Letters


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1. December 16th

It could've been the perfect winter's day.

A thick blanket of snow covered the luscious, green grass, keeping it out of harm's way in the harsh winter months. Despite the freezing temperatures, it gave off an effortless vibe of comfort and warmth. The trees surrounding the secluded clearing had long since lost their green overcoats and the many woodland creatures had gone on holiday for Christmas, but the forest still buzzed with energy and life you could expect in the middle of summer. To any passer by, it would've seemed beautiful.

Then there was the girl.

She sat on a thick oak branch, sprouting off one of the oldest trees in the area, a rope necklace around her neck. In fact, it was more of a leash than a necklace, tying her to the same branch she sat on. Weak and shaking, she slowly stood up, almost slipping on the thick covering of snow. The t-shirt and hoodie she wore were soaked in her own blood from the cuts she had made earlier in the day.

Any passing person would've believed her to be dead, or close to death, anyway.

No, she was far from natural death. She was jut 14 years old. Some would say she had her whole life ahead of her. A life of fun and excitement. But when all you've known is pain, how is it supposed to get better? She couldn't see a light at the end of the dark tunnel that had been her short life. Maybe the bullies from school were right. She'd be better of dead.

Apprehensive, she stumbled but clung on to the main trunk of the tree. One more minute before she met with the Reaper.

Then she jumped.

Hanging like a dead rabbit in a butcher's window.

Gone.

***

It didn't take long for people to realise she was missing. Her family searched for her hours on end. She was their angel. Sweet and caring and kind, she had never shown any signs that something was wrong. They couldn't help but blame themselves. Maybe they just hadn't listened to her enough.

It was her mother that found her in the end, three hours after she had jumped. The forest had been a favourite of her daughter. The silent tranquillity had drawn her in as a child and she continued to go there throughout the remaining years of her left. She had just wanted to escape from the stress and noise of her life in the nearby town.

It is an unexplainable feeling, seeing your eldest child, your only daughter, dead by her own will. Her mother didn't know what to do, other than get her down from the tree. She didn't want anyone else to see her daughter like this. Lying the body on the snow, she fell to her knees, silent tears streaming down her reddened cheeks. Her daughter had seemed happy enough this morning. She had come into the kitchen full of life, full of excitement for the launch of her school's art project that afternoon. Not like she was about to hang herself. Her mother must have been so ignorant to not see the signs of her daughter being unhappy. No, not just unhappy. Depressed.

She called an ambulance. They couldn't save her now, but she couldn't think of anything else to do. Only then she called her husband, telling him the terrible way in which she found their oldest child. Her father didn't even respond. It was his fault she had done this. And this wasn't in the same way her mother felt. Her mother had just missed the signs, whereas her father, it was all down to him.

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