Disclaimer: I don't own Digimon
A/N: This is a warning to you all. This series will be dark and kind of OOC. Unfortunately with this chapter I went a little darker then I figure. I never EVER thought I'd do something like this. There is implied sex. This is a warning to all of you who are pure of heart and innocent of mind that don't read things like this. And this chapter is also EXTREMELY long.
Natalie had seen her walk out of the bathroom. She had watched as the red head had stumbled into the hall. And she had watched as she fell forward onto her knees. "Sora!" She rushed over to her side and dropped to her knees beside her. The girl collapsed onto the floor, not responding to Natalie's voice. Natalie rolled Sora over and tried to shake her awake, but she didn't respond.
Natalie jumped to her feet. "Eli!" She yelled as she raced down the hall. She burst into his room, not bothering to knock. She saw him on his bed looking through a book. "Eli, I need your help."
"What? What's wrong?" He asked as he climbed into his wheelchair.
"Sora, she collapsed in the hallway!" Natalie replied.
"What?" They went down the hall to find the younger girl still lying on the floor. "I'm not following on how I'm supposed to help."
"Well, I can't lift her and I don't think she'd like to be dragged to wherever we can lay her down."
"Ay, Nat. You should have gotten Gennai."
"He's not home."
"Damn you, Gennai. Never there when anyone needs you!" He struggled to lean over and pick Sora up. "Jeez, she's light as a feather," he muttered.
"Put her in my room," Natalie said. She walked down the hall ahead of them and opened the door for him.
He wheeled himself in with Sora on his lap. He placed her on the bed. "We should call the hospital." She walked out of the room and returned a minute later with a wet cloth in her hand. She placed it on Sora's forehead. "Natalie, are you listening to me? We have to take her to the hospital."
Natalie chewed on her lip. She knew he was right. "No…I'm fine," a weak voice said. "Don't call anyone." Sora sat up, trembling.
"We have to-"
"Eli, let me talk to her," Natalie cut him off. He grumbled something under his breath before he wheeled himself out of the room. She got up and closed the door.
Sora watched as Natalie walked away from her to the door. Her pained red-brown eyes began to wander around the room, trying to figure out where she was. In the room was a single full sized bed. The white walls were decorated with picture and posters. It must have been Natalie's room.
"So," Natalie started as she leaned against her bedroom door. "Do you know why you collapsed?"
"I have an idea," she answered as she stared at her hands in her lap. They were completely white as they shook.
"Your bulimic, aren't you?" Natalie asked.
"What does it matter to you?" Sora snapped.
"Well, I don't want to see you hurt yourself." Natalie sat on the bed beside Sora. "And you are hurting yourself."
"I…don't care," Sora murmured.
"Bull! Why are you doing it?"
"I don't want to talk about it," Sora replied. She didn't meet Natalie's worried eyes as her fingers toyed with Natalie's blanket. Sora stopped and walked toward the door.
"Fine, Sora. Ignore me. I just thought maybe you'd like to know what you're doing to yourself. It's gonna kill you."
Sora had opened the door, but slammed it closed and faced Natalie. "Who are you to preach about killing myself? You have no DAMN idea what you're talking about! You have no right to talk to me about it!"
"I have every right! I know exactly what you're going through! But since you don't want to talk about it, that's fine." She turned away from Sora and walked to her CD player. "But you know where to find me if you do want to talk."
Sora didn't move. Natalie didn't acknowledge her presence any further. Finally Sora walked out of the room, closing the door behind her. She hadn't meant to yell at Natalie like that. Usually she could keep her emotions under control. This time she had just lost it.
She hurried up the stairs to the bedroom that she shared with Tera, Taylor, and Kari. She opened the door to find it silent. Taylor lay on her bed with headphones over her ears with attached to a Walkman. Kari lay on her stomach of her own bed flipping through a photo album.
Sora went and sat down on Kari's bed. "Hey, what are you looking at?" She said quietly.
