If I Left...byDani_Blade©
She needed a new way out. They weren't listening to her anymore. They didn't believe her anymore when she told them things were about to happen. Things they wouldn't be able to stop. She wrote about it all the time. All the horrors that were going to unfold, she saw them; they came to her in dreams and waking visions. But no one cared, no one understood just how scared she was. No one understood just how much she feared for them all until she was no longer there, until she was gone, and no one knew where to find her. She had many scares, but she also knew which ones were not from her doing. She knew which were from him.
So she ran, as far and as fast as she could as soon as she knew he was after her for real. She needed to keep them safe, all those she loved. She left clues for him, she knew would follow her. She couldn't let her loved ones know. She knew they would follow if they could. She left clues in the one place she knew they wouldn't go but he would. She left notes in the places she knew they would look. They needed to know she wasn't coming back for a long time. That they needed to forget about her and move on like she was never there, like she had never been there. She knew a few wouldn't be able to do that. So she removed what she could of herself from their lives before disappearing. But stull she knew, at least one would not let her go that easily. She left him the longest note. The one that explained everything. From the dreams and the visions, to the things she had never told him. The one that said I know I said I would come back, but as long as he is on my trail I cant. The one that told him that if he could to meet her in the park, in a city far away from where they grew up, a month from then. The one that said she would be there no matter what for 24 hours, unless he caught her. but his note also read that if anyone else came with him she would stay hidden. She would disappear. And stay that way until it was safe to come back. No one could know of this plan, no one could know of this meeting.
In her heart of hearts she prayed he showed up, but in her mind she hoped he didn't, she hoped he stayed away, stayed safe, and moved on. To have her loved ones safe meant more to her than her happiness, than her safety. She knows he can take care of himself, more so than she can, but if she gets the threat away then he doesn't have to do that. He can be safe.
So away I went, leaving the notes in a pile on my bed at school, packing everything I could into my car in the middle of the night, and driving away. I didn't know where I was going, all I knew was that I needed to get away. I couldn't live in the fear that he would find me when I was with my family and there would be no way for me to protect anyone. I was told nothing would happen, that I was worrying for nothing. But I started getting messages, and I knew they were from him. I was told not to tell anyone or he would go after my sister. That scared me more than I could comprehend. It was that night that I packed and left. My roommate thought I was doing homework, but instead I was writing my good bye letters. I don't think anyone is really going to understand. They all think that something will happen to put him away before he gets me. I know for sure that won't happen. I feel horrible leaving everyone with nothing but a letter. I even left my phone but not before taking all the important number out of it first. It means no one can track me, and it will be one less phone to pay for later on. As I cross state border after state border, things start to blur together. If I can last a month, if I can make back to NY in time to see him. If, if, if... if I can survive this, if he doesn't find me, if I don't crack, if I don't fumble, if I can keep off the radar. Then maybe I will survive to see NY again.
It's been two weeks, I don't know how but I've stayed off the radar so far. I check on my loved ones by going into libraries and checking facebook. There are posts all over my wall of people wondering where I am. Telling me to get in touch, hoping I'm still alive, it's kind of funny I don't talk to most of these people. It's the people I miss the most that leave the most posts, telling me to come home, that they love me, they miss me, that they will take care of everything if only I would come back. These posts make me cry. I check out their walls see what they have been up too. My sister is sad and her statuses are about hope of seeing me again, love for me, hate of me for leaving, and sadness. My parents are reaching out to people hoping to find me, my friends are a mix of both and a mix of their lives. There is one post to my wall that makes me stop and stare, it says cut the bullshit, come home now. A few days later it says ok. I take that to mean that he will meet me in NY, this makes me smile and that's all I need to know. I have three more weeks to make it on my own, and I can do it if I know he's going to come.
I have a week left and things are getting harder, I've been in NY for a couple hours and things are not going well. I have to get farther away. Being so close had me worried. I don't think I thought I would go so far away. But I don't want to do what expected, its what's kept me safe so far. I don't think anyone expected me to be able to stay away for this long.
Today is the day, the park is small, the smaller the better I thought when I found this place. Now I'm not so sure. I've been here for about twelve hours, and now my twenty-four hour wait starts. I hope he comes. If not I will understand, I mean I've been gone for a month.
