Wretched Trauma

Avery is an eighteen year old outcast, joining sixth form, for her final year of A Levels, before University. Before she started a new school, she was bullied, both verbally and physically. At her new school, she meets a new outcast, Axel; he's mute. No one knows why he's mute, but nobody cares enough to find out. No one, but Avery. She wants to know everything about him; how it's possible for him to lose his voice; how he became an outcast; but most importantly, he wants to know how to say 'I love you' without a voice. Everyone says love is blind, or maybe it's just silent?

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11. 'Dude, you need to shower.'

   I cried. I cried for hours. I cried myself to sleep. I woke up this morning, and, guess what? I'm still crying. 

   We were only together for a month, but it was the best month of my life. He made me feel like... Like I'm actually worth something. Like I'm not just another girl with problems; I'm a girl who deserves to have those problems fixed. And he was so close to fixing them. Plus, that was the stupidest break up ever.

   "Ave..." my brother whispers, peering in at me from my bedroom door.

   "Yeah?" I mumble back, refusing to leave the refuge of my covers.

   "Did you break up with Axel?" he carefully asks, not wanting to set me off.

   "Yeah," I sigh, pulling the covers back to look at him.

   "Do you want some ice cream? Chocolate? I have a few DVDs, too," he says, revealing a plastic bag, filled with said items.

   I'm about to say no, but the look of empathy in his eyes makes me think again, "What DVDs did you get?"

   So a few minutes later, we have a film playing on my small TV, as we shovel out cookie dough ice cream straight from the tub. Callum may be one of those super fit guys, who practically lives at the gym, but he eats like a pig. I suppose he burns it all off. I'm exactly the same, except I don't have to burn it off, I just have a very efficient metabolism.

   "Dude, you need to shower," Callum laughs, taking in my ragged appearance.

   "Dude, we still have like two tubs of ice cream left, I'm not showering," I reply, sticking my tongue out at him.

   "Whatever," he rolls his eyes playfully, just as Devon appears.

   "I heard the news. I know you probably don't want to talk about it, but we need to know what happened," she says, gesturing to the silhouette behind her, as she said 'we'.

   So, Devon, Ethan, Callum, and myself all made ourselves comfortable under my covers, still munching away at the food Callum got. The film is still playing in the background, but none of us are paying attention. In fact, they're all paying attention to me, but I have my attention focused on the pack of doughnuts I just opened.

   "Avery, just tell us. We're not going to take sides with Axel, and ditch you, just because you're the new one in our friendship group," Devon urges, placing a hand on my knee.

   "It sounds a little stupid... I think I overreacted," I murmur, studying the doughnuts intensely, "I hugged him, but he looked in pain whenever I touched his back. I lifted his shirt, and there were some cuts and stitches and stuff. I asked where he got it, and he blatantly lied to me. It's not the first time he's been magically injured, and lied about falling down non existent stairs," my voice raises a few times, realising how what I did was perfectly reasonable, "So I said stop lying or we're done, and he walked out."

   "He is so fucking stupid..." Devon mutters, and Ethan agrees.

   "Did I overreact?" I ask, feeling Callum give me a side hug.

   "No, I'd have done the same," Devon explains, half heartedly smiling.

   For a few minutes, we let the film playing continue to bore us, until it comes to an end. The credits flash onto the screen, and I let out a weak sigh. I didn't want to break up with him... But I did. So be it.

   "Hey, are you going to the Snow Ball?" Devon suddenly asks, piercing the awkward silence.

   "The what now?" I reply, cocking an eyebrow.

   "The Snow Ball. It's mean to be some stupid pun on snowballs, but yeah, whatever. It's just a Christmas prom, basically," Ethan adds on, rolling his eyes at least twice.

   "Yeah, are you going?" Devon repeats, her eyes shining with excitement.

   "What the fuck?" I reply, frowning. Prom? Dresses? Ha. Ha. No.

   "Hey, Ave, guess what?" Devon chirps, grabbing my wrist.

   "What..?" I mumble, slightly scared.

   "You're going with me. Whether you like it or not," she sternly tells me, "I'm going to do your make-up, too, by the way."

   Oh God save me.

