mikey as he handed Frank his guitar that was a gift from Mother War. Mother War truly treated them amazingly.
"God, that's horrible... I hate the wolves so much," Bob said as he flipped through a book he found in the ashes. There wasn't much to do but they always found something to do. Whether it was searching the city ashes or visiting the doctors, the term used for the souls of men and women wanted to care for others and help them leave before themselves, or practicing, preparing for the next parade they'd have.
"Well, someone has to get rid of the forgotten souls, I'm surprised they haven't gotten rid of us yet. Every morning I expect the wolves to be here at our doorstep," Gerard said walking to the small place they called a kitchen. They had nothing but a few small foods, when your dead you don't need food, but Mother War knew it would keep them happy and that they could still eat even if they didn't need it so she granted them that.
"Gerard, you know we will never leave, this is our home," Mikey said as he stood up walking towards his brother. Ray, Bob, and Frank were all silent.
Gerard leaned against the wall and sighed. "Well, I rather have my soul mangled and battered by the wolves than go another fucking day here," he said quietly but loud enough for the 4 other guys to hear.
"Gerard, listen to me, this is home now, and believe it or not it's not too bad, and.... she's not coming, you need to accept that," Ray said plucking at his guitar strings a bit.
Gerard looked up and what looked like tears formed in his eyes, but that wasn't possible according to Mother War only pained souls who'd done horrible things could cry in the Broken City. And Gerard had never done a thing to anyone.
"You're right....I just.... you are right," Gerard said, for the first time since they'd arrived to the city he admitted she was gone and wouldn't be joining the "Black Parade" anytime soon.
"I can't believe you've....you've accepted it," Bob said because Ray and Frank's faces were in shock. None of them could believe it.
"Well it was about time don't you think?" Gerard asked rubbing his eyes a bit.
Mikey smiled a bit and Gerard smiled back. "Yeah it-"
"Shit, it's Distraught," Frank mumbled.
"I heard that Frankie!" she yelled as she entered the cabin. Frank smirked and looked away from her. He still couldn't stand her. "Now boys, Mama wants to talk to all of you and now please!" she continued gracefully skipping out of the cabin and waving to them to come.
They 5 men looked at one another and got up. Slipped on their jackets and walked out wondering what Mother War possibly had in store for them.
Frank wondered the most remembering her warning.
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