Chapter nine

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(If you really want to set the mood for this chapter, I suggest playing "Helium" by Sia, when Luna is making her way home from the café)

Two months, that's how long it's been since Atlantis disappeared. Now he was just stranger, again.
I knew that he was going to leave eventually, but a good bye or at least a thank you card wouldn't have hurt. I didn't really take him for the disappear without saying a word type of guy, but then again, I haven't really known him for such a long time.

"Green" My eyes met Gina, she was reaching her hand out, I stared at it in confusion.
"You're like, the worst barista ever do you know that" ouch.
"Thank you, I'll put that on my things to get better at list" I replied, handing her the ice coffee when I realized that's what she was reaching for.
"That's probably a very long list" double ouch.

I threw a glance at the clock, only twenty minutes left and then I could go home.
Today's shift wasn't long, 7 hours only to be exact, it started at twelve and now the clock was 6.40
Even though this has been the shortest shift I've ever had, my body felt emptied for energy. Tired. Numb.

It took all of my powers to get out of bed today, it was as if my body had recognized and memorized the date. For each year, it this day only got worse. It was one of the few dates my brain refused to forget. It was burnt in my head, like a bad tattoo. The funny part is, it really was tattooed on my body, and if it wasn't, I'd still have the scars to prove it.
If you ask the police though, those scars aren't enough, only enough to be an ugly reminder.

I wasn't sad anymore, I didn't feel like crying, like throwing up or erasing my memory. I was just tired. Have you ever been in a state where you don't have any feelings left? You just want to lay down, close your eyes and sleep. Sleep for hours, days, weeks.

I untied my apron and placed it in my locker.
"Have fun at work" I grinned at Gina, pretending like this was a normal day.
"Whatever" She rolled her eyes, and went back to staring at her phone, and doing her best to ignore the customers that were trying to get her attention.

I put in my headphones and made my way home. I made sure to put my phone on do not disturb, so If Amalie called, she'd know I wasn't in the mood to talk today. Today was one of the few days, I allowed myself to be selfish.

"Barszik?" I locked the door behind me, making sure to let Barszik know I was home.
Only seconds later, he was making his way over, wagging his tail and throwing a couple of meows here and there. I loved being greeted by Barszik when I came home.
"Did you miss me, buddy" I smiled, lifting him up and placing a kiss on his forehead before putting him down again.

I made sure to change his water and give him some food before I went over to the freezer and grabbed a frozen pizza. I wasn't a big fan of fast food, or the 1 2 3 steps type of food. I love homemade food, I love trying new recipes but today I was too tired so I had to settle for a frozen pizza.

I put the pizza in the oven, and made my way to my bedroom so I could change into something more comfortable. Only when I started searching for my favorite oversized hoodie, I realized that he must've still worn it when he left. I settled for another black hoodie, and went for a pair of green shorts instead.

I plumped down on my bed, and felt my body relax. That was my first mistake.
Falling asleep in a matter of seconds was my second and forgetting to set an alarm for the pizza was my third. Suddenly, I couldn't keep my eyelids open, and all I saw was black.

I looked around, for any kind of escape, anyone to help. Nothing.
It felt like I couldn't breathe anymore, my tears were having a race of who could rush down faster. My sight was getting blurry, and I was thankful, because it meant that even though I felt it, I could at least stop myself from seeing it.

"P-please stop" I begged, knowing it wouldn't get me anywhere, it was too late.
"P-please" Sob, after sob escaped my lips. Why was this happening to me? What did I do to end up like this, was I a bad person? Was it really my fault?

It felt like hours, but only seconds later it stopped, a thousand kilos were lifted from my bare shoulders.
My eyes looked away, full of shame. Why was I ashamed?
"You were supposed to protect me" I let out, a small cry escaping my lips.
"Look at you playing all innocent, you were practically begging for it" His harsh words felt like a slap in the face.

Was I begging for it? Is it really my fault? Should I have been wearing a longer skirt? Maybe another shirt? Or was it because I smiled after every sentence, before all of this, was my politeness mistaken for something else?

"If you tell anyone, I'll make sure that you'll be the one facing consequences"
And with that, he left the room, taking my innocence with him.

Even though I never said the simple word "yes", I was still the one laying here. Bare, and ashamed. Why was I the one feeling ashamed?

Why?

Suddenly all I could see was fire.

Fire,

Fire!

The loud sound of the fire alarm woke me up, from a nightmare to another.
Smoke, and fire everywhere, I could barely see anything.
"Barszik!" I felt my body practically jump out of bed, I had to find Barszik, my sweet Barszik I couldn't let anything happen to him.
"Meow" I've never been so happy to hear those soft meows before, my head swung to the side and I lifted Barszik from under the bed, "Don't worry buddy, I'm not gonna let anything happen to you".

I made my way to the door, kicking objects that were falling in front of us.
"We made it" I said, touching the door and screaming in seconds when the heat reached my hand. The doorknob was so hot, it burnt.

I looked around and my eyes landed on the gloves I use to take things out of the oven. I made my way through the fire and grabbed them, rushing back again and opening the door.

I made sure to let Barszik out, planning to follow after him but then it felt like there was a shield in front of the door. I couldn't move my feet, it felt like I was glued to the floor. What if this was my easy way out? Would this be how It all stopped? Was this a way for the pain to end?

Barszik stopped and turned around, giving me a confused look when he noticed that I wasn't following him. A weak smile appeared on my face, my sweet Barszik. What would I have done without you all these years.

"Go on Barszik, I know someone will find you and take care of you" I smiled, a small tear escaping my eye. It was okay for me to be vulnerable now, it was all going to be okay. Right?

"I love you buddy" I wiped the tear away, and closed the door, making sure to look at Barszik all the way until the door was closed and I couldn't see him anymore. I turned around and faced the fire again, It hadnt touched me yet, but it still felt like I was burning.

You know what they say about life flashing in front of you, and memories creeping up when your seconds away from death? It was true. I found myself in a position where every single moment worth remembering in my life played in front of me, on repeat.

And for a second there, a hint of regret hit me, maybe I wasn't ready too die. The feeling was bittersweet.

The smoke didn't take long, I couldn't keep my eyes open anymore and my body finally collapsed. I flinched as I waited for my body to collide with the floor, but instead I fell into a pair of tattooed arms. Even though my sight was getting blurry, and there was only seconds of consciousness left, I recognized these arms.

"Atlantis?"

"You're not dying until I say so, ángel"

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Oh my God! You guys are making me so happy with all the comments, the story has gotten over 2000 new reads only today !! Thank you guys so much, and I hope you're liking the story so far <3 -YALM

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