   About an hour later, Devon and Ethan leave, Callum following shortly behind Devon like a lost kitten. I scream into my pillow, but I don't really know why. Well, looks like I'm going to have to buy a dress...

***

   "You're gonna buy a dress, whether you want it or not," Devon says, dragging me into the first shop of many.

  For the whole first hour, I whine at her, begging her to let me go home. However, I'm not going to lie, I'm beginning to have fun. First of all, we're going to find Devon an outfit, so then she can focus all of her attention on me. Her words, not mine.

   "So, are you my girlfriend, now?" I joke, during our conversation about our dates.

   "About that..." she awkwardly mumbles, as I zip up a dress on her.

   "What?" I sigh, shaking my head at the dress. Too baggy.

   "Ethan asked me to go... But Callum promised he'd go with you," she says, flinching slightly.

   "You want me... To take my brother... As my date?" I raise my eyebrows, helping her out of the dress.

   After a small argument, she begins begging me, saying it's her chance to become more than a friend to Ethan. I give in, knowing how much he means to her. I guess taking my brother wouldn't be so bad, because he's not afraid to hurt anyone who hurts me. Also, he's a terrible dancer, so I can laugh at him for the night.

   We finally find Devon a dress. It's electric blue, just like the ends of her hair. A belt of rhinestones wraps around her petite waist, and blue and silver ruffles cascade down from the belt, to mid thigh. It's also strapless, so she drags through three more shops to find a strapless bra. Along the way, she buys a cute, silver tiara, to finish off her look, claiming to already have silver high heels at home. 

   "What colour dress do you want?" she asks, linking her arm through mine.

   "I was thinking white, to go with the Snow Ball theme, or maybe mint green..." I muse, picking out my favourite boutique to go in first.

   Devon grabs a bunch of dresses that match my description, throwing them at me to try on. Rolling my eyes, I slip into the first one, not liking it at all. She agrees, discarding it into the 'no' pile. I go through sixteen more dresses, that are either too small, too big, too plain, too extravagant, too tight, too loose. 

   However, I finally find the perfect dress. It's white, just like I was planning on, and it's incredibly beautiful. It comes above my knee, but flows out to be a full length dress from behind. The back dips quite low, showing most of my back. It has one shoulder, with a full sleeve, that turns into a silver ring, so it's like one of those princess dresses, that covers the back of the hand. It's very light, and flows gracefully, making me fall in love with it even more.

   "Aw, you look so pretty," Devon gushes, clasping her hands at the sight of me.

   "How much is it?" I cringe, not wanting to know.

   "It's only eighty," she grins, and I sigh in relief.

   "Thank God," I smile back, slipping back out of it. 

   We buy a few pieces of jewellery to go with it, consisting of a silver necklack, matching earrings, and I buy a pair of silver, glittery high heels. I don't even know if I can walk in them, but never mind.

   "We're gonna look so good," Devon winks, shoving all of our bags into the back of her car.

   "Hell yeah," I cheer, sliding into the car with her.

   "Don't worry about Callum, I'll get him sorted out with a tux and a white tie," Devon waves off my next question, pulling into my driveway.

   "Cheers," I reply, "What day is the ball?" 

   "Friday, so you've got six days," she replies, helping me carry my bags indoors.

   "Is it just for sixth form?" I ask.

   "Nah, people from other schools can come too. I guess I'll see you then," she waves, getting back in her car.

   I wave her off, and continue the transportation of bags to my bedroom. Callum is waiting for me, sat on my bed, gazing at his phone screen.

   "Yay, Avery!" he jumps up, like an excitable puppy, "I get to take my lil' sis' to prom!" he crushes me in a hug, and I sigh, letting him hug it out.

   "Yeah, yeah, whatever," I murmur, his arm covering my mouth.

   We talk for a bit, but he leaves when he can smell food from downstairs. Laughing, I hang my dress up neatly, keeping the plastic bag over it, so that it doesn't collect dust. Honestly, I thought the whole prom thing, was an American excuse for the jocks and cheerleaders to get together. I didn't thing England even bothered with this kind of thing.

  But I'm not going to lie... I'm incredibly excited.

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