Rylie let go of him. "What's up with you today?"
Luke turned around, and rubbed his eyes as he looked down at Rylie. "I just don't understand why you won't show me the song!" he spat at her.
Rylie backed away, and frowned at him. "Be-because..."
Luke shook his head, and put his hand up. "Just don't say anything."
In an instant, your whole world can change. Just the snap of a finger, and your life can come crashing down. Rylie knew about that from her experience with Luke, but she had another bomb coming.
Rylie sat at the piano in the family room, and fiddled with the familiar keys. Her fingers gently tapped each one, making small, quaint sounds of pleasure. She woke earlier in a pain even heavier than what she had been facing. Her body was telling her something was wrong; she just couldn't figure out what it was.
The keys were smooth, and somewhat cold under Rylie's fingers. Her hand was so familiar with the piano; it was almost like another part of her body. The way she found herself was when she started to play.
One rainy evening, Rylie retreated to the family room as her parents went out, and she glanced at the piano as if she had never seen it before. Her mom had been yelling at her only minutes before, and all Rylie wanted was something to cling onto; something to get her mind off her mother. She sat down at the piano, and her fingers immediately started to play beautiful music. They knew what they were doing before she did. She had never touched the piano, and she had somehow instantly knew how to play. Ever since then, It's been Rylie fallback. She found the piano, and therefore, she found music. Music is a world within itself, where anyone can go if they find it.
Now, Rylie looked at the piano, and tried to find happiness in the memories. Her cheeks were wet with tears, and she wanted to get her mind off the quenching ache deep in her bones. Her fingers wouldn't play. They just wouldn't. Every time she touched one small, white, rectangular key, she thought of Luke.
The sun was going down quickly, and Rylie realized she had wasted the entire day crying. Yesterday was a good day for her; a step ahead. Now she took 3 steps back; right where she started.
Rylie felt a presence in the room, and she looked up to see her sister. Only, there was something different about her. Katie looked the same. She had some fitting khakis on, a tight purple shirt, and some oxfords on. Her hair was tied in a high ponytail. Nothing out of the ordinary.
Rylie squinted at her, trying to figure out what was wrong. Then, she noticed her ill expression. She saw Katie's eyes looking at her, and she saw the sadness behind them. Katie hardly looked at her like that. The pain so deep in her soul was visible. Katie's lips tilted down in a solemn expression. The dim light in the room cast a shadow on Katie's eyes, making them even more gloomy.
"What's wrong?" Rylie asked, and she gripped the piano seat tightly.
Katie looked down, and revealed the house phone from behind her back. "Why have you not answered your phone?" she asked so quietly that Rylie barely comprehended her words.
"I turned it off a few days ago." Rylie answered, growing more and more anxious by the second.
Katie looked at her, and a tear rolled down her polished cheek. The silence in the room only intrigued the suspense in the air. A sudden cloud of dull, hopeless insanity fell into the room, and no words were needed to know something was wrong.
"What's wrong?" Rylie repeated, her voice so quiet, fearing if she spoke any louder, the room would erupt in misery and laceration.
Katie exhaled gently, letting the room linger in anticipation. She walked over to Rylie and placed the phone in Rylie's hand.
Katie then patted Rylie's shoulder, and smiled a weak smile, full of sympathy and condolences. She left the room to allow Rylie's privacy.
Rylie didn't want to hear who was on the other line, and what he had to say. She brought the phone up to her ear anyway. "Hello," Rylie shyly spoke, her voice quivering slightly.
There was heavy breathing on the other line, and suddenly a cry of pain. Immediately after was a clutter, and Rylie assumed the person had dropped the phone.
What was going on?
There was scratching, and then all was quiet again. "Rylie...It's Niall. That was Luke...but I guess he couldn't handle your voice." Niall's voice was rushed, and distressed. He sobbed, and Rylie heard even more crying in the background. It was nice to hear Niall's voice, no matter what the circumstances. She wished she could've heard Luke's though. Maybe it would have helped her.
"Did Michael come see you?" Niall asked, his voice tired and weak. He escaped another torturing sob. He was trying to keep calm, Rylie could tell, but his strength was tearing.
Rylie nodded, then remembered he couldn't see her. "It's been a little more than a day now."
Niall gulped. "Michael was heading to the LAX airport." he sniffed, only to let another exasperated groan escape his mouth. His voice was panicked. "He...got in a car accident." Cries of agony erupted in the background. Rylie wondered if the whole crew was with him.
"He-he didn't make it." Niall hiccupped, and went silent. "He collided with a car, an-and the steering wheel hit his chest. He was killed instantly."
Rylie let the phone slip through her grip, and fall to the ground. She heard the thud, but it was far away. Her surrounding became blurry and unimportant.
Michael was dead. Michael...was dead.
"No..." Rylie crumbled to her knees. "No..." she whispered, looking at the pale blue carpet. He wasn't dead. She had just seen him a day ago. He couldn't be dead. "No!" she screamed into the air. "No!"
Katie came rushing in, and kneeled beside her, providing inviting arms. Rylie pushed her off, and got up. She took off. She ran, just like she always did.
Rylie ran to the foyer, and pulled on shoes before striding out the door. She ran down the sidewalk, her long hair trailing behind her.
She ran until her feet hurt. She happened upon a empty meadow unoccupied by human beings, and she collapsed to the ground, letting the grass absorb her tears. Her face cringed as she tried to hold in the inevitable agonizing torture that overtook her.
She tried to breath in and out, but no air would fill her lungs.
It was her fault. It was Rylie's fault Michael was dead. If she wouldn't have thrown herself on him, he would have left, and made it to the airport safe. He had to leave when he did, and that car had to ram into him. It was all her fault. If things would have gone differently...if...if. If was such a waste.
Rylie grabbed her stomach which lurched with a sharp pang, and cried out into the night. She screamed at the top of her lungs. She screamed at the sky above her. Finally, her voice gave out, and Rylie resulted to a constant sob. 'Michael is dead' were the only words playing in her head. Her body and soul couldn't take the pain anymore. It was never ending. The one person Rylie had was gone. Michael was one of the greatest human beings on the planet, and now he was dead. Because of her.
Overbearing agony wasn't enough to describe the bitter affliction that would haunt her for eternity. She could never hear his voice again. She could never see his green eyes, or his smile. She could never touch his face...or never feel his tender finger on her cheek.
Rylie stared at the dark sky above her, illuminated with a galaxy of stars. She admired the few stars aligned. It wasn't possible because it hadn't been a full month yet, but Rylie swore she saw her star staring back at her.