I woke up to the sun beaming though my window, I was home. I don’t even remember getting here, Louis isn’t with me, the only trace of him is the police hat clutched to my chest, surprisingly my head only has a slight ache, nothing I can’t deal with, I swing my legs off of the edge of the bed and sit up, my feet are free of the knee high leather high heel boots of my costume, sitting on the floor by my bed but body is still in my dress, I stand and make it to the door, my curls a mess on my head as I run my fingers though them.
“Your awake.” I hear my mum say and my head flicks to behind me, I smile.
“Yeah, ah. How’d I get home?” we both walk down the hall and into the kitchen where I jump up on the bench.
“Your father and Tegan’ dad went to pick you all up.” I nod, “Louis is upstairs.” She confirms my next question before I actually ask and I smile.
“Did you enjoy the party?” she asked and I smile as I think back to last night, Louis and I in the change room, I blush and nod.
“Yes. I did, very much.” I start to push the net stockings down my legs and finally pull them from my feet.
“I think Louis’ good for you.”
“What do you mean?” I ask as I rid myself of the second stocking.
“He has changed you.” She shrugs, “You’re not as.” She pauses thinking about it, “Self-conscious.” I don’t say anything, “I think he has a lot to do with it.” it’s true, he makes me feel beautiful something I never felt before him, I always thought people were comparing me to my dead sister, always wondering why I couldn’t be more like her. “Stop thinking about your sister.” My mums hand rises to my face as she places stray hairs behind my ear. “There’s nothing anyone could have done and you were the last person to blame.” I shake my head.
“She is.” She smiles at me before kissing my forehead.
“Happy birthday, to both my girls.” She says and I half smile as she leaves the kitchen, I stay sitting on the bench, looking down at my hands intertwined in my lap.
Five days later
Louis lies on my bed as I fowled my clothes packing them into my suit case; we were leaving tomorrow, going back to London and back to reality of jobs and school.
“Ellen.” Louis gets my attention as I gently place my journals in the suit case.
“Mmm?” I hum my reply.
“I read something one of the first days we were here.” I look towards him and his eyeing the brown leather journal in my hand.
“What?” his eye find mine and I swallow and close my eye for a brief moment.
“The girl in the picture isn’t your cousin is it?” my lips part ever so slightly as I look at him, my head moves side to side before I can proses what im doing, I get to my feet holding a journal.
“You read this?” I asked loudly, he just look at me from the bed, his silence is all I needed to confirm, “Why?” I ask but don’t give him time to respond, “Have you ever been told not to touch what isn’t yours?” his lips part at my words and he swallows, I feel tears start to well in my eyes and I shake my head again, “I can’t believe you.” I pace out of the room, and to the front door, my parents eyes on me as I leave the house, the journal I believe is one of the latest ones in my clasp as I hear Louis call my name, I don’t stop though as I take the slightly long walk to the cemetery, once I am at my sisters grave I collapse and pull my knees to my chest, looking at the dying deep red roses I placed there, tears finally falling from my eyes as I look at the grave stone.
I give up on calling Ellen’s name, I know she isn’t going to respond, I just follow her, she clasps the book in her hand as she takes up a seat of stone steps two at a time, once I make it to the top I realise we had entered a cemetery, Ellen cuts past a few headstones before collapsing to the ground and brining her knees to her chest, I watch as she places the book beside her, her fingers tracing over a bouquet of roses, she just looks straight ahead, at the stone, her back is to me so im not sure what she is doing. I should never have said anything that was the stupidest thing anyone could have done and I regret it. I decide to take my chances and move closer to her, I hear her sniffle and I kneel beside her, she turns her head, tears stain her cheeks and to my surprise she throws herself in my arms, I tightly hold her as she crying into my chest, trying to hush her as I read the head stone in front of me. I stoke her hair as she starts to calm, she nuzzles her head into the crook of my neck as she fists my shirt in one of her hands and she grips the nape of my neck with the other.
“Shh, baby.” I run my fingers up and down her back and I finally know for sure she isn’t crying, she pulls away from my looking back at the grave stone as I sit proply beside her, my arms hooked around my knees as I observe her. “Im sorry.” I say softly and she shakes her head.
“Don’t worry about it.” she almost whispers and I take her hand, kissing the back of it softly until she turns to me, a small smile on her lips, her eyes swollen and red from crying, I pull her towards me and hold her against me again, we both look over the stone.
“This it hers?” I ask and I feel her nod. I don’t know how we got into it but we started talking about it, Ellen willingly doing it.
