Chapter Two: Little Sister
I sliced the steak into equal bite-sized squares and pushed the rough sides of the meat on the edges of my plate. It doesn't really look appetizing. It was like you saw a nicely spiced beef steak and when it enters your brain, it turns into a pinkish mush of raw meat, the inedible kind. Yes, it doesn't look tasty. But as I glanced from my glass plate to Kana, she was eating like there was no tomorrow like it was only her and the food but intellectual enough to remember her manners.
Instead of eating, I took my glass and drank from it with slight hesitation. I let the liquid through my dry throat, liking the feeling of the cool caress it gave as it settled in my empty stomach. I'm not especially hungry but I appreciated the small comfort coming from the water. I hoped I won't see anything gross tonight.
I withdrew the water from my mouth and noticed there was still around a mouthful amount in it. Sure enough, my fear came true, the water turned red and troubled. It crashed into the walls of the glass like how the sea does to the rocks in the middle of a storm. I gripped the glass tighter, afraid it will break from the force and splash blood on me.
"… pretty, right?" Kana was talking. I snapped back into reality and faced her, sweat trickled down my back.
I nodded absently, not really knowing what she was talking about. I realized how tight I was holding the glass that my hand was shaking visibly. I carefully placed it on the table, beside my dish and noticed that it was only water. I sighed in relief.
"So, you don't mind wearing it?" Kana said as she glanced at me when she finished the last spoon of rice and smiled almost as happy as a child having a mountain of gifts for Christmas. She swallowed it down, "I mean, really wear it?" she actually appeared hopeful. I wish the food would just come back to her plate and divide her attention.
"Huh?" I said brilliantly.
"Were you even listening to me?" she pouted. Why hasn't the food materialized on her plate yet? "I was talking about the neck scarf that I knitted and it was my first craft and it was pretty, will you wear it?"
"Ugh, I guess." I swallowed my hesitation, might as well try her handiwork.
" Yay! I knew you'd agree to be my dress up doll!" she squealed, perfectly oblivious to my nightmare. She was in the sewing club while I was in the go-home club. "Why aren't you eating?" she asked, finally noticing at the hacked up food.
"I'm not really that hungry." I said to her with an apologetic smile, my fingers playing with the edges of my shirt.
She frowned and stared at me, hard. "I won't like it if my best friend's anorexic." Her tone was serious, the one she rarely used against me. And she hit the perfect frequency to grab my full attention.
"Don't." I said sternly, staring at her emotionlessly. She can't force me to eat this. The shadow fell on her face, the doubt disbelief was painted on her expression. Gosh, she's stubborn but I kept my face neutral and cold. She sighed and shook her head.
"Fine." She stood up and took her plate and mine, "I'll just gather some crackers and biscuits in the bedroom for you to eat when hungry. I hope you eat. Coz, I wouldn't know what to do if you're anorexic." She didn't smile at me, just gave me a disapproving yet worried look.
I gave her a reassuring pat on the shoulder as I stood up, "Thanks, I'll eat when I'm hungry. I promise." I took the mugs, glasses and utensils off the table as Kana went to the kitchen to wash the dishes.
I switched the lights off when I left the dining table and settled the dirty utensils in the sink. Kana was tying an apron then tied her hair. "So, what are you going to do about the History project?"
I washed my hands, "Hmm, what do you mean?"
"So, who was your partner? Was it a guy?" she asked, almost giddily. Though, I do know that she was aware that I'm not into serious commitments like relationships. Those are the things that I avoid as much as possible.
"No, I'm paired up with Susan." I said while wiping my hands with a towel that was hung on a hook beside the fridge.
"Oh, the girl who goes out with any guy and rejects them within a week?" she asked without turning to face me.
"I see, I heard she's from the Track club. She was the sprinter that got second place in the regionals, I guess?" Kana knew a lot of things about people which I have no idea on how she got such information. I kind of get worried if it takes up all her brain space that had resulted to her having a one-track mind. She turned her head and saw me sitting on the counter beside the basket of fruits and my legs hanging on the edge.
"The biscuits are inside that cupboard, might as well take those with you when you go to my room." She said while pointing the maroon cupboard with her hand covered in bubbles.
I jumped off the counter and opened the cupboard. There was a box of graham crackers, a pack of chocolate bars and cupcakes, some Doritos and a box of Pocky. What a supply. I grabbed the strawberry flavored Pocky and chocolate bars then went to her room. Might as well get the yummy ones.
I opened the door and turned on the lights, there were no sign of blood on the knob or any other unidentified carnage. I sighed in relief and strolled inside quietly, I have always hated unnecessary noise, and I'd hate to disturb the silence of the room. I pulled a drawer open and dropped the sweets and closed it immediately. Then clicked the bed lamp on and switched the lights off.
I settled on my makeshift bed on the floor, drew my thick blanket over my head and wanted nothing but sleep. If I was lucky, I won't dream. But so far, I'm never lucky in the first place.
The memories that I knew so well replayed over and over again, I cringe every time the image of my mother's hanging body appear in my mind. I was tired of seeing it, fed up of her face and everything about her, even myself. I have her rarest eyes, in a normally lit room they are dark but when outside with the sun's bright light, it glows red violet. It was weird, no one should have such eyes, it's not normal. My physical body came from my mother, except my auburn hair, which was from my father's side.
"Hey!" a little girl's voice rang inside the room. It sounded strange, like a squeal, high-pitched and childish sort of tone. I simply thought it was Kana with her overly joyous voice when she's excited. "Ne, Erikaaa~!" the childish voice whined. Great, did Kana invite her little cousin here for a slumber party?
I shoved my blanket down and sat up, looking around. It was dark, but the lamp was on so it was visible enough to see the little girl who was lying on her stomach on Kana's bed. She was wearing a dress, the one you usually wear on Sundays. Her hair was auburn, her skin pale like mine, a heart-shaped face with a little child-like blush, more or less she looked like me except for her pale blue eyes. Those are my father's eyes. I narrowed my eyes, refusing to believe what I am seeing.
She giggled at me and rested her chin on both hands and gazed at me almost lovingly.
I gulped, "Who are you?" my voice almost a whisper. Did Kana invite her cousin in? I'm having second thoughts.
"You don't know me?" she asked, her voice breaking like she was going to cry. She sat up, her eyes big and round and teary. "I'm the little sister you never had." Her tone was somewhat calm.
I never had a sister.