A/N: Sorry everyone for the LONG, LONG hiatus. I was busy writing other stories and I sort of forgot about this one. If you can't tell, I love writing drama fics, so it's not like it pains me to write about death. I've been thinking about my cousin more and more these past few months and his death is really starting to effect me, but I'm not dwelling on it. He's in a better place and I'm just trying to let it go. Thanks for all the support! It means a lot. Here's the next chapter:
Chapter 9: The Doors
"Stephanie? Stephanie, are you awake?" Stephanie awake with a start. She looked around and everything was white. She felt so light and airy.
"Stephanie, sweetie?" a voice said on her right. Stephanie looked over and saw a beautiful, blonde woman in her late 20's kneeling beside her.
"Wh-who are you?" she asked the woman shyly. Steph looked at the woman more closely. Her hair was long and blonde, like Steph's. Her eyes were a deep blue that seemed like an ocean. She looked to be fairly tall, and petite. Suddenly Stephanie remembered who she was.
"Mom?" she asked barely above a whisper. The woman smiled and nodded. Stephanie flung herself at her mother and embraced her. Her mother was smaller than she remembered. When Stephanie was 5, she remembered her mother being so much bigger than her. Now, Stephanie was about her size.
"I can't believe it's you, Mom!"
Pam smiled at her daughter. She had grown so much. "Sweetie, I've missed you so much! But I wasn't expecting to see you so soon."
Stephanie again looked around. The room she was in was completely white. It was whiter than the hospital room she was in. It was whiter than fresh snow. She looked at her mother. She was wearing a long sleeved, white dress. Stephanie then looked down at her own clothes. She was still wearing her hospital gown and robe, but she did notice that her gown was stained with blood. What am I doing here, and why is my mom here too? She asked herself. Am I in heaven? Stephanie again looked up at her mother questionably. Her mother nodded slowly as if she knew what Steph was thinking. The fourteen year old gasped. I can't be dead! I'm only 14! I just can't be dead!
"Stephanie," her mother said gently. "You aren't dead, sweetheart. You are just a sleep."
"What? Why? Why am I here, mom?" Stephanie demanded.
"Sweetie," her mother said as she slowly got up. She grabbed Stephanie's hand and led her towards the door. "I have brought you here to show you something."
Stephanie grew curious. What did her mother want her to see? It had to be important, because Pam was tugging on her like a child on Christmas morning. Stephanie followed her mother down a long white hallway. Pam stopped at a door on the left, and opened it.
"Stephanie, I have brought you here because I know you have been feeling left out lately. You feel like you are the black sheep in the family, but I wanted to show you what life would be like with out you. This is the first door of two, and I'll let you decide which you will chose." Stephanie looked at her mother full of confusion as she led her through the door.
Suddenly the standard, white room turned into Stephanie's kitchen. She saw the whole gang sitting around the table, only they all looked much older. Her father, a man who was into his late 30's, was now a 50-year-old man. Uncle Jesse and Aunt Becky looked like they were about in their mid-40's. Nicky and Alex looked to be like they were 11 or 12. D.J. looked to be in her late 20's. Finally, Joey looked to be a tired 50-year-old. Joey looked like he hadn't smiled in a long time. Michelle and Comet were nowhere to be found.
"Mom? Why do they all look so sad? And where is Michelle and Comet?"
Pam smiled and put her finger to her lips, motioning for quiet.
Stephanie turned towards the scene again. Michelle had just walked in; at least Steph thought it was Michelle. Michelle looked completely different. She looked to be about 16 years old. Her hair was dyed black and she was wearing a skimpy skirt and a short sleeve shirt that was skin tight and ended right above her pierced belly button. So much for 'Sweet Little Michelle,' Stephanie thought astonished.
"Hi Michelle," Jesse said to his niece calmly. Everyone, except for Danny, greeted her.
"Mom, why didn't dad say anything to Michelle?"
Pam smiled at her daughter. "After you died, Steph, Michelle became moody and antisocial. By the time she got into her teens, Michelle became…well…very promiscuous and she started dressing like she is now. Your father disapproved of this, and he threatened to kick her out unless she changed her attitude and her wardrobe. Michelle refused and she emancipated herself from your father and she moved in with a friend."
Stephanie gasped, "Wow! I never thought Michelle would be like that just because of me!"
Pam again smiled gently, "You underestimate the love people have for you."
Stephanie again turned to the scene in front of her. Michelle had joined everyone at the table. Jesse then spoke up.
"Thank you for coming, Michelle, D.J., and Joey," Jesse said.
