Author: KiwiBug94 PM
Born and raised in hate, Crystal faces one trial after another. After her mother dies, nothing seems right, and everything goes wrong. But then she has Brielle. And just when she thinks everything is going to be okay, Brielle is taken from her too. But this time, Crystal isn't going to give up so easily. She's going to find her, somehow, even if it is impossible.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Tragedy - Chapters: 7 - Words: 12,307 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 10-19-12 - Published: 10-02-12 - id: 3062708
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
For a while, I felt like I had a real family. Somewhat reserved, but family all the same. School ended and my father took us all to Arielle's graduation. Sober. It was so exciting to see her graduate and be so accomplished already. We went out to dinner together and had a grand old time. After, my father sunk back into drinking. It was never good, but there were some differences, such as he slipped us funds on a periodic basis. But this wasn't just for food or clothes. It was for things for Brielle. We had to start planning medical, clothes, formula, diapers, medicines... And so every time Dad handed Arielle and I money, there was always at least an additional fifty dollars just for the baby.
I was lucky to have Kerrington's old crib to use and so many hand-me-downs still around. We still had old bottles and bibs, toys and things needed for a baby. The one thing I was scared about buying for the baby really had nothing to do with her. It was me. I needed maternity clothes. My baggy clothes simply weren't baggy enough anymore and found myself either stretching out my clothes or borrowing Arielle's, since she used to be much larger than I was. But even that was no longer effective at this point.
But then I discovered something. I was searching through Mom's old things, looking for her old scarves when I remembered that all of her clothes were still in the closet. Upon searching, I discovered piles of maternity clothes. Relief swept over me, because that was more money for me to save for when Brielle actually got here.
And that day was coming fast. June flew by and before I knew it. I celebrated my fourteenth birthday, though with just family, because I was huge. We figured I was due in early August, which seemed no good to me, but I tried accepting it. I didn't want Brielle being born merely days before my first day of school at the high school. But there were some thing that just weren't avoidable or subject to change. Though as every day passed in July, I secretly hoped it would be the day. Because carrying Brielle was a challenge and I just wanted her here.
I sat on the couch reading a parenting book on the fifteenth when I am distracted by Arielle's entrance. "Crystal?"
I look up at her, curiosity in my eyes. "Yeah?"
"I have orientation today and tomorrow. Are you going to be okay holding the fort over here?" Arielle knew I had been have back and stomach cramps almost every day, and I grew tired quickly.
I frown. "Orientation? But isn't Stanford like, hundreds of miles away? How can it be today and tomorrow?" I was so alarmed because I had known my sister had received a full ride to Stanford and had accepted. My sister was in the top ten smartest kids in her school and she excelled in sports as well. This combination made her desirable. But this was the one part I was not looking forward to. I didn't want my sister hundreds to thousands of miles away. But at the same time, I didn't want her giving up her dreams.
Arielle's eyebrows shot up. Then she laughed, "Wait, you don't know?"
"Know what?" I asked, alarmed.
She laughs again. "Crystal, I turned down Stanford a few weeks after Mom died. I'm going to the university in town. They have just as good of athletics and they actually have a really good school of business. I'm giving up the big flashy name for the chance to be with my family and save money. I called the university and they're offering me a full scholarship as well. I'm actually being offered more than I need to attend, so I'll be getting some money back in return."
I was stunned at first. "Wait... What? You're not leaving us?"
Arielle shook her head. "No chance, little sis."
Somehow, I managed to pull myself off the couch, and I rushed to my sister and gave her an awkward hug, considering how my belly was so big and round with Brielle. But I knew she could feel the gratitude. But then tears escaped me without me wanting them to. "Thank you, Arielle. I couldn't do this alone. Not with him."
I felt my sister tense. Not because I was emotional or anything, but because the fact that her father had raped her, then, thirteen year old sister and got her pregnant had sent an icy rift between her and the world. Even though she still graduated with high grades and such, the acts my father did immediately appeared in Arielle. Between our mother's death and my rape, my sister dropped thirty pounds. She wasn't as thin as I used to be before I got pregnant, but considering how Gabby's death caused her to over eat as a child, she had gained so much weight that when she reversed everything, she dropped.
But my sister also spent less time sleeping, less time out with friends, and found a lesser interest in boys. She never told a soul, but everyone knew that more than our mother's death was going on at home. Abuse never effected her, though. Dad had hit her a bunch growing up, and no doubt that effected her. But Arielle was strong. She and I were definitely the pillars. The only reason I was ever afraid was because I cared so much. With Arielle, by the time Kenzie was here, she was already calloused. The only one her heart ached for was me, and that's probably why things effected her so, recently.
