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Jan 31, 11 at 7:20pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
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Uh oh. I don't think this will end well.
Amazing detail there, btw. Speaking from experience or something? :L
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Feb 3, 11 at 9:59pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
I like how only one person replied to this chapter. Says something about how they feel about it.
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Feb 3, 11 at 10:03pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
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Feb 3, 11 at 10:14pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
I'm like 3 chapters behind, I feel so bad. ;-;
I HAVE FAILED YOU, VENA D:
oh and congrats on nearly 300 pages and 135k words! : D
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Feb 6, 11 at 5:06am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Neon Rainbow: ...maybe.
Soda: I agree completely
LiveslikeBeth: YOU HAVE FAILED ME, INDEED! FEEL MY WRATH!
Nah just kidding. Here's a nice filler thingy~
crash and burn
Credit to hiimlucifer from deviantART.
I manage to wake up before six o’clock in the evening and tell Mother and Father I am fine, just fine. I drank a few energy drinks yesterday when I was hanging out with friends, and I just crashed from the drinks. Don’t worry, I’m fine. I eat dinner with them, and Mother gives me some tea. Sister isn’t there tonight because she’s studying at a friend’s house.
I do my homework, watch TV with the Parents, then take a long shower, spending most of the time sitting down on the tiles and watching the water fall, five gallons a minute, at my feet. I finish my shower, dry myself off, get dressed, and sit on my bed for a while. Suddenly, the seven incense sticks that Alex gave me yesterday appear in one hand, the lighter she gave me in the other hand.
Twenty-three: You know you want to, Alyx.
Seven: Smoked Mary Jane every day when I was your age. Just do it, Alyx, if you like something, don’t stop yourself.
One-hundred-forty-two: Are you stupid, Seven? You’re such a stoner! How do you expect to have offspring?
Sixty-seven: We’re all dead, One-hundred-forty-two! We can’t have kids!
Nineteen: Wouldn’t want them, anyways, they’ll end up like Alyx.
I stare at the sticks in my hand, letting everybody laugh and debate and argue on whether I should smoke one, just one. I had wanted one all day at school, but of course, I didn’t have them with me. Plus, if Collin knew about it he’d smack me silly. He’d probably laugh, too, because everything is so stupid. Incense, for God’s sakes. But it’s tasty, the smoke. Plus, incense is much easier to get than weed. And it’s less expensive.
Six of the sticks drop onto my bed. The last one stays in my hand. One end goes into my mouth, the other end sticks out. The hand with the lighter reaches up, the thumb flicks the little wheel. A flame ignites—bright orange, with blue at the bottom where the most heat is. The free hand of this body reaches up and controls the stick so the end not in the mouth rests in the blue flame.
The hand with the lighter drops the lighter onto the bed. Wisps of smoke escape the holes in the stick. The mouth inhales, then exhales. A wisp of smokes escapes the mouth, then vanishes into the air, ever so slowly.
Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale. Light up, inhale, exhale.
The heart starts to pound rapidly, the lungs feel like they are shrinking. The head pounds, too, like someone is trapped in a room and pounding on the walls, screaming to get out. Maybe They are pounding on the walls of My Brain, screaming at me to let Them out because maybe They don’t like the smoke that is slowly blackening my lungs. They don’t want to be destroyed.
I try to breathe, in and out through my mouth. I do that a few times, then feel better. My stick is only about an inch long, and if I hold it the way I do, it will burn my fingers. I throw the blackened stick out the window, put my lighter away, lie on my bed, and breathe out of my mouth for a long time. Once I can breathe through my nose, I leave my room and grab the cordless phone from the hallway. I close my door, throw the phone onto my bed, and take off my pants before I grab the scrap of paper with Alex’s number and then collapse on my bed.
With shaking hands from the high, I dial her number. I put the phone to my ear, and wait. I hear two rings before they stop. “Hello?” Alex’s voice answers.
“Hiii,” I reply.
“Alyx!” she says. “I missed you! How are you, Baby? Whoa, are you high? I am. I need to get baked just to do my homework, otherwise I’ll end up not doing it and my teachers will cuss me out if I don’t do it. My sister gave me her bong and I smoked some weed from it and it was better than rolling up money or something. Oh my god, we need to hang out and you can try smoking from a bong. So what are you doing, Alyx?”
“Is it normal for me to crash after school?” I ask. “I went this morning and was all ADHD until after lunch, because I’d crashed by then. I took a huge nap during my afternoon classes and after school.”
“Well, it was your first time, right?”
“It’s normal. Once you get used to it you won’t crash as often. You’ll just get really addicted. It’s like cutting, or smoking cigarettes. I used to smoke, but not anymore because it was too expensive. But at the mall they have this hippy store and you can buy a pack of one hundred incense sticks for ten dollars. Weed is like, fifty bucks a gram, at least from my sister’s dealer.”
* * *
The next two weeks are filled with weed, incense, and Alex. I blow off hanging out with school people except for Stacy, just to do drugs after school. I go home after getting high and do my homework and eat dinner and listen to music and watch TV. Getting high gives me a new perspective on life—I have the motivation to bond with Lynda and Robyn and Brian, I have the motivation to do my homework. Collin notices changes in me—he thinks I’m so much happier and more willing to listen to him. I guess I am, but I can’t be too sure because most of my time is spent staring into space.
I’m out of control with getting high. I need to get high, otherwise I will want to kick a baby over the edge of a cliff. The feeling is like a smoker needing a cigarette after a stressful day at work, but their concerned mother hid the box and now the smoker is kicking doors and punching walls. The high makes me feel so good, and it drives The Voices out of my head. The high makes Them happy, too—They leave the town of My Brain and party in a club in New York City.
I want it. I need it. I’ve stopped with the cigarettes and just smoke weed and incense. It does more good than bad. There are almost no deaths from Mary Jane and incense, but there are plenty of cigarette related deaths. I’m sure people are getting suspicious of my happiness and raspy voice, especially Collin. My lungs still feel like they’re shrinking and my heart is enlarging. My heartbeat is too fast during gym class and I get tired from running less than a quarter of a lap around the track. My eyes probably look red all the time, too.
No one has confronted me yet. Maybe I can keep this up. Or maybe I should just…stop.
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Feb 6, 11 at 5:16am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
OMFG, YES, YAYAYAYAYAY!
My face when I understood it was about drugs:
ily Marie <3
We faced many hardships, too... but... I think I finally know what's important.
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Feb 20, 11 at 5:00pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
ok so i got like ADHD and my cousin says i have Asperger's cause i have NO common sense XD so im sorry but i totally got this existed until maybe 3 or 4 this morning (maybe 5 i cant remember) T_T but its 9 now and im all caught up (apparently i got insomnia too >.> lol), i havent read since my last post either but.... SO AWESOME!!!!!!! some parts i cant help but start cracking up laughing hahaha and i was SO worried when Cameron drove himself off he cliff are they gonna make-up?? and are alex and alyx gonna become like an item? lol gonna stop talking now
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Feb 22, 11 at 2:22am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Johnathan Morris you're 12, kiddo, you don't need to be involved with drugs!
leotaylor92 what? lol
OMG I'M SO SORRY GUYS. It took me like 3 days to write this because I only started writing it 3 days ago. -_- I don't know what got into me, I'm sorry guys! I said I'd finish Schizophreak during March, and if I try my hardest, I think I can make it by the end of March. Idk though. But yeah here's a chapter. I'm sorry </3
thirty-three ~ motivation
Credit to Neumorin from deviantART
I start to stop by hanging out with Alex, but not smoking weed with her. I refuse the incense she offers, or anything else she offers me. I honestly don’t know where she gets this stuff: ecstasy, weed, even shisha, which is kind of like weed but mostly rich Arabians smoke that stuff. I say hi to Stacy and Jesse and Adam and Sara whenever I see them, but I realize Sara and Jesse usually skip morning classes and arrive at school during lunch time.
