The story so far:
The stony gray pavement under his feet was just like the entirety of the run down pavement in Jersey, but somehow, today, it felt different. It wasn’t right, nothing was right anymore. Puffs of translucent white drifted out of his mouth with each passing breathe. Red and black-stripped clothed arm came up, wrapping like a vice around his middle, shivering with the rest of his form. This was simply one of his pathetic attempts at keeping himself warm. He was always freezing.
‘I’m a weakling. Truly I am.’ The boy thought apathetically, just stating a fact to his self, flick short black locks out of crystal blue pools. Drip. Long, clear spikes that clung to the window sills above his head rained little pellets of liquid down towards him; some coming into contact with his hair, other missing. The boy just sighed and kept trudging along the cracked concrete slabs that lined the edge of the dull asphalt running off into the distance. Each metal machine that passed by him pulled his loose fitting jacket with the wind they left in their wake. The whipping sound of that wind blew into his ears, sound registering in his mind and causing him to subconsciously count the number of vehicles that passed by.
‘One, two, three, four.’
The boy was such a fool though. He had time to have ran to the shop in the other direction before he even left his home; his car was waiting for him there. After firing up the engine yesterday after school and rolling along the highway to get away. Just so he could crash out on the rustic, worn couch in the living room and sleep the rest of the day away, let his mind wander far, far away. Then, half way back, the quiet hum coming from the hood as he drove, a hum that didn’t even register in his mind until the boy heard it getting loud and rougher as he clocked up more distance. A loud pop, and a sequence of sputtering clanks beyond the metal hood. Next thing he knew, his car was hitched to a truck and being dragged along the same highway, instead now, the boy was sitting in the passenger’s seat of the metal trap carrying his own car, spring digging into his skinny back and all.
‘Forty five, forty six, forty seven, forty eight…’
He stopped, a light caress on the top of his head, twitching his fair dark locks softly.
‘I’ve been dripped on…’ The boy thought, mind somewhere else. He wasn’t even concentrating on where he was going now, his legs walking themselves, taking his torso for a ride. It didn’t matter anymore, he depended on his subconscious to find him somewhere warm to rest soon enough as the boy continued to let his mind wander and dance and sing far, far away.
Focus wasn’t his thing today. He was back on his pills again, and they always did this to him. Take one more, two, three, four, five, more and more until it became part of his existence to pop those little white, triangular pellets everyday. Crazy people don’t know they’re crazy, and he thinks he’s crazy, so he takes pills to stop the **** that makes him feel crazy. This all just makes him more crazy because those voices don’t stop, they never do, and with the drugs they just get confused, which makes the boy confused, thus making him again, more crazy.
Then that little girl was there again. The sidewalk was nearly empty around him; this was the section that had been reduced to a slum in the city, so no on e was ever around here really. That little girl, perched on a window sill several feet away, giggling and giggling, the closer he got the louder she got. His feet picked up the pace and the boy squeezed his eyes shut, wrinkles forming on the lids. Stop it, stop it, stop it, not today.
“Liam, Liam, Liam…” She chanted to him, speech slurred sloppily, tongue heavy. She was on the other side of the wall, in the other room. Orange, red and yellow wafts of heat and rage licked at every single thing around him, smothering him in heat slowly. Liam’s stomach was clenching and throbbing, mind yelling, screaming at him to run now while he still can. Leave her it doesn’t matter; she doesn’t matter. A beam crashed down behind him a ways, hot heat exploded from it, blaze growing bigger instantaneously.
‘I don’t wanna die, not here not now, no, no, no, not here, no, not no—’
They were making him do this. Those little white pills make him think about stuff Liam has been trying to block out. The little laugh, squeaky like a tiny mouse, wasn’t help either. Liam sighed loudly in relief then, the cheaply painted chipping building before him relieved him more so then it would for any other person setting their eyes on this atrocity of a house.
The gold globe attached to the dulled oak rectangle in the center of the building only wiggled slightly in his pasty, thin hand. Locked. Liam guessed the twins were here, he said he’d leave the door open for him, but if those two were giggling like the little girl was, Liam could understand why the other boy forgot.
