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7/1/2010 12:26:34 AM

"Don't Scream"-Not just any wall o' text.

"Don't scream." I have to repeat it to myself over and over again. I have to be calm. I'm not the only one here, so I can't be selfish. Adam isn't speaking. I can't see him, but I know he's there. He's squeezing my hand tightly, so hard that it hurts. There's little room to move in here, and it's hard to breathe with this much dust. It's not just me. Adam coughs, and I cover his mouth with my other hand to muffle the sound. I can't hear anything outside, but I can't be sure. I want to say to Adam that everything is fine, but it isn't. I want to slide open the door and run away, but I can't. Adam. Adam can't run. "Wake up." I roll over in my bed. I don't want to wake up. I keep my eyes closed. I barely slept at all. "I said wake up." Mom just won't give up. In all the years I have slept, I've never slept in...thanks to her. "Breakfast is ready. Go wake up your brother and bring him down with you." She walks out of the room, and as I open my eyes, I can see her smiling at me from just outside the door. "A little privacy please," I manage to say hoarsely. She pretends not to hear me at first, but then she walks away. I can hear her laughing. I roll out of bed. I'm still wearing what I was last night: jeans and a black t-shirt. I was too tired to change. I unzip my small, leather suitcase. I rifle through it, looking for my shaving kit and grabbing socks, shorts and a shirt. I find my shaving kit at the very bottom, and the blade is snapped off my razor: just a little bad luck. I run my fingers through my whiskers, and I take off my shirt. I throw it in the corner. I unzip my jeans, and I pull them all the way down. I jump out of them. I stretch out my arms. I stand up on my toes. I put on my clothes. I hurry to the bathroom, didn't know I had to go till just now. I walk into my brother's room. It's a complete mess. There are toys everywhere. His pile of dirty clothes in the corner is a mountain to my hill. I tiptoe past his Lego, past his G.I Joe, and around the model train tracks. He's sleeping there, helplessly. He's mine for the taking, and I'm going to get him. I pull back the blanket slowly. He's not moving. I raise my arms, getting ready to strike: still no reaction from him. I grab his sides suddenly, and I begin to shake him. He's still asleep. I wish I could do that. I lift him from his bed and shake him harder. He's still not waking up. I dig my hands into his sides, and I shake him as fast as I can. His eyes open, and I'm so startled that I drop him. His mouth opens and my ears start to ring: he's screaming. I try to calm him down, but he won't stop. "Adam," I whisper to him, "calm down." He tries to speak, but he can't get any words out. He's crying now. I put my arms around him, and he starts to calms down, but he's still managing to soak my shirt in his tears. His chair is downstairs, so I have to carry him all the way down. Mom's going to yell at me for this. I wish it was still breakfast. My brother would be eating his cereal cheerily with a big grin on his face. My mom-well- she wouldn't be too happy with me, but I could deal with that; I can't deal with this. "This is the price you pay for moving back in. I'll be back in a while." Mom leaves when she hears a car pull up. It's been three years since the accident. She has dated a few guys, as far I know. It's just me and Adam, not that there's anything wrong with that. He wants to watch a movie. I put on his favourite: Superman. I park myself next to him on the couch and try to pretend I haven't seen it before. He knows all the words, and he plays every character. He wants me to join him, but I shake my head. "Easy, miss. I've got you." "You - you've got me? Who's got you?" It's been tough not having Dad around. Adam is still young. I had already moved out before Dad passed away. There are no grandparents and no uncles to fill the roll. It's just me, but I'm too late. I was in school, and Mom wanted me to finish. I saw a job opening here, so I decided to move back in for now. It's only an entry level job, so I can't afford an apartment right now. To Adam I must seem like just an absentee brother to go along with his dead father. I need to make it up to him. I know this line. "Uh, you really shouldn't smoke, you know, Miss Lane." My brother looks at me and smiles. "Don't tell me. Lung cancer, right?" He answers. ""Well, not yet, thank goodness." The movie ends. Adam is asleep on the couch. I pick him up and bring him upstairs. He's very light: 50 pounds maybe, even with all of the popcorn and ice cream. He drools on my shoulder, and I consider dropping him for that, but I soldier on to his room. I kick over the Lego, the G.I Joe, and push the model train tracks over to the side. I manage to pull away the covers with one hand and place him down with the other. I tuck him in. I trip over something on my way out, but I recover quickly after some light swearing. I head downstairs. Mom should be