Sequel: Folie à Deux

From Under the Cork Tree

Thirty Five

My mind was in a tailspin after Pete had kissed me. He had kissed me and then was gone in a flash. The whole thing made everything turn upside down.

I wasn't sure if I should have liked it. My mind was confused, asking if it meant anything other than Pete being...well, Pete. Was it some weird little game of his, as usual? Did he mean it? But, what did it mean exactly?

The entire thought process had exhausted me, so much so that once someone else was with Jojo, I was out. I fell asleep any and every where I felt like. My dreams were foggy and blank; once I was up, I thought of nothing other than Jojo, eating and then my mind would focus on Pete...


My blog remained empty for a full two weeks. The last time I had seen Pete. I couldn't believe how long it had been, I slept through most days, and he didn't even call. Even Patrick called to ask how I was, but nothing from Pete, which threw me off.

He didn't like me. He made a mistake. I'm a bad kisser, to him.

The thought that process most of all was that we had made a mistake and Pete didn't want to acknowledge it. He didn't want to hear my voice, he didn't want to hurt my feelings. He's my best friend, maybe he didn't want to mess it up?

The broken record now belonged to Pete...John was left on the b-side.

So, I decided to reach out, figuring Pete was too anxious about the whole thing. I knew him just as well as he knew me. We're close, he's the only other person I could bother letting in -aside from Rae- and trusting with my inner most demons and secrets.

While my mom fed Jojo, I retreated to the balcony of my apartment. I left the French doors open, just in case my mom needed me. She was singing softly, almost in the same rhythm as the dial tone ringing in my ear.

I tapped my fingers on the railing, waiting for Pete to pick up, but he didn't. My heart sunk, my stomach twisted. This was cold hard truth; he didn't like me anymore. Maybe I was overthinking it, but him not answering didn't sit right. I knew either he was avoiding me, or he was busy.

I hoped that he was busy and not ignoring me.

Even though my head was telling me not to, I left a message. I had inhaled, waited for the beep, and then spoke; "Hey...uh, it's me...I'm just calling to see how you were...I think we should talk because it's unbearable not knowing what's going on between you n' me. Plus, me n' the kid miss don't--" I stopped myself, "Look, Pete, just call me when you can, okay? Okay."

I hung up and scolded myself from seeming like such a stalker and sucker. It made me sick wondering if I truly wanted Pete. I didn't know what I wanted, aside from stability; I felt like everything was breaking down and I would be responsible for cleaning up the rubble and damage.

With teary eyes, I looked up at the sky, looking for a sign or salvation. I let the tears roll and exhaled, "Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck. Dammit...damn."

I balled my fist, my sidekick was tight in my hand, I let myself cry. I sobbed, wanting to scream after it wrenched it's way out of my chest. Again, I looked to the sky, mentally screaming at God (or whoever was listening) to make it all better. There was no explanation for why I was going through all of this, it didn't make sense. Then, I inhaled sharply, speaking aloud, I asked, "Why did you take him from me?"


Still no answer from Pete, and it had been another 2 weeks. I was doing worse, I was prescribe anti-depressants, Prozac, but I didn't feel any different. I felt numb with the burning and aching feeling left in my chest. It was John's birthday that really messed me up; I didn't forget it, I couldn't, I had it saved in my sidekick and the alarm had gone off, reminding me.

The only thing I did was throw a pity party for myself. My dad had gone back to Italy, my mom was taking care of Jojo like she was her own, and Rae was trying to get me out of the house, to cheer up, only I couldn't. I had the weight of the world, as it seemed, on my shoulders, with the ocean sea salt burning my heart and collapsing my lungs.

John's 32nd birthday dragged on. I got calls from everybody, and as usual, everyone was sorry for my loss and were thinking of me. Some even said they were praying for him, Johanna, and I. And what do you say to that? All I could say was "thank you, I appreciate that," with that unenthusiastic tone of voice that you never mean to speak in. It just happens, like how life happens.

I smoked my first cigarette in over 9 months that day. I smoked outside on the balcony, staring off with my sidekick in my hoodie pocket. Though, no one was calling, it was getting late, the sun was setting, and I felt so beaten down.

"You should go back to work."

I turned my head to see Rae there. I shrugged to her statement.

"You look a mess," she added, sitting beside me.

"I am a mess," I took a drag of my cigarette, bumping ashes off the deck.

"Are you still feeling sad for yourself?" Her voice was sharp.

"Yes," I growled, "I'm not done, and I don't know when I'll be done. Got a problem with that?"

Rae sighed, "Being sad ain't gonna work forever. It's not going to help either."

"I don't know how to not be sad. And I don't even feel sad, I feel one of those stick figure signs on a bathroom door."

"Why don't you talk to Pete? You guys--"

I cut her off, "Pete won't speak to me."

I hadn't told Rae about the kiss. Really, I hadn't told Rae anything. Most of the day I was by myself while she worked and my mom took care of Jojo.

I felt like a failure.

"Why not?" She asked softly; she sounded as upset as my heart felt.

I was set to shrug, but when I looked at her, I could see what I always saw; my best friend, my confidant. Swallowing, I began to tell her everything from that day.

My throat had ached by the time I finished; I had cried and I had sobbed, trying to get the words out about how I felt. Rae had wrapped her arms around me and hugged me; she was freezing when I hugged her back, and I urged her to go inside, so we did. Again, she held me and told me it would be alright. The whole thing had failed to impact me, I was burnt out and tired, my throat was sore and I wasn't sure I wanted to be awake any longer. So, Rae put me to bed, and I curled up on John's side.
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Forgive me for any mistakes, I'm not feeling too good and I finally had the ambition to write!
I've got the flu, like I always do, yet I won't lie down like I'm suppose to.
Anyway, still sort of struggling on what to do next, and I have an inkling that this'll end and lead to a sequel...what do you think about that?

thanks for reading!