|Holding On And Letting Go
Author: thesaintswecreate PM
"I found myself moving to the bad part of a small town near San Francisco, California, not long after my seventeenth birthday. Six days later, I was murdered." Cole has unfortunate circumstances. Avery has an unusual ability. Will they hold on or let go?Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Supernatural - Chapters: 4 - Words: 5,197 - Reviews: 4 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 06-23-12 - Published: 04-27-12 - id: 3017439
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
I moved into a small, crummy house in an awful neighborhood just like the fourteen others before it. In my ten years of being in the foster system, this was about as good as it got. I mean, who would want the emotionally unstable teenager with the terrible past?
I never seemed to stay in one place long. It was usually only a matter of months before a fight broke out, something was stolen, or a drug scandal erupted. And, hey, why not blame the tortured soul? I was disposable, I had a "tendency to act out," and I was damaged.
The problem was; I was determined to be above all of that. After what happened with my parents, I wanted to make a better life for myself. Violence was out of the picture. I was above stealing. I had never touched drugs a day in my life. But it was my word over theirs, and after it happened once, I had a record. It became more and more likely that I'd do something bad again.
Every time a situation arose, I was sent to a new foster home, with a new family that was in it for the money, not for their "love of children and need to help out the less fortunate," like they said. Every house was the same—old, dingy, on the wrong side of town. Not even one remotely decent family wanted the unruly troublemaker.
It didn't matter, though. I was counting the days until my eighteenth birthday when I would be out of the system for good.
And so I found myself moving to the bad part of a small town near San Francisco, California, not long after my seventeenth birthday. Six days later, I was murdered.
The first time it happened was on my sixteenth birthday. I thought it was just a bizarre dream, but I was wrong. Never in a million years did I think it was real. Never in a million years did I think I had just discovered my gift.
I had just drifted off to sleep—a little past midnight—when it started. I felt myself being whisked away, flying through darkness, my hair flowing wildly behind me. I came to a halting stop and found myself in a tunnel-like room.
All around me, small circles of light started forming, growing and shifting, filling the dark room with a soft glow. I moved closer to one, desperate to get a better look. I felt inexplicably drawn to them, oddly at peace among the shining lights. I peered closely at a small circle, and suddenly features started to emerge. Eyes, hair, a button nose, a tiny mouth—the face of a little girl.
I moved to the next orb, and the next, and they were all the same. The pulsating lights were more than just that. Each was the face of a child, none appearing to be much older than myself.
I touched the glowing face of a young boy. It seemed to pulse and change under my touch. It warmed my hand and spread to my arm, my neck, everywhere. Suddenly, the small boy appeared before me, in full form. He was still shining, though not nearly as bright as before. It was like he was there yet not, almost watery around the edges.
"Umm, hi…?" I stammered, unsure what to say to this strange boy. "Who are you?"
"Where's my mommy?"
I glanced around the vast space, searching for an older face among the young ones, but had no such luck. His mommy—or any other adult, for that matter—were nowhere in sight. This was definitely the weirdest dream ever. "Where did you come from?" I asked the little boy.
He glanced up at me with big innocent blue eyes. "I…I want my mommy!"
Crap, here come the waterworks. I was never good with kids. I reached out a tentative hand to comfort the boy, but stopped midway, not sure if I should touch him, afraid of what might happen if I did. No, I told myself. This is just a dream. Nothing is going to happen. I reached out again, this time more sure of my movements, and put my arm around the little boy. "Shh," I assured him, looking around the cavern. "It's okay, it's safe here." Okay, so I wasn't so sure who those words were directed to, but one of us was bound to believe it. He sniffled as I knelt down, putting myself at eye level with him. "What's your name?" I asked as gently as I could, my voice echoing slightly off of the stone walls.
"T-T-Tommy." The boy hiccupped.
"How did you get here, Tommy?"
"I-I don't kn-know," he cried. "My mommy was driving, and then she was screaming, and it was so l-l-l-loud…" He trailed off, trembling with the memory.
I was no detective, and Tommy's explanation certainly wasn't the best account of events, but to me it sounded like Tommy and his mother had been in some sort of accident. I wondered if his mother was still alive, if he'd ever get to see her again. And then something occurred to me. What if Tommy wasn't alive? Suddenly I remembered watching countless episodes of Ghost Whisperer and couldn't help but feel that I'd stumbled straight into one. This dream just keeps getting stranger by the minute! I thought.
I moved past Tommy to a young girl and felt warmth once again spread through my body as I touched the orb. As her features emerged, I noticed that her skin was ghastly pale. There was no doubt in my mind that she had been sick. "I'm dead." She said, her voice filled with certainty. My heart sank as she uttered those words. But she didn't seem sad at the realization, though. She seemed peaceful, relieved. I wondered if she had been in pain.
"How do you know that?" I asked her.
She shrugged. "They told me it wouldn't be much longer. They said my pain would go away." The girl seemed to be around fourteen or fifteen—pretty, if it weren't for her sunken cheeks and the dark circles around her eyes.
"Did it?" I couldn't help but wonder.
She nodded then said, "But something doesn't feel right. It feels like there should be something…more." I guessed she was talking about an afterlife.
I had to agree. If all the children really were dead like I thought, if this were some kind of resting place, it didn't seem very welcoming. Then a thought dawned on me that made me panic. If everyone here is dead, am I dead too? I looked down at my hand, searching for the fuzzy edges that both Tommy and the girl had. But I was different than them, the outline of my hand more defined. And I didn't have the same glow that was given off by every other being in the room. I wasn't like the others. But what was I doing in that room?
Could it be possible I was really talking to the dead? But then I remembered this was only a dream and that I'd wake up in the morning and forget all about it. But in the meantime, I couldn't just leave Tommy wailing behind me, or the girl watching silently with a calculating gaze.
I walked back over to the sobbing boy and suddenly I knew what I had to do. Just like Melinda Gordon, I had to help the dead move on. Even though this wasn't real, I had a feeling I wouldn't be waking up until these poor children were at peace.
"Tommy?" I asked, smoothing the little boy's hair. And then I realized that I had absolutely no idea what I was supposed to say next.
Eventually I settled on telling him that everything was all right, that he would see his mommy again someday, but that there was something better than the cave waiting for him. When his eyes shone bright with wonder, I knew that I had helped him find peace, and watched as his glow brightened again, until it became too much and I had to shield my eyes. And then the light abruptly stopped and Tommy was gone. It felt like a weight had lifted from my chest.
The girl was staring on in shock. I sat down on the ground next to her and patted the space beside me. "How did you do that?" She asked, amazed.
I decided to go for honesty. "I really don't know," I admitted. "But let's hope I can do it again.
I listened as the girl—Stephanie—talked about chemo, the hushed conversations between her parents and doctors, the way her friends has been frightened to see her. She talked for hours, the words flowing out of her until she finally broke down and cried. I stayed silent the whole time, my arms wrapped around her. When she was finally done, she smiled a real, genuine smile that lit up her whole face and made her look beautiful despite the effects of her illness. "Thank you!" She exclaimed. "It's incredible!" And then she was engulfed in light.
But I didn't get to see her disappear, because out of nowhere I was being whisked away again, back into endless darkness. I felt a hand shake my shoulder and somehow I was back in my bed. My dream was over. My mother stood over me, smiling as I opened my eyes groggily. "Happy birthday, honey! Now hurry up and get ready, you're going to be late for school."
I jumped out of bed and rushed to get ready, my crazy dream still running through my mind.