"Some old photos I brought with me." Kari handed them to Sora.
Sora flipped through the large book. There were six photos per page. Each was filled with photos of the DigiDestined. There was a photo of the new kids. Davis, TK, Yolie, and Ken. One of the older kids. Another of Matt with his guitar. Yolie kissing Ken. TK with his blond locks.
She flipped to another page and looked over it. There were pictures of her and Tai on this one. Each ranged in age of 3 to 14. After 14 Sora had refused to take photographs. But there they were. The photos continued on to the next page. And the next. Some were of just them. Others had friends in them.
There was one that made her stop. Her and Tai, at 13. After their first time in the Digital World. Before the second time, before Matt. Tai had her in a tight embrace. They were both smiling into the camera.
She smiled to herself and it was a real smile.
There was a soft click to beside her and she looked up to. Kari was looking up at her with her camera clutched tightly in her hands. "You were smiling," the brown haired girl commented as she checked how many pictures she had left.
Sora felt her anger flare up. But Kari meant well so she did not say anything.
"I need some more film," Kari mumbled.
There was a knock on the door. "Come in," Sora called.
The door opened and Natalie came in. She glanced over at Sora, but just for a moment. Taylor pulled off her headphones and sat up. "We're going to the mall. You want to come?"
"No," Sora muttered.
"Um, yeah." Kari got up off her bed, leaving her camera sitting on her bedspread. Taylor followed her. "You sure you don't want to come, Sora?" Kari asked.
"Yeah, I'm sure." She looked down at the photo book still clutched in her hands.
"Okay," Natalie shrugged. The three of them walked out of the room and down the stairs. They walked into the living room where Aaron, Tera, Matt, TK, Tai, and Eli were waiting.
"Where's Sora?" Tai asked.
"She doesn't want to come," Kari replied.
"Well, she can't stay by herself," Elijah stated.
"I guess I'll stay," Kari volunteered.
"Nah, Kari, you go," Tai shook his head. "I'll stay."
"Are you sure?" Aaron asked.
"Yeah." Tai shrugged. He didn't want to go anywhere. The only reason he was going was to hang out with Aaron. They had become good friends lately.
"Okay, but just the two of you…" Eli started, unsure.
"We'll be fine. There's nothing for you to worry about," Tai reassured him as he stuck his hands in his pockets.
"Good. Let's go!" Matt cried as he stepped out of the room and toward the front door.
They all walked toward the door. Aaron was the only one to glance back at him offering a small wave. Tai nodded at this and watched them leave. When the door was closed and locked he walked toward the stairs and bounded up at them. He walked towards Sora's door and knocked.
"Sora, its Tai," he called.
She opened the door. "I thought you were going to the mall," she stated.
"No, I didn't want to go. I'm going to watch a movie. Do you want to join me?" He asked.
"Sure," she shrugged.
He turned his back to her and made his way downstairs. When he got to the bottom he waited for her to follow before walking into the living room. He picked up the first tape on the shelf that looked appealing and stuck it in the VCR.
"What movie is it?" Sora asked from where she had taken a seat on the couch.
"Uh…" he looked at the box. "Sixth Sense."
“Never heard of it," she replied matter-of-factly.
"Well, good because we're going to watch it." Tai replied. He landed on the couch beside Sora. He smiled at her as he hit the play button on the remote.
They watched the movie in silence. It turned out to be a scary movie and as soon as the movie got into the first half hour Sora began to jump and hide her face behind her hand. Tai laughed and she would just hit him in the arm.
A ghost came out onto the screen and Sora jumped again. Tai laughed uncontrollably again. Sora's arm whipped out to hit him, but he had been expecting it and caught her arm. In one fluid motion he pulled her into his arms and hugged her tightly. She let out a small gasp and tried to move out of his arms. He wouldn't let her go though.
"Tai, let me go!" She cried. He let her go and she jumped off the couch. "You jackass!"
