Chapter 6: School
Arthur sat on his bed and listen to William talking on the phone with his therapist. He could definitely tell he brother was a little distressed and he feared that what ever it was, it was his fault. He believed he was the source of William's distress. Looking outside, he watched the rain hit the window softly. It seems the sky was distressed too. He couldn't stop the few tears that fell from his eyes. It was all his fault and he knew it. He buried his face in his knees and began to cry.
William finished talking on the phone and walked to his room, knocking on the door softly. "Arthur?" He opened the door and found his little brother crying on the bed. "Arthur, what's wrong?" Approaching him, he placed his hand on the boy's shoulder. To the red head's surprise, he did not flinch at the contact, like he did so many times before. "Arthur... Please talk to me."
Arthur looked up at him, eyes swimming with tears as well as tear streaked face. He sniffed and tried talking, the stream of words coming out in a jumbled mess. "I-it's all my fault, and you're d-distressed over m-me... I-I can't do anything r-right..." He burst into tears once more.
"Arthur, shh, no need to cry. I'm not distressed just a little concerned, and you're not at fault for anything." He pulled the small blonde into a hug and rested his chin on his head. "Shhh..."
Once his sobs were reduced to small hiccups, the man pulled away and lifted his head. "Arthur, I'm going to register you for school. Your therapist said that you needed social contact because you aren't making any progress."
"S-So it is my fault?"
"No, of course not! I just can't watch you be like this. It breaks my heart."
Arthur sniffed again, and buried his face into William's chest, clutching desperately onto the back of his shirt. Saying he was scared about going to school would be an understatement. He was terrified. All he knew about the world, was how horrible it could be. The only light for his world was his brothers, but he only recently started to know them again. "W-Will you stay with me there?"
"Arthur... I don't know if I can. If they let me, I can only do it for one day." He began to pet Arthur's hair soothingly. "You need to learn to make some friends."
"I-I'm scared" The boy started to trembling in his arms.
"I know. It'll be okay." He kissed his forehead and stood from the bed, grabbing Arthur's hand. "Come on. It's time for dinner."
Arthur got off the bed and followed him down stairs, not once letting go of his hand. He clung to it as though it were a life line. He did not want to be flung back out into the scary world, but he knew deep down that it had to happen. Once they were sitting down at the table, William served him his food, sending him concerned glances. They ate in silence and William collected the dishes when they were done. Arthur just sat in the chair, unmoving and staring into space. The older brother didn't know what to do. He almost feared that he had sent him into a catatonic state.
"Arthur?" He called out, finally breaking the silence.
The boy snapped out of his trance like state and looked into William's eyes.
The answer he got was Arthur looking down and nodding slowly. A few more moments of silence enveloped them before Arthur stood from the chair and walked back to his room. He couldn't bare to sit there any longer in the agonizing silence. He crawled into his bed, as he has been doing nearly all day, everyday, for as long as he can remember. It was the only place he could take refuge from his father. However, even then, it's protection had its limits.
William stared at the now empty seat as worry welled up in him. Would Arthur ever find a normal life? Would he keep on living in the past? Will he be able to make friends? More and more questions filled his mind and he became increasing worried that Arthur would never be able to move on. They had been living together for two months and he had made no progress. He was still just as quiet and shy as he was when William brought him home, though he did seem to trust him more.
The red-head began to wash the dishes in an attempt to distract his mind, but it kept wandering back to his little brother. Finally, he sighed in frustration and set aside the plate he was washing. Tomorrow he decided that he would register Arthur for classes, but for now he was going to check on him. The boy kept spending all of his time in his room and it was starting to worry William even more. He knocked lightly on the door and opened it, seeing Arthur on the bed, hugging his legs. A sigh escaped his lips and he sat next to him. They made no noise and simply sat there in silence for what seemed like hours, both of them afraid that any sound would shatter their world. William took a deep breath and braved the first noise.
The boy flinched at the sudden sound. "Y-yes?"
William teared up at the action, but held himself back from crying. "You need to stop spending so much time in this room."
Arthur simply nodded and hugged his legs tighter. He didn't want to leave his safe haven. It was all he knew. "I'm scared..."
The elder pulled him into a hug. "I know." They sat there for a few more moments before William spoke again. "Your thereapy appointment is earlier than usual tomorrow, okay?"
