Forgive and Forget
Distance and Measure
Zafel didn't come home that night. Or the next one either. Kaitora lay awake on that dirty, worn out, old mattress. 'Where could he have gone?' she wondered. Was what she had done so wrong? Aaren had her convinced that this was the best thing she could do right now, for their survival. But it had bothered Zafel so much that he had hurt Jay, and hadn't come back since. Kaitora could not fend off the guilt in her heart.
Kaitora had been left alone with Jay that night; a drunken Aaren had left hours earlier to search the distraught Zafel. She sighed heavily, and looked up at the cracked ceiling. Without the two she had relied the most on nearby, she felt out-of-place, or even abandoned.
Jay placed a hand over Kaitora's with a gentle smile. "Ah, girl… You okay?" Kaitora laughed a little, softly, finding Jay's odd speaking manners funny at times. She gives him a grim smile, "Yeah, I guess so…"
"Y' can't sleep, huh?"
She shook her head. "Not really, not when both of them are gone. I can't help but feel like it was somehow all my fault." Jay shook his head and sat beside her, the two of them leaning against each other. Jay held Kaitora's hand in his, just sitting quietly next to one another. Although they had kissed, and Kaitora had given him, well, most of a particularly good 'favor,' between them was only a slowly budding friendship, a genuine one. Jay said to her, "Don't blame yourself… Charfin' on yourself like that won't get you anywhere, y'know? Besides, this was all their cause, not yours. You're only twelve years old, you shouldn't be expected to do these kinda things. Let Aaren and Zafel work things out; they're just kids too, afterall. None of us really know what it is exactly we are doing in this world; we're all just trying to figure it out.
Kaitora smiled, somehow, Jay's words made sense to her. She leaned against his shoulder and sighed softly. "Thanks…"
Days later, it was time to go again. Aaren didn't like the atmosphere there, after all the pointless drama that had occurred. That was enough to make him go. Shortly after Jay and Kaitora fell asleep on the mattress that night together, Aaren had returned with the temperamental Zafel. However, this didn't solve anything. Tensions were still pretty high, although Kaitora did her best not to get involved, and let the boys figure it out for themselves. So Kaitora, on the contrary, was pretty content to just talk with Jay and spend her time with him. She had gotten comfortable there. But with Aaren having made up his mind, and Zafel not objecting the move, there was no way to combat it.
She gave Jay a warm hug when it was time to part, tears welling in her eyes. "I'll miss you." She whispered quietly. "I'll see you again. Don't worry, I'll be here." He smiled and let her go from the hug, offering her a weak wave. Kaitora nodded and hurried back to that dreary van of theirs. And yet another chapter of her life had passed, all too quickly. Most of the way to their next home, she just slept in the back seat, feeling distant from the other two who were too busy bickering with each other, verbal or otherwise, to pay much attention to Kaitora anymore.
Watching the nearly naked trees of autumn whisk by, she could only feel a cold chill in her heart.
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