Sequel: Folie à Deux

From Under the Cork Tree

Twenty Four

I actually slept peacefully for only 3 hours before I was shaken awake. I heard Patrick saying my name, shaking my arm, sounding scared. His voice scared me a bit, so I quickly sat up, "What's going on?" I asked him.

Patrick turned on the lamp beside my bed, causing me to squint, " needa call Anthony."

I rubbed my eyes, "Anthony? Why?"

Patrick had no color to his face when I could finally open my eyes and look at him. He swallowed, then looked down, "Just call him."

He handed me my sidekick, where I saw a text message from John. This was the first time I didn't feel dread when I saw his name. First, I wanted to check his message before I called Anthony; I didn't get why I had to call him, I was sure that he was going to prank John.

Anyway, I checked my messages, seeing that Anthony had texted me over 12 times, and John only once. Still, there was no dread, no fear, only content and slight confusion. I opened John's message first, reading it to myself: i love you more than anything angel.

"Aw," I giggled, "John is sweet."

Patrick took my hand, "Angelus, call Anthony," he said sternly.

I frowned, "Why? What's wrong?"

Patrick had tears in his eyes, he bit at his bottom lip; my heart began to beat rapidly. I had a feeling that something was terribly wrong, but I couldn't say it. Patrick swallowed again, squeezed my hand.

"Anthony...he called Rae, and Rae called me," he began slowly, "she's on her way..."

"Why? Is Anthony okay?"

Patrick shut his eyes, "I'm sorry."

I didn't speak, I just waited.

"I...I don't know how to say it," he murmured.

"Just say it," I told him; my voice was airy and it didn't even feel it come from my mouth.

Patrick looked me in the eyes; tears and crystal hues of blue bore back at me. Fresh tears rolled down his cheeks, "There was an accident...the van flipped, John, Nick and Dan were thrown..."

When he paused, I took the opportunity to speak, "I have to go see him," I said quickly, pulling away from Patrick, "I-I-I havta--I havta get a plane ticket and get there."

As I went around my room, still half asleep, trying to pack, Patrick had followed and grabbed me, "Angel, sit--"

"No, I-I need ta get ta John right now. He's probably wondering if I got his message," I spat out frantically, trying to tug away from Patrick.

He grabbed me firmly, "Angelus, I'm not done," he said shortly, "please, don't make this hard on me."

"What?" I asked desperately, "Why won't you let me go?"

Patrick was staring at me hard again, "He...he didn't make it, Angelus...Beatz died."

I blinked, his stare was too intense. I couldn't even string words together. I didn't believe it, I knew that automatically.

"If this is a fucking Halloween prank, it's not fucking funny!" I snapped at him, trying to yank away.

"It's not a prank!" Patrick shouted back at me, but his voice lowered, "He's...he's really gone, Angel...Anthony, he...he wanted to tell you."

The reality didn't hit me. I didn't feel dread or fear anymore. I felt numb, blank.

"I'm sorry," Patrick repeated.

His grip on me faded, but I didn't feel it, I just saw his hands fall away to his sides. I stared at his torso, my mind was blank still, I had no clue what to say or do.

"John's..." His name felt sweet on my tongue, "My John?" I asked, keeping my eyes on Patrick's chubby waist.

"I'm sorry," again, he said, "this--I didn't want--I shouldn't have told you."

"John? My John?" I muttered again, "He's gone? How?"

"I don't know."

It was like a big rush just then; everything hit me like a wave of anger, despair, fear, sadness, and anxiety. My head was swimming, I couldn't grab a stable portion of my brain. My knees were weak, my stomach knotted, and without warning, I fell to my knees. My eyes were focused in Patrick's hips, but my vision was soon blurred with tears.

It was like an out of body experience; my mind wasn't there fully, one part was numb and the rest of me was broken and sobbing. My body reacted as any lover would upon hearing their husband was dead. It just ripped my heart apart.

I cried like I never cried before. I was screaming, but I didn't feel it, I only felt heartbroken. I was screaming at the top of my lungs, and Patrick had knelt, he held me, letting me practically deafen him by screaming in his ear.

The screaming didn't stop, I didn't fully realize I was still screaming until Rae's hands held my shoulders and she shook me. I could feel her manicured nails dig into my shoulders, she was yelling for me to stop, but I couldn't. My mind and body were on the fritz, screaming was the only thing I could do.

"Angel, please!" Rae yelled; my eyes were shut tight, and I couldn't see her. "Angel! Angelus, stop!"

Then, she slapped me.

I stopped screaming, my mouth closed and my eyes popped open. I stared at Rae, she stared back, her eyes were bloodshot, the bags beneath her eyes were puffy and red. My mind had stopped working, all I could do was kneel there, tears streaming down my cheeks.

"I'm sorry I had to do that," she breathed, "Angel, I'm sorry."

I only shook my head, "This is a joke, right? You guys are playing a prank on me, aren't you? Why is John doing this? It's not funny."

Rae looked up, my eyes followed; Patrick, Andy, and Pete were all around her and I. I frowned, still believing it was some cruel joke.

"Pete," I accused suddenly, "stop joking around, it's not funny!"

Pete looked at me with a sadden stare, "It's not a joke."

More tears, all of us in tears.

Again, I shook my head, "No, please," I begged them all, "please, it's a joke, right? You're just messing with me. Please?"