I'm a couple hours into my wait when I look up and see him, he's walking into the park, looking all around. I choose this tree for a reason, it gives me a view of the whole park, but people don't always look at a tree closely. It gives me a chance to watch him a minute before letting him see me. He looks tired, and worried. I start to stand and I watch as his eyes snap to me. It's like all the breathe is knocked from me as soon as I meet his eyes. I can see the anger from here. I stay where I am, not able to move, his eyes locking me in place. The closer he gets, I can see the anger flowing out of him, turning into relief, like he's not sure it's really me. Once he is standing in front of me, I open my mouth to say hi, but he lifts his hand, slowly, and I snap my mouth shut before I can say anything. His hand slowly comes up and touches my cheek, like he's checking that I'm real. Before I can react he has me in his arms, hugging me, holding me tight. I wrap my arms around him, holding on as tight as I can because if I don't he will disappear on me. It's really you is whispered into my neck, making me start to cry. I start to apologize over and over, telling him I had to leave, I had to protect her. He just shushed me and rocked me back and forth until I stopped crying and had calmed down enough to breathe.
We sit down on the blanket I had been waiting on, and he just holds me for a time. After a little while he sighs, and I look down at our entwined hands, sigh myself, and tell him to just ask. He asks me why I left, I knew he would, so I showed him the messages I had gotten. He asked why I didn't come to him with these or the police, I told him I couldn't. That I was told I was being watched, which was why I left instead of telling anyone. He asked me why I believed what I was being told, and I told him, the pictures did a lot in helping prove the point. When he asked what pictures, I showed him the ones I received. The ones that had him leaving my dorm, the picture showed him between cross hairs, the next was my sister in cross hairs; the third was me getting dressed in my room. I told him, I wrote the notes, packed and left. I couldn't stay, not knowing how much danger everyone was in just being near me. At this point I'm pretty some people hate me for leaving, but it was a choice I had to make. He sighed again, hugged me tighter and told me that he was happy I was there now.
I had been looking out at the park around us while we talked, but now I looked at our hands. I tried to take mine back, but it was like he knew what that meant. He held on tighter saying no, but I sighed, and told him, you know I can't go back yet right? He's still after me, he won't stop until he has me, or I'm dead, or he is. I'll come back when it's safe; I need you to comfort our girl. She must hate me to an extreme by now. He hugged me tighter to him, and started whispering things into my hair, things I couldn't understand.
We stayed that way for a while, not really paying attention to those around us. I started to pull away and he clung to me harder, saying just let me hold you, please. So I did, until I heard clapping and laugher. I turned to see what was going on, when I spotted the person I had been running from. I jumped up and in doing so pulled away from the arms holding me. I turned to him with a look I knew asked if he had done this. I look he gave me spoke volumes, it said so much but none of what I wanted it too. I knew my face showed betrayal, I gave him one last look before turning and running as fast as I could. I knew I would never escape, but I figured I could give it one last shot. I was caught before I even left the park, I was thrown to the ground, and I landed hard, jarring hands and knees enough to bleed. He laughed, and came at me waving a gun around like it was a toy. He pointed it back at the one I was trying to protect. He cocked the hammer back and I had enough time to jump up and slam into him before he could shoot. Although me slamming into him took him so off guard that the gun came around with his finger still on the trigger. I could see the anger, the hatred, the intent in his eyes just before the gun went off. I heard it go off, and I flinched from the sound because it was so loud. I heard screaming from off to the side of me. I didn't understand who was screaming or why, but it was getting annoying. So I turned to tell the person off for screaming when it had been so quiet before. But as I turned I slipped and fell to my knees. As I caught myself I saw a pair of legs go by, I turned in time to see two people fighting, until a second gun shot went off and they both slumped to the side.
I was so scared, I needed to know who was shot and who wasn't, I tried to get back to my feet, but it was like my body wasn't working right. It wasn't doing anything I told it too. I looked up in time to see one person stand; he turned to me with a terrifying expression. Like he was watching the person he loved most die before his eyes. I finally understood the term burning man. I couldn't understand his expression but I was so relieved that it was him that had stood. He came towards me like I was a wounded animal. He caught me, when I didn't even realize I was falling. He kept apologizing over and over and I was so confused. Why was he sorry? I probably just didn't have any strength left to stand; I hadn't eaten in a couple days, it had happened before.
It wasn't until he started pressing on my stomach did I feel the burning sensation that just spread, until it felt like every breath was made of fire. I looked up at him and told him it wasn't his fault. That he had to take care of our girls now. I told him how much I loved him and everyone I had left behind. I needed him to know, before I couldn't tell him. Words were becoming harder to form. But suddenly I wasn't in his arms anymore. His arms made it better, his arms made it less painful. I needed him back; I called his name over and over, until I couldn't form words anymore. I reached out to him and waited for him to take my hand. But it wasn't his hand that took mine. I tried to look for him but I wasn't allowed to move. I needed him back, I needed him to tell me it was ok. I was starting to fade, the edges of everything was growing burry and dim. I didn't understand what was going on and I need him here to tell me. He always tells me when I don't understand. The fading was getting worse, until the last thing I heard was my name as everything faded out completely.