I realize that stopping has consequences, too. I hear The Voices again, even more than I used to. They laugh at me all the time, especially while I do my homework. They laugh and point Their dirty fingers in my face because I’m not as eager to do it while sober. I try to block Them out—first by listening to music as loud as I can, then taking extra medication when no one is looking.
Nothing seems to work, but I’d better deal with it because this will go on for the rest of my life.
Collin tells me he has noticed I am back to normal—not as excited and eager to do whatever he wants. He seems a bit disappointed, but he’s going to have to deal with it, too.
In school, I go back to writing depressing poetry for English, monotone essays for Psychology, dark pictures for Art, not trying in Gym, and no effort in my other classes.
Yet, every day, I feel a bit better. Every day that I don’t inhale and exhale, my lungs open up a bit and I don’t feel like I’m going to die. My taste buds are returning, my tongue is no longer (grey) and icky. I’m trying not to smoke regular cigarettes, either, but it’s hard not to. I try to chew gum, but the sound of chewing rubber echoing in my ears annoys me. Instead of smoking, I eat more than I used to. I’m probably going to get really fat, but it’s better than my lungs being burnt to crisps.
* * *
I wake up on a Monday, automatically. Lynda hasn’t woken me up, which is strange—unless I’m up earlier than I should be. I rub my eyes, sit up, and peek out of the (navy blue) curtain, peel back a corner of a news page. It’s not dark outside, kind of light through the clouds. I think it might be morning—I turn on my iPod and see that it is 9:51 in the morning.
I head out of my room, down the hall, and down the stairs. I can smell something cooking in the kitchen—grease and salt. My feet want to jump to avoid the cold floor tiles, because I’m not smart enough to wear socks when I go to bed.
When I step through the doorway, I see Robyn at the stove, spatula in hand, frying up some bacon. I sit down at the table and watch her for a few seconds before she notices me. She turns, and I see a bunch of bruises on her neck, and above her chest. I can feel my left eyebrow pounding, which only happens when I’m about to scream out of stress. Why she has hickeys, I don’t know.
“Hi,” Robyn says, looking sheepish when she sees me look at her neck.
“Why aren’t we at school?” I ask.
She turns back to frying the bacon, and I stare at the table. After a minute, I stand up and walk over to the counter, stand on my toes and open up a cabinet. The left side has a sticky-note that reads Morning, the note in the middle reads After School, and the note on the right reads Evening/Night. I reach for the Morning bottles; there are only two of them.
I make myself a glass of juice, pop one pills from each bottle into my hand, tip my head back, and wash them down. I can feel Robyn staring at me, out of the corner of my eye, but I pretend not to notice. Once the pills have traveled 10 inches down my esophagus and into my stomach, I swallow the rest of my juice. I make myself a bowl of cereal, and sit back down at the table. Robyn piles her bacon and toast onto her own plate and sits across from me.
We do not talk. The kitchen is filled with silence and the smell of salt.
Robyn’s fork scrapes across the plate, making the worst noise to ever enter my eardrums. I try to ignore it as I listen to myself crunching on my cereal, and it kind of works. The Voices aren’t bothering us, because They are eating breakfast and/or popping pills, as well.
When all of my cereal is gone and milk remains in the bowl, the phone rings. I get up to dump the milk into the sink, and Robyn gets up to answer it, because I’m not allowed to answer the phones in this house. Why? Because I might scream or say something weird or do things I’m not supposed to or I might hang up while my heart races.
“Hello?” I hear Robyn saying as the milk swims down the drain. “Uh, no, she’s, uh, sleeping right now, but I can take a message.” I turn around and see her giving me a thumbs-up, for whatever reason. I raise an eyebrow.
“Okay…uh-huh…right…really? Okay, I’ll tell her. Bye.” She puts the phone back in its cradle and looks at me. “That was some woman named Lisa,” she tells me, sitting back down at the table.
My heart skips a beat. Why does she keep calling me?
Thirteen: Because she wants to invite you over for tea. She poisons her tea for every guest.
“The-the one who keeps calling me?” I ask, trying not to rip out my hair.
“I guess so,” Robyn says, shrugging. “She told me that Cameron—whoever that is—really needs you to come visit him at the hospital this week. She didn’t tell me why, but it sounded really important. You haven’t seen that guy in a while, have you?”
“I don’t want to.” I cross my arms over my chest.
“It’s been a while since you’ve seen Cameron,” Robyn says. “Lisa said you’re his friend. Friends visit each other at the hospital. Don’t be so dramatic, Alyx.”
“We—we had a fight,” I stammer.
“So go to the hospital and make up with him.”
“It’s not that f-cking simple, Robyn!” I glare at her. “He tried to…”
Nineteen: Tell her, Alyxandra. She’ll tell you about how your family stayed with you for three days when you tried to kill yourself.
“He tried to kill himself, right in front of me, all right? It was a Friday and we were talking, and he told me about how his brother, who was his best friend, killed himself right in front of Cameron, and how haunted he is by it. He’s schizophrenic, too, so that just made things even worse. He pushed me out of his car after he told me the story, and he drove off the cliff we were sitting on.”
“I got help and he was alive, but unconscious. He had head trauma, broke a few ribs, an arm, a leg, and dislocated his knee in the other leg. He was in a coma for three days, just like I was. When he woke up, he had amnesia and I yelled at him for being such an idiot. He deserved it! He did something so freaking stupid, right in front of me!”
“You’re a hypocrite,” Robyn says, looking at her plate.
“You tried to kill yourself, too,” she says, still not looking at me. “You didn’t leave a note. Mom was the one who found your body—do you know how loud she screamed? You were in a coma for three days, and I missed out on a lot of school, and Mom and Dad missed out on their jobs. We sacrificed a lot of our time, waiting to know if you’d ever wake up. You did the dumbest thing, Alyx.”
Don’t yell. “Robyn,” I say, trying not to shake with anger, “did it ever occur to you that I wasn’t trying to kill myself?”
“If you weren’t trying to kill yourself, why did you swallow a bottle of pills?”
“It wasn’t my fault! I couldn’t sleep!” My voice shakes as I remember Nineteen torturing my mind, building memories of Tyler Richmand. Nineteen replayed the Event, the worst part where he covered my mouth while I tried to scream No!, when he hurt me and made me bleed. “Nineteen made me do it! I just wanted to take one pill to help me get to sleep, but it didn’t work, so she made me swallow the whole bottle! I didn’t know what I was doing! It wasn’t my fault!”
“You’re crazy, Alyx!” Robyn says, an edge to her voice. She stands up and puts her empty plate in the sink. “Nineteen doesn’t exist! All of these ‘voices’ are in your head because you’re crazy! None of them exist. You’re just making up all of this shit to get attention because you think you don’t get enough! Are you happy now, Alyx? All of this attention from Mom and Dad and all those doctors?”
“I’m not doing it for attention!” I scream. “It’s real! Everything is real! The Voices are real! I can’t make Them go away! I didn’t invite Them, Robyn, please believe me! Why would I make all of this up? I had a good life and plenty of attention, and so did you! I wasn’t trying to take yours away!”
“Nothing happens out of the blue, Alyx!” Robyn snaps.
