Chapter 7 : The Unwanted Gift Given


So...once again Rita slammed a fist onto the snooze bar.

Five minutes later, she repeated as was neccesary.

And again.

And again.

And again, for hours. Until Roddy was sent by Rita's mother to wake her.

"Rita?" he whispered, remembering to keep his nose a safe distance away from her memorably dangerous hands. "C'mon, wake up. It's almost one."

Rita sat up, yawned, and rubbed her eyes. After she gained actual consciousness, her eyes widened. "Please say it hasn't happened again."

Roddy shook his head. "No, it didn't. You're in your own bed, as I was in my own."

Rita rested her head in her hands. "Thank god." She sighed, obviously relieved.

Suddenly her head jerked back up. "Did you say it's almost one?" she asked, throwing back the sheets and heading for her closet.

"Yeah. Your mum wanted to go and decide how your father's funeral is going to be done. Flowers, casket, services, pallbearers, et cetera."

Rita grabbed her green shirt and a pair of blue jeans and went into her bathroom to change. "That's the last thing I want to do, the fact being that it's almost Christmas Day."

"I know, I know, and it's the last thing I think you need to do, the fact being that you've been through so much in the last 72 hours."

"Like what?"

"The beginning of your guilt trip, your father's death, your mother's...well, you know, being too occupied to talk to you anymore, that sort of stuff."

"Uh, guilt trip?"

Roddy hung his head in embarrassment. "Yeah. You know, a few nights ago? That thing, two nights ago? Yeah?"

Rita felt her chest shrinking with the guilt emitting from the thought of it. "Yeah. I remember. All too well, I'm afraid."

Roddy nodded. Rita came out fully dressed and sat down to put her boots on. "What if mum finds out?"

"there's no telling. We can't fight the consequences if she discovers it. We're probably not getting anything but a lump of coal from Father Christmas this year. If that at all."

A single tear fell from Rita's eye and onto her jeans.

"Oh, come on, Rita," Roddy said, standing up and sitting on the bed next to her. "There also is a chance that our secret will stay hidden. Everyone could die without knowing.

"But Dad knows about it," She thought. "I can't live with what I know he's ashamed of me for."

Christmas came and went as it does every year, but what happened A few weeks afterward wasn't a gift Rita wanted to recieve.

Dun dun dun Dun...