20; Gone Girl

All eyes were on the unfortunate girl, watching her closely for any reason to prolong her stay in the echo house.

El's hands trembled every so slightly. It was as if she were standing in a blizzard and the freezing temperatures were attacking her bones, but she concealed it well as she stood surrounded by orderlies and the warden herself.

The warden glanced up from the discharge papers a few times checking for any signs of an oncoming psychotic break. "A pleasure seeing you again Eleanor. I knew you'd be back here and I'm sure this won't be the last time." the older woman asserted.

The teenage girl remained silent as she was given her belongings. She silently left the crowded room into the equally as crowed lobby. She breathed in and her constricted lungs relaxed. Her pale eyes searched the room of people until she spotted her brother across the room.

Not even an ounce of emotion passed through her. She wasn't happy or excited to be leaving this place for a second time. Three days had felt like years. She was back to where she started when she had been first released; physical and mentally beaten.

"Hello, sister." Paul grinned happily as he greeted her at the entrance, removing his glasses so that she could see his bloodshot eyes. It seemed he hadn't gotten much sleep in the last couple of days either.

Not that she cared much. He'd had the comfort of his own bed and she'd had a cold prison cell with a stiff pillow and scratchy blanket.

El's expression remained grim as she clutched her belongings tightly to her chest. "Should have never come back." she muttered as she pushed past him.

Paul looked after her in partial relief and worry. He'd tried to get her out of Eichen House a day sooner but the 72 hour stay was irreversible.  He was soothed by the fact that she was still alive but she didn't seem at all like she was three days ago.

That dull look in her features that she'd acquired after nine years of torture had returned. It was evident and also his fault. He should have never allowed her to go back or let anyone convince her to. Whatever monstrosities she'd endured was entirely his fault.

As he put the darkly tinted sun glasses over his eyes you would have never been able tell that any type of emotion was going on under his blank expression.

"Mom thinks I'm picking you up from a sleepover." he informed as he started his bright red Camero.

She nodded once. "what about the bill for my stay?"

"Don't worry about it. I'll handle it." he responded monotonously.

El scoffed. "You realize how expensive it is right? Last I heard you don't even have a job."

His expression hardened. "I said don't worry about it."

"Are you some hitman or something, earning money by killing people?" she grumbled, annoyed by the fact he wasn't giving her straight answers.

Paul paused. "No."

El raised an eyebrow at him but didn't question it any further. She didn't need to know about what he did on his free time. If he were a killer maybe he could do her a favor and relieve her of her miserable life.

The rest of the ride home was silent. El was mentally preparing herself for her mother, knowing she'd be full of questions and unwanted commentary.

After that she was going to go up to her room and sleep for the rest of the weekend. She hadn't slept in forty-eight hours and it was staring to catch up to her now.

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