"What?" He asked, dumb founded. "All I did was hug you! What the hell is your problem?"
"My problem is you!" He stood up and tried to grip her shoulders to look at her. "Don't touch me!"
"You know what? Fine!" He threw up his hands in defeat. He turned the television off. "I'll be up in my room. Call me when you're not such a bitch!" With that he stomped up the stairs.
Sora was left standing in the slightly darkened living room, wounded and angry. She glanced around slightly paranoid and scared of being alone. Quickly she raced up the stairs. She got to the top of the stairs and glanced over at Tai's bedroom door. She didn't want to be alone. With a groan she walked toward his door and knocked. "Tai. Tai, open the door. I want to apologize."
The door opened and Tai stood there looking angrily at her. They both stood in silence for a moment. "Well," he said exasperated. "Let's hear it."
"Tai, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to get so mad. I had no right. I just didn't expect it."
"Expect what?" He snapped. "Me hugging you? Suddenly that's a crime. You and I used to be best friends. We hugged all the time. Why is it suddenly so wrong now?"
"Because that was a long time ago! You stopped hugging me. You stopped caring about me! All because I went out with Matt. That wasn't fair, Tai! You are a jackass! I don't know why I even bothered." She turned away to leave, but he grabbed her arm. He twisted her back around to face him and he kissed her.
For a moment Sora forgot everything. She forgot that her crest didn't glow. She forgot that she was ugly and that she was bulimic. For right now the only thing that mattered was his soft lips pressed against hers. She leaned in deepening the kiss, yearning for his warmth and taste.
He pulled back, breathing hard and she realized she was doing the same. "I, um…" he stammered.
She interrupted him by pulling him into another kiss. This one was deeper then before and their tongues danced with each other. Her hands moved through his hair and his moved down her back.
She broke the kiss and stared at him in the eyes, their noses barely a half an inch away from each other. "I never got to thank you for protecting me at the ball park."
Tai rearranged the sheet that laid over him for the third time. He didn't know what else to do and the silence was hurting him. He pulled it up over his bare chest and the pushed it away upon realizing it was too hot.
Another few minutes passed, everything was still silent. And dark, very dark. His eyes wondered around the room, but Tai's mind stayed, uncomfortably where he lay.
There was a slight movement beside him. His head whipped around. His eyes met with a white back. "S-Sora," he whispered when he realized her body was trembling. He touched her lightly and it seemed only to increase the shaking and he quickly pulled back. "We shouldn't have done that. Sora? Talk to me."
"You're right. We shouldn't have done that," she whispered. Her voice shook like a wounded child. "I better go. Before the others come back."
She sat up and allowed the sheet to fall off of her. He cast his eyes away in embarrassment and she kept her head down in shame. Her red hair fell in front of her face as she picked up her clothes and awkwardly, and almost painfully, pulled them on. With that she walked out of the room.
Tai watched as she left. Tonight had been a huge mistake. He knew it; she knew it; why had they done it?
That kiss they had shared was the best feeling he'd felt in a long time. He had felt her warmth and he realized he needed it more then anything in the world. But he realized that warmth came with a price. The price was the pain he suffered when she walked away.
Sora stood in front of the white painted door and debated to herself whether this was what she wanted to do or not. Finally she knocked and waited for an answer. "Come in!" A muffled voice yelled from inside. Sora opened it and saw Natalie sitting at her desk looking over a large book. She looked up at Sora standing in the doorway and didn't try to mask her surprise.
"Oh, hey Sora. What do you need?"
"Can I talk to you?" Sora asked.
"Yeah. Come on and have a seat on the bed," Natalie motioned toward the bed and then turned her seat around to face her. Sora sat down on the soft bed and felt herself sink into the mattress. "What do you want to talk about?"
"I just wanted to know how you knew what it was like to be bulimic."
"What's with the sudden change in interest?" Natalie asked.
"I just wanted to know," Sora shrugged. "I want to know how you can compare yourself to me," she covered.
