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On the Verge of War
She stared down at her baby brother with longing. If you didn’t know her and saw her at that moment, you would have thought she was as happy as can be. She was happy but not completely. After knowing her for twelve years, you knew that she wasn’t happy but just looked it. You could see the longing behind the love in her eyes. As I sat there watching her I thought, It looks as if she is lost and is just waiting for her lover to find her. But I knew that not to be true. She was only thirteen-years-old and I have known her for twelve of those years. It couldn’t be because of an ex-boyfriend because she had never had one. She has always been like this now that I think about it. Always a longing behind the happiest of moments in her life and I should know. I have always been at the most important and happiest moments of her life. Her parents didn’t notice. They never have.
Suddenly, as if she had been slapped, she looked up. A stricken and surprised expression crossed her face, but it was gone a second later. I thought she must have heard something that startled her, but she wouldn’t have given her brother back to her mother if it had only startled her. She got up and excused herself. The room was sort of crowded but only as crowded as they allowed hospital rooms to be. There were only four people besides her mother in the room. I guess everyone else just thought she needed some air, but they hadn’t seen the look on her face as she glided to the door. So, I decided to follow her. With the feeling in my stomach, I knew I shouldn’t do it and I also knew I would regret it. But it was as if I had no control over my own body because I kept going. I looked around the corner thinking maybe she knew I was going to follow her and had stopped outside the door so we could talk. No. She kept going and she didn’t notice I was following. This was quite surprising considering she always knew I was behind her when I was. Now I was really worried, this couldn’t be good. She swept through the crowded hallway as if everyone had parted like the Red Sea for her. When I looked around the corner for her and saw her go to tap the shoulder of a boy I didn’t recognize from the back, I stepped back around the corner. I got as close to the wall as possible and peeked around the corner. By this time the boy had turned around. He looked strangely like Lailah. Their clothes even matched. Lailah was wearing a wrap-around blue sari and the strange boy was wearing regular blue jeans with the exact same blue colored polo shirt. Although, stranger than that is that they had the same eye and hair color. Their faces were like mirrors of each other, well except that the boys face was manlier. When she saw his face, she turned away. I thought I glimpsed a slight wetness to her eyes, but it could have been my imagination. Then the strange boy put his hand on her cheek and slowly and carefully turned her to look at him once more. I never knew peoples nails could be so long. They looked to be about an inch or two long. I almost ran at him and yelled to tell him not to touch her, but at that moment I noticed she was about to speak.
“Lahash, where have you been all these years? Dear brother, how did you find me?” she whispered, I could just barely hear her.
“Lailah, did you not realize that I was gone? That I had walked out on you? And you should have known that I would one day find you again. Did you not expect that your thoughts would give you away?” he said as he caressed her face. I wanted to vomit, but I couldn’t because too many thoughts had started. Did she really have a brother? What was with his name? I remember doing a paper on fallen angels and that had been one the fallen angel’s names. Right? If I remember correctly it means fallen angel who interferes with divine will. That is sort of creepy and eerie. And I have always known that Lailah’s name means angel of the night who watches over spirits at from conception to birth. In other words the angel of conception. Which was kind of odd, but I didn’t care. Though now I have doubts I mean isn’t it odd that she has an angel’s name while he, her brother (gag), has a fallen angel’s name.
“It has been twelve years, brother, and I had thought you were dead. I had believed it, too. Couldn’t you just use a cell phone or something? I mean I about screamed when I heard your voice and nobody else had. Why have you come, Lahash?” she replied with a hint of anger in her voice. At that Lahash dropped his hand and didn’t say anything.
“Nobody’s eavesdropping. Stop being paranoid, “she said. But Lahash didn’t say anything and his mouth hadn’t moved. I was eavesdropping though. This isn’t good, is all I had time to think before Lahash was upon me. I knew I shouldn’t have followed her I thought yelled at myself. Then I saw her face and knew mine had grown pale. She had a hurt and stunned look in her eyes. Then one single tear slid down her face. I went to sweep her into my arms but Lahash had pushed me up against the wall and I couldn’t move. He was strong for his size. Although he was at least a few inches taller than me.
“You made my angel sister cry. What is wrong with you?” he questioned and I knew he was trying not to punch me.
“My fallen angel,” she gasped out and then her voice rose,” Don’t hurt him. He is my friend. He did not want to hurt me. He only followed to make sure I was alright. Please, no, brother!”
He looked down at me and finally let go. I started to rub my arms where he had held me. And when I looked down there were red rings in their place. Wow, he was strong. Lailah ran over and gave me a hug. I thought she would let go, but she just started to whisper things in my ear. They must have been in another language because I couldn’t understand a word of it. When she stopped whispering she stepped back to look at me but didn’t release her grip. Her eyes met mine and the edge of my vision began to blur. The blur kept getting bigger and bigger until it swallowed me whole.
As soon as he fell unconscious, I gently laid him down on the floor to rest while I finished my talk with Lahash. I looked at Clark for a couple seconds and just studied him. His glasses were askew, his hair rumpled, clothes wrinkled, and his face a slight pink. He looked so peaceful. Lahash made me do it. If he hadn’t showed up and surprised me Clark wouldn’t have followed me and I wouldn’t have had to use the forgetful sleep on him. Oh, I feel bad for using it but I couldn’t let him just live his life knowing the secret. I would either have had to use the forgetful sleep or kill him. And there was no way I was going to kill him. He was more of a brother to me than my own brother. Although, Lahash was always talking to me, in my mind of course. He was always with me, just not in the face-to-face sense. I sighed and turned away to face my twin brother. We did look a lot alike. He was staring and I couldn’t help but snap,” What are you staring at? First, you show up unexpected. Second, you yell at me to come to the lobby most likely realizing that Clark would follow me. Third, you let him overhear half our conversation. This in turn makes me use the forgetful sleep on him.” I stopped feeling out of breath, although I wasn’t.
He stared at me and then said,” Is there a fourth?”
“No there is not a fourth!” I snap. This time it is my turn to hold him. I take hold of both of his forearms and push up against the wall and tell him,” You will never let a human listen to our conversations. You will never yell in my mind. It is not necessary. And you will never ever call me your angel sister in front of humans. You know that that means that I have to call you my fallen angel. You realize humans don’t get it and they never will. Now snap out of it!” When I had finished I let go and stepped away. He looked as stunned as I felt. I had never talked like that. It surprised me, but it felt good. I had finally gotten something off my chest.