Status: Rated PG-13 because of language used in later chapters and Abre (main character) isn't just a character to me, as she has helped me see my own light, which seems ridiculous I know. But it's true.

Imprinted Years

Appreciation

I rocked back and forth, back and forth, seeing blood everywhere. I saw Benedict in the corner of my left eye, his face seemed worried, but I couldn’t make it out right completely. I let the tears of angst at hate aimed at myself fall down my cheeks and carry on to fill my hands with little droplets of water. The most natural water source I believe exists, as tears exist from out strongest emotions, which is why, most times, they are almost impossible to fight off.

I’m sure he thought I was insane, but I no longer cared. I did care about him, what he thought of me, what he did, but now all he did was watch me as if I was mental, which I was. My tears weren’t ones to pity. I hated them, nearly as much as I hated myself, but I still let them fall, as even though I disliked them immensely, they really did help. It felt as if that with every tear I let loose, I’d grown stronger almost. I’d sinner and I always believed sinners would get their payback inside a jail, cold and alone for many years. But this was true revenge.

Taken out by one’s self. Guilt.

Before my eyes, Kaeo never saw the light again. I laugh hysterically, letting the pain, which was unimaginably strong, that came with regret fill me up. Choking me with hurt. I did this. Maybe I was cursed. But all I kept thinking, other than thinking I was insane, was whether my father would think me a good person.

I laughed, thinking to myself “how could anyone rate sins as good? Are you fucking insane? You really are screwed up! Ha!”

I wouldn’t let myself hide from these accusations my own shadow threw at me. The other side of me that argued against any fantasy I built up. I believed that maybe there was an easy way out. In this life, there never is and that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

When you think about it, if life is harder, then surely that makes you stronger? Strength was what I’d wished for all of my life after around the age of 7. I saw my father as strong. I don’t know why, I just saw him as complete, which I believed was a form of being strong. I’d longed for this, searched for it, dreamt of it, but I’d never achieved it and I still don’t think I completely have to this very day. I now see how my father carried off such power in his casual, everyday stride of his.

How his eyes suggested his wisdom and ability to do many things. How when he tucked me in at night when I was a young girl, when he wiped away my tears, when he smiled at me when inside he was breaking, he was strong.
He put me first, but he was never perfect like I used to think. No one is perfect, which is what kind of makes us all unique.

“Abre, Abre, are you al-right?” I heard the chorus of Benedict’s panic ring loud in my now weakened ears. His efforts at helping me weren’t the reason for this, but the other ringing in my head was. I couldn’t stop it! I screamed and shouted and banged on these four walls that had me panting for breath they were so tight in on me! I felt claustrophobic.

“I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe and he’s fucking shouting me! I can’t, I can’t, I can’t…”

Calm the fuck down! I wanted to shout this to myself, but I refused to hear my own helpful words.

Maybe I was being ignorant, but it hurt no one apart from myself, so that was fine.

I appreciated him. His company, but I no longer wanted him and I’d brainwashed myself into thinking I no longer needed him.

“Yeah right! You fucking don’t need him now you’re alive? But what if he never saved you, Abre? You’d still be dying! You may even be dead and yet you believe you don’t need him?”

I felt awfully guilty for feeling such independence, which was foolish, as I couldn’t be completely independent in that situation. I believed I could do anything, survive fucking everything, but I couldn’t.

No one can.

I was broken, but I wasn’t completely over with. My character may have fallen, but that doesn’t mean I am out of the game yet. I’m not yet ready for game over.

But then again, is anyone ever ready?

I was about to have a full-blown breakdown, dreading what my angst would do to me and anyone or anything around me. Benedict. I knew I’d break up inside even more if I let my angst get the better of me, but how can you control it? Breathe in and out? Smile? Just get on with this life and be happy? Face the demons I created? Live.

There is another way to live. Darkness is one, which is where I’d spent many hours, days, weeks and months in, but light is an option, if you can find it. Maybe if I had found it back then, I would have been able to fake a smile, which would soon hopefully become real. Genuine.

Maybe if I’d reached out for a better future, then I may not feel such cold within, every time I think back to that hard and the better days. I thought that had felt the most pain ever possible back then. I had been beaten, both in my mind and self, as Silica had left me rather hurt on the outside, but my foolish choices had hurt me within. More so even, as when I chose to leave Jessica, which I did choose, I never felt right for a while afterwards.