Natalie laughed. "Your not a very empathetic person are you?" Sora didn't know how to reply. "This probably won't result into some great friendship between the two of us because I've seen the way you are. So I won't expect you to confide in me what happened to you, or every dark secret you have. So you're off the hook." A moment of silence passed. "Okay, I was bulimic. Since I was eight, I think. I can't remember, I've blacked out so many times in my life I stopped counting when I was eleven." She laughed at this, even though it wasn't funny. "My mom had this odd dream of me being a model when I was a older, that way she could live off everything I made and she could be rich, famous, and "happy". She just forgot to run the dream by me."
Sora watched Natalie's face when she paused. It twisted into a face of grief, as she seemed to remember something that was too painful to remember.
"So, I was bulimic when I was eight until I was 11. We came back from the DigiWorld adventures then. My mom had seen the Digital World up in the sky. And she saw me. She told me to give her my tag, crest, and digivice so she could destroy it. I said no. She threw me out of the house. Within two days she had gone to every news channel in the city making up this huge sob story about how I had ran away and that she wanted me back because I meant the world to her. Everyone saw it. I left town that day." She ran a hand threw her ebony hair that draped behind her ears. Absent-mindedly she twisted her hair around one finger. "After that I stopped eating completely. I went from being bulimic; which after I thought about what I had been doing I thought was disgusting; to starving myself, being anorexic. I was known around my friends, other runaways, as the 'gutter beauty queen'. Gennai found me in a hospital after I had spent a year and a half on the street. Somehow he had tracked me done. It was my fifth collapse, I had been running in and out of hospitals for a long time, he had to pay a huge bill!" She chuckled lightly, "Serves him right."
"I…um," Sora started.
"Stop," Natalie interrupted her. "This is the part where you awkwardly apologize for bringing this up and you stammer over your words. I've heard it. I don't need to hear from anyone else that they're sorry." Natalie stared at Sora. "No, but you wouldn't say sorry, would you? You're not that type of person." Sora remained silent. "And I know you won't talk to me about this so here's my one piece of advice to you, find someone you can talk to."
"Okay. Thank you." Sora stood up and walked toward the door. She opened it and stopped, glancing back at Natalie. "What crest do you have?"
"Oh. Okay." She closed the door quietly behind herself.
He sat across from her at dinner. They didn't look at each other nor speak to each other. It had been two weeks since 'that night' and they had successfully avoided each other. They had ruined it. Everything they could have had, everything they had had. Everything gone.
Now she sat in her room, alone. The rest of the girls were downstairs. She sat on her bunk and stared at her hands trembling in her lap. She had to tell him, but she couldn't. How do you tell someone this? She wanted to die.
Her life was over now. One stupid decision jumbled up everything. She had lost her innocence at fifteen. She placed a hand on her stomach, which was still full from dinner. She couldn't believe there could be something growing inside of her.
Kari walked into the room and glanced up at Sora. "Sora, are you okay?" She asked. Sora shook her head. "Do you need anything or want me to do anything?" She started laughing as she spoke and Sora saw a far off look in her eyes.
"Could you get Natalie for me?" Sora asked. Kari nodded and walked out of the room.
There was a knock at the door. "Come in," she said softly. She doubted the person at the door had heard her, but she didn't say anything else.
Natalie opened the door and poked her head in. "You called?" Sora nodded. Natalie opened the door farther and stepped further into the room. "What's up?"
"I stopped throwing up."
"That's great! What made you stop?"
"Natalie." She bit her lip.
Natalie climbed up on the bunk and sat beside Sora. "What? Come on, you can tell me."
"I think I'm pregnant," she forced in one breath.
"I think I'm pregnant," Sora whispered as she stared at her quivering hands.
"Tai and I, we…that night that you went to the mall…we didn't mean to do anything…we just did." Sora began to cry.
"Sora, how could you be so stupid?" Natalie yelled.
