*October 2nd 2013*
“Echo! Get down here!”
Ugh. My mother.
I got up and walked downstairs and into the kitchen. “Yes?” I answer.
“Dinner is ready. It’s on the table.” She replies coldly.
I swiftly walk out of the room and grab my plate of hot food and my can of soda and head back up to my room.
“Echo! Don’t eat in your room!!” I hear my mother yell as I close the door.
“Well I’m not eating with you, if that’s what you want.” I think to myself.
I hear my mother curse and come upstairs. “Crap.” I whisper to myself.
“Echo! Get out here. Now!” she yells in front of my room. Thank goodness I locked the door when I came up.
She yells for about another 8 minutes, then curses and leaves. “Finally. I’d thought she’d never leave.” I said under my breath.
I grab the 5 or so photo albums from my desk and settle on my bed. Me, my dinner, and the photo albums.
This is what I do every night. My mother makes dinner, she calls me, I go get my dinner, I return to my room, she comes up and yells, then she leaves and I’m left in peace to eat my dinner and look at my photo albums.
Well, they really aren’t my photo albums but I’ve claimed them as mine.
I take a bite of my dinner. Noodles with butter, cheese and beef. Not bad.
I take another and then open up the first photo album. The first picture is a picture of a man, holding me when I was just a baby.
That man is my father. My father died 10 years along with my 5 year old brother, James and my 3 year old sister, Lilly.
I turn the page. I smile. It’s the only picture I have of my mom and dad together.
After Dad died, Mom threw our entire collection of photo albums away, well all of the ones that had Dad, James, or Lilly in them. Which was most of them.
My mom was happier before Dad died. She used to smile and laugh. We got along so well.
Now we never talk unless it’s necessary. She never laughs or smiles.
I really only see her on Mondays though. She leaves at 5:45 in the morning and comes home at 6:30 at night. She makes dinner, yells for me, and then yells at me for eating in my room. That’s about it. She stays out all other nights.
You think this would scare me but it really doesn’t. It’s her life and she can do what she wants with it.
When my dad dies, something died inside of her. She took out her happy button. She’s a robot now.
She doesn’t hate me but she doesn’t love me either. I don’t know how she feels for me.
I turn page after page till I’ve gone through all of the albums. I wipe away the tear on my face and neck.
Oh how I miss them.
Every night I reply the day they died over and over in my head. It doesn’t make any sense. My father and younger siblings didn’t even do anything wrong.
Questions roll off of my brain.
Why didn’t I die? Why didn’t Mom?
What did they do? Did they really die?
Is this a cover-up? If so, who’s behind it? The President?
And every night, as I drift off to sleep I start to make a plan to run away and find out the truth but I always fall asleep before I can write anything down.
Sleep isn’t fun for me. I only sleep because I know that if I don’t sleep I’ll die of exhaustion. Though I don’t sleep most nights because of the nightmares.
The nightmares started the night they died. And ever since, I’ve had the same one, every night.
It’s the same thing, every night.
It’s the last day we all had together. I see my dad calling me down to watch our favorite show together,
Him pressing the play button on the remote,
Watching it for a little while, the doorbell ringing,
Mom yelling for him,
The big men coming in, dragging my dad, James, and Lilly out,
Me screaming and trying to run out the door but my mother holding me back,
Hearing the first gunshot,
Hearing myself scream and crumple to the floor,
Hearing the second and final shot.
Screaming for my family,
My mother telling me that they were dead,
Me running to my room, slamming the door and crying,
Then, I wake up.
I always wake up crying. Always.
But this night is different. Instead of falling asleep, thinking of my plan, I grab a notebook and write everything down. Everything.
1 hour later I have written everything I would need and where to get it. I packed a small carry on with 7 outfits and all of my toiletries. I grabbed my biggest purse and put my iPhone, fully charged, my phone charger, my iPod and its charger and my iPad with its charger. Then I went to my closet and grabbed the large shoe box on the top shelf. I opened it up and emptied its contents on my bed. I have 10 envelopes full of money. I counted it all. 2,656 dollars. I knew that it was a lot but I wasn’t sure if that would be all I would need. So I crept downstairs to the kitchen and opened an old coffee can from the cabinet. My mom thinks that I don’t know about this stash of money, but I do.
I empty the cans contents on the kitchen table. 937 dollars. So now I have over 3,000 dollars. That should be enough.
I carry the money back up to my room and put it with the rest.
I put all the money in a large zippered bag and put it in my purse.
I looked at the next thing on my list. FOOD it said.
So I grabbed another bag and went back to the kitchen. I grabbed 2 bags of chips and 2 jars of crunchy peanut butter and stuck them in the bag.
I also grab a knife, spoon, and fork. Then I grab 5 sodas and 4 water bottles.
Then I grab a box of crackers and granola.
And lastly, I grabbed 1 box of cereal, 2 bags of chocolate and 3 containers of chocolate chip cookies.
Then I walked back up to my room and decided to put all of my stuff in a larger suitcase.
I was packed and ready to go.
I planned that I would come home, grab my bags and get into my car, fill it up on gas, then head to the Capitol.
I smiled to myself as I drifted off to sleep, and for the first time in 10 years, I didn’t have the nightmare.