I woke up to beeping. Kind of like in all those books that I read when something happens to the main character and they almost die. I felt stiff and sore. I opened my eyes to a semi dark room. Like hospital room dark. I looked around and found that that was exactly where I was. Now I feel like a clichéd book character. I looked around to see if I could figure out where I was or if anyone I knew was around. I saw no one and nothing to help me. so I searched for the call button, once I found it I called for a nurse.
It took a minute but one came in, and she seemed really happy to see me. she asked me how I was and if I needed anything. I told her I was fine, but I wanted to know where I was, state wise. She told me home, I was back in NH. She told me after I was out of surgery I was transferred home. I asked if anyone was around. She told me to look in the corner. I did. My mom was curled up in the window bed, and he was sleeping in a chair. She asked me if I wanted her to wake them, I told her not too. They looked tired even when sleeping. She told me to try and sleep more, and she left, but I watched them sleep instead, it had only been a month but I could see the toll my disappearance had taken on them both.
I was starting to get thirsty, so I looked around for the water, and I found it next to me on the side table. I tried to reach it but as soon as I stretched my arm out to get it a shooting pain drove itself into my side and stomach. I hissed out a breath trying to make too much sound. I closed my eyes and leaned back trying to calm my breathing. When the pain had quieted enough I opened my eyes to see him watching me. I watched him as he came to my side. I looked up at him and said a quiet hi. He looks at me and says you almost die and all you can say to me is hi. I just smile at him and slowly tried to sit up and reach out to him, I only got a little ways up before he had to help me. He sat on the edge of the bed and stayed very still, like he's scared of moving or hurting me. So I wrap my arms around him and sighed. This is where I wanted to be when they took me away, this is where I needed to be. That's all it took for him to wrap his arms around me too. He kissed my forehead and helped me lean back again; he grabbed the water and handed it to me, when I handed it back he helped me move over so he could be with me on the bed. He looked over at my mom and whispered that she was going to be mad at him for not walking her up, but that she could really use the sleep. I whispered back that it was ok, that I was getting tired again. I looked up at him and told him, I was waiting for you to tell me it was ok. He looked confused, so I elaborated; I needed you to tell me it was ok before I could go. I couldn't leave otherwise. The look he gave me told me he understood, it told me that he had been about to say it too. That he is realizing just how close he came to losing me, and not just in the sense of she out there somewhere and I don't know where that is, in the sense of she's gone and there is no way for me to get her back.
He told me to try and get some more sleep, I told him to do the same, but to also not let me go. He told me he wouldn't. He then fell asleep while I stayed awake, thinking about everything that had come to pass. Mom was still sleeping and I was starting to think about one of my girls, when she walked in, as if called by my thoughts alone. She carried three cups with her, all with coffee in them for its all I smelled. She walked over to my mom, I was about to tell her to let her sleep, but all she did was place the cup on the floor. The other cup she placed by the chair, the one he was in before. She never once looked at the bed, so I watched her as she went and sat in another chair, one that was turned so she could see me if she turned, but not so she was looking me. I watched her as she pulled out her phone and texted someone. I heard his phone go off, and guessed she had texted him, it was the noise of his phone going off that drew her attention to the bed and to me. I watched as she braced herself first, before looking, like she knew what she was going to see and knew she wouldn't like it.
She turned and just stared at me. I watched emotions flash across her face from shock to anger, to happiness to caution. She got up slowly as if waking from a dream and crossed the room quickly, I reached a hand out to her slowly so as not to wake the sleeper beside me and to not cause any more pain. She grabbed my hand as if it was a life line, held on so tight it almost hurt. Her eyes accused me of so many things I had to look away, I even tried to pull my hand away but she wouldn't let me. I couldn't understand it, she was accusing me of the worst things without saying anything, she was showing me how hurt she was, how anger she was, but she wouldn't let me go, she just squeezed harder, until he put his hand on hers and brought her back from where she had been. She looked at him then, and all he said was I know. I know. But you don't know the full story, you weren't there, you didn't see, you didn't hold her when it looked like she was going to die right there in my arms. I looked up at her and over at him and felt like everything I had tried to do to protect them just made things worse. I tried to pull away from him too, but he wouldn't let me. It was like he was reading my mind, because he pulled me closer and kissed my temple. I understand now, he told me and looking up into his eyes I could see that he did. He understood my need to leave, the pain I went through staying away. She didn't, not yet, no one did yet, but she would, they all would.