Ch. 1 Loss of Love
The rain fell like the tears of the broken hearted, pattering against the ground and soaking their clothes to the skin as they stood in the center of the abandoned park. The one boy looked shocked, his own tears blending with the rain that dripped from his face. His dark hair hung over his forehead in soggy strands just above his aqua blue eyes that stared at the girl who couldn't meet his glance. Her head was hung with shame, her eyes closed in remorse at the words that had escaped her lips. Her own brown hair stuck to the sides of her cheeks and forehead.
"You…you can't say this…" the boy stuttered. "Leigh…I don't understand, I thought…"
"Don't make this any harder!" Leigh cried, suddenly facing him with her eyes streaming. "I still love you, Kai! Don't ever forget that!"
"Then why?" The boy asked, confusion in his voice. "Why all of a sudden you have to leave me?"
"Its better this way," Leigh answered with bitterness, looking away again. "You'll be safe. I'm sorry…" she turned away and ran off into the dark city back towards her home. The boy was left rooted to the spot, his legs paralyzed as the love of his life shrank away in the fog of rain drops.
BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! BEEP!
The unforgiving alarm clock pierced his ears and took him from the dream world. Waking up in a startled sweat, he sat up straight gasping for air until he calmed his hyperventilating lungs. He slammed his hand on he silence button before wiping his forehead.
That memory was over two years old and he still couldn't understand why now of all times he was dreaming about the last moment he ever saw her. Maybe it was the date that drew closer and closer that caused the sudden rise of his dreams taking the forms of his memory. The anniversary of the very same event he had witnessed in his sleep was only two days away. Why he bothered to count down the days is another thing he could never figure out either. It had been the saddest day in his sophomore year, and now as a senior in high school, he couldn't afford to be anxious about what happened in the past.
Rolling out of his bed, he looked up at the higher bunk, and shook the shoulder of his older brother, fulfilling a request that was asked of him last night.
"You got work," he said to the lump beneath the blankets before walking out the door and across the hallway to the bathroom. His school uniform was folded neatly over the towel rail next to his brothers work uniform, compliments of there obsessively organized and neat mother. The boy glanced into the mirror, and saw the same thing he saw every morning. The reflection of a young boy named Malachi, or just Kai for short. His hair had grown since that faithful night, all the way down to his neck. He had the barber cut the front short though; keeping most of it above his eyes and the rest just fell around to frame his face. He glanced down at the reflection's wrist and forearm, noticing the light played off the multiple scars that traveled up and down his arm. Scars that symbolized his emotions those two years ago…
He smiled at the small uniform that matched his school colors of blue and green. He had forgot to tell mom that today was a casual day, a rare school occasion where the dress code didn't matter and everyone wore whatever they wanted.
After finishing his morning hygiene ritual of brushing his teeth and combing his hair, he grabbed the clean uniform from the rack and walked back to his bedroom, crossing his brothers' path as they switched rooms. Kai tucked the uniform away into his dresser and grabbed a few of his own clothes that were hanging in the closet. He pulled on a pair of jeans over his legs and a grey long sleeve shirt over his head. He placed a black short sleeve over the long, and from the floor he covered it all with a grey pullover sweater.
Wandering into the dining room, he saw two bowls of cereal waiting on the round wooden table. Kai smiled slightly at the attempts mom made to make him eat breakfast again. Shaking his head, he passed the table to sit in the living room for a couple minutes, resting on the couch in front of the T.V before he would receive a ride to school.
Mom came in looking for him, and smiled her pearly smile as she saw him contently watching the news.
"Honey, you haven't had breakfast…."
"I'm not hungry," he replied quickly, returning the smile. "I'm fine," he assured her, seeing the familiar argument about to arise before it could start. Mom frowned, finding defeat and sat down next to him, wrapping an arm around his shoulders.
"You make me worried everyday," she told him as cheerfully as she could manage. "For once, I wish you'd eat something in the morning so I don't think you're going to try and starve yourself again."
"I'm not gonna starve myself!" he said in exaggerated exasperation. "How many times do we go over this?" he added jokingly.
His mom laughed a little. "All right, let's go then," she said, pushing the entire conversation to its end. She stood up and reached for her purse. "Bye Ryan!" She yelled to his brother.
"Later!" Bryan replied lazily.
It was a mostly a silent drive to West End High School except for the small drone of the radio that played mostly country and classic rock. Kai only watched the outside pass by in his window while his mom glanced at him from time to time, worry evident in her eyes.
