Well, sad day… we've reached the epilogue. Just so y'all know though, I'm kind of glad. Only when a story ends can I truly decide if I feel I like it or not. And I have decided that I do like Dead Wrong. Thanks to all of y'all, you're the reason I write. :) Also, I wish this story had come to me in November. National Novel Writing Month. (In case you haven't heard of it, the idea is to write a novel that is approximately 50,000 words in the month of November.) I never thought I'd be able to do that. 50,000+ words for one story in a month? Not gonna happen. So much for that. 'Dead Wrong' was started August 2, 2011, completed August 28, 2011. Excluding author's notes and review responses, it is a grand total of 51,140 words long (105 pages on a single Word document; that's how much y'all have read in a single month. I'm proud of you). And the people who do NaNoWriMo are first concerned with the quantity (novels of less than 50,000 words are excluded from the competition), and then with the quality. I feel like this story was well written and a good concept, too. *sigh* I was three months too early. Ah well. Not much we can do about it. What's done is done, I suppose. Have fun reading the epilogue—KG64
Moirai and I stand and watch Brian and Seth. They're so happy. Them and Emma both. I'm a bit jealous of Emma, that she can still hug my big brother. But not much. Seth is happy. That's all that's really important.
Moirai smiles at me. "Your faith is great, Adele," she states. "I would not have believed they could meet the deadline."
I knew they would. They're stupid, and stubborn. But they're not that stupid and stubborn. "Why not?" I ask.
She shakes her head. "Adele, you have given them the greatest gift anyone could give. Surely there is something you would like?"
I shake my head. "No. Seth is happy. Mom is happier than she's been in a long time. Brian is happy." I smile. "I'm happy with that. Thank you so much."
She shakes her head. "I am not happy with that, Adele. You have given so much, yet you want nothing in return."
"What's wrong with that?" I ask. I have gotten everything I wanted.
Moirai smiles. "You will be going to heaven soon, Adele," she states. "But this time you'll stay there." Yes… I went to heaven when I first died, but came back because Seth wasn't happy. Like I told him, I couldn't be happy unless he was happy. And now he is. So I can go to heaven and stay. "Would you like to see him one last time?"
I look at her. "I can see him, Moirai."
She shakes her head, her poofy white hair frizzing. "No, Adele. I meant, would you like to talk to him again? Would you like to talk to your brother and your mom and Brian and Emma one last time before you move on?"
"I can do that?" I whisper.
She nods. "If you want, I can let you do that."
I nod. She smiles. "Then live, Adele. But only for two hours, understand? I can't keep you alive longer than that."
Two hours is plenty. I feel myself grow hot then cold. No one notices me. I walk over to Seth, where he and Brian are sitting on the ground playing with Emma. I tap his shoulder. "Hang on a second," he says.
"Seth," I say. "I only have two hours."
He spins around. "Adele." His eyes are wide. He inches his hand across the floor, searching for Brian's hand. Brian and Emma are staring at me also. "Brian, are you seeing this?"
He nods. "We should be okay with ghostly visitors, Seth," he reminds my brother. But both of them look as though they're in shock. Emma on the other hand bounces to her feet.
"You're Adele," she says happily. "I've seen your picture."
I nod. "Yes. And you're Emma. I've watched you get better."
She smiles brightly. "I got better for you. Seth wanted me to get better because he couldn't save you."
I nod again. "I know. I'm glad he found you. It did him good."
"Am I the only one getting the vibe that we're the kids and they're the adults?" Seth mutters to Brian.
Brian shrugs, but grins and ruffles Seth's hair. "Hey, don't forget. You are a kid, kid."
"You're only nineteen," Seth retorts. "Don't forget it." But then he leaps to his feet and wraps me in his arms. It's the bear hug he never gave anyone else, ever. He doesn't even give Brian this kind of hug. Just me. This is Seth's Adele-hug. That's what he called it. "Why are you here?" he whispers. "Why aren't you up in heaven where you belong?"
"Because Moirai is giving me two hours with you guys," I answer. "You and Brian and Mom and Emma. I don't think anyone else can see me."
He laughs. Then he looks at me, smiling. "You look beautiful, Adele."
"So do you, Sethie," I answer.
He scowls when I call him that. I laugh. He shakes his head. "I missed that nickname, Adele. As much as I always hated it… I hated it more that you couldn't say it."
"Well you need to quit being sad," I say. "I told you. I can't be happy if you're not happy."
He reaches out and pulls Brian to his feet. Brian wraps his arms around Seth's shoulder, kissing his hair. "I am happy, kid," he assures me. "Very happy."
"Good," I say. "Where's Mom?"
He smiles. "In the kitchen with Cara. Let's go see her."
She drops the plate she's holding when she sees me, and it shatters across the floor. She doesn't bother to apologize or clean it up. She just runs to me and hugs me. "Adele," she cries. "Baby girl…"
"Mom," I say. "This is just a Christmas present from Moirai. I have to leave in a couple hours."
