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She straightened the papers on the desk. The click of her pen rang in my ears as she proceeded to write some notes, pausing momentarily to push her silver glasses up the bridge of her nose. She wrote a few more sentences, clicked her pen, straightened her papers again, and looked up at me.
“I am here for answers Emily,” she said, eyes piercing into mine. “Tell me about Parker Claymander.”
I shifted in my seat. I knew Parker. He was one who remembered the names of everyone and made friends with anyone. He loved to talk, most people do, and he was never alone when he walked down the hallway, as I was often.
“Did you know him?” She questioned. I shifted again.
How could I begin to describe it? I knew everything. I knew his favorite color was magenta, even though he would always say it was green. I knew how he loved summer and only wrote in blue pen. I knew how his brown eyes reflected the highlights in his sun-streaked hair and how they sparkled when he looked at me.
I also knew he was afraid of the dark.
“Yes. I sat next to him in Chemistry,” I muttered.
She didn’t know that class. She didn’t know how he always smiled at me across the room, those brown eyes sparkling. I didn’t know why, but I would smile back. Did she know I smiled back? Did she know he chose to sit next to me? He seemed to know everything. He wasn’t modest about that.
She pursed her lips as if to keep from laughing. The click of her pen echoed in the small room. It hurt my ears. She jotted down a few sentences and clicked her pen again.
“I don’t need to know about your chemistry class; I need to know what your conflict with him was.”
Conflict. It’s like that history class, war after war after war. He was there too. He would smile at me. Why did he? Why did he laugh so much? We would talk about small things, and he would laugh and laugh. I didn’t like it. It reminded me of a crow, crackling in my ears like a campfire. It would keep going on and on and on, so much that I am alone and my room and I could still him laughing.
She clicked her pen again. I dug my nails into the leather seat.
I don’t like these seats. Does she like these seats? They are like the ones on that bus, the bus that he sat next to me in. I don’t know why he sat next to me. I don’t know why he sat so close. I don’t know why he grabbed my hand. I don’t know why I remember. I don’t know why I want to forget.
Her pen scratched across the page. It sounded like coarse sandpaper across metal. I wanted to plug my ears, but I remained frozen. I dug my nails further into the leather. My thumb penetrated the fabric. She looked at me again, with those same, piercing eyes.
“Do you remember who Parker is?”
Does she know who Parker is? Does she know what Parker does? Does she know how he put his hand on my leg and kissed me, even though I didn’t want him to? Does she know how it hurt? Does she know how he can remember the names of everyone, but will never remember to listen to me? Does she know how he implanted himself in my mind like a parasite? It hurts. It hurts. It hurts. So do I remember who Parker is? Oh, to forget is a blessing.
“Do you know what happened to Parker?”
He is cruel, doesn’t she know? He took away my life. In every waking moment, my broken mind breathes as his slave. I know what happened. She is the one who doesn’t know what happened. She is just another reporter, picking me apart until my entrails spew, like a vulture and a disfigured corpse. A filthy bird. A filthy, filthy bird that foams at the mouth when they see a headline. Whenever they see a “Boy, age 16, found dead in a high school parking lot”. I’m crying now, am I crying? Am I even alive anymore? I can still hear it. His screams. He told me he was afraid of the dark, but I was afraid of what he was doing to my mind.
I felt a hand rest on mine. I was shaking vigorously. I began to slow, as the woman looked up at me. Her eyes were soft, and her voice was smooth as she spoke.
“Emily, are you okay?”
I felt sick. I didn’t know where to go. My head throbbed. Where am I? He’s laughing. Help.
“He fills my head with glass shards,” I sobbed. “I thought I could make them go away.”