A gasp wrestled from her lips as her eyes snapped open, panic setting in immediately as she eyed the white silk directly above her – above, but way too close for comfort. A meek yelp tumbled from her as she reached up and slammed a hand against the underside of what she could only assume was a lid.
Inside her head, knowing there was no point screaming and yelling and wasting her breath, she cursed him. Mentally, she cried out every single bad word she knew, before the silent tears started to drip down her face.
Could she actually be underground? She knew the drug was good, but she thought she would have woken up sooner. Or he would have found some way to delay the burial.
It could have been worse, she thought, they could have had her cremated.
Joan bunched her hands together, creating two fists, and began to bang on the lid of the coffin, hoping she was maybe still in the funeral home, that someone would find her.
"We'll be just like Romeo and Juliet," Rick had told her, as he had eagerly laid out his plan. "Just, you know, without the whole death part."
She had been unable to hold back a smile when he said that. Two star-crossed lovers. She had told herself that, over and over again as she had pondered over the plan.
"It's the only way out," Rick had grasped her hands, squeezing them gently. "The only way we can be together."
She had silently nodded, her mind jumping and leaping in bounds, taking her to the house they would one day have when they had saved up enough money, away from this town and their families who stared down at the pair of them. Her father, who had banned her from seeing him. His mother, who had cried and screamed when she found out, who had threatened to keep him out of the will if he didn't stay away from her.
"This is the only way!" He had repeated, when she trembled in worry despite the happiness she had felt, when she had questioned him.
"What if something goes wrong?"
"It won't," He had been so gentle, so kind as he had kissed the top of her forehead.
"You'll have nothing!" She had cried. "Your mother will disown you, Rick. My father will stop my allowance."
"It doesn't matter," His eyes were shining with happiness and joy and hope...or, at least, she thought at the time that that was what they were shining with. Replaying the scene in her head, she realised there had been something darker there, something hidden. "We'll be together!"
A scream ripped itself from her throat, the tunnel becoming sore with the effort. The sobs came in full flow now as she realised no one could hear her. She really was underground; she would die down here.
Why hadn't he stopped them burying her?
"Ashes to ashes, dust to dust..."
Far above her, a priest stood over the newly filled in grave, her family gathered around it. Her mother held onto her father's jacket, sobbing into it. On the other side, Rick stood beside his own family, face still and steely. His mother squeezed his shoulder, kissing his forehead, believing the still face was a sign of grief.
Afterwards, she approached Joan's mother, offering her condolences.
"You're glad she's dead," She spat, holding her husband's hand. "Now she won't be near your son!"
"I'm not glad," Whatever Rick's mother was, she wasn't spiteful in the face of death. She wasn't mean, or nasty, she had just wanted what was best for her son. "I can't imagine the pain you are going through. If there is anything I can do..." She let out a sigh. "I feel...responsible."
"You should," Joan's mother sniffed back a sob. "If it wasn't for you, they could have been happy together."
"Maria," Her husband pulled her close to him. "Thank you, Clara. Look after the boy." He felt as bad, knowing it wasn't all on Clara's shoulders. It was a burden they would have to bear together, both families.
They drew away from the grave, leaving Rick alone. As he stared at the mound, the parents now out of sight, he couldn't help a smile creep across his face. "As if I'd love you," He whispered, shaking his head. "As if I'd give up everything for you." He laughed, swearing he could hear a thump echo up from six feet under. Tears sprung from his eyes as he laughed. Finally, the sound died away and he didn't wipe the by-products of the mirth away, instead leaving them there as a fake sign of his fake grief.
A/N: Another one of the 100 Theme Challenge. Last one for a while, as I'm going to be working on some other stuff. (Minor Talent, Back to Hell and Play the Game version two, to be exact). For some reason, the idea of live buriel popped into my head when I saw the title, and I went with it. The Romeo & Juliet link came a little later, and after I finished writing it, I realised the name's of the main two characters mirror the traditional star-struck lovers; Rick & Joan. I love it when my brain comes up with stuff like that and I don't notice. Anyway, please r & r.