Peyton POV

"And...?" I ask. Now I'm getting frustrated.

"Ugh! Why didn't you pick us? Demi over your brother?" If you couldn't tell already, Niall is upset about me picking Demi over him.

I sigh. "Three words: Get. over. it!"

He pouts and crosses his arms, dissatisfied with my answer. A knock at my door calls me, and I answer it.

There, on the other side of the door, is a tall, broad, dark man in a suit. He speaks up. "Peyton Horan- Sawyer?"

"That's me. But I prefer only Horan, please."

"I am Derik Rendoll. I unfortunately have some upsetting news for you." A look of grief crosses his face.

I gulp.

"Wh- what's that?" I manage to squeak out.

"I'm sorry for your loss." he states, handing me a manila folder. I open it, and I burst into tears.

Inside are my mom's pictures and funeral papers.

Frickin funeral papers!

The papers fall from ny hands and I shrink to a ball on the floor. I sob into my hands, the pain too much to handle.

"I am so sorry, miss." Derik apologizes, helping me up.

"How did this happen?" I sniffle.

"Your mother was in a horrible car crash. She died instantly."

Niall walks out with a bag of Doritos in his hands. When he sees me, the bag falls to the floor, and he rushes to me.

"Niall!" I sob, "She's gone."

~

"The funeral singer is gone, and the funeral is today!" Tom, the director, is having a panic attack.

"I could sing," I suggest.

"Do what you must!" he sighs, "but make it good. She was a good woman."

"I know," I murmur, "She was my mother."

~

"She," the woman sobs, "was wonderful. Always brought happiness with her, no matter where she was. I- I am so sorry, but I can't do this."

That was Darla, one of my mom's co workers. I never knew her well, and neither did my mom. So why was she here?

"Now for the song," Tom says, "Miss Peyton, er, Horan."

I walk up to the mic and adjust it to my size. I take a deep breath and start.

" I always needed time on my own

I never thought I'd need you there when I cry

And the days feel like years when I'm alone

And the bed where you lie

Is made up on your side

When you walk away I count the steps that you take

Do you see how much I need you right now?

When you're gone

The pieces of my heart are missing you

When you're gone

The face I came to know is missing too

When you're gone

The words I need to hear to always get me through the day

And make it OK

I miss you

I've never felt this way before

Everything that I do reminds me of you

And the clothes you left, they lie on the floor

And they smell just like you,

I love the things that you do

We were made for each other

Out here forever

I know we were, yeah, yeah

All I ever wanted was for you to know

Everything I do, I give my heart and soul

I can hardly breathe, I need to feel you here with me, yeah

When you're gone

The pieces of my heart are missing you

When you're gone

The face I came to know is missing too

When you're gone

The words I need to hear will always get me through the day

And make it OK

I miss you..."

The tears that have been pooled in my eyes now dripped down my face. Stay strong, keep up the act!

But why? To prove that I'm strong and don't cry easily? Well, I can't do it today.

As I make my way through the crowd, people apologize for my loss and pat my back. But one person that I wouldn't expect stops me and pulls me out of the crowd.

"Where are we going?" I ask.

"You'll see," Jacob replies, "get in the car."

I step into the black f150 Ford pickup truck. He inserts the key, and the engine purrs to life. We pull out of the lot and drive down the highway.

"Are you okay?" Jacob asks.

"Yes," I say, "why?"

"Just asking. When people die, their relatives are upset, that's all."

The truck pulls into the driveway of his house. Following Jacob, I go into the hideout with him.

By now the sky is coral and cotton candy pink, and the air is brisk. Fall is coming, I can tell.

"I know how it feels." Jacob states.

"What?"

"My dad died three years ago in a horrible car crash. The dad you see now is just my stepdad," he explains.

"I didn't know. I'm sorry," I apologize.

"No, no. It's okay, really. He's always with me, watching me. I can feel him with me."

Wow, that's deep! Jacob folds me into a hug, and we stay there.

Together, watching the sunset.

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