“That’s what I’m trying to tell you! Something awful happened to me, and I can’t tell anyone because no one will believe me and it started all of this and it wasn’t my fault!” Tears spill down my cheeks, my lips quiver.
“So what happened, Alyx?” Robyn asks sarcastically.
“I…I can’t. I can’t. I can’t…” I shake all over, my heart pounds as hard as it ever has. My legs buckle below me and I fall to the floor, my head in my hands. “I can’t tell you. It’s too horrible and you won’t believe me because it happened a long time ago and there’s no proof but believe me, please believe me, it happened, it was real!”
“If you can’t tell me, nothing happened!” Robyn yells. “You’re so starved for attention, you know? You’re so embarrassing! What are you trying to get out of this?”
“It’s not my fault!” I sob. “I can’t help it! They’re so mean to me and it was so horrible! I can’t tell you because it will make everything worse! I’m sorry, Robyn, I’m sorry, but I can’t! None of this is my fault, I’m not trying to get all of the attention, I don’t want any attention anymore!”
“Why don’t you want attention anymore? So you can become invisible and then slip off the face of the earth? Will you be happy then, you suicidal freak?”
Phreak. Phreak. Phreak. Schizophreak.
“I didn’t mean for any of this to happen,” I whimper, more tears spilling down my cheeks. “It’s not my fault, something so awful happened and it was so awful so awful so awful…” my knees climb to my chest, my forehead rests between them, my arms wrap around my legs and I rock myself back and forth against the sink cabinet. “I’m sorry, Robyn, I’m so sorry. I wish I could make it go away.”
I hear her sigh in disgust, and her footsteps walk out of the kitchen and up the stairs. The Whispers are doing their job, now that she’s gone. They laugh at me and point at me and call me a phreak. They tell me I’m a baby for crying, tell me my fight with my sister wasn’t good enough. They want me to suck it up because it could have been a lot worse. I could have gotten pregnant; I could have contracted an STI.
They are so dumb. Getting pregnant or contracting an STI would have been better—there would have been proof of what Tyler did to me. But no, there is no proof that he caused this. There were no cameras in his room, which would have been the perfect reason for him to do it. We were both drunk, but I remember everything. He probably didn’t, because he ignored me the rest of the school year.
The only thing I can rely on for proof is my memory.
* * *
Later when I’ve calmed down and dressed myself, I am standing out on the street at the nearest bus stop. It’s not raining quite yet, but it probably will. Mother Nature is bipolar on this side of the world.
I have my wallet in the pocket of my jacket, containing bus fare and my school ID, just in case I’ll need to show it. I hope what I’m wearing is normal—plain (black) t-shirt, jeans that are ripped at the knees, and sneakers. My jacket is denim. I think my hair is brushed, but if I look in a mirror, it will break. I didn’t ask Robyn for help with getting dressed, because I hate her right now. She’s mean and she’s not being a sister.
It’s quiet outside. I can hear cars in the distance, away from the neighborhood. In these homes, there are sleeping schoolchildren, sleeping teenagers, but working parents. Old couples are probably reading together, or watching television. The middle-aged citizens of Coldgrove are probably working. In the hospital, someone could be giving birth. Someone could be on the brink of death. Someone might have died. Someone could be healing.
The bus pulls up against the curb. I step on, shove two dollars into the plastic money box, and find a seat at the very back. There are three others on the bus, which starts moving when I sit down. The bus stops every few minutes, and we pick up four more people before it reaches the hospital. I pull the cord when I know we’re almost there. After a minute, the bus pulls up at the bus stop in front of the hospital. I get off the bus, thank the driver, and mind my own business as I walk up to the front doors.
Inside, the hospital isn’t very busy. There are a few people sitting in the waiting area near the desks, waiting to be called up. A little boy is taking his temperature at one of the desks. I walk up to the reception desk, where a nurse is reading a thick book. “Hi,” I say when I reach the desk. The nurse jumps and the book falls to the ground.
“Oh my gosh, you scared me,” she breathes. She takes a deep breath and picks up the book. “What can I do for you today?”
“I, uh, I’d like to visit someone,” I say. “Cameron Hill.”
The nurse types into the computer. “He’s been moved into the recovery unit,” she tells me. “Room Five-A. It’s in that hallway over there—turn left, and then turn right.”
“Okay,” I say. “Thanks.” I start walking into the hallway that leads into all the rooms. No one really looks at me suspiciously, so I can walk assured. I turn left, walk for a minute, then turn right. I find room 5-A in a matter of seconds. The door is closed. My heart starts to pound out of nervousness, but I gain the courage to knock on the door. I hear someone yelling for me to come in, so I open the door and step inside.
The room looks like his old room, except all of the machines aren’t there. No heart monitor, no stand with a bag of morphine that drips into his veins. The room is bigger than the other one was, and it even has a window that looks out into the woods.
Lisa stands up out of her chair and hugs me. “Hi, Alyx, honey,” she says. “We’ve missed you. I’m so glad you could come! He’s been begging me for the last few weeks to make you come and see him—he wouldn’t tell me what was so important. I’m just going to leave you here with him for a while, alone. I have errands to run. Bye!” she rushes out of the room, and the door closes gently behind her.
I look over at the bed, where Cameron is sitting up. The bruises around his eyes are healed, and the bruises on his otherwise fine arm are healed, too. His other arm is still in the cast, as is one of his legs, which is elevated by a pull attached to the ceiling. His other leg is covered by a thin blanket. There is a tray of wrappers and empty plastic food cups on the stand next to the bed. A get-well-soon card is sitting next to the tray.
“Hi,” he says. “Sit down.” He motions to the two chairs against the wall opposite of the wall with the window. Mechanically, without any response, I sit down. “So,” he continued. “I’m, uh, happy that you managed to come see me today.”
“I had to get out of the house,” I say, crossing one leg over the other and staring at my shoes. “My sister was being mean.”
“Oh.” He pauses for a minute. “Well, uh, yeah. I, uh, I managed to remember just about everything over the last few weeks when you weren’t here to visit me.”
I say nothing. I really want to stand up and scream at him with all of the anger that’s building up inside of me, but I have to let him speak. What he has to say could be worth listening to, after all.
“Before I start explaining everything in a way that won’t make sense, I just…I just wanted to apologize. I’m so, so sorry, Alyx. I had a nightmare a couple days after you left, after I woke up. The nightmare had you screaming at me, pounding on the windows of what I think was my car, screaming at me not to do it. I woke up, and that’s when I realized what happened.” He takes a shaky breath, but I still don’t look at him. “I remembered everything after I had that nightmare—me telling you about Eddy, and how much of a coward I was. I had flashbacks of you screaming at me from outside of the car.
“What really freaked me out was how I managed to remember driving off the cliff, even though I heard you loud and clear. I don’t know what I was thinking—but how could I do such a stupid thing? I remember starting to regret it when the bumper crashed through the fence on the road. I gripped the steering wheel and wanted to scream, but everything happened so fast. My car crashed through trees and the boulders on the cliff. I think when I landed, I went unconscious. I don’t remember anything after that.
“After you left, nurses and doctors came in, because you pressed the red button before you left after our fight. They told me I was in a coma for three days, and I broke a few ribs, my left arm, my right leg, and dislocated my right knee. I had minor head trauma, which caused my amnesia, I guess. My mom came in after that, and they had to tell me over and over again she was my mom.”
I’m still not looking at him, because I know I’ll break down in tears if I do. I can hear him sniffing.
