Danny said he was going to see Greg next weekend. Next weekend they would face him and Rachel would look into the eyes of the man who had nearly destroyed Danny and she was terrified.

What would he look like in person? What would he say to her? Danny had warned her that it wouldn’t be nice. What if he escaped and came after her? Abstract fears kept her awake. She’d slept so much in the past couple of weeks and now she’d spent nearly two days awake, the nap she’d had curled up against Danny when she went to visit him yesterday was the only sleep she’d had.

She kept thinking there was someone in the flat with her. Sometimes she’d catch a movement in the corner of her eye and her adrenaline would spike. She knew she should sleep but she felt so vulnerable.

At least her cast would be off by next weekend and if Greg didn’t destroy her, which was likely, then she had to start looking for a job.

The money was important but what if she worked too far from here, what if she couldn't see Danny all the time? Or what if she found something close, and easy, and could visit Danny every day. Go to mental hospital every day for months…

She loved Danny but still time stretched before her, endless repeated days, she could see no sign of change... he'd been in hospital before, but this time it would be longer. Her time had been longer... three months, she thought, automatically. But her birthday was in September, she'd turned 12 in hospital but she’d gone in in April; she knew it was April, she hated April, April killed her again every year.

Six months, then.

Just thinking about it made her feel mad. Tears were washing down her face as she lay on her back, dripping into her ears. She’d always hated that feeling, tears in her ears. Six months… maybe more. She’d been out by Christmas, she thought. They had a snowy winter in Cornwall. Her dad had bought her a mesh canopy for her bed, pink, obviously. The mesh was rough and stiff but it looked amazing. He'd called her princess and she used to think she was one - there was a gap in her memory, and her sense of self was full of holes; she used to suspect she was a princess, in hiding, with her bodyguard. Safe and protected so her mother – who wasn’t her mother at all obviously – couldn’t find her again.

There were times back in the early days out of hospital when she kept forgetting that her mother was dead and not still looking for her.

That was why the girls at schools started hating her, she remembered; because she’d confided in one of them that she was royalty in hiding and they found it hilarious.

Rachel she knew her thoughts were running away without her, scattering themselves to the wind and she, or the sanest part of her, failed to hold onto one thought before another blew into her and knocked her off track.

Just think about Danny, she told herself out loud, whispering to the ceiling.

Get hired somewhere, acquire money, keep it safe, and then run away with him.

She couldn’t leave her dad to go and live with Zoe because he needed her, he saved her, he looked after her and if she was at Zoe’s he’d know where to find her. If she left with Danny and disappeared she’d never see her Dad again and she’d never have to face up to the guilt of abandoning him like her mother did over and over.

At least she wasn’t packing kids into the car and driving off with them.

She had no kids to pack. Even the idea of being pregnant terrified her.

Rachel kneaded her belly. She wasn’t pregnant though. Couldn’t be. Her periods were messed up but so was everything. And she hadn’t had sex. Unless she had and had forgotten. How would she know? She dug her fingernails into her flesh. What if something was growing inside her right now? Then she’d have a child to emotionally destroy too, just like her mum.

She scrambled out of bed and flipped up the toilet lid as panic and dread turned to nausea, but nothing happened. She dry heaved a bit till her throat felt like it was on fire, like she was breathing out acid.

When she looked into the mirror an image flickered in the room behind her, a blur, a shape, in the corner of her vision. She tried to ignore it, staring into the colours of her eyes, the blue, the same as her dad’s, almost. Not her mother’s colour. That had been more proof for her stupid younger self that she’d been some secret princess and her mother had stolen her away. Their eyes weren’t the same. Did her brothers have her mother’s eyes? No, she thought, don’t think about it.

Rachel squeezed her eyes shut and bolted out of the room, bouncing off the doorway with her good arm but she made it back to her room, tipped her survival bag upside down on her bed and searched for something she could hold onto. Her hands squeezed around Cai’s key’s, the metal biting into the palm of her hand. The smooth wood of the keyring and the words carved into it.

WWJD, Rachel didn't know. Be dead a long time ago? Be imaginary? Rachel already had enough issues around feeling dead a long time ago and imaginary, she didn't want to try and act like a guy who might be both. But she could ask herself what would Cai do, and try to follow that.

She didn’t have a clue what Cai would do.

Danny would tell her to take a few deep breaths, to start with. He’s put his hand on her back as she leaned forward, telling her to breath, so Rachel did. The air felt good, like she’d never really breathed it before. Her lungs longed for it. She felt the craving start to lessen, and she closed her eyes and breathed deep, deep.

Frustratingly, this made her start to cry, so she wrapped her arms around herself as tight as she could because Danny would hold her until she felt better, and Danny wasn’t here, Danny wouldn’t be here for months so she had to figure out a way to hold herself together, on her own, through all the things that were to come.

Date: 2014-10-12 07:13 pm (UTC)From: [identity profile] harlot-of-peril.insanejournal.com
When she looked into the mirror an image flickered in the room behind her, a blur, a shape, in the corner of her vision.



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