[[Holly: And now, thrilling conclusion time!
Mello: And is it actually thrilling?
Holly: Not really. The thrillingest part was last chapter.
L: Then you're kind of lying. Also, thrillingest isn't a word. Like, at all.
Near: But it's a pretty fake word.
Matt&Mello&L: SHUT UP NEAR.
Holly: Anyway. Here's the end! Hope you like it. :3]]
It's been two weeks since that day, and I'm still sitting at home. A two week suspension, the principal said. I suppose I can't complain. I mean, considering what I did, I could have gotten a lot worse. I didn't mean to do it- you have to believe me when I say that I didn't really want to hurt him. Not the way I did. I could never do that to anyone. I'm still not entirely clear on what exactly happened- no matter how many times people tell me, the memory just isn't there.
I cried a lot, at first. Not because I felt bad about what I did, either, but out of anger at Matt, for saying what he said, for getting me into trouble this way. In my mind, it was his fault. What he said was out of line, and he made me hurt him, and that made me get in trouble. Why didn't he get in trouble? He'd hurt me too, after all, he'd hit first. I know, I suggested that we fight, but I didn't want it to go this far...
Estella stayed home for a while too, apparently. I didn't even know what I could say to her. I loved her, and Matt had stole her from me. But it wasn't even that I wanted her back, now. Not after what Matt had told me, not now that I knew that she'd been with him all along. She was...I can't say nothing to me, as much as I want to. I still loved her, I just didn't want to be with her, if that makes sense. Even so, after a few days of solitary confinement at home, I decided I should go speak with her. There were some things I needed to hear, from her- not from the devil's mouth.
"Estella...how could you?"
She was in tears the moment she saw me, as though simply looking at my face provoked a visceral reaction. I almost rolled my eyes, angry as I was, but I couldn't. She looked so pitiful, so pathetic, that I very nearly felt sorry for her. But then I remembered everything that had happened, and all feelings of pity fell away.
"I'm here to say goodbye, Estella. That's the only reason."
"...Well, I was going to come over to say goodbye to you, too, so..."
"We're moving. ...My dad says that this is...too much, and that we should go somewhere else now, so I can...move on, I guess."
I blinked. This was a surprise. I couldn't help but feel upset. Just because I didn't want to be with her didn't mean I wanted her out of my life entirely. There was something sad about thinking I wouldn't see her face pass in the halls anymore. On the bright side, I wouldn't be seeing her and Matt together anymore, so...
"What about Matt?"
"...What about him?"
"Did you tell him that you're moving?"
"...Yes, I told him...He got angry. And...he broke up with me. He looks awful, Juan..."
"He broke up with you? Why?!"
"He thinks...I'm on your side. I don't know whose side I'm on, though. I think...he said some awful things out there, but you...oh, Juan, if you'd have seen him..."
"Shut up, Estella. I don't want to hear about how horrible he looks, okay? I don't care."
"I'm serious. I hate him. The worse he looks, the better. After all this, you still think he's in the right?"
"I didn't say that, Juan...I'm just saying that I don't know who's right. I really don't know which of you I'm supposed to believe..."
"He broke up with you!"
"Does that matter? I'm moving...we would have had to break up anyway."
I shook my head, once. Then again, more violently. She looked almost frightened of me as I turned away.
"Estella, goodbye. I hope you're happy. I hope things are better, wherever you're moving to. I hope you forget about me."
I walked out of her house, and out of her life, without looking back, impatiently wiping away the tears that threatened to fall. I wouldn't cry over her. Not again.
I drew my knees closer to me, holding them to my stomach, staring at a wall. I had hardly moved, in the time I'd been here. Occasionally I'd try to watch TV, and once every other day or so I forced myself to eat something. But other than that, I've been too lost in my own mind to do anything. I left the house twice- two ill fated trips, one I took for my own sake and the other for my mother's.
I felt sorry for Mom. She was so supportive, so sympathetic towards me, that I almost wished she'd stop. I didn't deserve it. On some level, I knew that I'd screwed up majorly, that I deserved the punishment I was getting. But Mom seemed intent on complaining to the school, on getting Matt in trouble. I wanted Matt in trouble, too, but I didn't want my mom fighting my battles for me. Admittedly, me fighting my own battles had not worked out so well, but even so. It seemed to me almost as though my mother hated Matt more than I did.
