"Are all your clothes packed? Do you have the emergency kit with you? What about your identity card? It is in there, right?" I closed my eyes for a while and sighed as my Mom began lecturing me for the umpteenth time. I couldn’t blame her. Her actions were justified since she would not be seeing me for the rest of her life after this.
I looked on quietly as Mom continued to talk almost endlessly until tears started forming in her eyes and then I grimaced. Not again, especially not today, I did not want to go through the whole process of grieving again. Upon receiving that letter yesterday, I had already shed a lot of tears with my friends and family until no more could be forced out and I had no intention of doing that again.
What had happened could not be changed, I had come to terms with it. I had to deal with it no mater how wronged I felt.
"Sweetheart, I'm sorry. I am really, really sorry. I cannot do anything to keep you here. Please take good care of yourself for me and don't do anything dangerous. Please." Mom said with the grief evident in her eyes. Not trusting my voice, I simply nodded in response and looked down to avoid her intense gaze.
I would not cry.
As Mom gently touched my cheek with her warm hand, the doorbell rang. She shook herself out of the emotions and rushed to the door while I quietly followed behind her, still lost in my thoughts.
"Hey sis! I got you the solar charger.” Shane called out from the door and Mom opened it.
His optimistic notions sometimes annoyed me a lot, like the way he thought there was a chance that I might be able to come back. Seriously, someone should do a reality check for him. As I approached the door, another figure behind him became visible. I gasped as I recognised whom it belonged to. My childhood sweetheart, Nathan.
‘What was he doing here?’ I thought as a gave a sharp look to both my Mom and Shane. Mom just avoided my eyes and Shane shrugged as he moved towards me. Nathan was not supposed to know anything about this, I had even forced myself to initiate the breakup as I wanted him to be free of me, to forget me and to move on with his life. But now... As he walked in, I did everything in my power to avoid his gaze.
"I will put this in your backpack," Shane lifted the compact black box and then continued, "and one more thing, I didn't tell him anything." He gestured towards the somewhat furious boy who now stood beside him.
Yeah, he looked furious and also a bit tired as I took note of the eye bags underneath his eyes and felt a bit guilty. I swore quietly as Nathan grabbed my hand firmly and dragged me out of the house.
"Nathan! Wait, where are you taking me? I haven't finished packing my bag yet." I retorted while trying to pull free from his grip but he did not respond. Instead, he continued to drag me towards the only park that was left in the city. The park that is the only salvation for us human beings here. The park where I had accidentally disclosed my love for him. The park where we had shared our first kiss. Upon reaching the unusual greenery, he stopped abruptly, causing me to bump into him.
"Why? Why didn't you tell me?" He whispered with his back still facing me. I did not need to look into his eyes to know what he felt, the emotions are sharply evident in his voice. So much that they overwhelmed me and I bit my tongue to hold back my tears.
"How did you end up thinking that it was not important to inform me about this? Did you expect me to find out about this later and take it lightly. Did you even care about the guilt I would overcome with?" I flinched at the pain in his voice.
"I...I'm sorry. I was afraid. I-I am afraid." I said while I forced back my tears, I had promised myself that I won’t cry. Nathan slowly turned to face me, revealing the tears in his eyes which shined brightly in the rays of the sunset. Without any second thoughts, I closed that inch of gap which was between us and wrapped my arms around him tightly as if promising never to let go. I felt him shiver while he laid his head on my shoulder and let his tears flow freely.
I could not control myself and soon joined him. To be never allowed to kiss him again, hug him again, let alone touch him, it was the hardest thing to ever imagine. We had been together since childhood. Being there for each other had become a part of our lives and now, without him, it felt so empty.
As we stood there, in each other's embrace, I let everything out. Why was I even chosen, I had the perfect life here. Mom, who loves me so much and supported the family even when my father had abandoned us right when I was born. Shane who teased me to hell and made my life brighter everyday by just being there for me. My best friends, classmates and Nathan.
Without them, my life would be hell.
Why couldn’t they just chose someone who was ready to throw this world away? I bet there were millions of people trying to escape this death-bound world as they called it. To them this was not the place to live in. The sight of greenery here is rare and there were rarely any flowers which would have magnified the beauty of the fields like the descriptions in old tales had usually stated. There were almost no birds in sky ever. You will rarely catch one even alive, flying in the open sky tarnished with streaks of grey smog.
Still, I loved this place, it meant more than home to me, it was a part of me. It was where the warmth of belonging, love and family could be felt, something I could not survive without.
By the time we reached home darkness takes its place. Mom had finished up most of the packing for me so that I could have time to rest. Nathan decided to camp over at my house for the night to be by my side. Tomorrow was the day I was supposed to be transferred to Ness. After a quick dinner and some last minute packing, Mom insisted that I should sleep early to catch my last sunrise on Earth. No one knew whether there was any sun rising on the other side.
I laid down on my bed only to close my eyes and have the same dream again, the dream that haunted me my entire life. I find myself facing a human like creature creature with small brown scales covering its body. In the dream, the creature always pushed me down onto the ground, covering my body with its own and then it spoke in an unknown language that I was able to understand.
“Its alright,” it said, its voice hoarse,“you’re fine now.”