Three weeks later…
The sun was streaming through my window, hitting me right in the eyes. I groaned and rolled over to sleep some more. I knew I wasn’t going to sleep anymore though. Sleep was something that evaded me. I got a few hours every night, which were filled with tossing and turning.
My head hurt. My joins hurt. My chest hurt. Everything hurt. I had been on an emotional rollercoaster these past few weeks, and I had cried more often than I could count.
At first I cried because Loki was gone, and there wasn’t nothing I could do. I cried because I was lonely.
Then I cried because he would never be back again. I would never hear his voice, feel his touch, see him smile again.
And then I cried because of what could have been. That was the most upsetting, heart wrenching cry fest I had. Everything I had hoped for the future was gone. I had hope before, that Loki could be proven innocent, and maybe our lives could go back to being normal. But that was all gone.
So now I lived with my mom in her apartment. I stayed inside, not ready to face the outside world. I wanted to hide away in my room. I wanted to lie there, and hopefully I would wither away. But such things don’t happen, at least not when you’re half Asgardian.
I shuddered, remembering the first week here.
I was going to do it. I was really going to do it.
My mother had stepped out to do some shopping. She tried to get me to come too, but I wouldn’t budge. I wanted to stay home and hide.
I felt tears build up in my eyes, and I let them fall. My eyes felt so dry after crying so much, and they stung. I was tired, so tired of crying. I was tired of waking up every morning to relive this nightmare. I just wanted peace. I wanted to rest.
I gripped the knife in my hand. ‘It’s the only way’ I thought to myself. I could be with Loki. I could feel whole again, not just a shade. I could sleep, and feel peace.
I prepared myself. I looked around the room, taking it all in before I did the deed. I poised the knife ready to do it, ready to get this over with. I closed my eyes and breathed deep, feeling an odd peace at this.
And suddenly I heard a door creak open. “I’m home!” My mother called. I suddenly felt embarrassed, and put the knife back into the block, turning around just in time to face my mother, who was carrying a bag of groceries. “Sweetheart, you’re up.” She was surprised, since I only got up to go to the washroom.
“I wanted a snack.” I lied easily.
“Well, I bought you some fruit gushers! You used to love those.” She dug through the bag, pulling out the colourful box and handing it to me. I gave her a crooked smile, which was the only thing I could manage.
“Thanks mom.” I said. I wasn’t just thanking her for the gushers.
“You’re welcome dear.” She patted my shoulder, and promptly got me to work on boiling spaghetti for dinner, trying to get me to stay out and talk.
I sighed. That had been a rough day. And it wasn’t the only one I had. As far as I knew, my mother didn’t know I felt this way, and I was not going to tell her.
I no longer picked up knives with ill intent towards myself. Instead I just wished I’d go to sleep and not wake up.
My body suddenly decided that I needed to pee, and I got up slowly, due to my aching joints. I gently limped my way to the bathroom, my knees were killing me. Once I used the bathroom, I caught the sight of myself in the mirror while washing my hands.
I was pale. I looked like death warmed over. My eyes were still big and blue, but they seemed to look paled. My lips were chapped, because I had developed a habit of biting them. My hair was messy and sticking up everywhere.
I looked sick. Really sick. I decided to shower, hoping it would help with my sore joints and everything else.
After standing under the hot water for twenty minute, I got out and wrapped a towel around my body. I walked down the hall to my room, ready to get into some new pyjamas when I heard my mother speaking sharply.
“She’s had a shock, James. She’s ill.” I heard my mother’s angry whisper. Who was she talking to?
“I understand, Beth. But she’s been in that room for three weeks! She needs help.” I heard my mom’s boyfriend, James. I actually had had no idea they were still together. My mom had made no mention of him, but it could be because she was worried over me.
“I really doubt you understand! The man she loved died, hun.”
I didn’t really know my mom had told James that Loki had died. I wondered how many other people knew. I heard a deep sigh come from James. “Then we should get her someone to talk to. A grief councillor, maybe. I have a good friend who’s in the business-”
“Believe me, Noelle won’t go to a councillor. She’s an independent problem solver, she always has been. She’ll come around soon.”
“I just wished she was more social. She seemed very happy and social when I first met her. Maybe if she went out more, had something to do during the day. I’m sure there’s a position open in the office, an intern, a secretary, something.” I continued to eavesdrop on the conversation, hearing my mom tell James to let me get back to the world at my own pace. And though I was really grateful that James was there for my mom and was trying to think of ways to help me, I was glad my mom didn’t agree with him. I was in no mood to go out in the world. Not yet.
I stopped listening when the conversation topic changed to the upcoming event my mother was planning for a client. I’m sure James changed the subject because my mother sounded so stressed and worried about me. I shut my bedroom door, and looked around the messy space. I looked into the mirror, seeing that the hot water had helped my cheeks get a little colour. I looked a little better. My joints felt a little better. I gave my reflection a weak smile, and for the first time in the past few weeks, I felt a little better.
Instead of reaching for my pyjama drawer, I opened my closet door and pulled out a loose sweater and a pair of jeans.
James was right, it’s been weeks. And though I still hurt inside and out, that didn’t mean it was okay for me to put so much strain and worry on my mother.
I shoved into the jeans, pulled on the sweater and grabbed a blanket off my bed. I dragged it out to the couch with me and flopped onto it.
It was a start.