You hate how they look at you like you're going to blow up. They've seen the scars (those pink scars along your wrists that just scream at them, "Look at me—Leah's broken."). And you just hate it so much because they won't shut up.

"Wasn't she Sam Uley's girlfriend?"

"I heard he didn't even break up with her before proposing to her cousin."

"Poor girl."


It's all lies.

But you don't mind the lies, and the whispering. You mind the pity, because you're Sue Clearwater's daughter, Leah, and you don't need pity. You don't need them. (But what you're trying to say is you don't need him—but the words won't dislodge themselves from the roof of your mouth.)

Seth catches you whimpering in the corner of the living room (you'd touched the stupid gray wolf figurine he gave you, and you don't think it's ever meant more) and tries to insist that you get help. But that sounds so stupid that you barely scoff at him, and he's off again, shaking his head.

You can feel the foundations tremble. (He's your brother, and if he's lost faith then what next?)

"Hey, can I have a box of the Marlboro's and the disposable razor?" you find yourself asking Jared, indicating to the blue razor on the rack behind him. (He's got the job behind the counter to afford the down payment on Kim's ring—and that tears Leah a little bit, but she doesn't know why.)

"Lee…" he starts.

"Drop it, Jared. I don't want your stupid psycho freak-out bull, 'kay?"

"I didn't pin you as that type of girl," he murmurs, but passes over your fags and the razor anyways. You hand him all your cash, and turn to stomp out of the store, but the niggling urge to say something won't go away.

So you do. "Shows how much Sam knew about me."

(That's not what he said, but it's what he meant. And you're not stupid.)

"Leah, I didn't—"

"You didn't need to." And he's left listening to the faint tinkling of the bell above the door, and you hope he feels guilty. You're not sure why, but you need someone else to suffer.

You can feel the walls shake, and they quake and you know they're coming down.

With your third cigarette pinched between your lips and the cheap razor pressed to your wrist you feel finally over it. Even if it's just for a minute. You just want the blood to flow.

It's taken you almost one whole afternoon to muster the courage to press the blade hard enough to draw blood (and a whole bunch of memories) but its worth it when you see the crimson bead on the edge of the blade.

(Perhaps you can stop hurting now…)

But then the invitation comes in the mail—and every single wall you've spent the last three months putting up, brick by brick (all thrown at you by the people you loved) comes tumbling down and pins you in the rubble.

They didn't even invite you to the wedding.

Aunt Sue,

Despite all that's happened, I hope you can come. I miss Uncle Harry too, and I hear Seth's growing so big. Love always,


And you don't know whether to laugh or cry—the fact that she's not even mentioned you in their stupid invitation, nor the handwritten letter with it's curly letters just means that she's scared of you. Of what you've become. (Of what she's made you.)

And you know you'll be there, just so you can torture yourself a little bit.

You dig up your best dress from it's box, and you're not sure why, but you know you're not doing to sit back and allow things to go smoothly.

You slide into the (cherry) red dress and (killer) heels, and you wonder if maybe you're pretty enough yet. (If you were pretty, he wouldn't have left you for Emily. And now she's ugly too, with her long gashes which may never heal.) You hope it all tears him apart.

It should—because you were willing to let him make you ugly. And you wouldn't have minded the scars.

You stare blankly at the happy couple as they repeat their vows, and you can feel the fragments of your heart harden. You want nothing more than to grab their hair (he's combed it, finally, you notice) and bash them together so they can be broken and bleeding together.

In that moment, you're furious. You want to rip them to shreds and then light them on fire and dance around their ashes.

You feel the ripping before you know what's happened. (What you've become.) And, finally, you feel free. Utterly free.

You can run (away) twice as fast. You are twice as strong (so now you can stop hurting, and pick up the pieces).

Then you hear his voice, and your freedom comes crashing down. And the bricks tumble down at you.

"Leah, phase back."

And you know that now, you'll never be free. Not while you're in his pack—not while you take his orders.

You make yourself a promise: you won't love again.

But then Jacob comes around, and it's just like Sam all over again. Only it doesn't break your heart (because you don't really have one anymore, now do you, princess?) this time, and you can walk away.

(But he didn't promise you anything, Leah, so why do you think you deserve anything?)

You just thought (expected) him to feel something—to want you. You both have no imprints, and you need the stability of that similiarity. Or in instability, you realise. Because he chooses the baby over you.

You don't think you can take anymore of it.

You haven't got anymore strength to put up your castle; your walls crumble down.