The next day I finally find myself free of the infirmary. I head straight for my room. I’m not in the mood to mingle or talk to anyone and I hope to be left alone. I walk down the familiar hallway where we all stay. I stop, feet rooted to the ground at my door as I stare at Kaitlyn’s, still open. Do I dare?
I take a step towards it, remembering her last request before I jumped, that I move my things in there with her. I let my gaze fall on the all too familiar room and I feel my heart constrict. Why’s she leave me behind? Just because I jumped, didn’t mean she had to leave me here…
I exhale a heavy breath and head to my own room. I guess that’s where I’ll stay. Alone. I slip in and lock the door behind me. The darkness is inviting compared to the brightness of the infirmary.
Everything just seems dull without her around. In all this misery, I feel a bubbling anger simmering under the sadness, like a capped volcano, ready to blow at any time. I look at the table, strewn with my notebooks and pens, and suddenly, it cracks.
I lunge towards the table and flip it, watching at the books slide across the floor and the pens go rolling under the couch.
It’s not enough.
I kick the couch, shoving it into the wall where it leaves a sizable dent. I grab the lamp next in both hands and fling it across the room. It collides with the tv stand and I see sparks.
There’s nothing left in my room to trash, so I drop to my knees and weep. I don’t know how to shake this. I don’t think I can handle it. How can this get any worse? When will it get better?
I want the darkness to swallow me.
“Oh, you poor thing,” a voice whispers out from the darkness. I freeze.
“Who’s there?” I ask, feebly.
“It’s been a while, Andrei. It’s good to see you again,” a woman steps out from my room. She wears a black dress, making her blend in with my dark room, and her raven black hair is loose about her shoulders. She has blood red lips and a smile that’s all too familiar.
“Samantha? What are you doing here?” I ask, surprised to find her in my room, to see her even on this Island. “How’d you get here?” My body feels cold all of a sudden and I want to get away. Maybe it could get worse…
“Aww, don’t be like that. I’ve been looking forward to seeing you again, love. I’ve joined the Guild, you know. This is where I’ll be staying now,” she smiles, and I’m all too familiar with the contours to know what that means.
“You shouldn’t be here,” I say. I don’t want her here. Why now?
“Ouch,” she pouts. “That hurts. I came for you, Andrei. You’ve had your fun, but she’s a lost cause, your little pet. She was cute, but, it could never last. You of all people should know that,” she hums, walking closer.
Her hips sway as she approaches. I take a step back in response. She’s faster than I anticipate and she places a delicate arm on my shoulder, tugging me towards her with a firm grip.
“Andrei, you need a real woman. Not an immature teenager. Don’t you remember all the good times we had together?” she says softly, alluringly. Yes, I remember those good times, and what happened after; the leaving, the loneliness. It was much like I feel now.
Her perfume wafts into my face, the same as always, Rose Noir. My mind floods with memories of her from high school, walking through the park, watching movies, skinny dipping in the neighbour’s pool. I exhale slowly, opening my eyes to see hers, light grey, looked at me.
“Andrei, I made a mistake when I left you. I regret it,” she tilts her chin down, looking down between us. “But I’m back now, and I won’t leave you like she did,” she runs a painted finger down my face with a smile. She looks intently at me through her thick lashes, drawing me in.
“Sam… I can’t…” I try to say, gently taking her arm off my shoulder. “It’s… not right. It really hurt when you left. I loved you then. But now… things are different now.”
“Andrei. She’s not coming back for you,” she insists. “She only wanted you around to get some. I know her type. At least with me, you’ll have a real romance, like the good old days,” she smiles, oh, it’s just like I remember, and my heart hurts. I can’t. I know this is wrong. But…
All I can smell is her perfume and she leans into me, planting a warm, soft kiss on my lips. I resist, I try to pull away, but she’s snaked her hands into my hair at the back of my neck, causing goosebumps to rise on my arms, and she presses her body against mine.
I can feel the contours of her body against me and I begin to feel warm. My knees tremble with the passion of her kiss. I need to breathe. I inhale deeply through my nose, the scent of roses strong on her skin. She parts her lips and I feel her tongue on my mine. My body gives in against my will. I wrap my arms around her before I know what I’m doing, running my hands up her back.
I missed her so much. Why didn’t I beg her harder to stay? Does she really mean it? Is she here for good? She said she regretted leaving, she really did care, didn’t she? My sadness begins to numb and my senses are alert to her touch. It’s like I’ve taken a drug and every breath I take draws me closer. My thoughts are filled with her, this moment, this passion.
