The Fall of Us

©Molly Looby CampNaNoWriMo '14 !

Enter the world of Tye. The Fall has devastated much of the world as we know it but Tye knows nothing else. He and his best friend Eeli are ready to leave their home as soon as they reach thirteen years so that they can be off on their own and be who they want to be and do what they want to do. At last.

Tye and Eeli could never have imagined how dangerous the real world was going to be.

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I wake up skwintin an have to shield my eyes. Lite’s pourin through the curtains an givin everyfin a glow. I lean on my elbows, rubbin the sore spot on my head from bangin it last nite but it don’t hurt so much no more. My blanket is folded up so my name is on the top an the whole thing is half under my pillow. Eeli’s nowhere to be seen. I peak over the end of my bunk an find I’m the only one still in here. Empty beds stare back at me, their covers yanked up but not pulled proper. I shut my eyes at the breeze comin through the window an I smile at the sound of gigglin outside.

I hurry to the bathroom while all the noise is outside an I take a while starin into the mirror. I don’t usually bother even lookin at my face but today somefink’s different an I can’t seem to take my eyes off my eyes. My hair’s much tidier than last time I looked but I don’t like the serious look on my face. I smile an larf at myself an mirror Tye looks a lot less scary. It’s weird to fink everyone sees my face every day. I couldn’t fink of the last time I’d bin bothered to look in the mirror. But now, knowin I mite not see mirror Tye fer a long while an knowin his face mite change, I make myself look at every detail. It’s the last time I’ll see myself as a boy. If I ever return, I’ll be a man.

Pickin which clothes to wear is easy. I wear my fayvorit faded blue teeshirt an my combat trowsers wiff all the pockets. A little giddy thrill makes my heart bounce as I pull out my boots, bought specially fer this day last time the market came round. They’re the sturdiest fings I’ve ever owned. I pull em on, admirin the buckles an laces. Whoever makes boots is a genius, there’s no doubt about it. I can’t even start to fink how they do it. They come up to the bruise on my shin from walkin into the bunks last nite an I tuck my combats into them. The dark brown colour looks good on me, I decide.

Wiff all the rest of my clothes an belongings that were worff takin stuffed into my rucksack an my old stuff left in a pile on the floor fer the boys to fite over later, I leave the boys’ room fer the final time. I stop at the door fer a moment lookin back into the room an take a deep breath before turnin round an headin into the garden wiff the others.

“Hi, Tye!” They all chorus in varyin volumes an pitches.

I drop my rucksack as Eeli hugs me tite around the neck. As she lets go I take in her own outfit, much like mine. White vest top, brown combats, brand new boots. Hers dint have no buckles, just laces an they were a dark grey colour insteada brown. Most importantly was the leather jacket she had on that I’d never seen before. It was black an had a high collar. The colour seemed much darker wiff her golden hair spillin over her shouldas. It was a few sizes too big an flapped in the wind as she hadn’t done the zip up. Fer some reason the zip was on the left side rather than in the middle.

“Where’d you git that?”

She turned to beam at Nat who was smilin behind her. “Nat just gave it to me. You like it?”

“It’s brill. You look . . . amazin.”

“Fanks.”

I look to Nat. “Where’d you git that?”

“The market. You two were so busy lookin at everyfin an pickin yer boots you dint notice. It’s yer birthday present and leavin present both of you.”

My heart skips. “You mean that . . . Do I git one too?”

She larfs. “O’course you do, Tye. I wouldn’t leave you out like that. You wanna see it?”

I nod an I don’t feel like I’ve ever bin so excited in my entire life. I feel like I’m buzzin or hummin.

Nat disappears into the kitchen an returns wiff a jacket so beautiful I don’t know what to say. I take it off her wiffout a word an slip my arms into it. The leather’s cold against my skin but feels perfect. It’s a few sizes too big like Eeli’s but that don’t matter. I never want to take it off no matter how much I grow. Now I’ve got this I don’t even care if I ever grow again because at least then it’ll always fit. It’s the same dark brown colour as my boots an has pockets I bury my hands into. I never wanna take it off.

“Nat,” I shut my mowf before openin it again, tryin to fink of what to say. “It’s the best present I’ve ever got.” I fling my arms around her and skweeze her tite. “Fanks so much.”

“Wow, the best present you’ve ever got? What about when you was eleven years an I let you have yer swift nife.”

“This is better’n that cause this came from you.” I say into her hair.

She blinks hard a few times an sniffs, skweezin me back. “Aww, Tye. What am I gonna do wiffout you?”

We stand there fer a long time an the scamps are quiet. Eeli creeps forward an Nat an I part, lettin her in an then it’s the three of us in a huddle, all tryin to smile an not to cry. I feel little hands round my legs an realise that everyone’s joined in. I larf an a tear drops down my face.

It’s wrong. The feelin of bein the happiest you’ve ever bin an the saddest you’ve ever bin all at once. I’ve never had a feelin like it. Bittersweet, Nat called it. I reckon there’s never bin a more perfect word.

I dunno how long we stand there like that but eventually we part an I have to go by each of my remainin brothers an sisters one by one telllin em I love em an I won’t forget em an to live their dreams. I don’t larf at none of their dreams like Nat does, but she don’t know what it’s like to be a littlun livin wiff her. We’ve all got dreams even if we don’t know what they are just yet.

I come back to Nat again once I’ve made all my brothers an sisters cry.

“So,” I can see her eyes are swimmin wiff tears. “I guess this is it.”

Eeli stands beside me an takes my hand.

“You’d fink I’d git used to it by now.” She shakes her head.

“I dunno how to fank you, Nat, fer everyfin.”

“Yer amazin, Nat,” Eeli continues for me. “Wiffout you we wouldn’t be standin here today. There’s no one out there as special as you an as much as you drove me crazy everyday an I screamed at you, I wouldn’t change that now. I love you.”

Tears fall down Nat’s cheeks an she has to take a breath. “Wow, Eeli,” she wipes her eyes even though the tears ain’t stopped. “That’s the nicest fing I’ve ever heard you say.”

“I mean it too.”

“Me too,” I smile an it feels heavy like it did yesterday. “I can’t fink of what to say. There’s a million fings that won’t come out.”

Nat takes my free hand. “I know. It’s okay.”

“Yer - yer everyfin, Nat Watcher. Yer better than a mother. Yer everyfin.”

“Tye,” she bites her lip. “My little scamp.”

Then we’re huggin again, but only for a moment cause Nat pushes us away.

“Git out of my site you two or I’ll never let go.”

“See you soon, Nat.” Eeli says.

“Here’s hopin. Now git off my land,” she smiles an I hold it in my head as we wave to our little brothers an sisters an hand in hand, walk further away from Nat’s house than we have in our whole lives.

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