✠ Chapter Twenty-Eight ✠

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Healing Gabriel: Chapter Twenty-Eight

             

                                    ※(*)※Gabriel's POV※(*)※

  

        For the final minutes during the remainder of the school day, I felt incredibly drained due to all the thoughts I had in my head. To make matters worse, I had only received an estimated five hours of sleep last night. I just wanted to go home and snuggle up against Evan's side for the rest of the afternoon until early evening, when he had to return home. It didn't matter what we did during that time period, as long as we were together and I could listen to him whisper the most comforting of lies in my ear, like that I was normal, or that there was nothing wrong with me. Or my favorite, whenever he tried to convince me to believe that everything is and will be okay.

       So, basically, if I was tired and in no condition for a play date after school, and the only thing I wanted to do was to go home and rest next to Evan, I should do exactly that. Right?

       Wrong.

       I had one other thought in my mind that wasn't directly related to anything dealing with the memories of my early adolescence, and that was Jurnee. Which was really weird for me because I hardly ever thought about girls, nevertheless Jurnee.

       I knew that I didn't want to tell her no. But I was still nervous about saying yes because it was a well-known fact that Jurnee and me were not the best of friends. Plus, I didn't know how to hang out with anyone besides Evan. Wherever I went with the group, Evan was right there with me. If I went along with Jurnee after school, only having each other for company, then I'd be separated from my rock. And that fact alone scared me half to death.

      Not only that, but what if I really do end up making a complete idiot out of myself? I mean, for one thing, do I even like coffee? And if so, then what if I spilled coffee everywhere? What if I couldn't work up the courage to tell the barista my order? What if I had an anxiety attack or another episode? What if Jurnee did end up hurting me and Evan was too far away to help?

      There were so many possible outcomes of everything going wrong that I was severely starting to regret my final decision.

      "Are you sure about this?" Evan asked me, sounding very unsure himself. I gave a taut nod of my head, not looking at him as I switched out my books from my locker into my book bag. "Don't lie to me, Gabriel."

      I hesitated for several seconds, awkwardly shifting from foot to foot before giving a negative shake of my head even though he couldn't see it anyways. "I don't know," I whispered. "I feel more conflicted and paranoid than usual." Probably from the relapsing I was now certain that I was inching towards, but I didn't want to tell him that. Not yet, at least. I just wanted things to be as normal as possible, and part of being normal meant that I had to be getting better at handling mainly my PTSD and social anxiety.

      "You don't have to do this. She'll understand. And if not, then who cares? It's Jurnee we're talking about here, not Cleopatra." When I didn't respond, he continued. "If you want, we can do something together instead. I don't have to go to practice today."

      I bit my lip, my movements stilling as I continued to hide behind my locker's door. I didn't want to make Evan miss anymore of his football practices than he had to because of me. Also, maybe I did need a little separation time from him. To like, you know, give him a break from my burdening presence and such. And to make some more friends of my own.

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