home soon. I open the fridge and grab a beer: Kokanee. I hate Kokanee, but oh well. I open it and start drinking-at the very least it's cold. I sit down on a stool in the kitchen, and I sip my beer. Mom had the kitchen redone. I haven't visited since Dad died, and now it feels like someone else's home. Everything has been repainted, and all the carpets are different. All the things I broke as a kid are either gone, or replaced. Mom hasn't changed though. She's still the same person, no matter how hard she tries. She has highlights in her hair, and she wears way too much make-up, but she's still Mom. She still makes eggs the same way. She still refuses to buy cable. She still wakes up before the sun rises. She can't be anyone else. I hear a car pull up. It must be her, but I hear too many footsteps. She's not alone. The door unlocks, and there he is. His hair is slicked back. He's very tall, at least two inches taller than me. He's wearing a black spring jacket. He's very skinny, even though the jacket makes him look bigger. He turns, and I can see his face. He looks very young, much younger than my mother. His eyebrow is pierced, and he is shaven clean. My mom is smiling. She's also drunk. Her cheeks are a rosy red. He kisses her. I can see his tongue enter my mom's mouth, and I feel like I want to puke. My mom kisses him back, but then pushes him away. "You can't come in." I can hear her protesting, but he keeps insisting. He grabs her and throws her on the couch. My mom turns away from him, trying to ignore his advances. He reaches for something in his pocket that I can't quite make out. He kisses the back of her neck. Mom pushes him away again. I can see the anger in his face now, but he can't see me. I can see it now. He's holding a knife. I try to yell out, but I can't. I'm afraid. He grabs her by the hair, pulls back her head, and drags the blade across her neck. Blood is slowly oozing out of where he cut. He puts his hand on her mouth, but she still manages to scream. Her screams are slowly drowned by blood. She clutches desperately at her neck. He pulls out his phone and hits a number on the speed dial. He says something, but I can't make it out. There's a knock on the door. He goes to open the door, and a much shorter guy enters. He's built very solidly. He's smiling, laughing at what his friend has done. I want to kill him. He pulls out a gun, and he shoots Mom in the head. She stops moving. "Can't let the -blam!- suffer." He says coldly. His friend is still angry, but he nods accordingly. I have to move. My eyes are welling up, and I can hardly see. I get on all fours and start crawling toward the stairs from the kitchen. I move very slowly so they don't hear me. I need to get Adam. I can hear them trashing the place. The tall one walks towards the kitchen. He opens the fridge and grabs a beer. "Ugh, I hate Kokanee," he mutters to himself. He hesitates, but he still drinks it. He turns towards me with the beer bottle still in him mouth. The bottle falls to the ground, but doesn't break. "Mother -blam!-!" He screams at me. I run to the stairs. I hear a loud crack. There's a brand new hole on the wall. I scamper up the steps as quickly as I can. They don't know about Adam. That's why they were so surprised. I need to get him out before they realize that it's not just me. I run to Adam's room. They aren't following me yet. I don't know why. I shake Adam, and he opens his eyes slightly. "We need to hide, Adam. Get out of bed." "Where's Mom?" "Mom isn't home yet, but some bad men are in the ho----" The lights go out. They must have switched off the breaker. I grab Adam, and I carry him to the closet. I open the door, and we get in. It's a tight fit. We have to hide for now. Adam is still half asleep. His blanket is wrapped around him. He's sitting down, leaning his head against me. I'm squatting because my head would hit the top shelf otherwise. I can't tell him that Mom's dead. He won't be quiet if he knows. Right after Dad's funeral, he couldn't stop crying. He wouldn't even stop to eat. Mom-Mom told me he used to scream at night. If his legs hadn't been damaged in the crash, he might have run away. "He'll never walk again." I remember being with Mom when the doctor told us. Mom didn't say anything. She fell to her knees and started to cry, her hands buried in her face. I wanted to comfort her, but I wasn't Dad. Nothing I could have said would have changed how lonely she felt. I stood there, motionless. I didn't react at all. I left the next morning for school, like a coward. "I know you're here, you -blam!- coward." It sounds like he's in the hallway. I can here them both walking around. Adam is awake now. He grabs my hand. It sounds like they are raiding Mom's bedroom, looking for valuables. I hear some glass break. It is pitch black in here. I can see a little light beneath the door, at my feet. I whisper to Adam to be very quiet. I think he nodded, but I really don't know. [Edited on 06.30.2010 5:31 PM PDT]
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