Chapter 7- Accidents Happen

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Monday morning.

On the way to School.

The weekend seems to fly by, despite the fact that I miss Chris tremendously. The huge apartment room is so empty without him and I hate being there alone.

Robert treats me like his child now. I tell him frequently that I'm only a year younger than him but his protective aura just doesn't seem to dissipate.

"Stay away from the railway tracks," I hear him call as I wander away from the group. I wave him off and leap onto the tracks, ignoring the obnoxious exclamations from behind me. "That does not mean 'leap onto it', you fucking gazelle!"

Grinning, I skip further along the railing and into the center track. Their voices grow distant and my ears are filled with the delicious sounds of nature.

Birds tweeting in the trees, stones crunching beneath me.

Leaves twirl across the ground in a mad dance of freedom.

I lean down to observe a rabbit with a broken leg.

Bird's wings flutter and a horn blares... wait, what?

I look up a second too late and my childish bubble of make-believe is suddenly, and brutally, burst by the huge, metal train face four inches from my face.

SHIT!

A huge weight crushes me; the wind is stolen from my lungs.

The train rushes past and I whimper like a frightened child in the darkness.

Heavy panting, muffled exclamations, frantic cries. I'm pinned to the ground on my stomach, Robert's heavy body slung across my shoulders.

The gravel is hurting my face.

Eventually, the shock begins to wear away and I'm aware of Robert and Scarlett lifting me up.

Evans is retrieving my duffel bag from the left track and Pratt is screaming obscenities at the train that is nothing more than a speck of glinting metal in the distance.

"You fucking idiot," Robert hisses in my ear, but he sounds so shaken and too relieved to be threatening. "You fucking... idiot! I-if I hadn't-," he swallows and shakes me. "Y-you could... you would have-,"

"I'm fine," I try to tell him, but no sound leaves my mouth.

I'm sweating buckets and my stomach is twisting painfully.

"He's in shock," Scarlett frowns, gently lowering me to sit by her feet.

I don't know how we got so far away from the railway but I'm undoubtedly grateful.

Evans sits next to me and places his head on my shoulder. Within minutes my collar is soaked with salty tears.

Pratt is pale like a ghost and won't stop pacing the length of the highway junction.

Scarlett is checking my wounds with no expression blessing her pretty features and Robert is just passed out on the grass, emotionally drained from my stupid, little stunt. I feel my heart jump into my throat. I could have killed him.

So... this is why people don't like me. I'm stupid, reckless and I hurt everybody I care about. I really am impossible.

I make a move to stand and walk away but Scarlett grips my arm. "Don't even think about it,"

Her voice is raw and distressed. I've drained them.

"I'm so sorry," I cry, sounding five years old. "I am so fucking sorry,"

"Language, Tommy," Evans chastises weakly, hugging me tighter. Scarlett smiles and rolls my bloody jeans back to normal.

"It was an accident," Pratt shrugs, falling in front of me and patting my feet. "But, don't do it again. You almost gave your old man a heart attack!"

"Oh, stop it. I am literally a year younger than all of you!" I yelp and they slowly smile, their eyes lighting up again.

"But you'll always be my baby," Scarlett cries dramatically, jumping into my arms and smothering my face with motherly kisses.

We giggle and the tension gradually lifts from the air.

"Let's go back to the block," Pratt suggests, frowning at my heavy limp and barely contained grunt. I'm lifted by Evans and strapped across his back like a gun holster. "I see no point in going to school now. You almost died and we're all suffering from raw, mind-damaging grief from the possibility of you being a Hiddle-pancake."

"I see you have this all planned out," I sigh.

"Oh, absolutely, Hiddles. We're not leaving you alone like this. Fuck the police,"

"Hmm. I'm pretty sure that's not how it works,"

"Oh yeah? Shut your mouth, pretty boy,"

Robert pushes past us without a word and jogs back to the apartment blocks. He hasn't spoken since the incident.

Worry gnaws at me and I don't even get the chance to tell him I am sorry.




Intense, huh? Sorry guys. My babies just can't seem to catch a break.

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