Last Breath

 

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Prologue

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"But why didn't you kill yourself when you had the chance?" I asked him so confused. "Why...are you still here?" He sipped his coffee in his mug...a small grin plastered on his face as he looked very relaxed and chilled. 

"'Cause you are," he said simply. I looked at his eyes, trying to find some sort of lie but I couldn't, as he just looked passed me out the window, and back at me coolly, squinting his eyes a little. "I found my reason to live...and now I have to show you yours..."

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3:09a.m.

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I woke up abruptly, sitting straight up in bed, sweat down my face.

I breathe heavily, trying to calm down as I place the palms of my hands on the side of my head. "It was just a dream..." I tell myself. "It was a dream." Although I say it's just a dream, I stay awake for the next three hours and as I was laying there, facing my window by my bed, eyes open not knowing how to shut my brain off...my alarm for school goes off...but I still lay there...letting the sound echo throughout my room.

'Today...might be it...' I think to myself. 'Today might be the day I won't have to think at all.'

***

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Chapter One

Chapter One

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Considering I only got five hours of sleep, it's nothing new to me as I get ready for another day of school. I go to my bathroom, and I immediately wash my face with my facial cleanser and brush my teeth. I pull my hair up in a messy bun, and I go to my room to my vanity. I turn on my Hollywood inspired lights, and pull out my make up, hidden in my drawers. I apply foundation, some nude eyeshadow, eyeliner into a wing, and mascara; the typical. I put on some nude lips and take my hair down, heading for my closet.

I decide to dress cute with lightly washed blue skinny jeans, a cute pastel pink top, and my tan ankle high booties Aubrey got me for my 17th birthday last year. I go back to my vanity and I straighten my hair that's past my small chest, that's black with dark blonde highlights. I apply some gold earrings and a small necklace that I wear everyday that reads C x A est. 1998, and my silver rings. Two on my left hand and one of my right.

If  I decide to die today, at least I'll be cute.

Somehow ready a bit early, I decide to write on my personal blog that's connected to my Twitter account, that no one really reads anymore, but that was probably for the better. I never got more than 10 reads since the summer, but that was probably my fault for neglecting it.

November 8th, Tuesday 7:13am

"I had another nightmare. The same thing as always, only more detailed this time. I didn't go back to sleep, therefore I am exhausted. But I can't complain because I didn't necessarily try to. I'm starving, as I haven't eaten since yesterday at lunch, so I guess I'll get breakfast today as if I had a choice. Mother probably knows I didn't eat dinner yesterday, despite the lie I told her so she'll ensure I eat now. Our last home football game is this Friday, and also senior night. I'm going to get recognition, of course for being on varsity cheer for three years, but I don't want to go. Why should I? Azalea would've been excited and we'd probably think of something silly to do on camera together, but now it will just be me...and I won't even have my best friend to look for after the game...so...why bother?"

Not knowing what else to say or before I had a mental breakdown, I sign off, and I close my laptop, placing it in my black and gold backpack with my name enbeded on it, and I head out my room, leaving my Christmas lights on. I walk down stairs and sure enough I'm instantly slapped in the face with the smell of sizzling bacon and creamy pancake batter. It honestly smells divine, and I just want to run down stairs and stuff my face as soon as possible, but I really didn't want to eat. I see my mother, in our open kitchen, playing some Christian music over our surround sound stereo that plays throughout the bottom half of the house.

"Camellia," she greets me with a smile. I give her a smile one in return, hoping to hide the bags under my eyes from the lack of sleep I've gotten, but I think I lost a lot sleep since the accident...so it doesn't help much.

"Mother," I say in return. "Something special today?" I was referring to the food. I know there wasn't as Mother just wanted me to eat, but of course she couldn't just say she wanted me to. Mother didn't like complications.

"Well, your father just told me that today it's his bosses wife birthday. Shelby? Remember her?" See. 

"Hmmhuh," I head for the pantry. She has to make her story quick.

"I decided we'd celebrate for her by a breakfast!" She nodded at me with a big smile. "I know she's not here, and she doesn't know we're doing this right now, but the bacon was about to go out and I needed something to do it with it." I chuckled as I know she was telling me the truth. That was one thing about my mother I really adored, was that she never lied. She even made Santa Clause still believable to me this day, and I believe that's a characteristic I inherited from her, but now I believe it might have been Azalea'a. 

