Once the performance had ended, “The Back-burners” went back to the dressing room to celebrate. It never did dawn on Wasabi that I wasn’t there. I guess some people just have no though processes whatsoever…
Granite was still nervously wondering why I hadn’t arrived and Licorice was being Licorice. Celebrating as if nothing was wrong. “That was amazing guys! Whoooo we rock!”
Ah but this is where the whole plan was going. Licorice and her evil ways…was her feebled attempt to throw herself at Granite.
“Why don’t you and I go somewhere to celebrate?”
“Wh-ha-hat? Licorice how many times do I have to say this? NO. Back off!”
“Whats your deal Granite! I swear you are the like biggest snob. What am I not good enough for you?”
“No no. I get it now. I’m not as good as your blind closet rat.”
“You leave her out of this and how dare you call her that…wait why would you call her that? Licorice. You did something to her didn’t you?”
“Me? Oh no I would never.”
“You did?!?! I can’t believe you! Berry how evil are you?!?! You’re out… Now get out out of here!!”
“It was just a joke!”
He never heard her final reply, because we was already running down the hall checking every door as he went. When I heard him call my name and I screamed out. “Granite!!!!!!!”
I heard the door unlock and then felt the familiar arms of Granite wrap around me. The rush of relief was overwhelming, my knees started wobble and I collapsed into his chest crying even harder than before.
“Oh Gra-ha-nite! I was so-ho scared!!!”
“Oh baby, I’m so sorry!!!! Are you OK? Did she hurt you?!”
“No-ho she didn’t.”
I was so hysterical I could barely breathe. The whole experience had wound me into a frenzy that only seemed to have worsened when I was finally released from my captivity. For a few moments I lost total control of my body and only Granite was holding me up.
“Its ok now. I’m here. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. I never should have trusted either of them with you. Why was I so stupid!?” He pulled me in closer, holding me even tighter. “I never should have…I’m sorry.”
Once I finally had the control stand and walk again. Granite helped me back to the main floor of the bar. His comforting arm around my back the whole time. I was starting to feel a little better, when a voice, a voice I knew all too well cut through the air. “TRANQUIL!?”
This was a living nightmare. At the time I had not a clue how she had found me, but I later found out that Blush had somehow run into Fir and after a little prodding to why I was not there, he spilled everything. She in turn thought it was best to run straight to my mom…
“Oh Miracle! What happened?! Are you OK? Why are you crying?”
“I’m Ok Mom. Honest.”
From there her initial worry turned to anger in a flash.
“I can’t believe you would do this??!”
“And you?! This was your idea wasn’t it?” I only assumed she was talking to Granite, because he was the one to reply. “Yes Ma’am.”
I shook my head. “No. It wasn’t his idea. It was mine.”
“I don’t really care whos idea it was you are coming home now. I thought I could I trust you?! I guess I was wrong.”
“NO. This discussion is over. Lets go.”
She grabbed hold my arm and started to pull me towards to exit. I tried to resist with all my might. Granite started yelling after me. “Tranquil wait! Please?! Don’t take her?! Not like this?!!?” His plead sounded like a child who was convinced he was being abandoned. I tried to pull away again. Granite!?” I cried out.
“Tranquil I love you!”
“I love you!!” My heart was being ripped to shreds. I turned to my mother. “Please don’t do this.”
“That’s enough. We are going home!”
“Think you have done enough here Granite.”
“Blush please. You don’t understand.”
“I don’t know what your sick game is, but its over!”
It was a very intense car ride back to Blush’s house. I continued to cry the whole way while my mother was silent in the drivers seat. I was so angry at Blush if she had tried to speak to me, I don’t know what I would have done. Lucky for her she didn’t even attempt to say anything.
Before I knew it, a day had passed, and I was sitting on the edge my mothers old bed with my grandmother. My mom was so angry that she didn’t even know what to do with me. She drove me straight to Twizzlerbrook for an undetermined amount of time until she could decide. I had a feeling I would be there for a while.
The tears continued to fall. I was broken and no one cared. Or at least I thought no one cared.
“Sweet baby? Whats wrong?”
“Oh Gramma. No one listens to me. They all think they know whats best, but I know whats best. Why won’t they listen?”
“I’m sure you do dear. Now why don’t you tell me what happened? I will listen.”