“My mom waited three days to tell me how upset she was, and that was after I told her my nightmare. She told me that my nightmare was true, and she told me what happened. Little by little, I started to get flashbacks of what I did. When I was alone at night, when she left to sleep at home, I thought of how stupid I was to do that to you, Alyx; to my mom; to everybody. I was so upset with myself that I just wanted to end my life again—put myself out of all the misery and guilt I’m going to have to live with for the rest of my life.
“But the next day, when my mom visited me after work, we agreed that after I go through rehabilitation for my arm and legs—good thing I’m not heavy—I’ll go see a therapist or a grief counselor. It’ll take a long time for me to recover, physically and emotionally, but it will be worth it in the end. Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem, and I should never have to put anyone through that. I know my mom and probably Eddy’s parents are still scarred by what he did, and I was the biggest idiot to make her go through that. She’s so mad at me, and you’re mad at me, but I’m mad at me, too.”
His voice is wobbling like jell-o, and I can feel my eyes filling up with hot tears. He sniffs again. “I’m so sorry, Alyx. I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry. I can’t tell you how horrible I feel, and how horrible of a person I must be. I know how you felt when I literally went over the edge—it was so stupid of me. I am an idiot.” He’s crying now, I can hear it in his voice. But I do not look up at him. My cheeks are warm with my own tears, and my lips tremble. I don’t even know why I’m breaking down ever so silently—perhaps it’s because I have yet to apologize to my own parents for being such an idiot.
We sit in our own spots and cry together like total babies. I still can’t look at him, even though he’s not as hideous as he used to be.
After a few minutes, I manage to calm down. I grab the box of tissues sitting in the chair next to me, take a few and wipe my face. I hand the box to Cameron, still not meeting his eyes. After another minute, when I’m totally calm, I manage to look at him. His eyes are (red) and swollen, his lips still trembling. “I’m sorry,” he whispers. “I’m sorry, Alyx. I know you’re never going to forgive me, and I’m okay with that. I always piss every—”
“Shh,” I say. “Be quiet.” He doesn’t say anything. I want to say something, but I don’t know what. I guess I’d better apologize, too. “I’m sorry for yelling at you. I shouldn’t have done that—and don’t you dare tell me you deserved it. You did, however, but at the same time, you didn’t. You are an idiot, Cameron, but…so am I.”
“No, you’re not.”
“I said be quiet. I did something stupid, too, and during the last few weeks, I did even more stupid things. I managed to get myself high almost every night—really high. I went to this little concert with some people from school, and I got myself into incense. I know, it sounds really stupid, right? But I was so high—I even tried weed and made out with this amazing girl, who supplied me with more incense sticks. But I’m trying to stop—I’m even going to stop smoking regular cigarettes.”
“Good,” he says.
“I feel like I need to make changes in my life, but I don’t know how,” I continue. “When I kept getting high, my parents didn’t send me to my therapist because they thought I was happy and getting better. But since I quit, they’re probably going to send me back. I don’t really mind.”
I stand up, and move around to the other side of Cameron’s bed, where his good arm is laying. I climb over the metal bar that prevents him from falling to the floor, and lay down on my side next to him. He turns his head towards me, raising an eyebrow. I give him a small smile, and he smiles back.
* * *
When I get home, I ask Brian if I can drive around town. He agrees, and we hop in the truck together after dinner. It’s a clear night, and the moon is full, a perfect night for driving. We don’t say much between each other as I drive around Coldgrove. I drive around the cliffs, past the hospital, through a residential area, around the woods. When we reach our house again after an hour, Brian looks at me. “What if I gave you this truck for your birthday?"
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Feb 22, 11 at 7:18pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
NEW CHAPTER WOOP
Loved it. Also glad you're not dead and just took a while writing. I was starting to get worried
quote Name Undisclosed
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Feb 27, 11 at 4:41am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
thirty-four ~ vroom
Credit to StrangeConcept from deviantART.
For the rest of March, Dad lets me drive for about two hours every day. He tells me if I want to get a learner’s permit, I have to apply for an instruction permit, which is kind of the same thing, if I pass some kind of knowledge test given at a driver’s licensing office. I also have to pass a vision screening test. Dad says we can go the weekend before my birthday, which is coming up soon. I have a lot of experience already, so this can’t be too hard.
* * *
“All right then, Alyxandra,” a man says to me when I am sitting down in a small room with a dozen other desks, “Remember, if you fail the test the first time, you can take it again in four hours. There are only twenty-five questions, and you need at least twenty correct in order to pass. You may begin…now.” He gives me three pages, stapled together. There is a sharpened pencil, a small metal sharpener, and a (pink) eraser in the top right corner of my desk. I pick up the pencil and flip the papers over.
I write my name, age and address, heart thudding loudly behind my rib cage. I already gave them this information, and Dad even gave them my birth certificate and proof that he’s my father and Lynda is my mother. Why do they want all of this again? Are they going to track me down if I pass? Are they going to have a big SUV behind me when I drive? Do they not trust that I’ll drive safely after this test?
1. In multiple-laned roads, the far left lane is used only for:
a) All traffic that wishes to use it
b) Buses and carpools
d) Overtaking and passing another vehicle.
2. When a schoolbus travelling towards you is stopped with its red lights flashing and the roadway is four lanes wide with a median, you should:
a) Stop until the bus moves on
b) Speed up
c) Stop only if children are unloading
d) Slow down and use caution as you pass the bus.
On and on, the test continues. There are questions about drinking and driving, signs, driving behind ambulances and firetrucks, collisions, etcetera. I finish the test in twenty minutes. I raise my hand after turning the test over, and the instructor comes over. He takes my paper and tells me to wait a few minutes while he grades it. I wait, patiently, and two minutes later he comes back to my desk and gives me the test back—at the top right corner is a big 23/25. I have passed the test.
* * *
I pass the color-recognition test, too, with the help of The Voices.
* * *
The man who gave me the knowledge test takes my picture, where I am standing in front of a (white) wall. He tells me not to smile, but not to look gloomy. I put on a poker face and smile with my eyes at the camera, which flashes in my face. I blink when I think it’s done. A card slides out of a small machine beside the nearby computer, and the man picks it up and hands it to me.
“Congratulations, Miss Sawhill,” he says with a tight smile on his face. “You officially have a learner’s permit. Everything you need to know is in this manual right here. Have fun, but don’t have too much fun.” He shakes my hand, and I smile at him.
“Thank you,” I say. “I’ll be back in six months for my driver’s license.” He chuckles, and ushers me out and into the waiting room. Brian is sitting in one of the chairs, playing around with his fancy phone. The man disappears back into the office, and I hold up my learner’s permit, smiling. Brian hugs me and tells me he is very, very proud of me. He lets me drive us back home, and on the way there we have to stop at the gas station. He teaches me how to use everything, but I don’t have to go inside to pay for the gas.
When we arrive home, Lynda welcomes us back with a cake, because “she had a motherly instinct” that I would pass the test. Robyn still hates me, so she just gives me dirty looks and an arrogant “Congratulations” before she leaves the kitchen with a plate of cake. Mommy and Daddy are so proud of me.
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Aug 11, 11 at 3:04am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
um HI!!!!!! omfg i can't express how sorry i am. i was depressed. i was busy. i was upset. i had writers block. i quit neoseeker. but i finally finished this *bleep*ing chapter. i'm sorry.
thirty-five ~ birthday girl
Credit to me (xyxterftw on deviantART)
My seventeenth birthday falls on the first of April—a Friday. When I wake up, pancakes are for breakfast. They’re not my favorite, but that doesn’t really matter because I don’t have a favorite breakfast. I open cards from Mommy and Daddy and Robyn. I get a twenty from both Mommy and Daddy, and Robyn writes me a nice note in her card—“Whore!” underlined three times, but I also get a gift card to her favorite store. I thank all of them.
