When I was four, I ran from my mother, who chased me with outstretched hands in the hopes of convincing me to take a bath. What I found unappealing about the frothy suds and warm water, I don’t know. Perhaps I thought I had better things to do. Perhaps I had an appointment with my dolls that I simply could not miss. I don’t know, and I doubt I ever will.
When I was nine, I ran from my brother. He was thirteen and chasing me around our front yard, hand outstretched to tag me in whatever childish game we were playing. I laughed as I tripped over my own feet and into the plush grass, knees turning green. I don’t know how I was so carefree while my parents were fighting within the house. I don’t know how I managed to drown out their yelling. I’ve never managed to do it again.
When I was fifteen, I ran from...
You always told me funerals were depressing. You were right. I’m trying to keep my head up, I swear, but with everyone looking at me like that, I can hardly stand the sight of my own reflection. It’s pity in their eyes. And it’s practically choking me.
I prefer the mocking to this. The whispering and the name calling beats empty words and knowing looks. Because they don’t know, not at all. They don’t know your smile or your laugh or the way you would snap the elastic band on your wrist when you were nervous. They know you as the girl with that awful sickness. They know you as the girl who died.
That’s all we’ll ever be, in the end. The friend who died and the friend who was left behind to clean up the mess you made.
Too many people are angry. Your parents, because I won’t give back your things. Our friends, because I...
The world whirls around the girl like a spinning top, never coming to a stop. And she doesn’t wish it to, either. The city so often feels like a prison, even on the good days. Not only the city, but the people there. The ones who frown at anyone who doesn’t hate what they do. The ones who scold her for believing that perhaps not all creatures are evil.
She tries to forget about them. But it’s hard when she’s surrounded by what they hate. Even the music, almost as intoxicating as the drinks, can’t distract her from the fact that her sister would likely barge in at any moment, bringing the Hunt with her.
Still, she throws her head back and sings along to music with no words and no discernable melody. People dance together. Bodies brush against each other, sweaty from the heat of the fire they surround.
“Out of place, aren’t you?” The voice...