She shakes her head. "Okay, if you have to. I've still never had a better Christmas. I get my son back and I get to see my baby girl. I love you both, more than I can tell you."
We sit together in Emma's room for two hours, just talking. Well, Mom and Seth do a lot of crying also. And as the two hours draws to a close, Emma crawls over to me and hugs me. I'm not expecting it, but I hug her back. "Thanks for everything, Adele," she whispers.
"No," I tell her. "Thank you. You saved my brother."
"I can hear you," Seth says sarcastically. I ignore him as Mom hugs me.
"I love you, Adele, more than the world."
"I know, Mom. I love you too."
When she finally lets go, Brian gives me a hug. Except it's not just a hug. Brian gives me an Adele-hug. I smile. It makes me happy that he does that. Only Seth and Brian are allowed to give Adele-hugs. "I love you," he says. "I would love you even if you hadn't given me Seth."
"I can hear you," Seth repeats. "I'm not a thing to be given away."
"No, Seth," Brian says. "I'm pretty sure that you wouldn't have gone out with anyone—girl or guy—Adele didn't approve of."
Seth grumbles something I can't quite hear, but it sounds a lot like, "Shut up."
Brian laughs and tells me, "Take care up in heaven, kid. Love you."
"I love you too, Brian. Take care of Seth for me."
"I will," he promises. "He needs it."
And then without being asked, Mom and Brian and Emma file out of the room, leaving me alone with Seth.
He sweeps me into a hug, the biggest Adele-hug he's ever given me. But it's not soon enough for me to not see the tears pouring from his eyes. "I love you, Adele," he says. And that's it. No thanks, nothing. Because that's all he needs to say. Nothing else matters. I love Seth more than I love anyone else. And until Brian came alone, he loved me more than anyone else, even though I was dead. Which wasn't healthy.
I hug back, holding him tightly. And as I fade away, feeling myself drift back towards heaven, I tell him, "I love you too, Sethie. More than the world."
So, the final author's note. First, this chapter is dedicated to diamondntheruff, because they are the one who gave me the idea to have Seth and Brian come back to life; they didn't know it at the time... but it was one of their reviews that sparked that idea. It is also dedicated to JyleLover924 because she is the one who inspired the visitation by Adele, which I think is a really nice end to the story. Thanks you two!
Now... the story as a whole is dedicated to the following people... Jill Montino, anon, JyleLover924, The Color Clear, diamondntheruff, Not Abigale, Enchantedflame, Insomniac, Satellite-Princess, Higgledy Piggledy, Astir-Lewis, Leminkain, Sentinal of Aether, Mayuri, Shamalan Grey, MyssFae, MorganGrimm, SmexyHuggles, M, Wobwobwob, Nutter Butter, and Setsunie. Thanks for all your support!
Now, time to answer the reviews, one last time (any reviews for this chapter will be answered via PM/review response).
Jill Montino: Sorry it made you cry. Sorry if this chapter made you cry. It's fine that you didn't review till now. I'm just glad to find someone else has been reading it the whole time. That always makes me happy. :D
anon: Thanks so much! I'm glad you enjoyed it.
JyleLover924: Glad it made your weekend better. :) I hate stories like that, that make you freak out... But mostly that's just cause I'm reading the stories at one or two in the morning and everyone else is asleep... Thanks for reviewing!
The Color Clear: Thanks for the review! I'm glad you liked it and are still here with me for the final chapter. And I hate it when FP does that... frustrating...
diamondntheruff: Thanks, I'm glad you liked it so much. It really was you who inspired me to have them come back to life. I think it was your review of chapter 10, you said it was interesting how they kept getting closer and closer to human contact. Other people mentioned it too, but you were the first. I saved that review in my inbox so I wouldn't forget it... Ah well. It's your fault they're alive. XD Thanks for sticking by us through the end.
Not Abigale: Thanks so much. I try, I really do. Sometimes Kiyoshi doesn't cooperate, but most of the time... we can work together and produce decent stories.
Insomniac: Wondering what comes next for Seth and Brian... not wrong to wonder, but not something I want to write, cause it would just drag the story out. I suppose that you can just decide what comes next for them. I kind of like the idea that they stay with Seth's mom until Seth finishes high school, and he and Brian get jobs and can get an apartment together and live happily ever after. But that's just me...
Enchantedflame: ... I was sitting in my dorm when I read your review about Kiyoshi wanting to see them naked, and I think it was around eleven o'clock at night. Quiet time starts at ten. I about died, trying not to be too loud. And it's funny because it's quite possibly true.
Kiyoshi: Hey, now.
KG64: I'm not the only one of the two of us who likes guys.
Kiyoshi: I like girls...
KG64: I didn't say you didn't like girls. I just said you like guys. Which you do.
Kiyoshi: I hate you.
KG64: I'm aware. Well, for the last time, Kiyoshi and his girl are signing out. Love y'all and thanks for all your love and support. :) I doubt it could be appreciated more.
Kiyoshi'sGirl64 and Kiyoshi