Author: R.W. plus me PM
"New York I love you / But you're bringing me down / Like a death of the heart / Jesus, where do I start?" What has Cassie been up to since the finale of season two?Rated: Fiction M - English - Cassie A. & Sid J. - Words: 1,478 - Reviews: 6 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 4 - Published: 05-31-12 - id: 8167764
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: Wow, it's been a while since I've done this! But hopefully I'll be back for a while, after taking an incredibly long hiatus! I've had this idea for a while, but this storyline just took off. Series seven of Skins is going to be three episodes for each generation, which got me thinking about what direction they'll take the characters in. This story is one idea of mine. Hopefully, I'll be able to do all three parts. Naturally, it focuses on Cassie, my favorite character.
Part One: Cassie
She had gone all the way across the Atlantic ocean. She had lost herself in a city full of millions of strangers, millions of faces with billions of stories. She had dyed her hair dark. She had found a new flat, a new job, a new name sometimes, when she was feeling especially lost and lonely. She had done everything she could, and she still couldn't run away from it all.
Chris was everywhere. He was all over the diner where she worked, keeping her company when she counted her tips behind the till and sitting on the counter in the harsh florescent light of the kitchen when she volunteered to work overtime and clean up when the place closed. He was all over Adam's flat. He snuck into the steamy bathroom as she tried in vain to scrub the sadness and shadows off of her. He sat on the threadbare rug on the stained tile floor as she washed herself over and over again, and told her funny stories. He was in the bedroom at night, holding her hand in comfort as she cried herself to sleep. There were nights where he'd sleep on the couch, when she'd bring staggering, faceless strangers home, because sometimes the gentle words of a dead boy didn't help her. He was always in the kitchen. Eating cereal and tea sloppily at the scratched and scorched wooden table, or staying with her for hours at the counter as she stood and stared at a plateful of food before tossing it in the bin. He haunted her, but it was a strange sort of haunting: she needed it, she needed him.
Because having Chris follow her around after she had run away was nothing compared to what Sid was doing to her. Sid was everywhere in New York City. He was every face that passed her on the pavement, every customer at the diner, every man she brought back to the flat that wasn't hers. It was every part of him too. His voice rang in her ears all the time, the sound of his laugh was deep in her bones. She saw his smile in every surface. His smell, though she wasn't sure how, permeated the apartment. Sometimes she couldn't breathe and would have to open a window and stick her head out to gulp lungfuls of harsh city air to get away from it. It made her eyes water and her heart hurt. When this would happen, Chris would stand beside her, rubbing circles on her bad and drying her face.
She was desperately homesick, though she couldn't face going back. Firstly, she didn't know where home was, or even if she had one. The dull ache she felt for being somewhere else wasn't grounded in a specific place where she felt she belonged. For a while, home had been her flat with Chris, but she couldn't go back there. She couldn't walk by his door every day and pretend it was alright. And secondly, what was the point of going back if the ghosts she had run away from had just followed her here? She was sure they would haunt her all the way back to Bristol.
She was thinking about this as she stood in the familiar place by the sink, a bowl of untouched chili in front of her. Chis was sitting at the table, watching her. All of the sudden, a wave of sadness rolled over her. She was so alone in such an incredibly large world. Her only companions were the ghost of a boy she had watched die in her arms, and the face of the boy she was too scared to love. She had no home, her parents didn't care about her anymore, and her far-away friends were busy planning their lives and growing up.
"What's up, Cass?" Chris asked from the table.
Cassie jumped. It was ironic, that she was having this conversation with him, of all people.
"I'm so sad," she said, in that blunt way of hers that only she could manage.
"I know," Chris said softly. "You belong here."
"I don't belong anywhere!" Cassie cried, voicing what she had been thinking over and over in her mind as her dinner had rapidly cooled.
"No, Cass," Chris said. "I don't belong anywhere. You can belong wherever you want to belong, if you're with him."
Cassie didn't ask who he was talking about, she didn't need to. "He's gone now," she muttered, taking a sip of cloudy tap water.
"No, you're gone," Chris said firmly, correcting her.
Cassie whipped around to glare at him. "When did you get so fucking smart?" she shouted at him, slamming her fist down on the counter. The dishes didn't even rattle.
Chris grinned cheekily and put his hands behind his head, leaning back in his chair. "Dying helps," he said, laughing.
Cassie inhaled sharply. She didn't laugh. "That's not funny," she said, and Chris sobered up immediately.
"Seriously, Cass. What are you going to do?" he asked, returning the front two legs of the chair safely to the ground.
Cassie turned away from him, and tears stung her eyes. "I don't know," she whispered. "I don't know what I'm supposed to do now."
She couldn't hear him get up – he didn't make noise when he moved – but rather she sensed him near her. She turned her head and say that he was standing next to her, about two feet away, his hands shoved deep into his pockets. It was such a familiar pose that it made her heart ache, yearning for the real Chris, the one that wasn't here anymore. She wanted desperately to hold his hand, but he didn't move closer to her, so she reached for her glass instead. Her hands shook badly.
"You need to eat something Cassie," Chris muttered. Her head felt heavy and she lowered it. She closed her eyes, but tears escaped past her eyelashes and rolled down her cheeks.
Chris was wiping them away when it happened. She didn't know what caused it: why now, why here, why when she was with him. Maybe it was because she hadn't been sleeping well, or the feel of his cold touch, or the fact that she hadn't eaten in five days, but suddenly she broke. The coat of numbness she had worn protectively around her thin shoulders fell to the dirty ground, and she felt everything. She felt it all, every single emotion she had been pushing away since Adam left and she was all alone in this city. The huge world was closing in on her, it was getting darker and hotter; suddenly the world was too small for her and she couldn't fit in it anymore. Stars swam in front of her vision as the kitchen grew farther away. The sounds of the city – the constant wail of the sirens and the harsh, strangely-accented shouts of her abusive next door neighbor and his poor wife – were miles away, but she could hear the sound of Sid's laughter echoing through her body. She looked up, blinking rapidly, and all she saw were Chris's eyes. She stumbled and nearly fell into the corner of the counter, but Chris lurched forward and steadied her before she hit her head. She crumpled to the floor, Chris sliding down with his back against the cabinet to sit next to her, her heavy head falling from his shoulder to being cradled in his lap. Everything was dark and pulsing in front of her. Maybe this was what dying was.
Chris brushed hair out of her eyes. "Hang in there, Cass. Hang in there, okay? He's coming. He's coming so soon."
Cassie opened her mouth to reply, to say something back – anything – but the world finally caved in completely, suffocating her, and she surrendered, choking, to its darkness.
Please review! I'm also working on a HP related story, as well as an HP update and an update for this story, if y'all like it!