They stopped in front of the high school drop off circle, a path way of tar that bent closer to the school and around a circle where the flag pole stood tall above bushes and flowers
"Have a good day Kai," she said, giving him a hug. "I love you," she added.
"Bye mom," Kai replied, grabbing his backpack and opening the door. He stepped outside and slammed the door closed, and waved her off as she pulled out back onto the street.
He walked with the moving crowd of students into their first period classes as the bell had rung less then two minutes ago.
There school had once been a mental hospital with two floors and two separate buildings. Most of the rooms had been renovated from isolation and living quarters into large classrooms of about four formerly separated rooms. Stairs and rails on the outside provided a pathway to the second level class rooms where the patients use to have a Rec room, providing much more space for elective classes such as Art, Home Economics, Wood shop and a bunch of other subjects that were optional.
Each door was labeled with a number and a letter that corresponded with the subject and the teacher's name. Kai's first class was English with Mr. Tyler. He went to the second door on the ground level on building number two marked ENG GT.
He sat in the very last row, away from everyone else, a privilege he had gained from the school psychologist. It allowed him to think on his own, as long as he paid attention and took notes on everything that was required. It was the same with all his classes.
Finally the lunch bell rung at the end of third period art, and he left the small jail cell into the open air. He rushed down the stairs and into the center of both hexagonal structures. The school had built a wide courtyard out of a garden for the students to relax. Their was a statue fountain of their school wallaby mascot, surrounded by benches and large display of flowers, bushes and Roses. Soft grass patches were crossed with simple stepping stones that connected one path to the other. The entire open campus was soon filled with talking students as they left there classes, and one spot was his own every time he bought a small lunch from the cafeteria. It was at the far end of the school where the ends of the buildings made an L shape bend where he would sit in the very corner, a small distance away from the usual gathering crowds.
He would eat quickly before pulling his hood over his head and curling into his knees and hugging his legs to his chest. This way he was allowed peace and isolation, the only thing he really wanted. No one bothered him except for a few former friends that still tried to talk to him.
The only one that came daily was once Leigh's best friend. Her name was Laina, a skater girl that dressed with a black tank top and baggy green shorts with her blonde hair tied into a small pony tail and gelled bangs that fell right at the corners of her heavily shadowed eyes.
"Hey Kai," Her soft voice greeted him from above his curled form. She sat down cross legged in front of him, resting her elbows against her knees and her chin inside her hands. "I hope you're feeling better today," she said as she always said everyday. He nodded a little, giving her a response he rarely granted her. She smiled; happy he was in a somewhat talkative mood.
"Everybody's still worried about you," she told him. "We all really want you to come over and talk like the old days."
He shook his head.
Laina sighed, "When you're ready," she said, remembering she wasn't allowed to even try and persuade him. "We'll be waiting." She stood up and walked over to her friends, all who stared back with concern at Kai.
Personally, Kai didn't think he'd ever be able to talk to any of his former friends. They all reminded him of her, and always would, bringing back the sadness he felt inside from all the memories he had of Leigh. Sometimes he wondered what the others thought of him, now that he was a diagnosed sociopath. Was he any different in there eyes? The idea scared him, keeping himself isolated away from them and any other human being that wasn't family.
A cold wind suddenly blew through the school, causing the leaves and grass to rustle and sway in its direction. Something felt strange inside of his mind…he could swear he felt a familiar presence near him. He slowly lifted his head above his arms and stared at a young girl that had suddenly appeared in front of him with a dreamy expression over her face. She was shorter then him by at least a foot or so, with long wavy black hair. Her pale skin seemed to reflect the sun as her small green eyes stayed fixed upon him. In her left hand hanging by her waist was a small white envelope between her fingers with black ink scrawled on the front.
He kept his glance locked with hers; a long silent pause lasted between them as neither blinked nor moved. The air was thick and heavy as a smell of something rotten assaulted his nose. The world around them had frozen, and only he and the girl existed. Staring into her eyes, he could swear he heard a voice whisper inside his mind…
The girls arm suddenly twitched and handed him the envelope, breaking the stare and time resumed itself.
He looked for the longest time at his name written on the front. The ink was black and wide with curvy handwriting. He looked back to the girl, who only kept her deep dreamy stare. Her hand moved again, pushing it nearer to him, asking him to take it without words.
His own hand reached out slowly and took the envelope into his hands, wondering why he was even taking it in the first place. He tore open the useless envelope and stuck his fingers inside.
He extracted a small piece of paper folded twice. Curiosity driving him even further, he opened it into four squares. Written across each square was a note written in the curly handwriting of Leigh's left hand.