"Hey, what are you going to do after this?"
"I don't know, maybe go to mall?"
"Oh, I know! How about if we go to karaoke box?"
"Nice! We will have a blast there!"
I stared to the group of girls who just came out from the classroom. They were giggling happily, like a group of idiots. Next, a group of boys came out, saying something like wanting to play ball in the school yard.
And slowly… all of the student in my class went out in groups, leaving me alone in my desk.
I hated it.
I stood up, leaving the school, walking to my home.
The street was full of people. Each of them was with their friends. They were in groups, laughing around.
Like a group of idiots.
I stumbled, almost fell down if I didn't hold onto the lamp street beside me, when one of them bumped into me. But he, without even apologize, just continued to laugh and joke around with his friends.
Nobody cared for me.
I brushed my clothes, then continued my walk until I got home.
I threw my bag to the corner of my room, then I lied on my bed.
Alone again. Somehow, I was always alone. Even in my own home. My family were gone. One day, they just disappeared without trace. They left me alone. They left without me. My mother, my father, my little sister… even our dog! They all left. They took that dog, but they left me alone here… with only money to last myself enough.
In school, I was alone too. Everyone had friends. They were always in group. Only me, was alone. They didn't care about me. Even if I were to gone, they wouldn't care.
But when I thought about it, I was always alone from the start. I had a few friends before this. But they too, all disappeared. Without trace. After we became friends, they were always gone in the next day, disappeared as if they never existed.
Were they playing and toying with me?
Hahaha… this is so pathetic.
Slowly, I wiped my tears from my eyes with my sleeve. Maybe… I was fated to be alone after all.
I thought, I would always be alone, without any friends. But then, it changed.
"My name is Riella. Nice to meet you all!" She was a transfer student. She was so beautiful. I thought she was the type to be popular. And indeed, she immediately got popular. She was surrounded by many people, even the students from other classes. She was nice to everyone, and she was giving out this aura that would make you want to protect her.
No wonder she immediately got popular.
At the end of school time, everyone invited her to hang out together. But she refused them. She refused them all. I thought she only got some business, since she just moved into here. But no.
I was alone again, as usual. I was about to go home… when she suddenly came to me. "Hey, want to hang out together with me?" And then she smiled. A very… beautiful smile. The sun's light from the window fell on her, making her long, brown, reddish hair looked like it was on fire. She was so sparkling. She looked so pure. So honest. More than anything I had ever seen before.
"Hey? What's wrong?" She leaned in to see directly into my eyes. I flinched, a bit backing away. "No… nothing" I whispered.
She chuckled. "Ahaha! You're a weird girl!" She laughed. Again, I felt myself being mesmerized by her. It was not an underestimating laugh. Her laugh looked… so beautiful and so pure, with no ill intent. Like her smile.
Her entire being was just… looked so shining, as if she was a being from another world who was out from my reach.
"So… do you want to hang out with me?"
I couldn't say no.
After that, my life changed. I started to enjoy being with someone. I started doing and enjoying the things I once called idiot. I started to act like an idiot.
I… started to enjoy life.
And it was all because of her.
"Hm?" She turned her head to face me. I can see some confusion in her eyes. "Why what?"
I gulped. "Why… did you want to be friends with me, not the others?" I didn't know why I asked that. I… just wanted to know. But at the same time, I was afraid. Afraid to hear her answer, that she was actually just pretending and playing all of this time. But instead, she laughed.
"Simple, really. I like you more than the others!"
She said it as simple as that, as if it was the most normal thing in this world, when my classmates, and even my own family avoided and left me.
And that was the time I had decided.
I would protect her from anything.
"See you!" She smiled, walking out from school.
I smiled, waving to her… until when she finally far away, I stepped out from the school, walking to the same direction as her.
I would protect her. I would not let her disappear, like my previous friends. I would protect her from anything, by all means, even if I had to act like a stalker.
I kept my distance from her, following her carefully so she wouldn't notice me. And then… I saw something.
She met with a man. They talked for a while… and then, she smiled. Yes, she smiled and laughed. In the same way as when we first met. The same smile and laugh that… captured my heart and changed me.
I gritted my teeth. My right hand slowly took out my scissor in my pocket, clenching on it.
I had to protect her.
I WOULD protect her.
"Bad news everyone. Riella… she… has disappeared."
Immediately, after our homeroom teacher said that, the whole class let out a sad voice.
I… failed. I… couldn't protect her. I had the chance… but I couldn't. I let her disappeared, as my previous friends.
It was all my fault.
After that, my whole life changed again. Not better… but worse. Yes, I became so much worse. I often had nightmares. I screamed at everything. I threw my desk at school. I even tried to kill myself at school… until they had to take away my belongings.
Until they had my homeroom teacher to escort me to a psychiatrist.
I tried to run, but they forced me, until I had no other choice. So I went with my homeroom teacher… and what I got was really shocking.
"Miss, seems like you've gotten Athazagoraphobia in you."
Athazagoraphobia… a fear of forgetting something or… being forgotten, ignored, or replaced. But the psychiatrist said that in my case… it would be the latter.
I… couldn't believe it. But… I felt pretty normal when I was alone. Sad…? Yes, I was sad. But… it was normal, right?
True. I was afraid. I was afraid that my friends would forget and replace me with someone else. That was why I wanted to protect Riella, even though I had to stalk her. But again, it was normal to feel like that.
I walked to home as I kept thinking about that, after I finally had my teacher believe that I wouldn't try anything funny.
My phobia… it didn't have anything to do with this problem. It didn't have anything to do with Riella… and my previous friends' disappearance.
Finally, I arrived at home. I went straight to my room, wanting to rest and calm my mind. But… instead, I saw something… even more shocking.
Right after I opened the door, in the wall… there was a writing in the wall.
"WE WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER YOU."
It was written in blood… and… below that writing, there's many names. First, I saw Riella's name. And then… as I looked more, it listed all of my previous friends' name… until my family member's name.
Even my dog's name.