"Haha! That's really sweet Mom," I told her. "But...I really just want something small." I know she's disappointed in me and Mother hated for me not to eat, and she couldn't just let this one go. I'm glad.

"Um...are you sure? I can give you a fresh plate?" she offered. I was looking in the pantry for a granola bar to eat, but  I couldn't find one, and I thought for a moment I'd have to accept this one.  I needed to.

"Well..." I didn't want to tell her I ran out of protein bars, the only thing probably keeping me alive and I turn back around to her. "I'm not that hungry," I lied. "But I'll eat....I have time." She kept staring at me as I waited at the bar for a fresh plate, and I sat there on my phone, that's honestly blowing up from messages from some of the girls on the cheer team, a group text with all the football jocks and the other VIP's of the school, and individual messages from Aubrey, Kimberly, and Nathan.

After a some minutes, Mother gives me a plate and everything smells so good, I just wanted shove the whole plate down my throat...but I don't. She'll know I haven't eaten dinner yesterday, after I lied and told her I was out with friends and we ate out, but I was really at the train tracks, so I grab the fork beside me and ate sane.

"Any plans after school today?" she asked me. Today was Thursday, and usually on Thursday's Nathan and I would go out, but these past couple of weeks I've skipped. I just haven't been feeling the same...or simply having the energy to do it.

"I'm not sure yet, but I'll let you know if I do," I tell her, eating my eggs. She hands me a glass of milk instead of orange juice but I don't blame her. "Thank you," I tell her. She nods, letting out a small breath with a smile. 

I know the only reason why she did give me milk is because she said I looked smaller just a few days ago. I probably have sense I haven't been eating since probably October, when Austin, Aubrey's boyfriend, threw this massive Halloween party at his house and I ended up drinking the lemonade that was mixed with alcohol, and I literally made myself throw it all back up the moment I found out. Ever since I drunk it, I had no appetite for anything...even when I was hungry like I am now.  

It honestly took me a good while to forgive Austin for that, and when I told Aubrey about it at the time, she seemed as if she didn't care, but after she noticed the way I treated him since, and never accepted a alcoholic drink there after, she apologized. I didn't care if she did or not, because either way, I shouldn't have drunk anything knowing them. 

My mother walks back over to the kitchen and coming down the stairs I hear my father.

"Hello my beautiful girls," he greets us with a book in his armpits. 

"Hello," my mother says happily. I don't say anything, just wanting to eat.

"Camellia, you're eating breakfast with us today?" he asked me surprised.  He comes over and kisses my forehead and I smile up at him, swallowing a bite.

"Yeah...I have time." He nods. He's probably happy to see me eating too.

"Nice." He met Mother on the other side of the bar, and kisses her on the head too. "Smells good Hunbun," he tells her. For my mother who owns her own bakery, my dad loved calling her various of sweets as nicknames. My mom and dad have the best relationship, as a marriage and a friendship anyone would want, and I pray all the time, I'll have the same type of relationship when I'm older, only better. If that's even possible.

"What do you expect?" she asked him playfully. Suddenly I got another text from Nathan, and I open it as my parents are still talking.

"Hmm, the house filling up with smoke like that one time sophomore year of college when you tried to make pig and blankets." She busted out laughing, flipping the pancake so perfectly.

"Hahahah! Okay, okay, that was years ago! Let it go Mike," she begged. I chuckled reading Nathan's recent message and the ones I missed from last night.

*10:36pm*

'U still awake babe?' -Nathan.

*11:03pm*

'Goodnight Camellia, I'll see u 2morrow. Text me when u wake up... I love you.'-Nathan

*7:24am*

'Good morning Cami, are you alright? I'm sorry I keep bugging you, but if you're mad at me we should talk it out...Are you coming to school?' -Nathan

By the text messages, you'd think Nathan was my boyfriend, but every since the accident, I don't know what we were now. We still talk. We still hang out every now and then, but calling him my boyfriend was something I didn't want to do. Azalea actually got us together around this time last year. We went to homecoming together junior year and we were inseparable. I loved him, but right now, I don't even think I loved myself. 

"You know that was hilarious! How can I not!? You almost burned down the whole apartment complex!" My dad chanted.

"It needed to be burned down!" My mom said back behind laughs. "That apartment was disgusting! That's all I could afford at the time!" I looked up at my parents chuckling, but I decided to text Nathan back.

