A/N: OMG I'm aliveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! *gets tomato in face, but calmly peels it off* I expected as much, seeing as I haven't updated in MONTHS and people want to see an ending. *gets eggs in face and sighs* At least now I can taste a raw omlette.
Anyway, quick little rant and off you go to read this chapter! This summer has been hectic and lots of stuff happened, but here's what YOU need to know ;) I am planning/writing two Gakuen Alice songfics, because I freakin' LOVE that anime/manga! Also, I'm starting college tomorrow, and, since I'm posting this chapter before starting school (barely but still) my dreams of becoming a Veterinarian have not been defeated! KLIYH will definatly never go into hiatus officially, since I work on it on and off, and I'm hoping I'll finish it completely by next year (NO GUARANTEES) but worst case scenario I finish it in two years. (Because I suck at updating stuff _) The biggest new thing is that I'm working on an original story based on my Daily Challenges Drabble "Of Blood and Honor" and "It's Too Late". So, if I take long to post (which, I probably will *gets pelted with all kinds of things for a full minute, then spits out the stuff that got into her mouth*) it's because of that.
Helga: OK OK Criminy! You keep them waiting for months. MONTHS! And you expect them to listen to all your life's story?
Me: Not my /life's/ story per say, as much as my summer to now story...
*Helga cracks knuckles and walks over to me*
*Blank error screen appears*
Arnold: Believe me, you don't want to see that...Remember that darkangel1326 doesn't own Hey Arnold or it's characters. Enjoy the chapter!
Keep Love In Your Heart
Chapter 5: Long Gone and Moved On
Written by: darkangel1326
Approved and Beta'd by: LycoRogue
"Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like." - Lao Tzu
He looked up at the electronic screens towering above his head. On there was a display of various states and countries in the world. He could go anywhere he chose, and leave these painful memories behind. It was one of the rare times a person literally had the world at their fingertips.
However, the power didn't faze Arnold. He didn't feel the giddiness an opportunity like this was supposed to bring. He didn't have a burst of excitement boil through him. All he knew was that his chance of happiness was gone and may never come back again.
He sighed and gathered his luggage. It was time to grow up and move on.
"So, where will we be going now, son?" Miles asked, in a tone to hopefully pick up his son's spirit.
Arnold looked up and tried to put some happiness in his voice. Even if it took all his strength to do so. "I'm not sure yet. I don't really want to go back to Seattle. I finished my internship there and was going to find a job in Hillwood, but, after…the accident, I know I can't stay there…" Arnold looked at his parents, as they nodded in agreement.
But, despite the decision of leaving, he had no direction and wasn't sure where he even wanted to go. If you do not care where you want to go, does it really matter where you go to begin with?A small voice in his mind told him.
Arnold had decided to leave Hillwood, his hometown, where all his friends were. And the place where he met…her. The one, the girl who changed his life, and whose life he also changed. The girl who was his soulmate, and the one that Fate ripped away from him, not once, but twice in his lifetime. Their memories were all around Hillwood, from Slausen's where they had the occasional date, to the park, where he had to say goodbye to her. No matter where he looked, or how much he tried to avoid it, her presence lived in Hillwood. Despite the fact that she no longer did.
In Medical School, Arnold learned of many different injuries he would have to treat as a doctor, one of which was referred to by his professor as a "clean break". The injury and this name were self-explanatory; basically, the bone was broken completely, it was not a part break, nor was it a half break, it was very simply split. His professor said that one of these was what all his students should hope for in the field. Since no bone pieces would cause further injury, it was a fairly easy injury to treat.
Lately, Arnold couldn't help but think back to this injury, and how it related to his current situation.
That's what I need right now. A "clean break". Just get away from everything that hurts. Even if it means leaving everything I've ever known.
Of course, Miles and Stella wouldn't let Arnold go anywhere without them. They knew he was depressed. And they didn't want to risk him doing something dangerous and reckless because of it. Even if he was twenty-six and had his PhD, deep down, he was their baby who was miraculously born in San Lorenzo all those years ago. They still felt the need to protect him.
Arnold went back to the electronic screens that would decide his destiny. His next decision was crucial; one that could change his life forever. With a determined expression, he browsed his options once more until seeing the name of a state he never gave a second thought to. However, for some reason, his heart, which had grown more and more distant, gave a faintly bright beat.
"Mom! Dad!" Arnold called out to his parents. "I know where I want to go."
A few days had passed since Helga (and consequentially Erin) woke up in the hospital.
Despite this, Helga never told Erin who Arnold was. Every time Erin tried to bring up his name, Helga became quiet. It wasn't so much because she didn't want to tell Erin; it was because she found the attempt to be futile.
Helga, just as with Arnold at first, was having a hard time opening up.
It's not that I don't trust her. It's more like I don't trust myself.
She knew if she talked about Arnold, thought about Arnold, or dreamt about Arnold, she would accidentally take control of Erin's body. One that wasn't hers to begin with.
While Helga was having these thoughts, Erin was enduring her last day in the hospital. In a few hours, her family would take her to her apartment and she'd get a few days off before going back to work.
Just like always. After the operation, now that I'm "normal", they'll expect even more of me than before. And then, there's Livy…
Erin let out another depressed sigh. The fourth one today. But, since she was in the room alone, no one heard her. At least, she thought no one did.