Steph was confused. She knew that Michelle and D.J. had moved out, but she didn't know Joey did, also.
"Joey moved out about 2 years after you died, Steph. He said that the memories and the sadness had overcome him," Pam told her daughter.
Stephanie nodded and watched the scene. Jesse started talking again. "I wanted everyone to come here because as you all know, it is the anniversary of the day Stephanie died. I wish we could have all come together for a happier occasion, but I'm glad either way."
"Mom? Why do they get together after I die? We never did that for you," Stephanie asked her mother questionably.
Pam chuckled and said, "Steph, sweetie. You all did get together after I died, remember? Uncle Jesse and Joey moved in after I died. But after you died, Uncle Jesse, Aunt Becky, and the boys moved down the street. D.J. went to college, and Joey and Michelle moved away a couple of years later. Your father was left alone in the house."
Stephanie sadly looked away. She hated that her father was alone. She wanted to just go and hug him, but she couldn't.
Joey then started talking. "I'm happy to be here. My job at the factory is going good. I just wish that I wouldn't see so many people get hurt everyday. Last week, a man got his arm caught in one of the machines. They had to amputate it."
"Oh. I'm sorry Joey," D.J. told him comfortably. "My job is going good. Little Nina wishes that I would stay at home more, but I can't help it. Steve's company isn't doing so well, so I've had to work more and more."
Stephanie looked back at her mom. "D.J. married Steve?"
"Yes," Pam replied. "They have a son, Peter Daniel Hale, and a daughter, Nina Stephanie Hale."
"Stephanie?" she asked.
"Yes," her mother replied. "They wanted to have her first name Stephanie, but Steve thought it would be too painful."
Stephanie nodded and turned her attention back to the scene.
Michelle started speaking. "Everything is going good at my friend, Haley's house. We got a new T.V. the other day. It has cable and everything."
"That's good, Michelle," Becky said. "I'm glad everything is going good for you. How are you doing Danny?"
Just then Danny broke down crying. "I miss her so much! I've lost all of my daughters in that one night! I should have watched her more carefully! I shouldn't of let her sneak out! It's all my fault."
Stephanie glanced at her mother. Pam motioned for her to turn around and continue watching.
Jesse leaned over to embrace Danny. "It's not your fault Danny! It's mine! I shouldn't have yelled at her. It's my fault."
Michelle jumped in then. "Oh no! You can't take all the blame! It was my fault that Uncle Jesse got mad at her! I wasn't paying attention to Nicky and Alex. I should have been yelled at, not her."
Nicky and Alex then started, "What? No, it was our fault for messing up Dad's studio. We should have been yelled at!"
"Enough!" Stephanie yelled at her family. "It was my fault, everyone! It was my fault! I ran off and snuck out! I ran out in front of that car! It's all my fault! You can't blame yourselves for it!"
Stephanie continued yelling at her family, who seemed unfazed by Steph's yelling. She felt herself slip away from the scene. She slipped past her mother who mouthed that she loved her. She then saw Gabrielle, smiling at her. Gabby was dressed in white and she had a paintbrush in her hand. Gabrielle then handed the paintbrush to Stephanie and she left. Steph continued to yell out, but no one could hear her.
"Mom! Gabrielle? Make them understand! It's my fault! I did it! It's my fault!"
"Steph! Stephanie! Wake up! Wake up, Steph!" a voice yelled at her. Suddenly, Stephanie jolted up. She saw her family standing around her bed. She looked around frantically.
"Where's mom! What happened?" she yelled out. She saw that she was in her bedroom. Stephanie glanced down and saw that she was wearing the outfit that she had on the day she was hit by the car. She let out a deep sigh. "It was just a dream!" she exclaimed. Her family looked at her like she was crazy. Stephanie glanced around. She particularly picked out Michelle.
"Michelle! You're not a goth! Joey! You're smiling! D.J.! You're still you, and your not married to Steve! Dad! Thank God you aren't alone! Uncle Jesse you aren't old! Oh I'm so glad this didn't turn out like I had dreamt it would!" The whole gang looked at her like she was completely nuts.
"Steph, what on earth are you talking about?" her dad asked. "And why were you yelling for your mother and for someone named Gabrielle?"
"It was just a dream, Dad. It was just a dream," Stephanie sighed and slowly got up. As she got up, she saw a small paintbrush lying on her bed. Suddenly she understood that she had been given a second chance. She had chosen the second door.
A/N: I hope you all liked it! My arm hurts. LOL that was pretty random.