One-shot fanfic. Danielle cuts herself, can Ryan help her get rid of her life-threatening habits?
“Danielle!” Ryan shouted, as he watched her run away from him. He groaned and began sprinting after her. Danielle!” he called once again. But she didn’t look back. Unfortunately for her, his was faster and managed to stop her from going any further by grabbing her arm. “Danielle! Please, tell me what’s wrong?” he pleaded. Her hazel eyes didn’t look at him, but stayed firmly planted on the ground as she struggled to get away from him. He could see spots of moisture appear on the ground below her.
“Ryan! Please, just let me go!”
“No until you tell me! I want to help!”
Danielle’s head flipped upward and faced him. Her eyes were wet, her face was tear-stained, but her expression was angry. “I don’t need your help! If you want to help, just leave me alone please!” she begged.
The way she was begging him, and the way she looked at him broke his heart. “Please, Danielle. I don’t want to hurt you. I just want to help. Something’s been up with you, and I want to know what’s wrong.”
Her face was torn. “No…I can’t!” She shoved his arm away and started running again.
His eyes began to sting as her form retreated farther and farther from him. Then, he realized where she was going. The place she always went when she needed to be alone. He decided to go back and take a short-cut.
A few minutes later, he arrived at the creek. It was a small body of water, half a mile from their neighborhood in a wooded area. Ryan leaned against a huge oak tree, panting from the run. He watched all around, hoping to see Danielle soon. And a few seconds later, he saw her. Her shoulders were going up and down furiously, and her distressed sobs echoed all over. He hid behind a tree, not wanting to make her run away again. Danielle approached the creek’s edge, but she tripped over a tree root and fell down hard. Afterwards she didn’t even bother to get up, she just stayed there, curled up on the floor, grasping at her hair and sobbing heartbrokenly.
Ryan moved slowly so he was sure not to startle her. Then, he wove his arms around her waist and picked her up. She didn’t fight back as he cradled her and sat down under the tree. He held her to his chest, rocking back and forth as she cried her eyes out. He let her ruin his shirt and buried his face into her neck. “Shh, Danny, its okay. Everything is fine. Nothing’s going to hurt you. Everything’s okay.” he chanted over and over, he warm breath hitting her own cold neck.
Danielle’s sobs slowed and died out after a long while, when only small whimpers were left. Ryan had never let go of her the entire time.
“Do you wanna tell me what’s wrong?” he asked softly.
Danielle took a few deep breaths to make sure she would stay in control. “B-Brendon and I had a f-fight.” she said. Brendon was her twin brother.
“Oh. What’s happened?”
“I told him about K-Katie. That she was cheating on h-him, but he didn’t believe me. He said I was a liar and that I only wanted at-attention because my life was so fucked up and nobody wanted me.” She paused, and Ryan felt more salt water fall on his shirt. But he could care less. “And I shouted at him, I s-said that Katie didn’t really love him, like he-t-thought. And he slapped me and said to go kill myself, and ran away.” She began crying and Ryan stroked her hair in an effort to comfort her. He couldn’t believe all of the things she was telling him. How could Brendon have been so cruel?
“Calm down, everything’s gonna be fine.” he soothed her. He ran his hand down her arm and found her hand, which he held onto tightly.
“Ryan, its my fault though! I should have never told him, and then he wouldn’t have left!”
“It’s not your fault Danny, you were just trying to help.” Ryan assured her. He felt her shrug, and they stayed silent for a few minutes. He looked over at the creek, the rushing water flowed on and on, never stopping, making splashing sounds when it collides with the rocks.
“There’s something else…” she stated quietly. Ryan looks down at the girl in his arms as she pull up the sleeves of her hoodie and revealed deep, horizontal cut along her forearm. He frowned, then realized what was going on with a shock that made his lightheaded.
“Danielle, please tell me you got those cuts from rollerblading with Spencer?” Ryan begged. Danielle shook her head and looked down, ashamed.
“Why?” he asked, feeling hurt that she would do something like that to herself.
She bit her lip, and pulled away from him. Once she was seated next to him, she pushed her knees up to her chest, wrapped her arms around them, and looked out at the creek. “I can’t take it anymore Ryan.”
“Can’t take what anymore?”
“This! I can’t take this life anymore!” Ryan stayed silent as she continued. “My mom and dad are divorcing, Brendon ran away, Tyler’s gone…” Ryan knew she was talking about her now ex-boyfriend Tyler, who died in a car crash about five months earlier. “-and now Spencer’s mad at me for supposedly leading him on. I don’t even like him like that, but now he hates me!”
