Mr. Horice Wendal.
She rang the door bell. Glancing at her watch she read 8:59. She was on time, technically she was early, and not that it had set her scattered mind at any ease. She waited patiently, tapping her foot in an anxious habit. As the door opened, she stared at the heavily built; sandal and sock clad Racoon in front of her, she gulped and downcast her gaze from his warm eyes.
"Sorry." She mumbled, cheeks starting to flush.
This was how every Tuesday and Thursday therapy session would start. A young pink hedgehog, barely old enough to know what life had in store for her, yet she held the burden of an elderly woman, suffering from severe guilt.
"Amy, please come in! It's nice to see you again. How're you, dear?" The Racoon smiled kindly, although the smile went unnoticed, the small girl kept her eyes to the floor, as she took a step forward, stumbling over a few words, barely sounding like an understandable sentence. Amy did not look where she was walking; eye's still locked with the floor, collided with the man, only lightly stepping on his right toe. She made a light squeak, as her head flew upwards in an instant, eye's locking with the man for only a brief second before her hand flew up to her face.
"I'm sorry! I'm sorry, really Mr. Wendal. I should have been looking where I were going! I'm so stupid! I'm so-so useless! I-I.."
"Amy, please, it's okay! I-"
"No, I'm sorry! I'm sorry." She mumbled through wet sobs.
Mr. Wendal looked up to the white ceiling, rubbing his temple with his right hand, as he let out a sympathetic sigh. It was the fifth time he'd heard her say the 'S' word in literally five minutes. He thought they'd been making progress with this.
'Then again, she did use to be worse...'
Mr. Wendal bent down beside her, pulling her arms away from her face, getting her to look at him, if only for a brief moment; before she averted her gaze again. He smiled.
"Amy..." He said softly. "If I hear you say sorry to me one more time today, I will have to hit you over the head with my clipboard." The Racoon chuckled heartily. Amy loudly sniffed back her tears and let out a small giggle herself.
"I'm so- uh.. I mean, I just have a lot on my mind today."
"Isn't that the main reason you're here Amy. Come on," He extended a hand to her, along with a warm smile. "take a seat." She didn't take his hand, but gave a hand gesture that stated that she kindly refused his escort, strained the smallest of smiles and walked by his side.
Mr. Wendal studied the pink hedgehog lying across the armless sofa, after all it was part of his job, the hedgehog girl look drained, and unkempt. Her pink quills looked slightly greasy; messy, as if she had just put on her headband, and hadn't brushed it. Her face seemed pale, and her cheeks hollowed, as if she hadn't slept or eaten. Her plain red t-shirt was un-ironed, and dirty, same for the black skirt she wore that was being held up by a white, tattered leather belt. The tights she wore had a large ladder going up the middle of her left leg, and her red and black boots were worn out and scuffed. His eyes glazed over with an un-readable emotion. He jotted something down on his clip board and looked up at her.
"So, Amy, how was your weekend been?"
The girl visibly paled before him, she didn't answer.
"Amy?" He arched an inquisitive eyebrow. "You know... you can tell me anything, you seem more troubled than ever."
She winced and glanced at him for a millisecond.
"We're friends, Amy? Talk to me." After three minutes of thick silence, she sighed and looked at the Racoon with eyes full of mixed emotions, her gaze didn't falter as she spoke.
"My weekend was wonderful," the words flew off her tongue; this obviously wasn't the end of her explanation. He gestured her to carry on.
"We went to the beach; me and my friends. I was glad to just relax, but everyone seemed to think it was strange that I wasn't dressed for the occasion." The Racoon nodded.
"Did you have nothing to wear, Amy?"
"No," She responded immediately. Making the Racoon jump slightly, he wasn't expecting such a fast reply. "I have plenty of old bathing suits... but I didn't want anybody to see me so indecently. I didn't want to offend anyone."
"Offend? Amy..?" He sighed "Okay... what did you say to them when they asked you why you weren't dressed in swim wear?"
"I said that I didn't think it was very warm at first, and that I regretted it afterwards. Sonic then asked me if I'd like him to run me home, so I could change."