“I’m, I’m…” I didn’t know what to say, whether to lie, cry even more, hit out, scream, get up and run, bleed out my sorrows. So instead, I didn’t do anything other than rock back and forth harsher than before. This wasn’t only a comforter now, it was a need for me, as not all comfort is necessary, but it is better.

If I didn’t have this to sooth my soul now, I’d break. I was afraid of that, as breaking, I believed, was formed out of weakness.

“I can’t let this weaken me. I won’t. I will be strong. I may be a coward. But what is the difference in this life?”

I felt as he hugged me close to him once again, whispering sweet words in my clouded ears like “it’ll be okay” and “I understand.” Maybe he did understand and I did want it to be okay someday, but I found both of these comforting lines to be rather imaginary. I would wish for it, I’d want it and maybe I’d need it, but I’d never let myself believe it. When you tell yourself something is impossible, it hurts less when you realise that it never happens. Even if this is a lie, it helps.

Well, I thought it did. Maybe ignorance is a form of comforting, as if you never see the true sins of the world about you, how can you ever understand it? Without understanding it, you can’t get hurt by it.

So did this mean, as Benedict understood me, that I was hurting him?

I shivered and looked up at him for a short second, not allowing myself to gaze at his flawless, caring face again. I didn’t deserve his kind gestures. His smile, his considerate looks when our eyes met. I was the problem here and it wasn’t his place to fix me. But I did like it when he tried, even though I hated it at the same time. Knowing that such a genuine, caring being loved me enough, even if it wasn’t much, to care for me like this had me feeling charmed.

Which might have been foolish of me, but it kind of helped.

“How did you get here? Why are you so hurt? I want to help. I feel I need to. You’re so…” I shivered again at his kindness. Why? I closed my eyes again, holding them tighter shut than before until I felt I’d cry more if I continued. I felt like I’d throw up if I looked up again, so I didn’t. I kept my head down, because down was where I belonged. It was where I was used to being. So why change habit?

“Cursed?” I was cursed and I knew it now. Maybe I was even poison, like I believed I was. If he stood by me any longer, maybe I could hurt him more than I already was. He had to face this and he didn’t even know me.

I wasn’t his burden.

None of this was.

When I’d calmed down a little more, I looked back into his eyes again, his were still honest and kind. Warm and loving. I was still cursed, which I remembered when I felt the urge to kiss him. He was the boy who enamoured me. The one who was guarded for some unknown reason, but who was still kind and generous, which was far better than what I was. I may have been haunted by my own demons, but he hadn’t let such emotions conjured up from that empower his soul like I had. I let it override my light.

My kindness. My humanity. He resisted, which was why he was as close to perfect as I believed was possible.

“You will never be as strong as him. You know that, right?”

Yes, I do know that. I always have. Ever since I first encountered him. “I’m far from perfect. I deserve this.” I shook away the impossible cold that hit me so violently after speaking such truth. I did deserve it, but so did Kaeo in my opinion.
Was either of those punishments right though? I was the one, who carried out both, but I only seemed to have a choice with Kaeo and even that decision was clouded by angst and disgust. Was I ever right to do any of this? Now, when I shivered, shook my head with guilt and sorrow and when I cried out my sorrows, I seemed to have no choice in any of it. Benedict did. He comforted me, steadied me, held me close to him, protecting me from myself, but he never had to.

Maybe that’s why his soul is clean. Would I have done the same in return?

I needed to resist the emotion that had me controlled. That had me wrapped up in such a supposedly pitiful state. I hated this side of me, but angst let it continue. Not the same angst as when I killed Kaeo, but a different, if anything, a stronger kind. Guilt. Disgust. An inability to escape such emotions had me angered, but I could no longer allow it to control me. To be completely independent, I had to fight such emotions.

Benedict’s hold on me tightened and I tried to smile at the increase of comfort. I had to accept that I had made mistakes, I would remember them, but I couldn’t let that fight away what was maybe one of the few things that could work in my life. Benedict. He had stayed; he didn’t go when I pitied myself. Maybe he was worth fighting such angst. Maybe he was the only reason I did.

“No he wasn’t. You had to fight it for yourself as well as him and Jessica too.”