I laid out the the whole story. Granite, the secret dates, the gig, our music (I left out the hot tub part). Once I had finished I dropped my hands into my lap. “No one understands.”
Gramma grabbed my cheeks and kissed me on the forehead. “Love I do understand. Its hard but you have to stand up for yourself.”
“I have tried.”
“I know…stay here love. I need to go talk to your grandpa.”
“I love you angel.”
“I love you too Gramma.”
“I know love.”
“We have to do something? I see myself in there crying on that bed.”
“What can we do?”
“I am not sure. But I have to do something.”
“Angel? Wake up dear.”
“Come on we are going for a drive.”
Standing on that balcony looking down over the empty street below, I contemplated more things than I care to repeat. How easy it would have been to step off the edge and leave all the problems and heartache behind. Except if I had, I would only be leaving them for her. The thought of seeing that sweet face crying, there was no way I could ever go through with it. It had only been a day but I missed her already.
How quickly she stepped into my life and took everything over. Within no time at all she retaught my cold jaded heart to love again. Hah! The old me would have probably punched me in the face for even thinking something like that, but it was all true. She floated in and changed everything, and then just quickly she was ripped away from me…just like them. I shook that last thought from my head as the doorbell rang.
I couldn’t believe it when I opened the door and saw her standing there.
“Tranquil? What are you doin here?”
“Oh Granite. I had to see you.”
“How did you find me?”
“An old gal has her ways.”
I was so happy to see her I could barely think straight. We stood on the front step for several minutes before it all really sunk in. I invited them both inside and closed the door.
The moment the door closed, my senses came back to me and I pulled her into my arms. Now I am not an overly emotional guy… Not for a long time, but having her there got to me more than I realized at first. Now that I had her there, I didn’t want to let her go. I started choking back tears, what the berry was the matter with me?!
“I’m so glad you’re here.”
There was something else pulling at me that night. Something I had not spoken of for many years, but I knew if we were going to make this work, I needed to tell her, she needed to know. Without even pulling away I started to reveal my deepest secret to Tranquil and her grandmother.
“There is something I need to tell you.I feel you have a right to know.”
“You can tell me anything.”
“It was my fauilt.”
It was the day of the accident. My Great Uncle had passed away and my mother and father had fly out for the funeral. We didn’t have a lot of money, so they decided it was best to let me stay home with my older cousin. Muffin was too little to stay so they were planning taking her with them. I had never been so angry in my life. Of course the baby would go. They loved the baby more than me. I threw a big fit and started screaming at my mother.
“You love Muffin more than me!” I screamed. “That’s not true.” My mother countered. “We just can’t afford another ticket. You will be fine love. It will only be a couple days and we will be back home.”
“Its not fair! How come she gets to go and I don’t?”
“Because she is too young. To stay.”
“Its not fair!”
“I hate you!!”
“Granite Whisp you don’t mean that.”
“Yes I do! I hate you and I hope your plane crashes and you all die!”
“That is enough young man! What awful thing to say.” Her voiced started to crack and she quickly ran to her room with my sister.
I broke my mothers heart that day, but due to shame and pride I didn’t say anything.
“He doesn’t mean it love.”
Instead of apologizing I locked myself in my room until it was time for them to leave.
I watched as they packed up the rest of their things and placed Muffin in the car. I had already started thinking about my apology for when they got back.
But I never got that chance. Their plane went down about half way there and there were only a handful of survivors. None of them were my family. I lost the only people actually loved me that day, and how did I repay that love. I wished death upon them, and guess what, it worked.
When the police officer came to the door, I ran out of the house and right down the street. I had no idea where I was going, I just kept running. Maybe I hoped could run away from everything I had done, but all I could hear was “I hate you! I hate you!”
That was the last time I ever cried. I vowed that I wasn’t worthy of any thing good. I was too ungrateful to deserve anything nice. I started pushing everyone away and being as mean as possible to keep everyone at arms length, but you. You came right through, you didn’t even stop to… heh look.
As I finished my story I felt them, tears began to sting my eyes. There was no choking back anymore. I dropped my head onto her shoulder. “I don’t want that life any more! You have shown me what it can be like, and I want it. I want you. Please forgive me.”
“Oh Granite. That wasn’t your fault. You didn’t make that happen. It was just a horrible accident. Your mother knows you loved her. You were so young. Its OK love.”