I get dressed in something I hope is normal—a (black) tank top, a hoodie with a zipper, and jeans. On the bus, Ashley yells Happy Birthday at me, and gives me a small gift. I don’t know how she knows it’s my birthday, but I guess Collin must have told her. She’s given me a CD and a card with a nice note in it. I thank her, and listen to her chatting away until we arrive at school. When I get to my locker, there is an envelope taped to it. I rip it open and find a card that explodes with confetti that falls to the floor when I open it up. Something else falls to the floor, and I pick it up.
In my hands, I find two tickets for a baseball game next Friday, at 7:10 PM at Safeco Field, in Seattle. My eyes widen a little, then I read the card.
Happy birthday, Alyx!
I hope you have a great weekend! Here’s your present—two tickets to next week’s baseball game. It’ll be the Mariners’ first home game, and I wanted you to come with me. One ticket is for me, the other one is for you. My brother and his girlfriend are going to come with us. I hope you like it!
“Did you get your card?” I hear a voice asking from over my shoulder. I freeze, then realize it’s just Collin. I turn around and grin at him.
“Yeah!” I say. “Thank you, Collin. I love it.”
“Did you like your gift, too, Alyx? I wanted to give you those tickets for your birthday since forever! You don’t mind that my brother’s going with us, right? I mean, it’d kind of be embarrassing if my mom came with us, right? We’ll be on a double-date!”
I give him a smile, but I am shaking all over. A double-date. A date. He wants to go on a date. Datedatedatedate. Daterape.
Fifty-three: Are you stupid, Alyx? Yes, he said ‘date.’ This shouldn’t mean anything to you.
Eighty-seven: [i]Why do you say that, Fifty-three? It should mean something to her—she’s so ugly, remember? Ugly girls don’t get dates. He’s going to drug you, Alyx. Don’t go.
“Great,” I say, with fake enthusiasm. I give him a half-hug, and put the card in its envelope, which I put in my backpack. “I’m looking forward to next week.”
“I’ll see you in Math!” he says, waving at me as he runs down the hall, clutching a textbook and two notebooks. I get my own things, shut my locker, and head down the hallway, my heart pounding so loudly that I bet everybody else can hear it. No one notices me, or looks at me, which is good. Nobody else knows that today is my birthday, and I intend to keep it that way. I should be grateful Collin didn’t decorate my locker or anything, which is what the popular girls do for each other.
When I reach Mr. Lenhart’s English room, there are three other people in there, but they are all crowded around his desk. I take my seat and look at my notebook, then decide to draw on it. The people that were crowded around the desk leave the room, and a few people come into class and sit down, chatting amongst each other. Mr. Lenhart walks up to me, since I am the closest to his desk, and hands me what I believe is a short story I wrote last week, in the point of view of a marijuana addict. “Good job, Alyx,” he says as he puts it face-down on the desk.
I pick up the three papers stapled together, and look on the front side. In the top right corner is an A-. Good enough. I skim past my typed words, 10-point Arial, and spot the red pen letters made by the dictator himself. In the margins along the third paragraph on the second page, he writes something—Are you speaking from experience?
In that paragraph, I wrote about how elated one must feel when inhaling the plant wrapped up in paper. I wrote about how one’s head starts to pound, the heart starts to race, but the high settles in nicely and all you can do is laugh. I feel like Mr. Lenhart is concerned about my well-being by that comment in the red pen, but yet, it shouldn’t really matter to him. He was a teenager at one point or another, he must have tried weed, too. I bet everybody in this school has tried it.
I put the story in my English notebook, and class begins after the Pledge of Allegiance and some announcements about clubs nobody cares about, except the annoying little freshmen that want to be voted Most-Liked in the yearbook. Mr. Lenhart talks about our short stories and how he is impressed with our progress from the beginning of the year. He keeps talking throughout the whole period, and the kids who take school way too seriously take notes as he speaks. I open up my notebook to a blank page and write, making it look like I am taking notes, even though I’m not.
* * *
After school, I am picked up by my parents in Mom’s car. They ask me how my day was, and Dad gives me a candy bar that I used to like when I was Normal. I thank him and eat it on the way to Robyn’s school where we are going to pick her up, and then we will all go to a restaurant of my choice for an early dinner. It’s a Friday, Mom says, so we’d better get dinner early before every place gets busy.
When Robyn gets in the car, Dad gives her a candy bar, and we drive out of the middle school parking lot. All the kids look so short and tiny, like they belong in elementary school instead of middle school. I don’t remember it being like this when I was in middle school, but I guess the times are a changin’. I watch the streets and people and buildings as we drive through town, heading to a popular, fancy seafood restaurant that has a new commercial every week. It doesn’t take too long to get there.
When the car pulls into the parking lot, there are only a dozen or so other cars here. We all get out, as a (dysfunctional) family, and Dad locks the doors. We head into the restaurant, and a preppy college-age girl greets us.
“Hiwouldyoulikeaboothoratable?” Mom and Dad look at their daughters, and we shrug. Mom says a booth, and the girl leads us to a booth against a wall that is plastered with fish heads and sepia-tone pictures from the forties. I am forced to sit beside Robyn. The waitress hands us our menus and says she’ll be back in a few minutes to take our orders. But first, would we like any drinks?
Mom orders iced tea, Dad orders a Coke, Robyn orders water, and I order a Coke. The girl disappears, and we all look at the wall I am sitting right next to. There are pictures of men holding up pictures of giant salmon, found commonly along the west coast. There are also pictures of lobsters and other fish.
I focus on the booth table. I look at the drinks menu, where they offer cocktails and alcoholic beverages that I am not allowed to drink yet, unless no one catches me. There are salt and pepper shakes, a napkin holder, and a metal cup that holds a small bottle of Tabasco sauce, for the weirdos that decide they want to add that to their fish.
Dad says we can start off with an appetizer, if we want, because it’s my night tonight and he’s willing to go out of his way to spend a lot on dinner tonight. I don’t want to choose the appetizer, because I hate choosing and Robyn might hate what I choose, so I let her choose. She chooses breaded butterfly shrimp, which I have never tried before. I look over the menu, wondering what to have as the main course. The waitress returns with our drinks and Mom tells her what we want as an appetizer. The waitress writes it down on a pad and looks at us, asking what we’d like to order for the main course. Mom and Dad will share a lobster. Robyn will have a stuffed Sole, and I order haddock and chips because I am a plain Jane.
The waitress disappears again. The family talks to each other, and I pretend that I am listening, nodding occasionally so they don’t get suspicious that I am exhibiting catatonic behavior in a public place. I don’t really know what they’re talking about, but they don’t mention my name. However, the families and couples and friends and business partners sitting at the other booths or tables keep staring at me, their eyes glowing crimson red, their fangs poking into their lips. Their lips pull into sinister smiles, their eyes blackening.
No. I am not going to be afraid tonight. I will not screw everything up. It is my birthday and I have to make everyone happy.
The waitress appears with a huge, circular tray in her hands. On the tray is a plate covered with breaded butterfly shrimp and a little bowl with dipping sauce in it. We all thank the waitress, who says our meals should be ready in about thirty minutes. I pick up a piece of the shrimp, but a fisherman in the photo on the wall beside me whispers, “You want to know how I died? I ate that kind of shrimp.”