"I don't know," Sora replied as she cried harder. "I'm scared. What do I do?"
"How do you know?"
"I missed my period."
"You have to tell him."
"No, I can't!"
"Sora! You have to tell Tai."
"But what if I'm not?"
"But what if you are?" Sora didn't reply. "Do you want me to take you to the clinic? They can do a test and you can find out for sure in a week or so. That's about the only thing you can do."
"Are you sure? It's getting pretty late?"
"Yeah. Come on."
Natalie climbed down from the bunk bed and Sora followed. They walked downstairs and slipped out the door without anyone noticing.
Sora sat alone in the living room. There were footsteps in the hallway and she looked up to see Tai standing there. He looked at her sternly, as he did when he was trying to mask his emotions and just trying to be a leader. "Natalie told me to come talk to you."
"She told you to come here?" Sora asked. He nodded. "Oh."
He moved to sit down beside her, but he quickly changed his mind and sat on the couch. "So, what's up? Why did we need to talk?"
"Tai, it's about that night-"
"That I don't want to talk about."
"Tai, we have to."
"Why?" He snapped. He jumped to his feet and loomed over her. "Why can't we just forget it happened? You didn't seem to want to be with me after we did it that night! And you didn't seem to want to look at me afterwards. Why all of a sudden do you want to talk about it?"
"Tai, I might be pregnant."
He stopped. Stopped breathing, stopped moving, just stopped. His jaw went slack and his shoulders slumped. "What did you say?"
"I might be pregnant."
"You're joking right? Some sick joke," he yelled. "Right?" She shook her head and he collapsed onto the couch beside her. He didn't say anything and neither did she. All of a sudden he couldn't breath. The room was stuffy and hot. Beside him Sora was trembling just like that horrible, horrible night.
God, he wished he could say that was the truth.
But it wasn't. That night wasn't horrible. It was a mistake, but it was probably the best night in his life. He had felt warmer then he ever had with her just by his side. He had been with her; that alone was all that mattered.
He pulled her into his arms. "It's gonna be okay."
"How?" She began to cry now, struggling to pull away.
"I don't know. But it will be." He hugged her close to his bed and just whispered. "I just will be. We'll get through this together, no matter what." She squeezed his hand. "How did you find out?"
"There's nothing for sure yet. Natalie took me to a clinic. I'll find out in a few days." He kissed the top of her head and she relaxed slightly into her chest. "Tai, I'm scared."
They stayed like that for a while. It was odd that they could be alone in a common gathering place of the house. Or maybe Natalie was just making sure they could talk.
"We'll get through this, together," he repeated. "Because I love you."
"I love you too, Tai." That was all she needed to say. They didn't need to kiss or look longingly into each other's eyes. All they had to do was sit there, in each other's arms, soaking up much needed warmth and tenderness from each other.
And upstairs in a tiny jewelry box a small pink crest stayed dark.
Sora stared at her crest in her hand as she waited for Tai. He had invited her up to the roof where he said he often went to think.
There was a sound at the edge and Tai pulled himself up. "Hey," he whispered. "What do you think of the view?" He sat down beside her.
"It's beautiful," she whispered.
"Has the clinic called yet?"
"No. Believe me, if they did you would be the first to know."
He reached for her hand, but found the crest there. "What's that?"
She held up the crest for him to see. "It's just my crest."
"Why do you sound so distressed?"
"I can't get it to glow, Tai. What's that supposed to mean? I mean I love you, with all my heart. Why won't it glow?"
"I don't know."
"Could the crest know something I don't? Could it know where my heart lies and with who?"
"Whoa, whoa, whoa! Are you telling me you're letting an intimate object tell you if you love me or not?" He held out his hand. "Give it to me." She placed it in his hand and he threw it out into the darkness.
He turned back to her and kissed her. "That's what I say to these damn crests." He laid back with his hands behind his head and stared up at the stars. Sora lay beside him one arm draped over him and her head on his chest listening to his heartbeat.