They’re broken when she pulls away. I look at her, questioningly. Why did she stop?
She smiles sweetly. “I’ll give you time to clean up and sleep. You look tired, you could use the rest. I’ll see you tomorrow, okay?” she turns up her lip into a crooked smile, the same one she had when we were seventeen years old.
She steps towards the door, turning before she leaves. She lifts her hand with a small wave and shuts the door behind her, leaving only the scent of her perfume behind.
I stand there, dumbfounded. What just happened? What have I done? What about – wasn’t there… is this really real? I feel like I’m forgetting something, but I can’t seem to remember what it is.
The taste of her lips lingers on mine and my heart is pounding. No, this is… fine. I… find the urge to see her very strong, but she wants me to clean up. I must be a mess. I haven’t showered in days and my clothes are stained with dried mud. She’s right. I need to clean up.
I sweep up the remaining broken debris from my rage with the lamp. I can’t believe I lost it, and with someone watching no less. This isn’t usually like me. I’m not the kind of person who trashes things. But I guess everyone needs an outlet. The weirdest part of it is, I can’t remember why I trashed it in the first place.
I mean, I suppose I was angry about something… but I can’t, for the life of me remember what I was angry about. It’s sort of like… when I try to remember, there’s just nothing there. Like I came in and then it was trashed. I know I didn’t find it like this, but I don’t remember the reason… This unsettles me.
It’s been two days since then. I haven’t had the energy to really leave my room since then, so I spent the time organizing my strewn notebooks and recounting the events of Kaede’s and my jump to Romania for the fire plant.
While I was writing, I would suddenly feel hot tears on my face, but, again, when I tried thinking about why there was just a whole there. I wonder if the jump back, with the concussion, did something to my memories.
I dump the debris in the trash can by the door and dust my hands off, looking around the room, satisfied. It looks normal again, minus the broken tv and the dent in the wall from the couch being shoved into it.
I sigh, as a knock comes from the door. I turn around as the door slowly swings open.
“Andrei? Are you in here?” Caroline’s voice calls from the doorway.
“Yea, come in,” I reply.
She slips into the room, shutting the door and stops beside me, looking at the room. “You broke the TV?” she asks, not sounding at all surprised.
“Yea… sorta…” I scratch the back of my head.
“Andrei, I know it must be difficult, but, it’s ok. Things will get better soon, I’m sure of it,” she says, turning to me. Her face is a map of worry and concern. It’s alarming because I’m not really sure why she would be worried about me.
“What’s wrong?” I ask her, hoping she’ll clue me into what’s bothering her.
“I… just wanted to know if you’re doing ok,” she says softly, holding her hands in front of her.
“Yea, I’m fine. Why?” I shrug.
“Really? I mean, it’s ok if you’re not. I understand and all. We just haven’t heard from you in like, two days,” she says.
“Why wouldn’t I be ok?” I ask her, seriously confused.
Her eyebrow raises high at my question and her face shifts into mostly concerned. “Andrei, it’s not good to pretend nothing happened. That’s just as bad as acting like everything’s over. You can talk to me about it if you want,” she suggests.
“I’m not pretending anything. I’m fine, really. What makes you think I wouldn’t be?”
“Ok, it’s fine. I understand if you’re not ready to talk about. Just… Kaede wants me to make sure you’ll come out of your room eventually,” she continues, hesitantly.
“Yea, I was thinking about it today. I just finished cleaning up after…” I jester to the room since I’m not sure how to explain what it was. “Hey, have you seen Samantha around?” I ask her, hoping to hear she’s really still here.
“What? You… you know about Samantha?” she asks, face suddenly concerned again.
“Uhh, yea. I mean, why wouldn’t I know about her?”
Caroline seriously looks confused and I begin to wonder if I’m missing something when she shrugs and turns for the door.
“Yeah, she’s fine, I guess. I’ve seen her around, but haven’t talked to her much. If I see her, I’ll let her know you asked about her. When you’re up to it, you should introduce yourself to her and all,” she says.
“Oh, that’s fine. We’ve already met,” I say with a small smile as I remember the scent of her rose perfume.
“What? When?” Caroline says, surprised.
“Uhh, two days ago,” I tell her.
“Ohh…” she says. “Alright. Well, I’m going to class. Bye.” She shuts the door behind her and I frown.
What was all that about? I shake my head and grab my notebook with my notes from the artifact research. Maybe I’ll go back to the library today, after making some breakfast and do a little research. Hopefully, I’ll run into Sam. I really want to see her again.
I shut the door and head to the cafeteria, wiping a stray tear from my cheek.
By Kayla West