"I love you"
As we drive back towards our little alley I remain in the back seat with Amber, her head resting on my shoulder, eyes squeezed shut. I wonder what she’s thinking about. Once home I help Amber up to her room, surprised to see the turtle sitting on her bed. Amber walks over to it, collapsing on the comforter, holding the turtle to her chest.
“Thank you Frank,” she says smiling up at me. “I like turtles.”
Nodding I sit down next to her, “I know.”
Amber’s still beautiful even in her broken state. As I lay my lips on her forehead Donna walks in, bearing a forced smile, “Frank, sweetie, your mother would like you home.”
Amber’s eyes widen, her breath catching a little; she doesn’t want to be alone. Nodding to Donna I turn my attention back to Amber. I won’t leave her unless I’m positive she’ll be okay, I don’t care what my mom says.
“You can call me on the walkie. I promise I’ll answer. I can come back tonight if you don’t want to be alone,” I whisper.
Amber just nods having already put up the protective walls around herself to block out the pain. Her eyes stare blankly at the wall, unblinking and glassy. Not knowing what else to do or say I stand, kiss her forehead and leave the room.
Sprinting across the alley I pull open the back door of my house. My mom is sitting on the couch, sipping her coffee, eyes glued to the news. There I am, answering police questions about my best friend being violated, tears clinging to my face.
Suddenly I’m filled with rage, red spots appearing before my eyes, “Change the damn channel!”
My mother, startled by my sudden outburst, drops her coffee mug. White porcelain pieces and brown liquid fly across the floor but I don’t even care. Instead of apologizing or offering to help clean up the mess I bound upstairs already hearing Amber’s voice.
“Frank, are you there?” she asks, voice barely audible.
“I’m here, shh, don’t worry,” I answer sitting down on my bed, walkie talkie in hand. “What’s wrong?”
“Nothings wrong Frank, I just thought I’d let you know the windows unlocked, just watch your footing if you come over. I’m going to sleep,” Amber answers.
Glancing at the digital clock I read the time...it’s only four o’clock in the afternoon, “Sleep well.”
For the next few hours I just watch TV, trying to push the worry for Amber out of my head. I should have just told my mom I didn’t want to come home. She’s probably hurting right now and there’s nothing I can do to comfort her…I’ve left Amber in her time of need yet again.
Around six my mom sets a bowl of soup just inside the door, “You can go over as soon as you’ve eaten. I want you home by lunch though.”
Nodding I move over to pick the bowl of soup up, eating as slowly as I can force myself to. I don’t want my mom to think I’m in a rush to get out of the house. After I’m done I brush my teeth before grabbing the shoe that has been perched atop my television since the fight Amber and I had…it seems so long ago. Letting the note I wrote a while back flutter to the floor I head downstairs.
After exiting my house I cross the alley, using the garbage cans to get up to Amber’s window. Just like she said it is unlocked so I let myself in. Although it is dark in her room I can see that Amber is not asleep, instead she is sitting up, arm clutched to her chest.
Flicking the lights on I drop her shoe to the ground, climbing onto the bed. The red transferring from Amber’s arm onto her shirt lets me know exactly what has happened. Sighing I look her right in the eyes, trying not to let myself cry.
“Why, Ambo?” I ask gently taking her arm in my hands. There are red marks crisscrossing her forearm, most of them still leaking the sticky, red liquid that is Amber’s blood.
“I deserve it,” she answers.
For a second I have to turn away, a few tears spilling down my cheek. He’d left her so broken that she feels she deserves to be hurt. I swear I’m going to kill him. She doesn’t need this…Amber deserves to be happy not fucked up in the brain cause of some stupid bastard.
Once I’ve got my emotions in check I turn back to the now crying red head, “You don’t deserve it Amber. What happened isn’t your fault. You only deserve to be happy, Ambo.”
She shakes her head, “It is my fault. If I had listened to you, if I had paid more attention, if I hadn’t been stupid, if I hadn’t….”
Her words are cut off by a sob. My gut reaction is to pull her into a tight hug but I know if I get blood on my clothes I’ll get questioned by my mom in the morning. So instead I pat her back before walking out of the room to find some things to clean up her wounds.
After about five minutes I give up and knock on Mikey’s door, he opens it looking a little confused, “Hey Frank.”
“Hi, Mikey, where do you keep the disinfectant?”
His face falls, as it clicks in his mind why I’m asking. He doesn’t enjoy the fact that Amber hurts herself anymore than I do but right now, in this kind of situation, it just seems a million times worse.
“It’s under the sink in the bathroom behind the hand soap,” Mikey answers, “Frank, help her get better.”
I nod, “I’ll try my best Mikey.”
Once I’ve gathered everything I head back to Amber’s room, getting to work on cleaning out the dozen new cuts she’s given herself. I watch for the reaction on Amber’s face as the disinfectant bubbles, killing any germs that could possibly be living in the light pink cuts. Before putting the bandages on I rub a little bit of Neosporin on the lacerations.
“What did you use?” I ask, climbing under the covers with Amber once she’d put on a new shirt.
As she moves closer to me her eyes shut, “An exact o’ knife, I didn’t push it in very deep. I don’t want to die…yet.”
“Can I have it? I don’t want you hurting yourself anymore,” I say, stroking Amber’s hair.
“No, it belongs to me,” she answers. “I won’t use it unless I have to.”
I frown, quickly wiping a tear off my cheek, “You shouldn’t have to use it ever.”
Amber doesn’t respond for a long while, her breathing nice an even as if she is sleeping but I know for a fact she isn’t.
“Frank…” Amber says getting my attention as her fingers intertwine with mine, “sing me a song please.”
At first I don’t know what to sing. Eventually something comes to me, a song by Coldplay that I remember Amber listened to over and over again for a few weeks straight when she was going through a rather severe bought of depression. That will make this situation worse. Amber sufferes from depression and sometimes it lasts for months on end...she doesn't need this.
Taking a deep breath I being to sing, “When you try your best, but you don't succeed. When you get what you want, but not what you need. When you feel so tired, but you can't sleep, stuck in reverse. And the tears come streaming down your face, when you lose something you can't replace. When you love someone, but it goes to waste, could it be worse? Lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones, and I will try to fix you. And high up above or down below, when you're too in love to let it go. But if you never try you'll never know, just what you're worth. Lights will guide you home, and ignite your bones, and I will try to fix you. Tears stream, down your face when you lose something you cannot replace. Tears stream down your face and I…. Tears stream down on your face. I promise you I will learn from my mistakes. Tears stream, down your face and I…. Lights will guide you home and ignite your bones and I will try to fix you.”
By the time I finish Amber is fast asleep, her head resting on my chest, hand still held in mine. She looks so peaceful, as if nothing ever happened; I know that this is not the case.
Leaning down I kiss Amber on the cheek, “I love you.”
Note: Hope you like it. Song is Fix You by Coldplay. Remember to rate and review. Getting new reviews always makes me smile. :)