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And She Is Silent
Adalyn's lips twitched into a momentary smile, flickering away more quickly than it had appeared. Her tongue flicked out, sliding over the stud through her lip. A strand of hair got caught in her mouth, and she pushed it away with one black-nailed finger. Her red-highlighted hair swirled around her in the wind, a black and red sweep of constantly moving tendrils. The sun broke through the clouds, momentarily shining a natural spotlight on her face, lighting eyes that matched the sky above.
The cold wind from the north caught her back and pushed her forward toward school. Rain spattered the sidewalk around Adalyn, tapping her shoulders with minute drops of nearly freezing moisture. Droplets ran down her face, dripping off the tip of her petit nose. She shivered with cold, but the same smile that had momentarily graced her face minutes before reappeared, shifting her face for longer this time.
Her steps took her ever closer to the school she'd never dreaded more, and with every step her smile slid further off her face. Her boots hit the cracked sidewalk more heavily as the school came into view, the parking lot full of Mercedes', Mazdas, scattered Hyundais, some other assorted cars, and one hot pink Lamborghini.
Adalyn's dreading footsteps carried her up the stairs, toward the double doors, which she fell through headfirst. A chorus of laughter bombarded her from all sides. Taunts and jeers closed in on her from all sides. Adalyn lay on the floor, keeping a resilient expression as always. Her eyes burned with tears, but she held them back like clouds hold back rain until they can't hold them any longer.
She let their insults wash over her, bathing her in a darkness she had become accustomed to. Her black-shrouded frame slowly stood again, straightening as tall as possible, despite only having five feet of height. Adalyn retrieved her bag from the floor where it had fallen from her shoulder and walked to her first period class.
Adalyn's bag slammed against the desk in the corner farthest from the window. She pulled it open forcefully and grabbed her history textbook, dropping it on the desk loudly.
She sat at her desk just as the 'popular' girl walked in. Katrina glanced over at Adalyn, sneered, and turned back to her friends. Katrina's voice carried back to Adalyn. Snide comments about the weird, emo girl in the back of the class drifted into Adalyn's ears and settled in her heart, a weight heavy enough to pull her even further into a pit of darkness that she had thought she had hit the bottom of. She folded her arms on her desk and dropped her head to them, hiding her face.
Snatches of Katrina's conversation continued to drift back to Adalyn's ears, sinking her deeper and deeper into her inner darkness. Gentle, prodding tendrils of morbid thoughts crept through her mind, sliding beneath the memories of momentary happiness and pulling them away with care. By the time the bell rang, all Adalyn's thoughts lingered on were Katrina's comments.
Her History class slid past in a blur of inattentiveness and a clear lack of notice. Adalyn's eyes drifted closed, keeping her emotions locked behind a nonchalant face. Her head hung over her desk, and her eyes drifted open, apparently studying her black nails as she chipped away at the paint. The voices around her swirled in a jumbled, meaningless buzz of noise. Bits and pieces of conversations made themselves more apparent in useless snippets.
Adalyn's hand drifted to her pocket where she kept her nail file, sliding it out beneath the desk. She pulled both of her hands below the desk, and filed her thumbnail into a point, perfect and sharp. She replaced the nail file in her pocket just as the bell rang. She put her still closed history textbook back in her bag and slid out the door by the time most people realized the bell had just rung.
Her footsteps echoed in the quickly filling hallways, slowly fading as the noise level grew. She ran up the stairs, shoving through the throng of teenagers that all hated her. She shoved her way into her next class, stumbling and stepping on stray feet on her way. She took her seat at the back like usual and lifted her hand with her sharpened nail, examining the point before bringing it down and slashing it across her wrist, cutting thin, shallow line in her skin. Blood welled in the cut, running around the curve of her wrist and dripping slowly onto the desk.
Adalyn pulled a tissue from her bag and wiped the blood from the desk, then held the tissue against the cut, preventing her blood from running across the surface of the desk. She ducked her lower arms below the desk as the door opened and her Math teacher walked in.
Ms. Lisa looked at Adalyn and nodded, walking to her desk with a large stack of papers, tests for a previous class, or tests for hers. Adalyn couldn't be sure which.
Adalyn's wrist burned with pain, but her face betrayed none of that. In fact, her face showed no sign of any emotion beyond indifference. Her grey eyes stared at the door intensely, her black makeup smudged slightly from the rain, giving her entire face a look of shadowy disdain. The door slammed open, causing Adalyn to jump. A boy, dark and angry, stormed in. His cold eyes drifted around the classroom, resting on her. His eyebrows furrowed and he stalked toward her.
