He's been asking me if I want to do things all week. I keep saying no. He just looks at me with confusion, and then runs off.
I can't say that. That won't solve it.
He likes it that I'm older now. That I can do all the things he's always done. Now he asks to spend time with me, instead of the other way around. Once, that would have made my day, my week. Now it just annoys me. I don't want to run in circles, thanks. That doesn't interest me. I don't really care about this tree or that kind of flower, like you do. I know you appreciate natural beauty, but I don't. Not anymore. I like machines. And besides, when was the last time you helped me build anything.
But no, that's not the point. The point is, I have to tell him. Before it gets worse.
I didn't want to deal with it so soon.
"So," he says, in his cocky, you're-gonna-listen-and-listen-good voice. "What's up with you?"
"Nothing," I say, pretending that my screwdriver is stuck. Of course, he knows me too well and pointedly pulls it out of my hand.
"Something's up," he says, twirling the screwdriver around and around his fingers. "Ev'ry time I show my face you hide yours. What's goin' on, bro? Don't you like me anymore?"
My heart stops.
Has he figured it out?
There's no way.
"Heh heh," says Sonic, tossing the screwdriver on the table, "looks like I hit a nerve there. You're gonna tell me what you're thinkin', kiddo, 'cause I can't read your mind."
"Really," I say. "You always seemed to.
"That's what I mean. You're actin' all strange. Like you're not Tails, like you're someone else."
"Yeah. I just caught a chill is all."
He sighs and sits down, leaning on his arm and staring at me. "You know I hate being lied to."
I look at him.
"Tell me. What's goin' on? Lemme help you."
"You can't help me," I say.
"Sure I can," he says, smirking, "I can help anyone. I'm the hero in this picture!"
My fur stands up and instinctively I bare my fangs. He blinks and cocks his head a little.
"Never seen that happen before," he says. "Something must be really bothering you."
"YES!" I growl. "YOU ARE!"
His face instantly goes blank as he backs off.
"'kay, fine then," he says, standing up. "Look, Tails, I'm getting pretty tired of trying to get through to you. If you don't want to talk about it then say so. I've hardly even seen you in the past couple of weeks. I don't understand why whatever the hell you're doing is more important than your friends and family, but I guess I'll leave you to it. You'll have to deal with it by yourself pretty soon, because it's damn frustrating trying to talk to a brick wall, which, by the way, would at least be warmer and more responsive than you."
"That doesn't even make sense," I snap.
"Really? I have to explain it, Mr. I-have-an-IQ-of-three-freakin'-hundred? And also, being smart doesn't just mean you passed a million tests. It means you can pass the test of life."
"Stop thinking, Sonic, you'll hurt yourself," I say, and I feel a jolt in my stomach as I realize what I've just said. He doesn't turn away, lets me see the hurt in his eyes.
"I can break a brick wall, Tails, and get to whatever it is behind it I need. I can run into it, I can jump into it, and I can pound it into dust. But no matter how much I try to do those things with words to get through to you, you just sit there. I know I ain't good with words, but it used to be that you always understood what I was sayin'. Even before I said it."
He turns around.
I have to do it now.
I have to.
I have no choice.
"I HATE YOU SONIC!" I scream at him, at his ugly back, watching his stupid hair wave as he turns his head to look at me in total shock.
"W...what?" he stutters. "What did you say?" "I said I hate you."
He looks around in confusion. "What...what did I do?"
"You're you," I say. "And everything about you offends me."
"I hate the way you look, I hate those damn shoes, I hate it when you call me Tails, I hate it the way you walk around like the world belongs to you."
Every time I told him another reason for my hatred, he looked as if I'd hit him, hard. Like I was ripping away his soul, piece by piece.
Maybe I was.
As I continue, that tiny little voice in the back of my head, the one that tells me right from wrong, tells me to stop. That every word I say destroys everything we ever had. "Tails, stop!" he cries. "I know you're erasing our future, but do you have to attack the past as well?"
I've been telling him of all the stupid things he's done or made me do.
"Please," Sonic says, as he tries to blink away his tears, "leave me the past. Let me remember..."
"What good is that gonna do you?" I snarl. "It won't change anything."
"Because, Tails," he says in a weak voice, one I've only heard rarely, "I still love you."
Looking as if he has been beaten from the inside out, Sonic runs away.
The voice in the back of my head creates guilty feelings in my conscience. But its whispers die quickly and satisfaction sets in.
I have freed myself of him.
The doorbell rings.
"Unh," I say. "Don' wanna answer that."
It rings again. I clench my teeth.
"I'm sleeping, dammit!"
It won't stop ringing now. I yell in frustration and go downstairs. I yank open the damn door and behind it is Amy. She's crying.
Beside her is Cream.
As I scan their faces Knuckles appears behind them.
He, too, is crying.
"What the happened to you guys?" I say, instantly concerned, my anger at being roused from a deep slumber dissipating in the cool morning light. If Knuckles is crying something really bad must've happened.
"It's...it's Sonic," says Amy.
Then I remember.
They don't know.
He wouldn't have told them.
"What about Sonic?"
"He...he tried..." starts Amym but then the tears fall harder and she buries her face in her hands. "Oh God Sonic, why?" she sobs.
"What? What did he do?" Knuckles comes forward, pulls Amy into a comforting hug. She folds into him in her need, her face smothering the crescent moon on his chest. He swallows hard, then tells me:
"He committed suicide."
They left me alone with him.
They don't know.
They can never know.
They have to know.
If I keep it a secret I'll be living a lie. I don't want to live a lie.
I don't hate them.
I only hate him.
But a feeling is creeping upon me, forming long icy fingers down my back.
I don't hate him.
I miss him now.
I need him now.
What have I done?
He hung himself.
You can see that he was crying.
Do they wonder why?
Do they know?
Did he tell them?
Sonic, why did I say those things?
Why couldn't you tell they weren't true?
His body lies there.
I am whole.
His body is intact.
Both of our spirits have been broken.
Technically I am still alive.
But I feel dead inside.
He took a piece of me.
He took a piece of me with him.
The biggest piece.
I will never be happy again.