“I don’t think he hates you, Danielle.” Ryan pointed out.
“Your just saying that so I won’t cry anymore.” she said bleakly. “But seriously, I don’t know it I’ll even make it to this weekend at the rate I’m going. Everything is getting to be too much! I can’t take the pressure anymore!”
Ryan looked at her as she stared out into the woods. Never had he seen her so vulnerable in the entire fifteen year life span that he had known her. “Danielle, trust me when I say that I know how you feel.”
“No you don’t.” she said stubbornly.
He sighed. “Trust me. I do.” Danielle looked confused as he began raising the sleeve of his shirt on his left forearm. He held out his arm and showed her the faint red cut marks that covered his arm all the way to his elbow. One particularly long cut ran from his wrist to the middle of his forearm. Danielle looked at them, astounded, then raised her eyes to meet his gaze. His brown eyes were as sad as she felt.
“When my dad hit me, when my mom passed, when Ashley left me, when my dad passed…You’re not the only one whose had hard times Danielle.” A huge wave of guilt washed over her. Sure, she knew about his dad hurting him, his mom dying, and Ashley dumping him, but she’d never really thought about how much it had affected him. As he rolled up his sleeve again, she felt bad for making her situation a bigger deal than it was, because clearly, he had been through worse.
“Ryan…I’m sorry.” she apologized.
Ryan shook his head. “No, its okay. Just promise me that you won’t cut yourself anymore.”
Danielle looked away from him quickly. “I don’t think I can.”
Danielle bit her lip trying to will herself not to cry again. She’d had enough of that for one day. “Well, its juts that sometimes…when I cut myself, I feel like the stress disappears and the pain goes away. I tried to stop, but I can’t. I keep doing it, even though I don’t want to! I threw away my blade yesterday, but that just made me want to do it more, and I took whatever I could, whatever I could use to relieve the pain and make it stop.”
“Yeah, I know its get kinda…addicting, but you’ve gotta fight the temptation.” Ryan said, taking her hand in his and rubbing her pulse with his thumb. “You probably don’t realize it, but cutting yourself isn’t just feeling some pain, getting some cuts, and then its over. You could easily kill yourself, and after that, there’s no going back. You’re gone, and you can’t come back. Think of all the people who love you, how will they feel if you kill yourself?”
Images of Spencer, her mom and her dad, even though they weren’t together, Jon, her friend Victoria, her friend Melissa, her grandparents, her cousins, and Ryan all whizzed through her head. “They’d all be devastated if you died Danny.” Ryan said, “You’re probably thinking that life would be a little bit easier if you were gone, but the truth is, they’d suffer more.” Danielle made a scoffing sound.
“You may not think that’s true. But you being here, alive, had a big impact on everyone’s life. Who would Spencer hang out with at skate parks and have rollerblading races with? Who’d Jon play guitar with on weekends and set him up on blind dates? Who’d watch the Super Bowl with your dad and help him cuss out the referee? Who’d go shopping with your mom and max out her credit card?” He looked sideways at her, and he thought he saw the corners of her mouth twitch upward. “And who would I go to when I needed someone to talk to, someone to just laugh with and joke around with?”
Danielle turned her head toward him, looking for falseness in his expression. However, pure sincerity lined every detail of his features. “Without you, nobody’s life would be complete. You want your loved ones to be happy, after all?” She nodded. “Then the way you can do that is simple: Don’t hurt yourself and try to life your life to the fullest. That’s all you have to do.”
She thought about what he had just told her. He was right. He was always right. Ryan smiled, and finally, Danielle managed a small smile and he said, “That’s my girl.” He wrapped her arms around her, and she crushed his upper body to her, burying her face in the crook of his neck.
He helped her stand up and once again, she said, “I’m sorry about this Ryan.”
He shook his head. “Nah, let’s just forget about it. C’mon, let’s go home.” They began making their way out of the wood side by side, their paces matching. Little did Ryan know was that this was all it took for Danielle to fall in love with Ryan. And little did Danielle know that this was all it took for his to fall in love with her. They made it to the clearing, and as they walked, Ryan’s hand reached for hers and wove his fingers in between hers. She squeezed his hand and smiled to herself. The peace had settled back into Danielle’s mind, and she was going to keep it that way.