He stood next to her, towering over her. Adalyn's head turned, and tilted back, looking up at his angular face. Icy eyes softened when they met hers, and a small smile tugged at his lips. His voice was low, but lilting, as he told her she was beautiful, and asked her out.
Adalyn's mouth hung open, and a hesitant noise escaped her lips. She frowned slightly, not sure what to say. In the end she didn't say anything, she just nodded her head, and he smiled again.
He took the desk next to her, one that was usually empty, and introduced himself as Keegan. It was a nice name, albeit unusual, though she couldn't really say hers was usual.
He chuckled and asked her for her name. Adalyn whispered it to him, hoping he liked her name. She watched his face as he thought about it, eyebrows furrowed in contemplation now. Suddenly a grin broke across his face, and he told her she had a beautiful name.
Adalyn felt her face flush red, embarrassment coursing through her consciousness like blood through her veins. He apologized, and turned away. His eyes flashed in triumph once his face was turned.
The bell rang and students poured into the classroom, filling the previously quiet space with incessant noise. Adalyn's eyes watched Keegan the entire time, longing for his eyes to meet hers and make her feel beautiful.
As if hearing her wish in his head, Keegan turned. Eyes like the sky after the clouds finally clear stared deep into hers. A smile pulled at his lips, casting a glow over his chiseled face. The classroom suddenly went quiet.
Adalyn looked up. The entire class was staring at them. Suddenly somebody giggled, and said something about how the hot, new guy had a thing for a freak.
Keegan stood up and shouted at the girl who had said that. His voice was rough as he told the girl that Adalyn wasn't a freak, and Adalyn deserved more respect than the girl would ever have. The girl's boyfriend stood and told Keegan he wasn't allowed to talk to his girlfriend like that.
Before Adalyn could say or do anything, Keegan bowled into the other boy, knocking him down. Keegan pinned the boy down and punched him in the face. His hand came away bloody, and not with his own blood. The boy turned his head and spat blood on the ground. Keegan raised his fist again, but before he could the teacher screamed that that was enough. She told the boy to go to the nurse to see what could be done about his face, and told Keegan to go to the principals office.
Keegan stood and looked at Adalyn, his face radiating how sorry he was. Adalyn smiled a small, sad smile, and mouthed that it was okay. Keegan walked to the door and exited, looking back at Adalyn one last time to see an expression of complete love on her face. As he walked down the hallway toward the principals office he clenched his bloody fist and smiled a twisted, evil smile, his eyes cold and cruel.
Ms. Lisa called the janitor to clean the blood from the floor, then began her class. Adalyn didn't pay any attention. Her chin rested on the heel of her hand, eyes gazing off into nothing. The only thing on her mind was Keegan, and how she had fallen so quickly for him when no other person had ever made her feel that way.
The bell rang sooner than seemed possible, pulling Adalyn out of her thoughts of Keegan. She packed up in a haze, drifting out of the classroom like a whisp. Her eyes searched the halls for Keegan, but it was a fruitless search. Adalyn sighed and trudged to her next class, the last one before lunch, and her favorite, but today she wasn't in the mood for it. Her eyes were sad as she sat at her usual desk in the corner.
She rested her head in her hands and Adalyn let herself be pulled back into thoughts of Keegan. A small smile touched her lips. She remained this way until the bell rang and students filed in.
Adalyn's art teacher entered and passed paper to everybody in the front row. They passed pieces back, and for a while the room was silent. Once everybody had their paper the art teacher, Mrs. Peterson, stepped up to the blackboard and wrote 'SKETCHING REAL PEOPLE' in large letters.
Adalyn didn't need further instruction. She bent her head and drew, a figure forming before her eyes, starting as a series of shapes, detailless and plain, then slowly growing into the likeness of a figure. Mrs. Peterson strode about the class giving instruction where it was needed, and complimenting when it was true. Her steps took her to Adalyn's desk eventually. Adalyn had labled her drawing at this point. Written in a script-like font along the curvature of her drawing's beautifully drawn hair was the name 'Keegan'.
Mrs. Peterson asked Adalyn who Keegan was. Adalyn just smiled and asked why it was important. Mrs. Peterson told Adalyn that it wasn't, that it was a beautiful drawing, and then moved on, leaving Adalyn to finish her perfect likeness of the beautiful face of Keegan.
Adalyn had just added the final touches to her drawing when the bell rang. Adalyn turned in her work and left the classroom, and the school, sneaking out to see if she could find Keegan.
Her feet hit the ground, splashing through puddles as she bolted out of sight of the school. Keegan sat on a bench by the street, his arms across the top and his feet spread wide. A cigarette hung from his mouth. Adalyn ran to him and sat beside him, curling against his damp chest.