Rae pulled me into a gentle hug; she and I cried, my heart shot into my throat, like when you ride a roller coaster. My stomach felt sour and still, I felt like throwing up, but I couldn't move. I was defeated and broken, I was nothing, I lost my entire world, and all I had left was our baby and his text message.

I prayed. Prayed over and over. Begging God and Jesus Christ for forgiveness. Praying that I was just in a terrible, realistic dream, that none of it was real. Even with the sharp pain in my chest and stomach, I wanted it to be a dream.

I sat with my hands clasped on my couch for hours. My mom and Rae were with me, holding me, telling me how sorry they were. They kept saying that it would be okay, that I had something to live for, but I honestly felt like I didn't. I kept trying to tell myself that it was a trick, or a dream, or some twisted game that John was playing on me to test my loyalty or something. That was all I believed, for hours I believed that John was fucking with me, and everyone was in on it but me.

It wasn't until Perry and Big Bob called. They spoke to me, both were in hysterics, asking me how I was and if our baby was okay. I couldn't answer, I lost all ability to speak, I was angry and in denial, nothing seemed real, even with the pain. I set the phone down and stayed curled up on the couch, staring at the wall, or keeping my eyes shut. Everything in me wanted to wake up or die out, I couldn't stand the feeling of being broken or torn to shreds, it was the worst feeling I had ever felt in my entire life.

But, it would never compare to acknowledge the fact that this is real life and you have to move and breathe without the love of your life. It's a selfish and empty, betraying feeling when you think that you're taking in deep breaths, that you get to eat, sleep, shower and dress when someone you love so much is lying somewhere dead. It hurt to think of, it felt like even my brain was in pain; I selfishly didn't want to live anymore, not without John. I could barely function with that thought when I was asked, by Perry and Mike, to come to New York for the funeral. My mind could barely wrap around that fact; how long had I been lying on the couch, praying to wake up from this horrible nightmare?

Rae told me it had been 2 days, but it felt like an eternity.

I didn't want to go, it would make it too real. I didn't want to see John that way, I've never been to a funeral before, I've never seen a dead body, and I didn't want the first to be my husband, the father of my unborn child. But, I couldn't not go. I couldn't just let him be buried without a proper goodbye from me and our child.

Again, I was torn up about that.

I finally peeled myself off the couch, I was alone, even Cupid was gone. The lights were on, but nobody is home. My legs were weak, my stomach was deep and hallow, empty, only full of a fetus. My heart had sunk low inside of it too; I've only had water and crackers, like I was a prisoner on the Island of Misery. It hit me that it was pathetic, that I was disgracing John.

Every thought returned to him.

I went to the bathroom, took off my pajamas, untied my hair, and stared at my naked body in the mirror. My belly poked out, I guessed it was from the lack of food in the last 49 hours, and my body had red indents from lying on the couch, the stitching imbedded on my arms, the little brown hairs were flat, my fingers felt numb. I stopped staring and finally got in the shower; I stood under ice cold water until it warmed up, and even then I stood there like a broken toy, tossed in the trash, forgotten.

Forcing myself to wash up, wash my hair and brush my teeth, I got out the shower. I grabbed two towels and headed to my bedroom, sitting on my bed, my head was finally empty of current thoughts. I sat there for I don't know how long before I heard a knock on my bedroom door frame.


I looked up, hoping it was John, but it was Pete. He looked sorrowful, but frightened of me, and it made me feel sad inside.

"Hi Pete," my throat was sore, I hadn't spoke in over two days, why was it sore?

"Uh...can I come in?"

"Yeah," I said.

Pete came into my room, and proceeded to sit at the edge of my bed, a few feet away from me. He wouldn't look at me, but I looked at him, wondering what was wrong. What could be worse than death at this time?

"I came to see you a couple of times," he informed softly, "you...were asleep."

"Sorry," I whispered.

"No, I understand. Are are you? Have you eaten? Your folks are downstairs, Rae 'n Andy are at our place. Everyone wanted to give you space."

I couldn't answer. He had said so much, it just turned to mush in my head. My stomach churned, I looked away at the floor, spotting an old pair of John's sneakers next to my dresser.

"Why did this happen?" I asked, my throat burning.

"I don't know," Pete answered.

"What did I do so bad that--that John..." I stopped myself, my eyes burned.

"Life is fucked up, Angel."

I rubbed my eyes, "It's not fair," I snapped, "it's not fair! We--we just got married, we were suppose to have a baby and a wedding and be happy!"

Pete got up and stood in front of me, surprising me; "No one will ever know why shit like this happens."

I began to cry, "It doesn't make doesn't feel real. I want to wake up."

Pete knelt down and took my hands, "I know, Angel. I know."

"Why did this happen?" My voice broke, my heart was stuck in my throat now. "Why John?"

Pete rubbed my hands, "I dunno...I dunno."

I began to sob and break down; Pete hugged me, letting me cry against him in just my towel and wet hair. Everything seemed so surreal and fake, like I was acting. The feelings were all too real, but I was expecting for someone to yell "cut!" or shake me from a deep sleep.
♠ ♠ ♠
I tried to convey how I was when my dad died, only it was a lot different, but I didn't think it was real. I found him and swore he was just joking, and after everything seemed fake, like bad acting but with real pain. So, the next chapter will be based on real experiences of mine; I don't know much about funerals, so if I get a lot of stuff wrong, I apologize in advance, I refused to go to my dad's and I refused to acknowledge anything that had to do with death.
I hope this chapter is okay, I don't know if I got enough realism or enough emotions. Just tell me what you think; if I did make you sad, I'm truly sorry.