Trotting down the stoop, Liam pivoted around the corner of the white washed building, circling around the side of it to the back. His tiny frame fit with ease between the concrete wall and tear in the wire fencing. He then slipped around the corner on the back side of the house and toward the passage way identical to the one in the front, except this one had swirls of interrogate lettering and swirls covering its form. Goddamn, his head pounded again, throbbing shooting spikes of lord make it stop.
NO!’ His head was screaming at him still, mantra never ceasing. Blood was pounding thorough his veins now, flowing like an out of control river, searing his skin along the journey. He’d try, he’d try to find her.
Spinning around on his heals, Liam ran to the other side of the orange flaming room, where he heard her slurred speech. The hollowed organ in his chest was still constricting with each passing second, each contraction of the muscles in it becoming more and more difficult feeling to him.
Frantic, everything was all so frantic. The red and gold was dancing higher and higher, blocking the doorway into the other room. Antsy, Liam quickly turned back around and to try to see if he could slip into the kitchen. Sweat was dampening his forehead, and it wasn’t all from the heat of the licking and lapping flames singing all around him. A lump that congregated in his throat was forced down was the tightening muscles in the neck.
Fire was swallowing all around him. The heat was too much, it was burning and searing. Out, Liam had to get out. Head snapping back and forth, the sound of her calling his name being pushed to the back burner of his mind for the time. The room started to spin and another lump was forming in the throat, sweat pouring and legs bouncing anxiously as his eyes scanned the room. Through the black smoke lifted in the air he saw a framed pan of glass. A spark lit in Liam’s eyes, last bit of hope left in his form as his leg muscles pulled his skeleton along to the fresh, lovely air that lay waiting.
The window surprisingly burst under his weight and Liam flew out glass harpooning tender flesh around and all over—
Liam reached up to touch what could be seen of the bandage under the hoodie that clutch to his body. His hand cranked the knob and the wooden rectangle creaked open gently, warmer air puffs caressing Liam’s face gently. The dark haired boy could appreciate the warming feeling that spread through his whole body. As he strode through the room, he made it to the stairs, climbing them in a short amount of time and with what was a minimal amount of effort.
He took the first door on the right, pushing the already adjured door open enough for him to slink inside. There, Liam was met with a pair of swirling green and gold pools, chestnut brown tickling around the other boys pale, thin face. His eyes, Cyle’s eyes, were doing that sparkly thing, but today it seemed even prettier then usual because it made Liam feel even warm all of a sudden. A small smile curled up both their faces as Liam came over to where the other boy was resting on the worn down sofa.
No words were needed for today. Puffy white clouds were starting to come down outside the foggy window Cyle had averted his eyes back to looking20at. Liam flopped down into the cushioning of the furniture, sinking into it like a monster trying to eat him. From up here, you could see the ashes; Liam could here them blowing in the wind; all of those ashes.
The little girl was behind the pair of them now, but her laughs weren’t as loud to his ears par the usual. Clear strips of liquid leaked down Liam’s face slowly, expression never changing as his azure eyes remained glued to the outside, where it use to be.
‘Free.’ Liam tested the word in his head again. ’This wasn’t what I meant. God, why do I care so **** much…?’
A few moments later, a warm hand enveloped Liam’s boney one, warmth spreading like wildfire up his arm, after the comfortable silence had just resumed;
Merry Christmas, Liam.” His voice was hoarse and dry as he spoke, hand squeezing lightly. He looked over at the darker haired boy, Liam meeting his eyes half way. Cyle’s orbs were swollen, and red rimmed, much like Liam’s were becoming. Liam’s soft free-hand came up suddenly, touching the other boy’s cheek sweetly; thumb gently brushing away the remaining tear tracks. Cyle smiled sadly as he scooted over towards Liam, thighs, hips and sides brushing. Arms slipped around one another and Liam nestled himself into Cyle chest, taking in the warmth and the musky scent that was filling his nostrils. The constant beat of the organ behind their individual chest cavities was pounding together as one, but it was echoing, shattering more and more with crunch after crunch.
They both look out again, back outside, but this time up at the snow cascading down to the darkening city streets, both pairs of eyes glazed.
“Merry Christmas, Cyle.” Voice cracking, and breaking, strength it once held blowing away like the ashes outside.