I think, F-ck off, and dip the shrimp in the sauce. I put it in my mouth, chew, and swallow. I haven’t died yet, so I keep eating. I drink my Coke after every few shrimp, and actually listen to Mom talking about her day at work and how the photocopier caught on fire somehow. Dad talks about a new case he has to deal with, and he’s going to have to go to Seattle on Monday. Robyn doesn’t say too much, she laughs at Mom’s story, which makes me laugh, too, since her laugh is so obnoxious. I don’t know where she picked it up.
The waitress collects the plate when it is clean, except for a few crumbs. She sets a basket of biscuits in the center of the table and assures us our food will be coming shortly. I eat a biscuit and it tastes so good, a mixture of salt and seasonings and dough. They keep telling me, screaming at me, that it is poison, I will get fat, it will kill me, blah blah blah.
No. This is my night.
* * *
After dinner, we drive back home. Mom drags me out of the car and pulls a blindfold out of her purse and ties it over my eyes. I think she leads me into the house, because the click of the front door opening it familiar. I am lead through another door and down about five steps onto a hard floor. I hear a light clicking on, and two other pairs of footsteps.
“Okay, Alyx, take off the blindfold!” Mom says, with genuine enthusiasm.
Reluctantly, I take off the blindfold and let it drop to the floor. In front of my eyes is Dad’s truck, the big black one that’s kind of rusted but the one I am in love with. On the hood is a large envelope, which Dad gives to me. A camera clicks off, the flash blinding me. I can tell it won’t be a very flattering picture.
“Happy birthday, Alyx,” Dad says to me, grinning. “It’s yours now.”
My lips curve upwards and my cheeks are getting hot. I throw my arms around my father’s shoulders and whisper thank you over and over again until the camera flashes again. Mom and Dad say I can take it for a ride, if I want, because I know everything that I already need to know. It’s still light outside, so I can ride alone if I want to. I say I want to ride alone. They say okay, fine, but be back in an hour or less.
They open up the garage door for me. I get in the driver’s seat of the truck, and it has that new car smell even though it’s new to me. The interior is cleaned up—all of dad’s shit is cleared out from the little compartment beside my right arm. However, the glove box is still filled with empty cigarette packets, clean napkins, and a small booklet that I don’t bother looking at.
Inside the big envelope Dad left on top of the truck for me, are a bunch of things, including keys for the truck itself. I fish them out and put the big key with the black top in the ignition. The engine roars to life, almost startling me. I pull my seatbelt over my shoulder and click it in place. I shift the gears to R, for reverse, and back out of the garage, on my own without Dad in the passenger seat, hoping we won’t crash. I’ve had enough practice. I have a learner’s permit. I will not crash.
Mom’s car isn’t parked in my way; it’s parked on the sidewalk, so I don’t have to panic about hitting it and getting the truck taken away from me. I drive down the street and out of the neighborhood, free at last. But I don’t really know where I could go. I guess I could go to the hospital and visit Cameron.
* * *
One week later, Friday the eighth, Collin’s brother Michael picks us up from school so we can start driving to Seattle to watch the first home game of the Seattle Mariners. Collin meets me at my locker right after I am back from gym, and is jumping up and down in excitement, holding his ticket, exclaiming “It’s ten seats behind home plate! Do you realize how close that is? Oh my gosh, I’m so excited! Aren’t you excited, Alyx? Do you think we’ll win? We’ve been doing a good job this past week, so I think the Mariners are off to a good start!”
His excitement reminds me of a kid’s. I hurry, shoving all of my books in my backpack and putting on my jacket. I slam the locker shut and Collin drags me to the nearest stairwell, and pulls me down the stairs. Then, he walks as fast as possible without running, still pulling my hand, all the way to the front entrance of the school, where his brother’s car is waiting. “Sit with me in the back, Alyx!” Collin suggests as we make our way towards the passenger doors. “Mike’s girlfriend is coming with us.”
Collin opens the door for me, the door on the passenger side. I get in the car. Michael looks at me and waves. The girl beside him turns to inspect me. I wave like the shy, little girl I am. “Hi,” she says. “You’re Alyx, right? I’m Mallory.”
I could have sworn Michael’s last girlfriend was named Maria, but I guess it shouldn’t be any of my business. “Yeah, I’m Alyx. Nice to meet you.” We shake hands, and Collin jumps into the seat beside me and pulls the door shut.
“Hi Mal!” he exclaims. Mallory greets him back, and Michael starts the car. “Put your seatbelt on, Alyx,” Collin reminds me. I do as he says and Michael manages to pull out of the parking lot and the school property. We ride down a few streets until we make it to the highway. Michael blasts some really loud rock music, and I guess this means I don’t have to make conversation with anyone.
I don’t have to ask to use anybody’s cell phone, because I have my own now. It was given to me by Aunt Lizzy and her husband, my uncle Jimmy, and my cousins. They came over on the Saturday after my birthday and thought it was amusing that I’m seventeen and still didn’t have my own cellphone. It’s a simple phone that slides out to show a keyboard, but it’s (red) and it’s pretty. Of course, I only have my parents, sister and Collin as contacts, but still. I text Dad’s cellphone number and tell him I’m in the car with Collin and his brother and his girlfriend and everything is going well.
I put the phone back in the pocket of my jacket and lean my head against the window. I watch as we pass other cars and trucks. One of the trucks is filled with little piglets sticking their noses out of the spaces between the bars keeping them from falling onto the road. My chest aches as we pass the truck. In the eighth grade we saw this video about how most factory meats are made. There is a machine that brings down some kind of metal board and it crushes all the piglets to their death. The cows are skinned and their organs are taken out and then their bleeding bodies are hung up to dry. The chicks are zapped and thrown in a bin. That video persuaded Autumn to go vegetarian. It lasted a month before we went to McDonald’s because she needed a burger.
I swallow the huge ball in my throat as the truck disappears out of my vision. The song in the car changes to a band that I know of. My new phone vibrates in my pocket. I fish it out and unlock it. Dad texts me back with “Okay, have fun Aly!” I don’t reply; I put the phone back in my pocket. Collin pokes my arm several times, trying to get my attention.
“Look at all the traffic!” he says, trying not to yell too much over the music. “The game must be sold out, huh, Alyx?”
“Yep,” I reply, not bothering to yell over the music. Mallory changes the radio station to something I don’t recognize, and she turns the volume down. Collin asks her about a bunch of stuff, and I must admit, she’s pretty patient with him. Michael doesn’t really get involved in their conversations, which is about favorite players, because he has to drive. I sit and stare at the back of the front passenger seat for a while.
Lots of time passes, and my eyes are burning, begging my brain to let them blink, or maybe even close, but my brain isn’t where it is supposed to be. It has been fired by its boss, and The Voices are its replacements. They whisper in my ear over the too-loud classical music, overpowering Mallory and Collin’s voices.
I bet lots of people from your old school will be there. Autumn will be there with her family and her friends and her boyfriend, except they will be in different seats and sections. I don’t think they offer group passes. You’re probably going to be shown on TV since your seats are so close behind home plate. Would you like that? Knowing you’re going to blind millions of people with your ugly face? They won’t be able to watch the game if you blind them! What kind of person are you?
You know who else is going to be there? Tyler Richmand and his “brothers.” They will be in the same section as you and Collin and Michael and Mallory. You might run into him. What if he recognizes you, Alyxandra? What are you going to do? You can’t have a breakdown, not in front of the hundreds—no, thousands of people there. What if they film it? What will your parents do? You’ll never be able to go out again. You’re going to be locked up in a room with rubber floors and walls and ceiling and handcuffed and in a straitjacket.
