“Fine! I’m leaving!” My friend screamed at me before turning on her heals and running off, out of the school.
Rushing after her to the bus stop opposite the school, I saw the bus which she usually took home pass by.
Oh no. I would not be able to apologise to her.
That thought. That thought alone promoted me to run faster, and faster.
However, I still could not catch up. Not even sparing me a glance, or a seeming second thought, my friend boarded her bus to go home.
Glumly, and resigning to the possibility of her never being my friend again, I plopped myself on one of the benches at the bus stop.
As if the sky had finally noticed my emotions as well, it became overcast with dark clouds. So with me and the weather connected via our emotions, I boarded my bus to return back home.
Throughout the journey, I was worried.
Worried that she would never be my friend again.
Worried that I had lost such a good friend because of my thoughtless deeds.
Worried that she might do something stupid with her overwhelming emotions.
Bus gets into accident on expressway
The headline of the newspaper read the next day. The bus was the exact same one which she was riding at the time which she was riding.
Hoping that nothing had happened to her, I went off to school.
Only to see her not there.
Morning assembly. There was only silence. I was greeted by the announcement that a student had died.
No. It can’t be her. I have not apologised like that. She can’t just leave like that.
But Fate had never liked me.
She had left me.
We had parted just like that.
Uncontrollable tears came to life as they escaped the grasp of the person trying to keep them in.
Someone collapsed on the floor of the assembly area as her friends tried to get her awake again and stand up again from her sobbing mess.
She only felt a faint breeze against her cheek. It was as if her friend had come back to life again, the breeze was just like how her friend would caress her cheek when she was upset.
Don’t cry. I’m sorry I left you.
A whisper was heard by the girl before the light she saw as she sobbed went out as abruptly as her friend’s life.
“I’m sorry. It’s not your fault. I was mine. Just…” She sobbed heavily. “Just come back to me. Why? Why did you leave? I’m sorry.” The girl sobbed, blaming herself for the fight which her friend had with her, causing her death.
No. It was not your fault. I was being short-tempered. Move on from me. There are other people who need you to be there.
The voice said again.
“But I can’t do it without you…” The girl had stopped sobbing, all her tears had escaped their jail.
You will do it. Remember me. Use me as your strength to carry on. Help others. They need you. I know you can do it.
With numb feet, the girl stood up again.
Perhaps. Perhaps she would carry on.
For the other people who love her.
For the people who need her.
For her friend.
“I will.” She declared, as she stood up shakily upon numb legs.
The girl smiled faintly.
Few year later, the girl had grown. She no longer mourns her friend’s death any longer. She still missed her though. No friend could ever replace her. The day her friend had died had left a hole in her heart.
A hole which could not be filled.
But filled it was. Filled by a man who was to become her husband.
She no longer remembered the voice which had helped her up in her worst moments, when she still blamed herself for her friend’s death and had tried to kill herself in an attempt to get her friend back, insisting that ‘a life for a life’ and that her friend would come back if she died and she did not matter anyway.
She no longer remembered the pain which her friend’s death had brought her or what had caused her friend’s death. Just that she had died somehow after she had spoken to her.
She no longer remembered what her friend had looked like. After all, she had burnt all photos which her picture in them while she was mourning.
“Perhaps wiping her memory was best.” A little girl hid behind a pillar of the wedding venue as she watched the girl getting married.
She had not come with anyone.
No one would have seen her anyway. Smiling to herself, the little girl picked up the white lily which was along the wedding venue, disappearing into the light of the happy atmosphere.
She after all had not been invited or remembered.
She after all had been there to make sure that the wedding went well.
She after all had been there to make sure that the girl was happy.
She after all had been there to make sure that the girl had moved on.
After all, she was no supposed to be seen.
After all, she was the one who had been so deeply connected to the girl.
After all, she was the one who helped the girl back up.
She was the phantom of the girl’s friend.