Okay, spill it sister, who's Lizzy? Erin heard a voice tell her. She looked up and scanned the room. No one was there.
Where is that voice coming from? Erin thought.
Uh, hel-lo?! It's just me. You know. The girl whose heart is currently tucked under your ribcage, answered Helga.
Erin sighed again. Helga certainly was a character. She had the kind of personality that wouldn't fit into her parents' standards for her. It was also the kind of person she most wanted to be like.
Sorry, Helga. I've just got a lot of things going on right now, so I wasn't paying much attention, Erin thought.
Erin heard Helga sigh. Although they could communicate easily with one another, they rarely spoke much. Both parties were too preoccupied in their own thoughts to pay attention to the other.
So what's this I hear about 'parents expecting more from you' and who's Lizzy? Helga asked.
Erin felt her eyes widen suddenly. Was she offering advice?
Yes, I'm offering you advice.
But why?Erin thought, unable to connect the dots.
Because…well, the least I can do while I'm still on Earth is help you, right? Besides, I can relate, Helga said.
Helga stayed quiet for a moment, and then answered back. I had a perfect older sister. She did everything right in her life. It was almost impossible to find a flaw. Naturally, my parents, like crazed bees around their prized honey, surrounded her with nothing less than complete love and affection. When I was born, my dad expected me to be better. Reach for the stars? That's what losers do. I was supposed to reach for the full damn Milky Way.
Did you get there? Erin asked, completely sucked in to Helga's tale.
Helga sighed. Not in his eyes. No matter what I did, Olga did better than me by infinity. It was hard to compete with perfection, so I stopped trying.
Erin was silent for a moment. Until, Helga spoke up again.
Anyway, who's Lizzy? A friend of yours? A pet?
Her name is Livy. She's my little sister. She's about to start High School next year.
Is she rebellious?
Not at all!
Does she hide away from the family?
Not too much. She's usually pretty social with people.
Is she an outcast in school?
No, she's actually quite popular.
So…why exactly are you worried about her? She sounds like a younger version of my perfect sister.
I'm worried she's trying to prove herself. Ever since I can remember, my parents wanted a first-rate child. When I came along, those were the expectations they gave me, and I tried my best. Ever since she could speak, my little sister has always looked up to me.
So you're worried she is the way she is because of expectations for her?
I'm just worried she's trying to prove to my family-and me especially-that she is perfect.
But…she does sound perfect.
Yes, but recently whenever I want to talk to her, and spend some time with my sister…she avoids me. She gives me a lame excuse and walks off. I'm worried she resents me.
Helga sighed, remembering her situation with Olga quite well.
I hate to be the bearer of bad news…but she probably does resent you a little bit.
Erin sighed, but continued to listen.
This poor girl has to not only live up to your family's expectations, but she also has to stay away from your shadow.
Yes. Don't you see? This chick has to make a name for herself. Since you're older, and have done more things, when people talk about your family, you are the first one that pops into their head. And your sister has to remain known as 'Erin's little sister'.
Livy has to make a name for herself, but be perfect. And that's tough on a kid. I think she's just starting to realize how annoying it can be, which is why she's kind of avoiding you.
You think so?
I'm practically 100% positive that's why. It was like me and my sister. I was always in her shadow, and right when I became my own person…I die.
Helga sighed and there was a tense pause, but eventually, Erin broke it.
What do you think I should do?
I'm not sure exactly. If I were Dr Bliss, I'd probably give you a logical answer. All I can tell you is to give her some space, and time. Maybe she just needs to think things through for a bit. I know I needed that when I was younger.
Another pause; until finally Erin asked what was on her mind.
Do you think about your family much? She ventured
They're not the ones I worry about most, Helga half-answered.
What did Arnold do to make you love him above anything else? Erin couldn't help but think.
Helga stopped talking after that point.
Arnold was once more boarded on a plane-10 years later-to leave his hometown, with his parents. The nostalgia kicked in.
He tried not to think about her, but couldn't stop himself. Like a distant bell, he heard her words ring through him.
"I-I never said goodbye to you."
Arnold closed his eyes.
And you never will.
As much as he tried to forget her; her laugh, her smile, her voice, her appearance…the more the memories resurrected.
But he was tired of it all. Tired of fending away those painful truths, and those aching memories. Her voice, her memories…everything about her poured through Arnold's conscious, filling his soul with a desperate longing that would never be fulfilled. He held her voice in his mind, as a tiny reminder of why he had to leave, and didn't realize he overlooked a few things.
He overlooked Helga's true last words to him. He overlooked the fact that, once again, he was leaving Helga, with a broken heart, whereas he returned with a hopeful one. And, he overlooked the fact that, as his new destination drew closer, his heart was shining with a brighter intensity then it had for a very long time.
A/N: *DA1326 drags herself to screen, her left arm in a sling, her right leg in a cast, her head covered in bandages.*
Maybe I'll start updating more often than /occasionally/.
*DA1326 pulls off disguise and smiles* Just kidding everyone! I'm fine! How about that for acting ;)
Anyway, if you could please Review, that would be AWESOME SAUCE! And I'd love indefinately more :)
PWEASE! *Puppy dog eyes*
(you know, the perfectly mentally healthy writer!)