You’re going to be raped at the game. In the bathrooms.
I have to cover my mouth with both hands so no one hears the scream. Thank God there’s music playing. Collin glances at me for a second, but my hands have left my mouth. I quickly turn to look out the window. My heart beats against my ribcage, screaming to be let out or else it will explode.
No. No. No. Stop it, Alyxandra. You are in a car and he knows how to drive and you’re not alone with him. There is no need to mess with the door handle and pound on the windows and scream. You have to let Tyler go. You’re not going to see him at the game. You won’t be on TV because you’re not directly behind the plate. Grow up.
Collin starts a conversation with all of us, including Michael. “Hey, Mike and Mal, Alyx got her own truck last week for her birthday because she knows how to drive! Isn’t that awesome?”
“Wow, really?” Mallory asks, turning herself around and looking at me. “Was it new or used?”
“It was—” I start to say, but Collin cuts me off.
“It was her dad’s! He and Alyx’s mom are going to get a bigger car for themselves and her little sister!” he exclaims.
“Yeah,” I mutter.
“Collin, don’t interrupt her,” Mallory says. She looks at me.
“I, uh, don’t actually know what my parents are going to do,” I tell her, feeling my cheeks warm up with blood.
“See, Collin? You shouldn’t be jumping to conclusions,” she says to Collin, who blushes.
“Sorry,” he says to both of us.
I look out the window again, and I can see the Space Needle in my sight. We must be getting closer, because the traffic is suddenly worse than it was when we first reached the highway. It’s the first home game of the season for the Mariners, so it’s probably going to be sold out. I try to get a better look at each car we pass, and wonder if the people inside of the cars are going to the game.
A lot of the cars seem to be going in the same direction that Michael is driving in, so it’s safe to assume they’re all going to the game. It’s surprising there are this many cars, because the Mariners have been doing pretty badly in the last week. I don’t know why Collin thinks they’ve been doing so great.
I close my eyes and try to block out the music still blasting in this car. It’s so small in here—I think I might be claustrophobic.
* * *
“Ten more minutes! Oh my gosh! This is so exciting!” Collin is practically bouncing up and down in his seat, which is right beside mine. The Chicago Cubs are on the field, as are the crappy Mariners. Collin hands me the giant bag of popcorn that we’re sharing, and I eat a few handfuls while he talks and talks. Eventually he stops talking, but I don’t notice until he shoved a notepad in my face.
“Look, Alyx! I got Jack Wilson to sign this for you! For your belated birthday!”
“Uh, who?” I ask, taking the notepad. I rip out the page that Collin has left out in the open. Happy birthday, Alex! –Jack Wilson, it says. I smirk at the fact Jack Wilson has misspelled my name.
“He’s the second-baseman, dummy!” Collin says, playfully punching my shoulder.
“Oh.” I stuff the paper in my pocket and look out towards the field, and I see a guy standing at second base, throwing the ball to the shortstop. He spins around and I can sort of see the name printed on the back of his jersey—Wilson. “Well, uh, thanks.”
“No problem! I’ve got a bunch of other autographs from other players, too! I’ve got Ichigo Suzuki’s, Derek Jeter’s, Vernon Wells’…” he keeps talking while I look out at the field again. The first baseman tosses the ball to a kid sitting at the fence that separates the seats from the field, and the kid tosses the ball to a little boy sitting nearby. The ball the outfielders were tossing around gets tossed to someone who is sitting near third base.
A booming voice from the speakers tells everyone to please rise and remove your hats for the singing of our national anthem. The thugs two rows below us don’t take their hats off. A young girl, maybe about ten years old, stands on the pitcher’s mound and, horribly, belts out the national anthem. I have the strong urge to put my hands over my ears and sit down, just to piss off whoever is watching, but I don’t. I manage to make it through the entire anthem without screaming.
But when the whoops and hollers come when she finally finishes, I clench the sides of my head with my hands, kneel over and scream at the top of my lungs because I know no one will hear me. I come back up and people are still whistling and screaming, so I know no one has heard me. Collin sits back down and jumps in his seat. The voice from the speakers announces the game will begin. I watch as the Mariners’ pitcher gets ready, and the voice announces the name of the first batter up from the Chicago Cubs.
I can feel the excitement surrounding me—life-long baseball fans, anticipating the first strike of the season.
But since the Mariners suck so much, the first pitch is a ball. There are many boos coming from the people around us. The guys who sell snacks come up and down the aisles, yelling “It’s getting hot in here, somebody needs a beer!” and “Popcoooorn! Getchur popcoooooorn right hee-yah!”
“You want something, Alyx?” Collin asks. I shake my head no. He waves one of the guys over and buys a bag of popcorn. The guy walks away towards another person in need of popcorn.
A Chicago Cub hits the ball, and it is a pop fly towards the second baseman, Jack Wilson, the one who signed the notebook paper for me. He catches it and unnecessarily throws it to first base. The whole stadium erupts in cheers, whoops and hollers. I just sit down and steal Collin’s popcorn bag. He doesn’t seem to notice.
The next Cub is up to bat. He swings and misses, for a strike. The stadium erupts once again. He swings again and fouls it into the audience near right field. On the big TV screen about three hundred yards in front of me and behind the grass, the cameras zoom in on a little boy catching the ball with his glove. The people around him clap.
The pitcher has a new ball, which he throws and the batter swings and hits it. The ball goes out to center field and bounces in between the center fielder and right fielder, causing them to crash into each other. I laugh, and Collin buries his head in his hands. Boos erupt in the stadium, all from angry fans. I take the time to look around. The stadium isn’t completely filled in. Chicago is a time zone or two away from here, so I don’t think anyone from there would willingly drive to Seattle, even though it is Friday. The Mariners did terribly last season, too, so I guess previous fans lost trust in their ex-heroes.
The Cub that hit the ball makes it to third base, for a triple. More boos from everyone in the stadium. The cameras zoom in on the pitcher, who looks like he’s about to bust a nut or two. Collin shakes his head and mutters to himself. The announcer calls out another name, and I look at the field. The runner on third base looks pretty pleased with himself, and the third baseman looks like he wants to kill the pitcher, even though they are team mates and should be best friends forever.
The pitcher throws a strike, only because he is angry and when you’re angry you play sports better. You run faster, throw farther and hit harder. The next pitch is a swing-and-miss, making everyone scream with hope that this will be the first strikeout of the game and season. The batter hits the next pitch, which rolls on the ground towards the shortstop. Collin grips the handles of his seat, anticipating what will happen next. The shortstop slides sideways, on the field, and throws the ball to first base. The guy catches it and the stadium screams. The guy who hit the triple was heading for home base, but because the ball was thrown to first base it doesn’t count, so the bases are empty.
The next batter swings on the first pitch and fouls it in my direction. I duck and shriek because it might hit my head, but when I look back up it turns out the ball landed three rows back. I look towards the giant TV screen and see my face looking upwards. I quickly put my hood up. A guy wearing a hat with the Mariners’ logo fights with his buddy for the ball and cheers when he gets it, standing up and showing off.
The first half of the inning is over. A few people stand up and head up the stairs, wanting to get food, drinks, or to go to the bathroom. Mallory says she’ll go get us some food and asks me if I want to come with her. I shrug. It doesn’t really matter whether I go with her or not. I don’t need to pee and I’m not really hungry. I follow her up the stairs.
“What should we get?” she asks loudly, over the buzz of people talking. “Mike wants pizza, and Collin will eat whatever.”