“When my dad asked if we wanted to go for a drive we were more than willing to, I was always behind the passenger seat.” She pauses as she shrugs, “It just never changed, my car seat when I was younger was on that side as well. It was just after new year’s and she said that for the new year she would let me sit behind the driver’s seat and I was so happy.” She miles at the thought, “We had been driving for maybe twenty minutes and it was starting to get dark so dad said we would start heading back to the house, the last thing I really remember seeing was headlights coming towards Lynn’s side of the car as we spoke, my dad swore and tried to swerve but it was too late, the last thing I remember hearing was my sisters scream and shattering glass, my head had gone through the window beside me.” her smile had faded at this point, “I woke up two days later, I had been patched up all over my head, from where the glass had wound me, my mum explained to me what had happen, at the time I didn’t know it was as serious, she told me Lynthia was just sleeping but the worst part was only that she might not wake. Now that im older I know now that even if she woke she wouldn’t have been the same, no disrespect to my sister but she would have ended up retarded, the only reason for that is because a section of her brain had died.”
“And the driver of the other car died?” she nodded.
“Yeah, after he hit our car, he kept driving and wrapped himself around a pole.” She shrugs, “I sometimes wish he was still alive so I could see him rot in jail but then again if my sister died because he was a selfish basted he did not deserve to live either.” She frowns, obviously thinking something to herself before it faded and she looked at me. “The day they turned her life support off was February thirteenth.” She looks down at our hands, “It was a month and a few days after the accident. The doctors told my parents that she was never going to make it, the only reason my parents said yes to turning the life support off was for the family, so we didn’t have to watch every day and not interact with her. They wanted to lay her to rest.” She wiped a single tear away, “The day my parents told me she was really gone was probably the worst day of my life, the next month I didn’t have a birthday party, I had stayed home from school for weeks, I didn’t want to see anyone, my parents thought it was an odd for a seven year old to be showing signs of depression so I had gone to doctor after doctor, and I was never diagnosed with it, in the end they sent me to a therapist.”
“You didn’t like therapy?” she shrugs.
“It was okay, when I was young they didn’t refer to them self’s at that, but when I was about to turn ten I had changed to my fifth therapist in three years, I still didn’t know why I really went to them, this lady told me I was there to talk about my sister, but after the fifth of sixed session she wanted me to start talking about myself but I throw a tantrum, I didn’t want to talk about anything but my desested sister. She told me to start writing down my feelings and I think it was just before my birthday that I started. I took my book in the next session, she said it was good, she said it would help me and I asked her not to tell my parents. It wasn’t until after I turned eleven that she warned my parents about the book, saying that she thought I was suicidal.”
“Were you?” I shook my head.
“No, I was sad and scared, I thought I was alone but I wasn’t I had my family and friends I just wasn’t seeing it, I wasn’t going to kill myself, and I would never self-harm.” I nod in understanding.
“So why did it take you so long to get over her death?” she blinked a few times as she looked at me.
“You got me over it and I don’t know how.” I was slightly shocked, “I think because I have been comparing myself to my sister my whole life when I finally met you I stopped thinking about it. I think I stopped because you never know about her.”
“Why did you think everyone compared you to her?” I was slightly couscous with my questions but I wanted to know.
“She was perfect.” She paused, “compared to me anyway.” I see her chin tremble but she composes herself. “She would always tell me she couldn’t be perfect because we were the same but it was a lie, I was far from perfect, I couldn’t speak until I was six for Christ sakes, I had hearing problems, sight problems and everything is still with me today, some of the things are being fixed on their own, others will stay with me forever.”
“Your perfect to me.” she looked up at me, a smile making its way onto her face, “You might be a bit crazy,” I tuck her hair behind her ear, “But I wouldn’t love you the same if you weren’t. And these.” I pull them down her nose slightly before she giggles and pushes them back up, “Make you, you.” I see her swallow, “Everything you are, Ellen is what makes you who you are and no matter how fucked up you think you are of how fucked up anyone else thinks you are, you are mine and I love you how you are.” I brush a lone tear that falls away with my thumb and take her hand, “Come here.” I pull her into my lap and side straddles me, her ankles crossing behind my back, I look up at her as she’s now a full head higher than me. I wrap my arms around her, holding her against me, my fingers fiddling with the ends of her long hair, her blue, green and orange eyes sparkling as she storks down my cheek with her fingers, as if to make sure im really here. “Never change.” I almost whisper and she crashes her lips into mine.
“It’s too late.” She mumbles against my lips, “You’ve already done it.” my hands trail up her back and into her hair where I hold her lips to mine as we kiss. “I love you Louis.” she whispers as she pulls away and I smile up at her, smoothing out her hair.
“I love you too, beautiful.”