"Ah. Sonic? What a gentleman." Her eyes visibly narrowed as he said this. She frowned slightly. "I take it you declined." A small nod confirmed this,
"I declined politely; it would have burdened him anyway."
"Amy, if someone offers to do you a favour, then it isn't a burden." The statement went unheard.
"All the way through the rest of the day he kept looking at me strangely. I paid little attention and focused it mostly on my book."
"What were you reading, Amy?"
"The book you gave me to read. Needless to say... it's interesting."
"Interesting?... Is it helping you then Amy?" He look over his clip board, hopefully.
"I'm not sure. I think so." She huffed as if unsure and folded her hands upon her non-existent stomach. Fiddling with one of the many shells, on a small bracelet around her wrist.
"Needless to say Mr. Wendal, I disposed of the front cover." She chuckled sadistically. "I don't want people knowing I'm crazy."
"You're not crazy Amy!"
"It's your job to say that, anyway-" Mr. Wendal backed down, he wanted her to finish off her story. He'd lecture her later. "The day was going nice, I gossiped with Rouge, played with Cream and Cheese, engaged in a little volley ball with everybody. I joined in ! Can you believe that!" A small grin broke it's way on to her face.
"That's great, Amy!" She looked him, grinning impishly, a tiny spark in her own eyes, it reminded him of the old Amy.
"It was going great... we had a picnic. Everybody was in there couples, we watched the sunset!"
"You were in a couple?" Her grin faded...
Mr. Wendal cursed at him self. He should have let her finish.
"I'm just happy for the others." She smiled, her eyes showing a hint of pain. "After it all we parted ways, but Sonic came running after me, He was waving the book you had given me in my direction. I thanked him for giving it me back and tried to get on my way. But he stopped me, and looked into my eyes. Asking if there was something I wasn't telling him." Amy took in a shaky breath before continuing.
"I said no, and smiled. But he grabbed my hand, which made me jerk it away, on instinct. I was so harsh... I didn't mean it. He looked angry. And said that I were being stupid; that I had changed, I just ran before he could see me cry..." She sniffed at the memory.
"Sonic shouldn't have been so harsh, but Amy, if he knew what was wrong, he wouldn't have been so hostile. You really should tell your friends; One by one. You don't have to necessarily tell Sonic first. "
"I can't tell them!" Came another quick reply from Amy.
"I promise you, nothing bad will happen." Mr. Wendal gave his best reassuring smile. "Nobody will judge you."
Amy looked unconvinced. She stared at for what felt like ages; Contemplating his idea. Three high pitched beeps bought her out of her trance, she looked straight at the clock, she knew what those beeps meant. It was ten o' clock time for her to leave and let- in her opinion- some other unfortunate Mobian, get everything out in the open only to have to shove it all back in afterwards. She truly loved Mr. Wendal, to her; he was the only person she could freely talk to about her problems. The majority of the reason being, that he is under the act of confidentiality. It's clear to say that she is in fact embarrassed greatly by her 'self-esteem' issue, but Amy preferred to call it depression. And being who people thought Amy was- cheerful, bright, and Sonic The Hedgehogs main obsesser. Being labelled as depressed by the public made her think she'd turn out to be a laughing stock. She never understood how she turned out to be so messed up in the head in the first place. But it didn't just happen over night; she knew that for a fact.
"Well, Amy. I'll have to ask you to leave... But take my advice. Tell someone else. Just one person. If you do, phone me straight away. Otherwise I'll see you on Thursday." He smiled at her. His warm eyes pleading for her to take his advice. She smiled back and nodded. Telling him that she'd try. She felt considerably better. She very gingerly shook his extended hand and left without another word.
He rang the door bell. Glancing at his watch he read 10:23. He was late. Then again he was always late... regardless of his speed. He waited impatiently, tapping his foot, old habits never die. As the door opened, he stared at the heavily built; sandal and sock clad Racoon in front of him, he scowled at the Racoon's amused grin.
"Here to talk about your love life again, Sonic?" His scowl only intensified.
"Shut up, Horice."
Sonic narrowed his eyes as he let himself inside the small building. Mr. Horice Wendal, let out a throaty chuckle as he shut the door behind him.