“Pizza’s fine,” I say. She nods and when we reach the top of the stairs where all the shops are. Mallory heads for the nearest pizza stand, where there is already a big lineup. While we wait, I look around to see if there are any faces I recognize—from school or from when I still lived here in Seattle. Fortunately, I don’t. I mostly see little kids wearing jerseys that you can buy from sport stores and wearing Mariners hats. Mothers and sisters drag their daughters and sisters to the bathrooms.
Mallory orders two slices of pepperoni for the boys, one vegetarian for herself, and a Hawaiian slice for me. I give her my money but she insists she’ll pay for it. She suggests that if I want to pay for something, I should go to the next stand and buy some drinks. I swim through an ocean of hungry and thirsty people until I find the drink stand. I buy two bottles of Coke for Collin and Michael, a diet Pepsi for Mallory, and a ginger ale for myself. I cradle the bottles in my arms and stand in the middle of the chaos, looking for Mallory.
I hear someone screaming my name, and I look around until I see her. I push through a crowd of people without saying excuse me because they wouldn’t hear me anyways. I follow Mallory back to the stairs where our seats are, and we go down several rows. I hand out the drinks and sit next to Collin. He informs me that the Cubs scored a run and one of the Mariners hit the ball so far it bounced off the wall for a double, which is the only thing that ever happens to the Mariners. I pretend to be interested in what he’s saying while I look at the field, instead. Eventually, after a couple of innings, the Mariners score a run because one guy hit a sacrifice pop-fly.
Finally, after three more runs from the Cubs and a new pitcher for the Mariners, the seventh inning stretch has arrived. This means a bathroom break for me. Mallory decides to get into the spirit of baseball and starts singing Take Me Out to the Ball Game, so I’m all alone, which is fine. When I make it to the top of the stairs, I find the Ladies’ room easily and a couple stalls are open.
After doing my business, I have to wait a while for an available sink. Normally, I wouldn’t bother washing my hands, but when I’m in a public place I do it so no one will think I’m nasty. After a fat woman leaves the room I hurry to the sink she was using and quickly wash my hands, then dry them on my pants. I leave the bathroom, which is filling up with even more women. Outside is even more crowded—people lining up for food, drinks and souvenirs, some people leaving because the Mariners suck and they wasted so much money on those gosh-darn tickets.
Where the hell is gate 120? There are too many people here; I can’t see the signs above their heads. They push me, bump into me without apologizing. The murmur of this crowd is vibrating in my ears. My heart races. I feel like a little girl who wandered off in the mall because Mommy was taking too long at the checkout, all alone and surrounded by smiling strangers.
Then suddenly, a face I recognize, even though he’s a bit different. He’s grown a few inches, wearing a Mariners jersey and baseball cap, and baggy jeans. He’s holding a glass bottle of beer even though he’s four years underage, standing against the wall beside the door to the men’s room. He sees me staring at him, he looks at me up and down, then smiles because he probably recognizes me.
He walks over to me, a sudden break in the crowd. He looks at me up and down again, which makes the sound of my racing heart clear in my ears, louder than anything else. I try to breathe, try to swallow, but my body is numb with fear. He smiles again, and gives me his beer, half-empty.
“Alyx,” he says, soft but loud enough to be heard over the crowd. “Where did you disappear to?”
I try to open my mouth, but it feels like someone has glued it shut for me.
“Haven’t seen you in a while. You been skipping?”
I manage to shake my head no. I don’t look right at Tyler’s face, I focus on the collar of his shirt, where my eyes are lined up.
“So where you been? Not skipping, not at school. Where you been, huh? You move somewhere?”
“What, you move and now you don’t talk to no one? You just gonna shake your head at me?”
“Go away,” I whisper.
“Go away,” I repeat, a little bit louder.
“Can’t hear you, babe!”
I clutch the neck of the beer bottle. “Get away from me!”
“Why? I’m not doin’ nothing to you, Alyx! Why you being so weird?”
“Get away from me!” I yell.
“Hey, babe, slow down!”
“Get! Away! From! Me!” I scream the last word before throwing the contents of the bottle at his face. Beer splashes into his eyes, into his nose, then spills down his cheeks like heavy rain.
He swears loudly, then rubs his face, which causes him to yell out again. I shove the bottle towards him, ready to run. “This bitch poured my beer in my face!” Tyler sputters.
“You raped me.” I whisper, my voice shaking with anger.
Tyler, who is still trying to wipe the beer off his face, looks at me, steps over and pushes me, the tips of his fingers on my collarbones. “The hell are you talking about? I didn’t rape you! Why you always starting stupid shit like that, Alyx?”
“The party!” I scream. “Don’t you remember it? Don’t tell me you don’t remember it! You raped me! You raped me!” I scream the last three words, then push him back, even harder than he pushed me.
“I didn’t rape you, you idiot! You liked it!” Tyler pushes me again. A swarm of people push through us. “You liked it, Alyx!”
“No, I didn’t!” My lips tremble. “No, I didn’t! I didn’t! I didn’t! I hated it! You hurt me! It’s all your fault! Everything is your fault!”
Tyler stares at me, a cold, hard stare, like he’s about to kill me. I gulp. “I’ll freakin’ kill you if you spread shit like this. You’re making me look bad! The hell is your problem, huh? You little freak! I didn’t rape no one! Why would I even put my hands on you?”
My heart is screaming, pounding its weak hands on the walls of my rib cage. I don’t know what to do. I don’t know what to do. What do I do? No one is helping me. Collin isn’t here, Mallory isn’t here. Not even Michael.
“*bleep* you,” I say, loud enough so he can hear it. I turn and run, trying to find gate 120. I run down the steps until I find the correct row, where Collin and Michael and Mallory are waiting for me. I don’t even say excuse me as I find my seat. I collapse in the green chair, my whole body shaking. I grab Collin’s arm and bury my face in his shoulder.
I hope he doesn’t find me. He can’t find me. I’m safe, for now, until the game ends.
|posts in thread|
Aug 16, 11 at 5:34am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
if no one comments im not posting in dis thred anymore!!!!!!!1123
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Aug 16, 11 at 7:57am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
*nervously walks forward*
Ummmm I've been meaning to comment on this for like, a week, or whenever you posted the last update.
But I saw that you posted in this thread two hours ago and I thought you updated it again </3
Anyways... I read the majority of Schizophreak after I stumbled upon it back in May. And I can honestly say that Schizophreak is the most entertaining and addicting story I've ever read in Writer's Lounge.
Seriously, Alyx's personality is just so freaking addicting. The way you write from her point-of-view is addicting. Schizophreak entirely is just so addicting.
This story also taught me so much about schizophrenia that I didn't know... I use to always crack jokes about schizophrenics, but now I don't think I'd even dare to do that.
Umm, anyways... That last chapter was pretty shocking. I never really suspected that she would run into Tyler again. I always thought it would be Autumn or someone else from Alyx's old school. I also thought that if Alyx did ever run into Tyler again, she would have a complete breakdown. So it was nice to see her stand up for herself.
I'm also surprised that no one else commented on the recent chapter yet, considering the level of awesomeness that Schizophreak emits.
tl;dr MAKE NEW CHAPTER PWEASE. :3
The dirt whispered,
"Child I'm coming home."
|posts in thread|
Aug 16, 11 at 9:55pm ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
OMG, YOU'RE BACK : D
I really hope Tyler gets what he deserves at some point.
quote Name Undisclosed
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Aug 17, 11 at 1:24am ^re: Schizophreak [COMPLETED!]
Got my name hehehe.
Story's pretty good
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