*7:26am*

'Sorry, I didn't feel good last night so I went to bed early and I'm no way mad at your for anything. I'm sorry to worry you and yes. I'm coming school.' -me

As I finished eating and my parents   reminencing the time she really did almost burn down her apartment in college, I placed my plate in the sick, clean, and I drink only half the milk.

"I'm on my way to school," I tell them jumping off the barstool. "I'll see you guys later." They both turn to me.

"Oh, bye Camellia. Have fun at school," Mother tells me.

"Yes, and I transferred some money into your bank account this morning just in case you wanted to go out anytime today with some friends," my dad informed me with a smile. I know the only reason he actually mentioned he did that is because they wanted me to go out. If there's something I haven't been doing since homecoming is socializing, but it's not like I had to. I hung out with the kids that run the school. People came up to me for that type stuff and it was my decision if I wanted to accept their house party invites or typical sleepovers every weekend. So if I was missing anything, it was my fault. 

"Oh, okay. Thanks Dad. Bye you guys," I grab a water bottle out the fridge and head for the door.

"Bye!"

"We love you!" my mother chants before I closed the front door.

"I love you guys too!" and I close the door.

Saying I love you is something that lost it's meaning to me even hearing it from my own parents. When Azalea was here, those are the typical words you only heard over the phone or on holidays, but now it's an everyday thing. I know they mean it and so do I, but it's one of those things that you got to ask yourself and you say, 'Do you really love me?'

As I get in my rare baby blue Volkswagen bug and turn on my engine, I head to school, avoiding the quicker route into town. I would get to school fifteen minutes earlier if I didn't, but just seeing the old scene gives me chills reminding of the day and I just can't handle it... To get there, I have to take the half mile long bridge in Rosemere called Amelia Crossing that's over Lake Iris and that was pretty much all that was going for us here in Rosemere, Washington. Despite people using it as a tour ground or Tumblr post, I saw it as a great grave. Why give some poor innocent human a mess to clean up when you can jump into a 300ft deep pool and just be left with your lungs full of water?

As I listen to my aux, toning out all the outside noise which was only my thoughts, I finally make it to school and even stop for Starbucks coffee. It seemed appropriate with my outfit, and I really just wanted to make it through the day, as I honestly shouldn't have came to school today in comparison to my exhaustion.

I get my PSL and make it to school, as two freshmen run in front of my car but I don't mind. They'll know the frustration in three years. I park my car along with the other cheer girls, our car decals in the straight line, like our cars were in some kind of sorority.

 I get out and at the same time I see Aubrey, getting out her four wheel drive, pure white Jeep that made my car look like an actually bug, but the color made up for it. "Heyy Cammiii," Aubrey greeted me. Her long dark blonde hair was blowing in the wind that had some waves in it for it to be noticeable as if she got a blowout this morning, but her hair was always pretty down so it was probably just her.

"Hey Aubrey," I waved at her locking my door.

"I texted you last night, did you get it?" she asked me pointing down at my phone. I checked it as the messages read,

*10:23pm*

'Wanna go shopping tmrrw after school? I can't find anything to wear lmao!'-Aubrey

*10:55pm*

'You sleepin girl?' -Aubrey

 I place my phone in my back pocket.

"My bad, I felt sick last night," I told her. "I went to bed early." She nodded. Aubrey probably couldn't care less I did feel bad, but as long as I wasn't totally ignoring her, everything was okay. Even if it was a lie.

"Oh, its fine, but do you want to?" she wanted to know. I looked ahead of us, thinking about it, as we walked across the campus, underclassmen were playing football in the courtyard, while some girls were all standing in a huddle fangirling over the newest youtubers and some nerds sitting on a bench studying for the early SAT's. Aubrey and I continued to look ahead of us as we walked, our short hells clicking on the payment and everyone looking at us as if we were the queen bee's of the school.

But to be honest, we were.

"I'll think about it," I say with a single shrug even though I just wanted to say no all together. "I need some new shoes."

"Okie doke," she replies opening the door to the school and waiting for us by our red lockers are our friends.

"Heyyyy you guuuuys," Aubrey greets everyone wiggling her fingers. I walk beside her, the others not in our group just looking astonished.

"Aubrey! Cami!" Matt greets us with open arms.

"Sup guys," another says. I smile a little as that one was meeting me half way. His blonde hair swooped to the side, his sympathetic blue eyes looking into my mine. He bends down and kisses me on my check, and I close my left eye a little on impact.

