We used to joke that there was ink running through our veins instead of blood but I stopped
believing that when I watched blood seep out of your body and pool around you like you see in
the movies. When the ambulance got to your house, they wrapped you in bubble wrap and I
laughed because my Mom always said she wanted to do that because it would keep you safe but
that didn’t stop you from dying anyways.
They said we should put flowers on your grave, but I wasn’t really sure why because I’m pretty
sure flowers die too, so isn’t there some irony there? I held onto my rose anyways, gripping it so
hard I was sure it going to die too. But it didn’t.
I stared at the casket as they were lowering it into the ground and couldn’t help but worry
because you had always been afraid of the dark but I didn’t say that out loud because your Dad
was right there and I didn’t think he knew and I didn’t want to be the one to accidentally tell him;
the last thing I wanted was for you to be embarrassed. Mom called my name when it was over
and it was then that I realized my rose had some thorns and now my hand had some blood. The
rose was red, so I wiped the blood on that but I’m not sure it did any good.
We went to your house after, and I sat at your kitchen table and drank red wine from your
favorite mug with the fish on it and tried to avoid talking to your brother because I think he
blamed me for what happened to you but I wasn’t sure why.
I started screaming when Mom told me it was time to go home. I wasn’t ready to go home; I
wanted to stay with you, go into your bedroom and lay in your bed, take in the smell of your
pillow that I was sure still smelled like you so I ran upstairs and slammed your bedroom door.
When they came to get me, your pillow was wet but I don’t remember crying. I ran outside
before my mother could catch me and crouched behind the blackberry bush because it was your
favorite spot for hide and seek. I half-hoped I would find you there, but I didn’t.
When we got home, Mom asked if I wanted to watch a movie. She picked Cinderella because
she knows I love it but that was your favorite, so I said no and went to my bedroom instead. She
brought me a cup of tea later, because it usually calms me down but the sight of the glass made
my blood boil over, just like yours did, I guess.
She left me alone then, but I’m not sure that’s what I needed. I stared at the cup of tea for what
felt like hours but with you probably would’ve felt like a couple seconds before picking it up and
throwing it against the wall. After, I wondered why I didn’t pour the tea all over myself and scald
my skin instead because now there’s a stain on the carpet that looks kind of like blood and I
don’t want it in my bedroom.
The first time it rained after the funeral, I stayed inside and watched it out the window and
pretended you were sitting next to me. Mom had always talked about how the angels were
bowling when it rained and part of me wondered if you were having fun, but the other part of me
wished you would take me with you so we could have fun together, but I didn’t think Mom
would say yes, and she didn’t, but I decided to go anyways.