The next thing I was aware of was the sound of my heartbeat pounding in my ears and a severe pain spreading from the top of my skull. Moaning, I tried to open my eyes and saw a bright white light which only caused yet more horrendous thumping in my head. There were people in the room with me, but their voices were distant and unidentifiable, still everything they whispered and every other sound they made intensified the agony within my head.

A part of my mind that managed to function despite the agony, figured I was in a hospital because of the light and the smell of sanitizer that was slowly burning my nose. Being in hospital sucked, especially for me and not just because Mum had died in a hospital (although that was definitely a bummer) but because I was determined not to die of a terminal illness like Mum. And people with terminal illnesses flock to hospitals, so to my mind it was the place in which I was most likely to contract one. 'Knowing me,' I thought 'The one way I don't want to die, will inevitably be the way I die.' So hospitals were a no-go for me, I despised them so much that I tended to avoid being within a forty kilometre radius of them whenever possible. And now I was in one, this was a crisis.

I tried once again to lift my eyelids despite the urge to never again look upon the light of day but still I was unsuccessful. Groaning I forced myself to roll into a more comfortable position however as I did so I was hit with a most unpleasant dizzy spell.

A voice suddenly sounded from beside my uncomfortable hospital cot "You fell over when you were dancing, hit your head on the table, blacked out and you're now in hospital with six stiches in your head."
"Thanks," I groaned "I remember."
"You weren't lying about not being able to dance," the voice was now thick with laughter.
"Maybe next time you'll trust me."
"Maybe, I've got to go, hopefully I'll see you at school tomorrow." I head her make to leave and she had reached the door when I spoke
"Alison," she stopped "did you burn the spaghetti?"
Laughter sounded in the hallway.

I was sent home that night, with instructions not to use heavy machinery and a warning of possible concussion. Dad promised the doctors to keep me from driving even though the chances of my driving a car were extremely small as I didn't have a car or a licence nor was I legally old enough to operate a motor vehicle. I was forced to lie in the back seat on the way home and had to endure the torture of being directly above the back wheels so that whenever dad made a sharp turn or we had to pass over a speed bump my head collided sharply with the backseat door. If at the time I had seen the point in listing things, the car trip would have topped my list of most unbearable occasions I had ever experienced. I vomited twice.

When we pulled into the drive way, Dad pulled me out of the car and helped me stumble into the house where I inevitably collapsed upon the couch. However instead of leaving me to sleep he sat down and stared at me, as if he was searching for something.
"Did you do that on purpose?"
"What do you mean" my voice sounded tired even to my own ears.
"I mean you've thought about killing yourself before and didn't hesitate to act," he sighed "I was wondering if you were having suicidal thoughts today?"
Internally groaning I sat back in the chair, sensing it was going to be a long conversation "I have suicidal thoughts every day."
I saw him swallow "Maybe you need to see Dr. Free a few more times a week."
"No!" I yelled, it hurt my head but I continued "No! No! No! I think about it but I never act on It."
"But was what happened today you acting on it?"
"No dad, I mean honestly if I suddenly decided to commit suicide I doubt I would employ death by table," both of our voices were steadily rising.
"You might if you were that desperate."
"Oh for God's sake, wouldn't it make more sense to run out into the street in front of a car?"
Something burst inside him and he screamed "I'm not answering that question."

It turned into a screaming match, as if we were both trying to see who yelled the loudest. My head throbbed under the noise but I continued yelling anyway. He yelled at me for not being close with him and for not appreciating things. Then I yelled at him for not understanding how pointless life was and why it didn't make sense for me to appreciate things. Then he played the 'Mum card', like he always did.
"Your Mother loved you so much! Do you really think she would want you to be like this!"
Instead of conceding the argument like I normally did at this point, I decided to drive the point home "Of course she wouldn't! But that doesn't freaking matter! Because she's dead! Isn't she? So whatever she would want doesn't matter because all that's left of her existence is fingerprints and ash!" He went silent then and his eyes watered before he turned and made for the door grabbing his coat along the way. A minute later I heard the car engine starting and watched dad and the car become smaller as he drove further and further away. Scoffing, like a typical 'misunderstood' teenager, I turned from the window and made my way to the old record cabinet.

Have you ever talked to yourself? I most certainly did. But I didn't do it in a 'thinking out loud' way, I talked to myself so I could confirm that my position was the right one. I wasn't sure if it made me insane or not but sometimes it was the only way I could communicate without being contradicted. But on that day no matter what I did or said, I was unable to settle myself into a state of agreement. My mind was throwing Dad's words back at me repeatedly, mingled with words that seemed to emerge from my own twisted subconscious.

You're wrong! You can't always be right.

You say you're here because you love me, but it sure doesn't seem like it.

"The only reason I still breathe is so your pointless existences is slightly easier!" I snap.

You have to do more than breathe, to help him.

Wake up and see that life isn't the worst thing that happened to you!

"Of course it's the worst thing that's happened to me, it's the only thing that's happened to me!"

Look at the little things!

What about that girl? You think she'll stick around with you acting like this?

"No, I don't expect her to."

Your mother's life was cut short; it doesn't mean it was pointless.

"Really? Nothing she ever did is valid now that she's dead!"

The things she said are still valid! You must know that, you use those words!

"I don't treat her words like philosophy."

No but you believe in them.

"I can't think of one minor instance where her words have influenced me since her death."
Then the voice changed to a whispery echo of my mother's

When you play a song on vinyl remember 'That's how it's meant to sound'.

I pulled Spirit in the Sky from the cabinet, threw it to the floor and watched it break into small and insignificant shards.

The voices fell silent.

Well, thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed that! I'm sorry this chapter took so long; I've been enjoying my holidays since it's finally summer in Australia!

I want to change the summary for this story, so if anybody has any suggestions please let me know! All ideas will be greatly appreciated.

Remember to leave a review even if you didn't like it, I thrive on constructive criticism. For those who did like it, should there be anyone, I hope you will leave one too; they fuel me to write more.

Flames will be used to light my Christmas barbeque.

If I don't update until Christmas then let me just say, Have a Merry Christmas, Smile and Keep Safe. Those living in the colder countries I hope that you will have a toasty, white Christmas; Enjoy your Christmas jumper. And to those living the warmer countries I hope that you have a lovely and relaxing Christmas; don't forget the sunscreen!