He wrapped an arm around her. "How come you couldn't get your crest to glow?"
"I don't know," Sora admitted.
"That's cool. Can I ask you something?" Sora nodded. "What happened in Odiaba to make you change?"
"Were you really bulimic?"
"Who told you that? Natalie?!"
"What? Why do you say that? Sora, you can't tell me that you didn't hear the rumors! They were all over the school."
"What would Natalie tell me? What were you talking about?"
"Do I have to go talk to Natalie myself?" Sora didn't answer. "Fine." Tai left the subject at that and he stroked her hair softly. His fingers stopped on a spot on her head that felt strange and she flinched under the feeling. "What's this?" Sora reached up and traced the spot on her head. He sat up and examined the spot on her head, pushing back the hair. It revealed a large scar on her head. "Sora, where'd you get this?"
"It's nothing." She pushed his hands away.
"Sora, you're going to tell me what the hell that is!" Sora flinched when he raised his voice. "How'd you get that scar?"
"Please, Tai, I don't want to talk about it!"
"Sora! I'm not asking! I want an answer."
"My ex boyfriend did, it okay?"
"No, Steve. He hit me over the head with a wrench."
"What the fuck?! Who was this jackass and why don't I remember him?"
“You remember, he was captain of the football team. Jet-black hair, perfect skin, straight teeth, the top of every girl's want list."
"Doesn't ring a bell."
"Maybe that's because you skipped school most of the time we were dating."
"Oh, it was around that time." Sora started to shake just thinking about it. "Sora, what did this guy do to you?"
"Steve was the most popular guy in school and he used it to his advantage. At first it was little things. Steve started making comments about how I dressed, so I changed my wardrobe. Then he'd say something about my friends, Matt and Izzy and everyone; I stopped hanging out with them." She stopped. "I don't want to talk about it, Tai. Please don't make me."
"No, Sora. I want to know what happened."
She stood up and walked to the edge of the room. "I can't talk about it any more!" She jumped down and slipped through the window.
Tai went after her and slipped through the window as well. He ran from his room down the hall to her room where he had just seen the door close. He knocked on the door. "Sora! Open the door!" He pounded on it. "Please Sora! Let me in, please!"
Aaron walked up to him wearing only a pair of blue boxers and a white shirt. He held a glass of water in his hand. "Pounding on the door and screaming orders at her isn't gonna help you score a girl." With that he walked off.
Tai watched him before returning to the door. He knocked again. "Sora, please! I'm sorry." The door opened and Tera stood in the doorway dressed in a spaghetti strap shirt and pajama pants. "You're not Sora."
"No, but it's midnight! Leave her alone."
"Tai, leave her alone. Whatever you did she doesn't want to talk to you. And she sent me to tell you that."
"Okay," Tai sighed. "I'm sorry about waking you up Tera."
"It's okay. Maybe you could just bang earlier okay?"
"Okay," he smiled weakly at her. She shut the door and he went back to his own room. He slipped inside and saw Matt and TK asleep. Aaron sat on the top bunk of his and Tai's bed with a flashlight in his hand as he looked through a magazine. "Hey man, isn't it a little late to be looking at porno?" Tai joked.
"Its never to late for that," Aaron laughed. "But if you really want to know it's a video game magazine, you sick sick man!"
Tai lay down on his bed, the bottom bunk. He and Aaron had switched beds after he and Sora had done it in Aaron's bed. He had made up the lamest excuse, but it had been an excuse. 'Yeah, I fell off the bed last night, mind if we switch?' Tai remembered saying. He laughed, as she got ready for bed.
She pulled herself from her bed and into the bathroom, trying to ignore the flashbacks in her mind.
She lifted the toilet seat and thought about what she was doing.
This could hurt the baby, if there was one. And Tai. And Natalie, who had so much confidence in her. And herself.