Keegan looked down at her and smiled, a false smile that appeared so real. He dropped his cigarette to the ground. His lips slid against hers, hard and fierce, a lie. His hand slid her bag from her shoulder and slid up the back of her shirt. She tried to pull away, but Keegan's hand on her back kept her where she was.
Keegan's hand wrapped around her arm. He pulled away, only to cover her mouth with his before she could scream. He pulled her through the park behind the bench to an old house, empty by the looks of it. His breath hissed over her ear, telling her that this was where he lived, and if she knew what was good for her she would stay quiet. Adalyn nodded shakily, and Keegan pulled her inside.
His hands roamed her body, tugging at her t-shirt, and undoing her belt. Adalyn's hand shot out and cracked across his face. He tossed her on the ground against the wall and left the room.
Keegan came back with a rope and tied her wrists behind her back. He pulled a pair of rusty scissors from the table next to the dusty couch and cut her shirt off. His hands pressed against her skin roughly, sliding down and tugging her pants off. Adalyn squirmed, but was too scared to open her mouth, after all, she was supposed to be quiet.
Keegan hit her and she stopped moving. Her eyes fluttered half closed, and her head lolled to the side. Through slitted eyes Adalyn watched in silence as Keegan pulled her into a world she had never wanted to enter, and into a life that would change for her, but she knew nobody would care.
Keegan finally tossed her to the side, throwing a long coat at her and untying the ropes around her wrists. Adalyn pulled the coat around her bare body as quickly as she could. He smirked at her vulnerable form. He picked her up off the ground and told her never to say a word to anybody about anything that had gone on in the house. His words made it clear that she would still act as his girlfriend, and if she ever said a word, he'd kill her.
She nodded, not knowing what else to do, then bolted from the house, leaving behind her bag, boots, and clothes. The rain was pouring down as Adalyn ran home in the coat Keegan had made her take. Her hair was caught in her face, mingling with tears and rain. Adalyn's bare foot caught on a raised square of sidewalk and she fell to the ground. Her foot screamed with pain, and her knees scraped the rough surface.
Adalyn pushed herself to her feet, despite the pain, and continued running. The only thing that mattered was getting as far away from that house as she could.
Adalyn was entirely soaked by the time she pushed into her house. Her mother was at bingo, and her father was at work. There was nobody there to see her diminished form as she slammed the door and ran up the stairs, dripping water everywhere.
She threw the coat out her window, collapsed on her bed, and sobbed. At some point she pulled her covers around her body, and not long after that she fell asleep.
After what seemed like only seconds, Adalyn awoke to the door slamming closed. For one moment she forgot what happened, then she looked at herself, and it all rushed back in a flood. She rose from her bed and pulled out a pair of baggy sweatpants, and an overlarge shirt from her closet. She pulled them on, slid across the hall to the bathroom, and wiped the black smears of makeup from her face.
She returned to her room, and lay back in bed, curling up beneath the only comfort left to her. She heard a shout from downstairs, an exclamation of displeasure, she assumed. Probably at the water all across the floor. Footsteps stormed up the stairs and her mother burst through the door to Adalyn's bedroom.
Her displeasure radiated off her in waves, and it wasn't helped by seeing Adalyn lying in bed. Adalyn looked at her mother, and listened to the screams of how Adalyn must never leave water on the floor. Adalyn nodded, and rolled over.
Adalyn's mother huffed in frustration and walked stomped out telling Adalyn that her father would hear about this. Adalyn just listened, then closed her eyes, tears streaming down her face until she couldn't cry anymore.
Adalyn's thoughts roamed around the dark corners of consciousness, and with the passing minutes, she sank deeper into the dark. She was still this way when her father returned home. She listened to her mother tell her father about how she was being uncooperative, and the shouts that followed. She waited as her father stormed up the stairs, his hair out of place and his suit crumpled. He shouted at her, much as her mother had done earlier that day, but she didn't say a word, after all, Keegan had told her that if she said a word to anybody he would kill her.
Adalyn's father glared at her, and walked off angrily. Adalyn ignored this, and fell asleep, having been tired by crying.
When she awoke, morning sunlight drifted through the crack in her curtains, shining in her face. She turned away, putting her back to the ignorant world outside. She heard the door slam closed, and knew her father had left. Her mother shouted up the stairs that Adalyn needed to get up for school. Adalyn's sore frame protested as she attempted to rise. Her knees gave out and she fell back to her bed.
Her mother came up the stairs and told her to get up again. Adalyn just stared at her, keeping her mouth closed, probably never to speak again. Her mother frowned at her, and went downstairs to call her father. Adalyn heard her mother's shouts, but not the meaning. All she heard were the words before her mother hung up. Her mother yelled in irritation, "And she is silent!"