Not that Arielle didn't care about the others. But I had already assumed that role as the nurturer, the carer. Arielle shut herself off as just a general protector. And she believed that by protecting me, she was protecting the others. She had a hard time being close with the little ones because it hurt her too much to be close to them and experience the pain of them being hurt. A pain I shouldered constantly.
I tried to believe I was a strong person. I really did. Arielle told me all the time, and so did my mother. But for a kid, when your dad beats you, screams at you, hates you, and rapes you, and you always succumb to tears and fear, it's hard to believe it. In some ways, I suppose I was strong. But I had a hard time seeing it. I hoped that I was, so that the little ones had someone to look to for help.
We broke away and I dried my eyes. "Sorry," I mumble. "Stupid hormones."
Arielle chuckled sadly. "Don't you be sorry for a single thing, Crystal. You've done nothing wrong and you're carrying a heavy load." She glanced down at my belly and smiled sadly. "Literally. I love you so much. Mom was right when she told you that you never deserved this. Not any of this. But I swear to you, I'm not going to leave you. No matter what. Because I won't let anything else bad happen to you if I can help it. But if something does hurt you, I won't rest until you're healed. I promise."
I gave her a grateful smile. "Thank you," I whispered. "You're the best sister ever," I say as I give her another hug. After we broke apart, I assured her I'd be fine with the kids for the next two days and that she shouldn't worry, because if anything happened, I'd call her. She left feeling almost assured, but nevertheless sure things were going to be alright. And I thought that maybe, just maybe, they might be.
And the two days were fine. Arielle was back on the first night right before bed time, which helped not having to bathe and put down Kerrington. The second day, Arielle was done by mid afternoon. It wasn't too tricky to take care of the kids. All I had to do was keep an eye out for them, keep them fed, and make sure they were entertained. It was a piece of cake.
I was thankful for Arielle's return the second day because recently, I started having crams, and they seemed to escalate over time. I didn't tell Arielle, though, because I felt guilty. I didn't want her to think she had overwhelmed me. But I could tell that she noticed each time I had to stop what I was doing because of the escalating pains. Even though this was often, I just went back to what I was doing once the pain was gone.
That night, I tucked in Kerrington and Rory. Kerrington had fallen asleep in my arms and I smiled. She was such a sweetheart. It broke my heart, though, that the closest thing to 'Mommy' she had was me. I tucked her in first, kissing her forehead as I gently set her in her crib. Rory had followed me, watching me put Kerrington down. When I turned to tuck him in, he smiled.
"I love you, Mommy," he whispered.
I gave him a sad smile and pulled him to me. "I love you too, Rory. No matter what." I took his hand and led him to his small bed. I helped him climb into bed and tucked him in, good and tight. "Good. Now you're as-"
"Snug as a bug in a rug!" he said quickly, beating me to it.
I smiled and kissed his forehead. "That's right. Now, go to sleep little man. I love you."
Rory yawned then smiled. "I love you too." I smiled before getting up to get into my pajamas. I changed quickly and came back to mine and Rory's room, where I turned off the light and climbed into bed. I felt exhausted but every time I was about to fall asleep, my stomach would cramp up and wake me.
After what seemed like hours, I drifted into an uneasy sleep. My mind felt troubled and my body felt awake, though my mind was exhausted and trying to sleep. I must have been tossing and turning because when I woke, I was in a cold sweat and my blankets were tangled around my ankles. It was then that I felt the sharpest pain I had ever felt, followed by one of Brielle's kicks. I sat up quickly, my breathing fast. I waited a few minutes until, suddenly, I felt it again.
It was then that I realized what was happening. I felt my breath catch in my throat. Panic surged through my veins, which froze me. What on earth would I do? I was about to start crying when I heard Rory stir. "Mommy?" he asked groggily.
"Yes, Rory?" I couldn't keep my voice from breaking at the end. But he didn't seem to notice.
"Are you okay?"
I bit my lip. I was thankful it was pitch dark in our room. "Yeah. Do you think you could go get Arielle?"
I heard Rory start to move. "Yes, Mommy." But I heard him stop. "What do you want me to tell her, Crystal?"
I thought for a second then sighed. "Tell her that I'm not having cramps." I knew Rory was confused by this, and that's what I wanted. All I wanted was for Arielle to understand. And I knew she would. She'd know from earlier that when I said that I wasn't having cramps, I was actually having contractions. This could mean only one thing, in my mind.
Brielle was coming.