"Hey beautiful," Nathan whispers. "How'd you sleep?" I shrug up at him and back down at the floor sipping my coffee.

"I had another one." He knew what I meant, and suddenly he hugged me, his face down by my ear. 

"Are you alright?" He asked me. "It's just a bad dream. It's okay." 'It's more than that,' I want to tell him, but instead, I hugged him back, as honestly, that's probably what I needed. 

"I am now." He departs from me and smiles and I give him a small one back as he kisses me softly on the lips. "Pumpkin spice?" He asked licking his bottom lip with a smile. I shrug at him a little. 

"You know it's back."

We walk over to everyone and I open my locker that besides Aubrey's and she laughing with Victoria and Tabitha about some poor little freshmen that got Tabitha's number and is explaining how much he loves her and wants her extremely bad, although he never technically greeted her in person.

"The poor little fish doesn't know when to stop!" Aubrey is literally crying.

"It hilarious! But okay, I told him to meet me in the parking lot today at 2:30pm since that's when we get out of school right, and he literally he texted back, 'Can we do it after 9th? I have class and I can't be late. I'll be marked tardy.'!! Y'all I DIED," Tabitha cracked up. I didn't laugh getting my notebooks out my locker and changing them out within my backpack. I really didn't need my backpack with the six classes I had, including lunch, but I didn't have the strength to carry my books today. 

I really didn't have the strength for anything, even laughing about a pure little fish.

"That is so funny, yet pathetically cute! When are you going to tell you him you have a pretty ass boyfriend though??" Aubrey asked looking at Tabitha with a scrunched face and a smile. Nathan was leaned on the locker beside me.

"Wanna get food today?" Nathan asked me in a low tone. "I'll pay." I didn't look at him, still organizing my stuff. 

"Aubrey wanted me to go shopping after school with her today, but I don't even know if  I want to do that," I told him opening a notebook checking for notes. He didn't say anything as I closed the notebook and turned to him directly. "But I'll let you know what I decide to do." He nodded easing a smile.

"It's whatever," he told me. "You don't have to." By the way he said that, I wasn't totally sure what exactly he meant by that, but I smiled anyways.

"Thanks."

As we were all talking, Aubrey playing with her hair, leaned back in her locker looking up at her fuckboy of a boyfriend Austin who was telling jokes as always, and everyone laughing; Victoria and Tabitha talking to the other cheerleaders about this Friday's senior night and football game; Matt, Colby, and Jordan talking about yesterday night practice, Nathan was still hanging beside me still as if he wanted something.

"If you don't want to go out today, we can always see a movie Saturday," he suggested. "We haven't been in awhile."

"There's a lot of things I haven't done in awhile," I mentioned to him, which came out bitcher than I wanted it to. "I don't even want to go to the senior night this Friday. I just want rest," I sighed. 

"It's okay Cami," he called me by my nickname reassuringly. "Thanksgiving break is coming up and it'll be here faster than you know it. We all can rest then."

"Well it's not coming fast enough," I complained. Nathan sighed, I know getting frustrated with me, but this one of the reasons why I didn't want him anymore. 

I was always so negative and he'd be or try to be optimistic for me but I wouldn't listen to him. He'd always ask to hang out and do stuff like we use to do before times changed, but now I always blew him off just to be home to sleep to shut my brain off or just to be home because I didn't physically have the strength to do it. I told him the week before senior year started that we should take a break. He agreed, but I don't think he meant for the break to last four months and still counting. Besides he is a boy...he won't be able to stay this comfortable for long and I could tell. 

"Everything will be okay Cami," he says again, placing one hand on my shoulder. "I promise." Nathan's promises were something I use to bribe over and love everytime he said it to me...but there were many promises of my own I couldn't keep so it got me thinking, why should I believe others when they could be doing the same thing I do to myself?

I was listening to everyones conversations and Nathan talking with the guys, my close friend, as close as Mia, comes to me. She was one of the only people who had a right to come to us, as Aubrey didn't like "outsiders", but I guess because of what happened to me, Aubrey didn't mind her. I know she didn't like her, but it was okay, because she didn't either. 

"Hey Cami," she comes in for a hug. I hug her closer than Nathan. 

"Hey Kim," I say back. 

"How you feeling today?" She asked me. I get this question a lot and usually I lie when asked, but Kim, real name Kimberly, felt my pain and I know she knows how I felt, so I always give her the honestly truth. 