They were right, the voices and I was wrong. Even though he was a massive contributor to my recovery from such angst, he wasn’t all of the reason for it.

I repeated in my head “you must do this. You have to. Think of her. Think of your future. Think of him. Think of your father. Think.” I did think and I remembered too. I accepted. I aimed to better my life in those few moments. I did have my own ambitions, which were to be happy one day. Genuinely happy and I had always anticipated to be strong. I could be strong. They say can’t isn’t an option. They are humans. Maybe this time, they were right.

I had felt alienated. I had never seemed to fit in. With Jessica I did, but I saw it, as I didn’t. Which I now see as foolishness, as I had the chance to fix a part of my life and I refused it, but to be honest, I had been aching for a long time. So much darkness, loneliness within, an inability to know what was truly wrong and right had me feeling heart ache. I had missed something all along. Appreciation.

I hadn’t appreciated myself when I did make right decisions and I discarded loved ones when I made mistakes. I blamed them. I blamed Jessica. I had blamed my father in the past and now I realised how that only made me weaker also. They loved me, cared for me and that was something no being can buy. A piece of humanity in them both, which was why I couldn’t hate humans anymore, as being humane means to love, care and understand.

They both did this for me, so why couldn’t I do it for them?

The thing is, I could.

So now, I would.

With age comes wisdom, love, distrust, guilt, hurt, life, honesty, truth and strength in some circumstances. I was weakened by physical pain and discomfort, but now, seeing this new light, which was a change from the home of darkness, I’d made for myself, made me realise that I was stronger. Which was why I no longer felt guilt when Benedict soothed my inner sores. I then decided to take action.
It was mad, as it made no sense to me at the time, but doing otherwise also seemed crazy. I didn’t wish to lose the chance to better my future not only in the aspect of happiness, but love too.

I turned to him, the boy who had been in my life for weeks, but who I’d only known for a short time. I’d admired his strength, his entity, him, but I’d never known him like I felt I did now. I may have not spent countless of hours with this being, but I felt he did really understand everything I was and everything I had become. I wanted someone to save me, but I also wanted to be the saviour as well as.

Without thinking about anything other than a future I could be proud of, I went to kiss him, but to my surprise, he got there before I could. Before I knew what was happening, his lips were tight against mine and almost automatically my hands held onto him tight. I lifted them to wrap my arms around his neck, still our kiss continued long and passionate and I smiled inside when

I felt his arms wrap around my waist also. I let my right hand grasp onto his hair, pulling my now wildly alive body closer to his. Bringing us closer.

Wrapped up as one.
Formed together. I let out an excited moan when I felt his hands tight on my back, pulling us even closer, pressing together the few air particles between us. I chuckled at such excitement rushing through my veins, my pulse now heavy and beating faster than ever before. I loved this, him, everything in these few moments and now, my desire were quickly turning to need. I needed it.

We pulled apart, which I at first saw as a disappointing action, but then realised, now I can look back into his deep blue eyes once more and see his beautiful, outstanding smile form on his flawless face once again. I smiled myself now, maybe a little too ecstatically, but I wasn’t ashamed of such happiness. I was happy. Truly happy and nothing could ruin this moment.

Only one thing could make it better.

Jessica.

As having a true friend to share tales of a beautiful, mesmerizing moment with must be spectacular.

This is why I almost felt I needed her, even though this was meant to be just between us, Benedict and I, I still felt I needed her.

It was these times, when I felt I had just experienced something wild, when I wanted her back. When I realised that Silica was nothing but a coward, I wanted her with me. When I saw her and my father flash before my eyes, when I believed I would die, when I believed I was lost, I needed her. When I saw all she had done for me, how she listened to my sorrows and how she comforted me, I needed her.

This is why, when I looked over Benedict’s shoulder and saw the figure of someone I knew from a life, which I had believed to be lost to darkness. When I saw the kind of look that would be given by a friend of a long while, the kind that had me respect and love this person. When I saw the hooded cloak that she wore so greatly. The smile of honesty and care on her face, that had me letting one last tear fall down my soft, rosy cheeks. When I saw this person copy this action, her tear almost matching my own, her smile being identical to mine, I almost melted with awe and pure, impossible happiness.

It was she. The one friend I knew I would remember on this Earth and in this life.

Forever and always…