"<You don't deserve any of this!>
It didn't matter, because she did it anyway. She flushed the toilet and crawled/stumbled out of the bathroom. Somehow she got to the stairs and had to sit down. She collapsed onto the first steps and leaned her head against the railing. She closed her eyes and she could feel her mind detach from her body.
Tai had heard the sounds. The sounds of someone throwing up. He only needed one guess to who it was. Sora.
He forced himself out of the hot bed and made his way to the hall. The light was left on in the bathroom and he could see her sitting on the top of the stairs. He walked over to her and sat down. Her eyes were closed. "Sora," he whispered.
She didn't move, or respond. He shook her, but that didn't do anything. Her chest wasn't moving. She wasn't breathing. "Oh my god. WAKE UP! Everybody wake up, please!" He screamed.
Aaron, Matt, and TK emerged from the rooms first, rubbing theirs eyes, yawning, and looking relatively pissed that they had been woke up at 3 in the morning. Gennai came up from the first floor just as the girls appeared from their room. Natalie and Eli appeared at the foot of the stairs looking up at them.
"What's going on, Tai?" Kari asked, looking a little hung over.
"Sora's not breathing."
Gennai knelt down beside them. "Aaron, call an ambulance. The rest of you either go back to sleep or get dressed." Aaron ran downstairs to the phone and the other kids trudged back to their rooms. "That includes you, Tai."
"No, buts. Go get dressed if you're coming." Tai ran to his room. Five minutes later he came back fully dressed.
The doorbell rang and Natalie opened it. In a flurry of motion two medics ran in, picked her up on a stretcher and toted her off.
They said she would be fine. She was going to be okay, the doctor had told him in a less then friendly tone. But you really couldn't blame the white clad guy after Tai had asked him over and over and over again. But then, you couldn't blame Tai either.
He hated hospitals. They were probably his least favorite place in the world, beside his old apartment in Japan. But here he sat in the sanitized smelling, extremely white and bright hallway. He hadn't been in one since his parents…
"Hey Tai," Natalie sat down beside him. "Here." She gave him a soda and a brown paper bag.
"What's this?" He opened the bag and saw a pastry.
"Breakfast or should I say lunch now?" She replied.
"Thank you." His stomach growled and he realized how long it had been since he had last eaten. Last night at dinner around seven. It was three in the afternoon. Tai was about to bite into it when he stopped himself. "Do you want some?"
"Nah," she waved it away. "I already got something. Thanks anyway."
They sat in silence. Tai munched on his pastry trying to fight the feeling of throwing up in worry.
"Natalie, why'd she do it? Why would anyone want to make themselves sick like that?"
"Because they want to look pretty."
"Pretty? She's beautiful! She doesn't need to change!"
"In your eyes, but what do you think she sees when she looks in the mirror? Do you have any idea what it is to be called ugly?" Tai shook his head. "Then you don't know what its like for her. She wants to be beautiful, she doesn't think she is."
"So, how do I convince her?"
"Gennai's gonna get her in therapy, most likely. That's what he had me do. You just have to support her."
Tai nodded. Gennai walked over to them, dressed in his usual blue business suit. "She's awake. She doesn't want to see anyone, but I think you should go talk to her."
Tai stood up and followed Gennai to the room where Sora had been placed. Tai got to the doorway and stopped. Sora was on the bed, head in her hands. "Go ahead," Gennai said. "I'll leave you two alone." Tai stepped in and Gennai shut the door.
He walked over to the bed, his footsteps echoing as he walked. He sat down on the bed and stared at her waiting for her to acknowledge his presence. When she didn't he reached out and forced her hands away from her face. She looked up at him with shimmering red eyes. He reached into his pocket and placed something in her hand. It was her crest.
"I thought you threw that away," she said, her voice throaty.
"Nah, I wanted to make you think that. Maybe if you weren't thinking about the stupid crest you could get it to glow."
