Chapter One: Triggers and Memories.
My mom yells at me to wake up, causing me to groan. Someone banging on the door wakes me up.
"What!" I exclaim. They stop banging on the door and knock lightly. How nice of them. They open the door slowly and I pull the sheets up to my chest, in case of a rapist comes through the door. I roll my eyes and sit up. "What do you want, Josh?" Josh chuckles and sits next to me on the bed.
"Just wanted to give you a something nice to wake up to," Josh says. He smirks immediately and swings his arm over my shoulder.
"You're so sweet, I wish you were my husband," I say sarcastically. Ryan, Jake, and Maddie come through my door with smiles on their faces. Let me introduce you to them.
Josh, who seems like the jerk, actually is at points. He has a pearly white smile, tan, green eyes, and black swept hair and is tall like very tall; well to me anyway, he's 6'4. (I know, not that tall.) Every girl wants him at school, but he's not popular. He's the only child in his family, he wasn't before, and so that means that his younger brother died from a car accident. We've known each other since 8th grade, and known him for 3 years.
Ryan, who's the total sweet guy but is tough when someone who he loves, hurts them, (Which is handy sometimes.) He's so smart and athletic and almost looks like me; well he has the same characteristics as me. Brown light hair, deep blue eyes (I have different colored eyes though), slightly tan, and has perfect teeth. I met him when I was 4 years old. People always mistaken us for siblings and the teachers did sometimes even though they knew we had different last names. Personally, he's my best friend, the best one I could ever ask for. People also thought that we were dating because of how close we are which kind of gets annoying because everyone says that. He's someone who I love as my brother and I just can't get mad at him.
Jake, oh my god. Jake. Jake is what a girl would say that he's the total package. They would say that he was the perfect body, the perfect hair, the perfect skin, the perfect eyes, the perfect personality, the perfect hands, the perfect everything. It's weird how some girls obsess over him, to me, he's just a guy. I don't think of him that way at all, he's more like any guy, but something is so unique and different. I've known him since 7th grade when I was 13 so our friendship is strong.
Maddie, oh Maddie. She's the best, her and Josh are an item, I know so cliché. I've known her since 3rd grade and she never left me or anything, she's real. You know, she's not fake, she's real and true. She stands out the most out of all of us, honestly. She has black hair and hazel eyes, a perfect figure (said by Josh) a smile that can make your day when you're sad. Her personality is the best, she's so strong in front of people she doesn't like people thinking that she's vulnerable it took Josh to gain her trust for a year. I gained her trust in 5 months, and for the other guys it took a year also. If you didn't notice, she has trust issues with guys the most ever since this bastard broke her heart, god he got what he deserved. Anyway, she's just an awesome best friend.
"We decided for the first day of school, here in Honolulu that we would visit you in the morning to give you the best thing to wake up to: Us," Jake says. They all sit on my bed and Ryan gives me a Grande Caramel Frappuccino from Starbucks.
"Mmm, thanks Ryan," I say as I sip into the straw and all the yummy flavor spreads across my taste buds. "Oh, thanks guys, but don't you think that I would like to wake up to a peaceful thing? You know, not someone banging on the door." I glare at Josh and so does everyone else.
"Josh! You promised not to do that today!" Maddie pouts. Josh frowns and wipes away a pretend tear and puts his hand over his heart. Maddie and I roll my eyes at Josh and smack him on both of his arms.
"Sorry, loves," Josh says sympathetically. God, how such a jerk he can be sometimes, yet he can be so sweet. He's not a jerk to Maddie though, no, he knows that certain things will happen to him if he breaks her heart. I mean, seriously, he beat Blake up to pieces anyway when he broke her heart so I would see no point in that. Well technically, it was all the guys, including me, who beat Blake up for Maddie because she couldn't do that.
Maddie and Josh have one of those almost make out session until Ryan clears his throat on purpose. They pull away from each other and Josh pulls her towards him, putting her on his lap. I roll my eyes. Lovebirds. For being best friends with them and them being around me all the time, I got used to it but sometimes at moments, like this, it gets on my nerves. Don't get me wrong, I set them up and I think they're perfect for each other, but sometimes it you know, too much, especially in the morning. I'm not really of a morning person if you didn't notice.
"Can I get dressed? Like," I sigh. Ryan raises his eyebrow at me. God, I could never do that! It's impossible for me and I do it at the randomest moments and when it's not needed. "I don't wanna change in front of you guys!" Jake groans.
"But, Serenity, we've seen you naked before. Don't you remember?" Jake says. I shudder at the memory. Most embarrassing moment ever. I push the memory away before it starts playing again in my head.
"Yeah Jake, I do, but you know it was weird the first time, I don't want you to see me again," I say.
"Josh and I will go, because we understand," Maddie says and grabs Josh's hand, pulling him out my bedroom door. I look at Jake and he groans again. I roll my eyes at Jake and Ryan puts his arm around my waist.
"Face it, Jake. You have no chance with her. Besides, she's mine," Ryan says.
"I was just kidding, jeez," Jake mumbles as he exits my room. I look up at Ryan and smile at him.
"You have a beautiful smile," Ryan says softly. I gaze into his deep blue eyes and he gazes into my grey ones. I slightly bite my lip and he places his hand onto mine. We stare at each other for what seems forever. He breaks the gaze by looking at my lips. He leans in and I feel a sharp pain in my back. He stabbed me in my back and I scream. "Serenity?"