"I'm tired," I tell her. "I want to sleep." 

"Sleep in first period," she tells me bluntly. "I'll take notes for you-" but I cut her off,

"Forever." She looked at me quickly, hiding her lips in her mouth and I sigh. "Metaphorically." She nods hiding her lips in her mouth, I know not forgetting what I said, as Matt comes our way.

"Sup Kim," he greets her going straight in for a hug. 

"Don't touch me jerk," Kimberly stretches her arm out stopping him. "I don't like you anymore."

"Don't got to," Matt grins biting his bottom lip. "Just gotta want me back." Kim rolls hers eyes. 

"I'm leaving. Comin' Camellia?" She asked me. I looked back at everyone who was laughing at Matt's rejection and I turn to her and nod. 

"Sure," I shrug.

As I leave the group, Nathan runs to me and grabs my arm and stops me and Kim and I both turn around. "I'll see you in third?" he asked me quickly. He acts like I won't see him at all.

"Course," is all I give him. He nods once, biting his bottom lip and we stare for a second and I start walking with Kim again, out the main building.

"Nathan's has been acting weird lately," Kim mentions. "At least to me, and to be honest, I think he's just trying to get your pants one more time." I don't look at her, sucking on my lips in my mouth. Another thing I liked about Kimberly was that she spoke her mind. She'd never bullshit anybody and she'll tell you what she thought at that moment and usually...she was right.

"Probably, but he's not. I told him to let me go but he won't. Lately he's been wanting to hang with me...I mean... like really wanting to hang with me. Every chance he gets. He knows I don't want to though," I said as we were walking the campus grounds. Everyone just chilling before first block. "But I don't know why he keeps trying."

"It's like I said Cami. He wants to get in your pants," she repeated.

"So typical," I brushed it off rolling my eyes. "But I won't believe it." We both had to chuckle at that one.

As we walking to our AP statistics class, I hear the strum of a guitar being played and everyone was looking up at something. I look up with them to see some boy sitting high on top of the career building as he was just sitting normally on the edge, like he wasn't that high up. Going up there isn't as hard as it sounds, but anyone in their right mind wouldn't go up there anyways...but he was.

"Hey Kim, look," I pointed up at him. He was still just sitting on the legde playing the guitar and Kim looks up uninterested. "What's he doing?" I asked. She shrugged.

"That's just Justin Hawthorne. The boy that use to be in our English class at the beginning of the year?" she informs dumbly. "You know him, he has his annual speeches sometimes when he was here on why he hates the world and wants to leave this town. I guess now he's just been making it more public," she shrugged still looking up at him. I thought about what she said and looked back up at him.

"Justin?" I asked again.

"Yeah. Hear talk he just go back today from Plyler? That alternative school that students go to when they get in a fight or who are less likely to graduate?" 

I shrugged.

"He usually sits in like the corner of the class on our right in the back? Always trying to find a way to piss Ms. Peterson off only to get some beautiful long ass lecture as to why we should stay in school and love our lives before something happens? You know him," she nudged my shoulder. "You just can't remember him." 

She was right, I don't remember him, but that doesn't mean I don't remember his name. 

He didn't talk much, but when did, he didn't bullshit but he was very sarcastic. People say all kinds of things about him, and you really didn't know what to believe. Like one story says he participated in a threesome with two college girls during spring break at a house party last year hosted by his best friend I assume that use to be with him a lot, Da'Marcus, and another says he got drunk at the after party of senior prom, fully wasted on the roof attempted to jump but didn't after he passed out, and even at the beginning of junior year, he got caught with cigarettes on campus in his pocket but without a lighter on him, but still got suspended for having them and so on. I never really noticed him or what he did to end up in Plyler and you would think I have with a record like, but I didn't. Nathan might've been the reason for that that.

"I don't know him," I admitted to Kimberly still looking at him as he played. "But I know of him."

"Nice way putting it, me too. Well, come on. Hopefully we see him third period and he doesn't do anything stupid," she gently tugged me along. As I was walking away, Justin looked down at the ground and suddenly we made eye contact, and he kept his stare and slowly stopped playing. I quickly turned away catching up to Kim, and even though I necessarily didn't know him...I hope he didn't do anything stupid.

We can't have two suicidal cases in the school paper next week...

~

 

 

 

 

 

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Chapter Two

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