That's why I was so surprised when she made her suggestion.
"Juan...maybe it would be good if visited that boy at the hospital."
I just stared at her.
"Apologize to him, Juan. Be the bigger man. I know he did just as bad as you, but you need to be strong here. Maybe he'll apologize to you, too. Who knows?"
Matt? Apologize to me? When pigs fly, maybe.
Even so, there was no use in arguing with my mother. She always knew- or thought she knew- when she was right, and she never gave in. With a half shrug, I stood up, heading out the door. My intuition told me this was a horrible idea.
My intuition is usually right.
"What the hell are you doing here, dude?"
I hadn't expected any other reaction from him, as I walked in the room. He was sitting up, his fingers poking the buttons at the DS they'd apparently let him use. Matt's parents seemed reluctant to let me in at first, but I told them I was here to apologize, and eventually they'd caved in. Apparently evil wasn't genetic. His parents seemed nice enough.
He laughed his creepy laugh. I looked at his face, biting my lip, deciding against saying anything. The entire right side of his face was covered in bandages. His right eye was open, mocking, as it always was.
"You want to apologize for this? Look at this bandages, dude. You messed me up pretty bad."
"Yeah, well...I'm sorry about that. I didn't mean to."
Matt ignored me, playing his game. I stood there, awkwardly, noticing some odd things- like how he was still wearing his cell phone wrist watch, or how he was wearing a hospital gown- I'd never seen him out of his racer jacket before- or-
He looked up at me.
...Or how there was a fire that burned in his eye, a fire that scared me.
"You...didn't...mean...to? I'm sure you didn't mean to, dude. Dead sure."
"Well...yeah. I'm sorry, alright? I'm just gonna-"
"I don't know if I can accept your apology, dude. I'm gonna consult myself, okay?"
I could only stare at him as he started punching numbers into his cell phone, holding it to his ear. He spoke softly, and I couldn't hear him. Of course, if he was talking to himself, he probably wasn't saying anything at all. After a few moments he snapped the phone shut and looked back at me. The half of his mouth that was visible was turned up in a frighteningly devilish grin.
"You want to know what you did to me, Juan, dude?"
I started to shake my head, taking a step back. I had a premonition of what was about to happen, and I didn't want any part of it.
With one swift movement, Matt ripped the bandages right off his face.
I stared, horrified. His eye was open, and apparently working, so that, at least, wasn't blood on my hands. But his face...claw marks ran deep, straight across his right eye, giving his face a horrifying quality that was entirely apt. But even so...
I did this. This...is my fault
"How do you like me now, Juan? I'm...Matt Engarde."
He laughed. His laugh had a tinge of hysteria to it, like someone who knew things couldn't get worse and yet was quite satisfied with the way things were going. I backed away, slowly at first, and then wheeled around, running out as quickly as I could, as the doctors rushed in to fix his bandages. I refused to cry, but I came close.
Even as I ran out the door, towards home, I heard his laugh echoing behind me.
It was Sunday. My two-week suspension ended tomorrow- I would be returning to school in the morning. Conveniently, Matt was just getting out of the hospital- he'd be coming back as well. I'd heard that the principal would be splitting us up, putting us into separate classes, hoping this wouldn't happen again. A nice thought, but just because we were in different classes, didn't mean I could avoid him forever.
I thought of those lines, marring that once perfect face. I shuddered to myself.
Hadn't I done the right thing, though?
This thought had come to me several times over the last few weeks. Wasn't this justice? Matt Engarde was a horrible person. That was nothing but fact to me. Wasn't I alerting the world that he wasn't the perfect person that face seemed to show? Wasn't it only right to reveal the devil in plain sight?
I didn't know. I couldn't know.
But the next day, I'd have to face him, scars and all. The devil would be on display. And after everything that had happened, in the end, nothing had changed.
He was still my enemy.
And he always would be.
Holly: The end! I'm not going to coerce you into R&Ring, hopefully you just will, since it's done now. XD Yay! I hope you liked it. :3