Staring at the hole in the wall, at the lush green bushes beyond the gray wall that keeps me inside, I wonder how long I’ve been here. Honestly, even though I know I’ve been here for a startlingly long time, I couldn’t care less how long it’s been. What I do care about is Lela. She is the only other thing in this room, the only person here to keep me company. I wish she wasn’t here. She’s always mocking me. She’s probably doing it now. I look over to find her staring at me. To think we were best friends. We did everything together and shared our most secret thoughts with each other, and now she treats me like this. She sits back and stares at me like I’m stupid, like there’s something I’m supposed to know, and don’t. I hate her.
I pull myself off the floor seething in another recurrence of anger and punch her stupid face as hard as I can. She stumbles back and, with almost inhuman speed, rebounds off the wall and kicks me in the shin. More aggravating than that is she does it all while laughing. As she never talks to me anymore it often seems to be the only sound she can make these days. I used to look forward to hearing from her, but now? The sound of her voice brings me nothing but the most violent of emotions. Being here has allowed me to notice how shrill and annoying her voice is.
I go back to my corner and try to use the pain to block out her inane laughter. I never win and sometimes, I think I never will.
I stare at the solid grey walls that contain us in this hot, square room. There is only one exit to this room, and no windows. The hole in the wall is only big enough for me to reach my hand out and touch the plants, so too small to be of any use to me as an escape and the wall is too sturdy for me to be able to make the hole bigger. The door seems to taunt me as much as Lela does, I can even see her in its smooth, metal surface. At least she has quieted back down. She is now silently staring at the wall in front of her. I wish she would just leave me alone for good. This heat is bad enough, but to have to deal with her too? This is ridiculous.
I lay down and rest my head on the ground next to the hole. I let the breeze wash over me as I stare out at the plants. This is where I was when she first got here.
At first it was just me. I was so cold and lonely. My stomach was so empty it felt like it was trying to eat me alive. I was much happier then, though. I fell asleep right here, with a leaf in my hand. When I woke up the first thing I noticed was how hot it was. When I sat up I realized Lela was there. She was staring right at me. For a second that was ok, but whenever I talked to her she never said anything, she just continued to stare with the same blank expression. I tried to shake her out of whatever trance she was in, but she just whined at me. That was the start of our difficult new relationship.
“Maya!” I heard Lela call my name and I looked over at her. Like always she was staring at me. I was rather curious why she suddenly started speaking to me, and I stood up and stared at her.
“Maya!” I heard her voice say. She wasn’t moving her mouth though.
This is so aggravating. I want to scream it into her face. How could she have learned how to do this in such short time, and without ever talking too. Dammit, why does she have to be so good at everything she sets her mind to?
“Maya!” I hear again, but this this time I swiftly kick her in the stomach. When she bounces off the wall and comes after me I slam into her and shove her against it.
“SHUT UP!” I scream over and over as I keep punching her in the face. Each punch only makes me angrier My punches weren’t doing anything. She wasn’t bleeding or bruising, She just laughed, and kept laughing more maniacally than I’ve ever heard her.
“Maya!” I heard her yell again, louder than before. She keeps yelling my name over and over getting louder each time.
I slump to the floor and start bawling. I can’t take this anymore, why do I have to deal with this! What have I done to deserve this?
Suddenly the door opens with Lela at the other side. I look to the corner she was in, sure that I would have noticed her run past me. There was nothing there but a wheelie chair.
“Maya,” she yells while rushing to me,” are you ok?”
What just happened? That’s all I can think as she hugs me. “Get away from me!” I yell and push her back.
“Maya, What’s wrong?” She looks at me as if she’s concerned. I know better than to trust her. After all that is the face that has tortured me all this time. For all I know she put me here! No. She probably did. She probably couldn’t stand me anymore. Maybe she never liked me in the first place.
Then I headbut her, she obviously didn’t expect it.
“Maya, what are you doing?” I raise my fist to hit her again, but just as I’m about to land the blow, someone catches my wrist and stops me. I look up to find a police officer standing there.
“Please calm down Miss, we’re here to help you.”
Help me? I think. It had never occurred to me that someone might want to help me. I look up at the kind looking policeman, and then over at Lela. She looks sincerely hurt by my actions. Still, I can’t trust her.
I take the policeman's hand and he pulls me up and leads me out of that room. He leads me out of a large abandoned building and straight into the heat of the summer light. The policeman is talking to me, I vaguely understand this, but I don’t really listen. I don’t really care, either. As I climb into the cop car I wonder, how much time was wasted in there.
Lela and I were out enjoying the wildlife and having fun together. I must have wondered off, because next thing I knew she was gone. There were no bars on my phone. I tried to get back to her, I tried yelling for her, but it didn’t do any good. I only got more lost.
Eventually I came across a building. It was large and looked like it had been abandoned for years. When I saw it I forgot all about being lost. My curiosity got the better of me and I felt like I just had to go inside. So that’s what I did.
Apparently the building wasn’t as abandoned as I thought. I ran into a homeless looking man in there and I was attacked. I was knocked out and when I came to my wallet and phone were both missing. I was also stuck in a room with nothing in it except for me and a gross looking wheelie chair. I remember how hard I tried to get the door to open. To make the hole in the wall larger. I couldn’t even manage to break the chair.
When they found me I had a high fever and I seemed to be hallucinating that Lela was in there with me. I was told there are hallucinogenic berries growing around that building. It’s believed that I ate some and they caused both the fever and the hallucinations.
Even now, when the effect of the berries has completely left my system, I can’t make myself feel the same way about Lela. Lela and I have gotten back to a pretty comfortable friendship, but it still feels weird, and sometimes I find myself doubting her without reason. Hallucination or not, it felt real. I had so much hatred for her. Lela. My best friend. I don’t think things will ever be the same.