The blonde nodded and pulled away before laying down. William knew it was way too early for him to be going to bed, but had seen him act this way in the past, knowing it was Arthur's way of saying, 'leave me alone.'
He stood and looked back at the small teen. "Good night, Arthur." And with that, he left the room.
Arthur lay on his bed, blinking back the tears that wanted to surface. He curled up on the bed. He wanted, with all his heart, to show William that he could be proud, but he wasn't sure that he could live up to his expectations. He felt worthless and he was sure William thought so too. The boy drifted off to sleep, convincing himself that no one wanted him.
The next day, Arthur was getting ready for his appointment as William made breakfast. Arthur ate quickly and put on his shoes before waiting by the door for his brother. It was just a system to him. After couple of weeks he quickly fell into the pattern, sticking to it closely. William joined him shortly and they both got into the car, driving to his appointment. As usual, Arthur remained silent the whole way and when they arrived, he got out of the car, just as sliently. The red-head sighed and followed him into the building, sighing him in and waiting for his turn. The door opened to reveal a boy about Arthur's age, sporting glasses and a single strand of hair that curled down in front of his face.
"Hey Mattie, you done?" Another boy that had been sitting in one of the chair stood and walked over to the on he called 'Mattie'. They looked identical with only one difference. The boy who was in the room for the appointment named Mattie had slightly longer hair than the other. The other slung his arm over Mattie's shoulder and walked to the desk to talk about payment and handed them an insurance card. After a few more moments they walked to the door and left. Arthur watched them leave, feeling... different. He wasn't sure what it was, but that other boy, who didn't know the name of, did not scare him. He had an air about him that made Arthur feel safe. Immediately the blonde shook his head, angry with himself. He was probably never going to see the boy again anyway. This was the only time that his appointment would be scheduled this early. He was called into the room and his appointment began, once again, making to progress.
His life over the next month went on as normal, but as soon as it ended, school began. This was not going to be easy, though William promised to stay for the first day. He could not enter the class room while class was in session, but he waited outside the door, for the class to finish. The first few classes were rocky and by the time lunch rolled around, Arthur wasn't doing well. A few boys snickered at him because he had his brother with him. When he asked his brother to sit with him for lunch, William shook his head and told him to go find a seat next to someone. At hearing that, Arthur nearly burst into tear, but held himself back and sat at an empty table. William sighed at the sight and leaned against the wall. He wasn't sure what to do anymore.
Arthur ate slowly and looked around at all the student talking with each other. He could never hope to be social like that. He looked back down at his food until a tray was slammed down on the table, in front of him. Startled, he looked up and saw the grinning face of the other boy with the brother 'Mattie'. He blinked a couple of times, almost not believing his eyes.
"Hey! I'm Alfred F. Jones!" The boy held out his hand.
Arthur took it, though feeling a tad intimidated. "A-Arthur..."
"Aren't you that kid who was at the therapists about a month ago?"
Arthur nodded shyly.
"So, what were you doing there?"
Swallows uncomfortably and looks away. "I-I'm not sure... if I'm comfortable..."
Alfred cut him off. "Oh sorry, dude! I didn't mean to pry, I just have a habit of asking questions."
The two were joined, a moment later, by the one called Mattie. He sat down next to Alfred and began to eat. "About time you showed up!"
Matthew meerly smiled at his brother and continued eating.
"So, Mattie, this is Arthur. He was that kid that had the appointment after you."
Matthew nodded, not saying a word. Arthur was curious as to why he remained silent. He reached his hand over shakily, wondering how he was being so social with the two. Matthew noticed the shaking and smiled at him warmly, taking his hand.
"P-pleased to meet you..."
Matthew looked at Alfred and signed a few words. Alfred gave a nod and and turned to Arthur. "He said he's pleased to meet you too."
"A-are... you mute?"
"Mattie's selectively mute. Meaning he only talks around people he's comfortable with."
Matthew blushed a little, looking embarrassed.
"Oh... I didn't mean to talk about something so personal."
Matthew quickly shook his head. Alfred chuckled a bit watching his brother.
William stood off to the side and smiled, a little shocked. Arthur was actually talking with someone willingly. Maybe his therapist was right. Maybe all he needed was a push in the right direction.
Yeah... I pretty much hate myself for taking so damn long with the update. Please, forgive me! And I totally sorry if it seems rushed... Don't forget to review~!