I stared at myself in the mirror self-consciously, even though I had no idea why.
"You coming?" asked a voice from my doorway.
"Sophie?" I asked.
"Really? Is that the best you can do?" asked the voice again, and I sighed, annoyed with myself. I let my feelings get the best of me again. I couldn't let myself do that anymore, I just couldn't. Not without having the feeling over and over again.
Now the voice softened.
"Relax." it said. "Sorry. I thought you were fine now; I guess I was wrong."
"Darn wrong." I said. Then I turned around and glared at the girl behind me.
" Gosh, you're so moody today," Veronica said. "You've got to chill out."
Easy for her to say, I thought. She did not lose her mother a year ago. Some people.
"We're all going for a group hike today on the fancy cliffs. But I'm guessing you're not going?..."
"Mmmm," I said, honestly not listening to a thing my friend was saying. I was too caught up in my own head. "What was that?"
"Hike. Cliffs. Listen to me sometime. You don't do that to anyone anymore. Not even your Aunt."
"Of course not!!!" I yelled. "How am I supposed to listen?! LISTENING is how it happened!" I felt the need to cry.
There was a moment's pause before finally Veronica spoke again. "But that doesn't mean it'll happen again."
Great. Now I felt guilty, too.
"Fine. I'll go on the hike. But you just don't understand how hard it is for me right now."
"I'm sure I do," said Veronica. "Come on, we'll go get ready."
I nodded, feeling quite distracted. "Yes. get ready."
On the way down to the lobby, she added, however: "But IT happened a whole year ago. You really need to get over it."
Really? Honestly?! NO I did NOT. So I said that aloud.
We walked out to the bus and Aunt Claire said, "Roxanne? You're going on the hike?"
"Yeah, I guess so." I said.
I slowly sat down and watched as we drove to the fancy park.
We only just stepped out of the bus when a ranger ran by and said, "Right-O! Let's get going! This is a beautiful gem of the grasslands and I am so excited to share the giant magnificent plums with you..."
(She did not actually say that. I just made it up to spare you. You're welcome.)
But then it got more ominous when she said, "And do not go down in the water... or else."
ooh, chilling, I tell you.
After what seemed like eternity, we finally got back to the actual cliff-part. I looked down in the water and wondered what was so bad about it when...
a pair of hands reached out and pushed me! I was sent flying down below. Tried to grab the rock. Missed. Cut my hand open. Started bleeding. The air got pulled right out of my lungs. I couldn't scream. But the whole thing was rather relaxing right now. Like I was flying, minus the you know, actual flying part.
The water headed closer and closer to me. SLAP! I hit the waves, but not before ding like what I'd read in a book, preforming a stance so I wouldn't break all my bones when I hit the water.
I went under the waves, silently screaming. I swam up, up, up, but the surface never seemed to come.