"I'm pretty sure I figured out why the damn thing won't glow. I've had a lot of time to think in the past twelve hours. That was when I wasn't thinking about how the last time I saw my parents was in a hospital and about how much I didn't want to be here." He paused, making sure he could keep himself in control and not break down as he had done a few times. "It's because you don't love yourself, or it could be because you don't trust me or love. Maybe even both," he said this very deadpanned with his voice low. She didn't say anything in her defense. He stood up and paced the room. "God, why would you do this? To me and to yourself!"
"Tai." He stopped pacing. He stared at her with big brown eyes. "I'm sorry."
"That's all you can say?" He yelled. "That's it? You're sorry?"
"I'm sorry because I don't think you and I will work out."
"I want to break up."
"Because you deserve so much better then me. I don't deserve you."
His tone softened and he approached the bed. "How can I have better then you when there is nothing else? Sora, please don't do this."
"Don't make this any harder then it has to be."
"I have to because I don't want to lose you. Do you honestly want to break up?" She nodded. "Wow, I've never been blown off for caring. But it's your choice." He turned to leave.
"Tai," she called.
"Do you remember when we were little?"
"When we were best friends?"
"And we used to tell each other stuff."
"What are you getting at?"
"Do you think maybe we could try that again?"
All he wanted to do was say no. Say no and walk away. But he was helpless her pleading ruby eyes. "I don't know, Sora. We could try." He walked back to the bed and sat down again. "Why? What do you want to tell me?" She didn't answer. "Sora."
"Natalie told me that I should find someone to talk to, someone I could trust. I've always been able to trust you."
"Is this about what that Steve guy did to you?"
"Do you mind?"
"Not at all." She took a deep breath like she was about to hyperventilate. "Take it easy." He grabbed a glass of water from her bedside and handed it to her. "Here, take a drink. Lemme think, you left off about how he was changing you, I think."
She took a drink and handed the cup back to him. "Oh, yeah. He was saying all that stuff, but those kind of things you don't think much about. I thought he loved me and it was okay for him to say things like that. But then he started mentioning things about my weight and I took it all seriously. I stopped eating, but my mom caught me. So I ate, but threw it all up instead." She stopped and just shook her head. "I knew what I was doing was hurting me and I wanted to stop, but I didn't want him to leave me. I had everything. Popularity, friends, a boyfriend who loved me. So I ignored it. Then I collapse and went to the hospital. He yelled at me for being weak. I told him to stop trying to change me. He said okay. Two weeks later he was at it again. He started hitting me too…"
She stopped again and he handed her the water. "Take another drink."
She complied and took a drink before going on. "I'd have bruises and I had to cover it up with so much makeup I was a friggin' cosmetic line! And when I told him I wanted to break up he got me over the head with a wrench."
"It doesn't matter though. I'm fine."
"No, you're not. You lie horribly, you know." He looked at her head again. "He really got you good." He set the water down and hugged her. "Jeez, I am so sorry." He laid beside her and pulled her into his arms. "Things will get better."
She set the crest back in his hand. "Why don't you hold on to that. I have no place to put it."
With a yawn, Sora fell asleep clutching Tai's shirt tightly and breathing in his scent. Tai watched her sleep, praying this moment would last forever. Probably for the last time he got to hold her in his arms. "I love you, Tai…" she whispered.
"Huh?" But she was asleep. "Must be dreaming." He kissed her head, the spot where the horrible scar was covered by flaming red hair. With that he allowed himself to slip into a long dreamless sleep. The very kind he was grateful for.
At that very instant his hand began to glow. Neither noticed due to they were both asleep in each other's arms.
Okay. There's the fifth chapter. I'm sure you all are now very very sick of Sora and Tai so I'm gonna change the people. Next person up is....you'll just have to wait. First I would like to say before I leave I am sorry this took so long. Second I will tell you whether Sora is pregnant or not and if she and Tai get together or not. I didn't forget about it, I just thought I'd leave you hanging for a bit.
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