"Serenity!" a voice yells. I open my eyes and Ryan is staring at me, eyes full of worry. My arm goes up to my back, unharmed, no blood, no injury at all. I guess it was just my imagination or that trigger of the memory. "Are you okay?" My hands are shaking and I have goose bumps. He rubs his hand over my arm. "Oh my god, Serenity. Something triggered it. Jake! Maddie! Josh! Come in here, now!" They all come in, but I can't move or say that I'm okay.
"What's wrong Ryan?" Jake says walking over towards me. "What did you do to her? Anna! Come here! It's important." Footsteps come running up the stairs and my mom appears in my room, rushing over to my side.
"Oh god, what triggered her memory?" she asks in horror. Mom looks at every one of my friends. "I thought all you guys were gonna do was wake her up and talk for a while?"
"It's my fault, I'm sorry. I take all blame for it. I just forgot for a moment that she still has those memories and triggers. We were just in the moment and she went pale and I had to shake her away from it. She looks like she can hear everything but can't move or say anything. What do we do?" Ryan says in a panic.
"Serenity, listen to me. That memory is in the past, don't believe the thoughts in your head, even though there might be no thoughts, I know you're in some kind of danger, I'm sorry. Come back to me, Seren. I love you just remember that, please. Please, come back to me! Come back to your friends that love you and your mom Anna, please. Please, Serenity," Ryan whispers, his eyes in panic. I manage to look at him in the eyes. "Serenity."
Jake pushes Ryan aside and stares at me, grabbing my shoulders and shaking them. "Serenity, please snap out of it. You're scaring the hell out of us, please just please," he says as he rests his forehead on mine. He stares in my eyes, searching for any sign of me being alive. "Listen to me, if you can understand me, blink once." I blink in response. Everyone sighs in relief. Jake looks at my lip, like Ryan did before, only this time, nothing happens. He starts leaning in until our lips are centimeters away and then I gasp and fall back on the bed. I gasp for air until I go back to my normal breathing pace. I sit up slowly from the help of Jake's strong arm.
Everyone is staring at me, cautiously of my every movement and they arch their eyebrows. Seriously, how do they do that?! "Are you okay, sweetie?" my mom says stroking my arm. I nod and smile.
"I'm okay," I croak.
I never got how it works; I mean my memories and me being paralyzed. I have the nightmares everyday about that memory and what happened that day but I just don't understand. It scared me forever, is what happened, it's just there forever, you know? Like one of those things that will always be there in your life that you can't get rid of because it either scared you to death or something guilty that you did. In my case, it just paralyzed me whenever something "triggers" the memory, so basically, I can't even kiss a guy or my mom because that thing happens and it sucks. The things that don't trigger my memories are hugs, eating, holding hands and everything pretty normal. Kissing isn't normal for me, just to make it clear.
Maddie hugs me tight and so does everyone else, I know what that means, time to go to the doctor and the therapist. Great, just great. I hate going to the doctor and the therapist because I have to explain what happened and how it works, which makes me worse. So really all that's happening is making people know more about it and it's so embarrassing! It took me a while to let my friends and my mom see it because it usually goes away after a while, so it's nothing major. The doctor says that it's rare for this to happen to be, but hey, to me it's not that rare because some women have it and they have it way worse than me. They say it's curable but they haven't made one yet, have they now? No, they haven't and here I am, just living this moment and horrible thing mostly two times a week. When I was younger it used to be way worse, I used to have it like every day, I think like two times a day. I'm surprised I even made friends, I mean, who would like a loser and a weirdo like me who has this weird things? Well they put up to it. Ryan and Maddie took it hard the most, since they've known me longer but I told them that it was no big deal and that it was fatal nor harmful. Okay, maybe I didn't say "nor" but I said something different, hey, don't judge me. I like talking formal and I can barely stand it when people use abbreviations it really gets on my nerves. Anyway, you don't know how hard it is living my life. It's like not worse than having cancer but close to it. Like if I'm alone and no one is there to snap me out of it then it will most likely last for an hour or two, but when someone is there to snap me out of it, it takes me ten minutes to, depending if they're trying. Of course my mom and friends are trying to snap me out of it because they get worried if it's the last time they'd ever see me or something, which is impossible because it doesn't exactly harm me. The therapist says that it does, but I guess I'm so used to it that I don't really notice. She says that it harms me emotionally because it floods all the pain and memories and everything back that it makes me really tired.
"Serenity, you better get dressed for school, you can take a nap in Josh's car, okay? Alright, everyone, give her privacy to dress. I'll go get you something to munch on, guys. Ryan, I want you to stay with her, just to make sure nothing happens," my mom says ushering my friends out of my room. Ryan stays on my bed and scoots next to me and puts his hand on my thigh.
"I'm sorry, Seren. I should've never done that, I should've taken precautions," Ryan says looking into my eyes. A small smile appears on my face and I place my hand on top of his.
"Oh, shut up. It's my fault, not yours, okay? Thanks, Ryan, you're amazing," I say as I entwine my fingers with his. I tap my index finger on his pinkie. "Come on, we have to get to school, well I have to get dressed, I'll be right back." I smile at him and he nods, untwining our hands.
I get up and go to the bathroom that's linked to my room and wash my face. I brush my teeth and after that I put on makeup, not heavy though. More like a natural look. After that, I exit my bathroom and see Ryan lying down on my bed hugging my stuffed animal that he gave me for my 9th birthday, causing me to slightly smile. I walk into my walk in closet and toss on a crop top with tank top underneath, shorts and sandals. I walk out to my little desk where I keep my perfumes and creams. I choose the perfume called "Dark Kiss" from Bath and Body Works and lightly spray it, but not too much. I turn around and Ryan is looking at me with a small smile on his face. I walk over to the side of my bed and grab my backpack.
"Let's go," I say and grab his hand, pulling him downstairs.