The autumn leaves cascaded against the hospital window, each color getting stuck there, like he was. He couldn't speak; it wasn't possible to move anything below his waist. He could still talk but he knew that he wasn't doing well. The parade of doctors came in and went through tests upon tests telling his mother what they found wrong with him. All of them believed that he was still asleep from the pain he had experienced from the night before, remembering all he had done to be alive.

He lied there alone so that he could feel close to her, back before it had all gone downhill. Before she went from Hell to back, back when his father was alive, back when he didn't feel like the autumn leaves, broken and easily crushed and trapped. She gave him something different from his routine of getting up and just living. She made him feel alive until she had died. For the longest time after she had died, he had tried it all.

He had tried to get hit by a car by jaywalking every time he got the chance for a whole year. He was never hit by any car. The blurring red and black cars would go so close, but not even graze him for the moment. His mother had decided to get a chip implanted in him and she made it impossible for him to jaywalk by shocking him every time he tried to do it.

The next thing he tried was to buy enough drugs to overdose him. His mother had gotten the box first and had handed it over to the police, saying that it had been left at her doorstep. He wasn't able to overdose himself so once again he had to find a way.

For the next two years, he slowly cut himself over and over, being very subtle about it. He was trying to nick an artery or stab himself in the heart so he could feel anything at all. At the end of the second year, she had got him; just had he stabbed an artery. He had a quick trip to the hospital and a year with a therapist where he couldn't try his suicide attempts.

On the very day, that she had been hit by that thunderstorm, he decided to take a trip to the hill where they use to meet. He remembered the leaves crushing against his boots as the winds had picked up as he climbed up the small little hill. Up on top of the hill, he saw the blanket that he had left for lying next to her. He looked at the charred spot where the lightning had struck her and he moved it there. Maybe if he was lucky, he would be struck by a bolt and die just like her.

He remembered that he saw her then, beautiful Marissa. She had the long red hair that always reminded him of roses, those baby blues that knew how to sparkle and she was wearing the dress she had died in, that beautiful emerald dress that shinned against the tree.

He had always felt plain compared to her. He had mopey blond hair, bland brown eyes, a white t-shirt, jeans, beaten sneakers and a leather jacket that barely fit. He wasn't a jock; he was lanky like a paper that could be blown away easily. "Rissa, how come you come now?" He asked, as she had been waiting for her over five years.

"Brandon, it's almost your time. Autumn's no time to lie alone. I only came the other times to see you. Everyone who I ever loved is with me and so is your dad, everything is just so much better there, but it doesn't feel that way since you were missing. I couldn't live without you and I can't even die without you," she said, vanishing as she said that too.

"What do you mean by that? Does that mean that you love me?" He asked. He wasn't sure what else to think except that. As he had lied there, he had been struck by the lightning and here he was.

"Miss Bradley, we need to talk to you outside about your son's condition," one of the older doctors said from outside the door. He couldn't see that far without showing that he was indeed wide awake from his sleep.

"Yes, we should talk about his condition. He doesn't seem to be getting better at all. He's paralyzed and those nightmares don't seem like a good thing for him to be having," she said, being quite honest to the older doctor.

"Quite frankly, he is doing horribly. He has so much internal bleeding from the crash that we can't operate on since he has such a weak heart that may not restart if we do anything. However, if we don't treat him soon, his heart will give way and he will die. We, however, cannot tell him the truth since he is in such a fragile state of mind," the doctor said.

"Yes, Brandon still suffers from the delusions of the girl who died waiting for him in that autumn thunderstorm five years ago. It was such a tragedy that she was struck by lightning and that she died alone. He still goes up to that hill and maybe if he hadn't been lying alone like her he might have not been in this hospital," she said. His mother didn't understand him and he could hear it while he was still in the critical state. He heard it, before anyone else did. It was his heart monitor and he was flatling and fast. As he was finally freed from his earthly prison, he turned back to see his mother crying and he just knew what he needed to say.

"Mom, it's going to be okay, I am going to be okay, I am free," he said, lying to her perfectly.

"It is, it is," she lied back. Brandon gave a quick mental laugh, remembering what Marissa had told him.

Marissa took his hand and smiled as he entered the clouds and he looked at her. "Is my mom going to be okay?" He asked out of the blue.

"Of course, Brandon, she will be fine, perfectly fine," Marissa replied. "After all, she is fine now. Autumn is the time to not lie alone and its winter now. She will be with us soon and everything will be fine.


She smiled. "Angels can't lie," she said, as I caught the lying tone in her voice, but he ignored it as he followed her anyway and went to lie on the Heaven version of their hill.

AN: Yup, it's a semi-happy ending since he died and now he lies with her in Heaven . . . or the afterlife. This is my WCC entry, please vote on it!