Umbrella

Took an oath I'ma stick it out till the end

Now that it's raining more than ever

Know that we'll still have each other

You can stand under my umbrella

I can honestly say I didn't see this coming. But I should have. I should have noticed how bad things were getting with Taylor. And now, she's in the hospital on suicide watch. And it's all my fault.

Samantha had come running into our house practically yelling at me, asking if I knew Taylor was. And I didn't even notice she was home. She was in the house in the room right above me and I didn't know. I'd told Samantha;

"How should I know? I'm grounded." I'd pretty much stated I didn't care. Samantha had raced up the stairs and I could hear her searching for my sister. I was starting to get worried. Something wasn't right. I was getting up from my chair when I heard the screams. Taylor was screaming.

Taking the stairs 2 at a time, I'd dashed to her bathroom and found Taylor half shouting, half sobbing.

"What have you done?" Tears were coursing down her cheeks and Samantha was backed against the wall. Mom suddenly pushed me aside and gathered Taylor in her arms.

"I just wanna die!" Taylor had cried desperately. "I just wanna die…"

I'd looked around the bathroom and had to hold onto the door frame to keep myself steady. There were pills all over the white tile floor. So many pills…and my sister was going to take them. The paramedics were coming now. They told me to get out of the way. I wasn't going to move. I had stared at my older sister, a crumpled heap in my mother's arms sobbing her heart out; her long blonde hair knotted and mussed, and make up smearing down her red cheeks.

"I wanna die…" Her tears made her voice thick.

When the paramedics had finally sedated her and put her on a stretcher, I was swallowing back tears. Mom and Samantha had gone to the hospital with Taylor in the ambulance. Mom had made me stay home to clean up the mess. Once they'd gone, I'd sat on the bathroom floor just staring at the pills. There were so many. Just so many. I must have stayed there for hours without moving. My sister had almost died today. I finally managed to clean up the room, hiding anything else that she could possibly use to hurt herself. I'd then raced to my room and buried my face in my pillow. The whole world now seemed so dark and cold. I was cold. So very very cold. And then, I let myself cry. I'd almost lost my sister today. It was all my fault! I would never forget it. That memory would haunt me to the day I died.

Now, I was walking down the sidewalk to school. I'd missed the bus. Taylor was back from the hospital but wasn't back at school yet. She'd found out Samantha was that James kid who had tortured her. Obviously she wasn't taking it well. Mom was keeping an eye on her. When mom wasn't home, I was supposed to check on my sister at least once an hour. No one knew that I did it at least 3 times an hour. I had to make sure that Taylor was still there, still breathing.

When lunch came around, I was sitting with a couple of my friends. They hadn't really pushed me into talking much. They understood my sober mood. I wasn't going to get over the shock easily. They had accepted that without a word from me. I silently thanked them for that. I was opening my lunch box when Marcus came up to me. I didn't know him really well. He was just some kid in my class. But what he said next sent shivers down my spine.

"You're the kid whose sister tried to kill herself right?" I stared blankly at him. He wasn't going to get anything from me. Not today.

"Leave it Marcus…" my friend George murmured, glancing warily at me. My eyes had dropped to my uneaten sandwich. I wasn't hungry anymore. Marcus went back to his friends.

"Ha, she let some dude get to her and then she tries to kill herself. How pathetic." I stood up suddenly. George and Cooper tried to pull me down but I stayed standing. He dared to joke about that. I walked quietly over to him. His back was turned to me. I tapped his shoulder. He turned around, and I punched him square across his pimple ridden face.

"How dare you mock my sister?" I yelled at him. I didn't care that the entire lunchroom was staring at me. "You didn't have to find her!" His friends were still sitting on the lunch table bewildered. "You didn't see her crying her heart out! You didn't see her going to pieces because idiots, jerks and, morons tortured her through Clicksters. You didn't see the pills all over the floor!" My voice cracked slightly but I kept going. "You've never seen my sister's pain. But if you keep making fun of her, I swear to god I will make you regret it until the day you die!"

Marcus was still on the floor, shock on his face. I was the skinny little geek who sat behind him in science. I was the boy that was never in his crowd, and frankly never wanted to be. I was the kid who was invisible. And I was the kid who had just punched him across the face with enough force to break his nose. I sincerely hoped I'd broken it. Mom would yell at me later, but it was worth it. I didn't regret it at all.

Miraculously I didn't have to visit the principle that day. Maybe Marcus had decided that tattling on me would only get him into more trouble. Good for him, he had a few brain cells. I was walking home now. It was dark and cloudy; I stood in front of my porch for a total of 2 minutes then raced in to check on Taylor. I made sure that she didn't realize how much I cared. After all, am her little bro. That would seem weird.

She was in her room, curled up in her quilt. She was staring out her window, her once bright cheerful eyes now dark and haunted. It scared me.

"Hey Eric." She murmured, not turning.

"Hey." I replied cautiously.

"I'm alright you know." She said a little louder. "I'll be fine. You don't need to worry." As if that would stop me and my ever constant concern.

"I'm sorry." I blurted out. I'd been holding it in, trying to find a way to go through this without letting the guilt kill me. Obviously that wasn't going to work.

"Why are you sorry?"

"If me and Coop hadn't posted that comment, none of this would have happened. It's all my fault." She sighed.

"Eric, really I'll be fine." A lump rose in my throat. I still had to ask, even if I already knew the answer.

"Were you really gonna do it?" She stared out the window some more, not even blinking when she said

"Yes."

I swallowed hard. Then I recalled something. "What did you mean when you said it wasn't "your" fault?"

"I talked to Sammie today." She murmured her eyes were still dull and hollow. "You know about that kid named James?"

Gulping again, I gave a nod. "Yeah."

"Sammie made him up. She was the one who really fanned the flames. She's the one who told everyone about dad." I stared in absolute astonishment. Samantha was her best friend. Why would she do that?

"When did you see her?"

"When you were still at school and Mom was in the kitchen. She told me to come outside." I could practically see my sister, huddled in her patchwork quilt stumbling out on to the damp lawn.

"Why did she do it?"

"I don't know Eric. I just don't know."

*time skip*

Today was Taylor's first day back at school. After my little outburst in the cafeteria at my school, no one ever brought up my sister again. Good, they had some sense. I sat on a ledge by a window in the library. It was raining. The sky seemed to be totally gray.

"Eric?" It was George. "You okay?"

"I'm fine." I spoke quietly. "I'm fine." He seemed to realize that I didn't want to talk, so he wandered off to the sci-fi section saying something about finding a new Matt Smith book. I didn't turn or reply. I simply looked out at the pouring rain. Droplets clung to trees, and spilled over tables. They ran down the window, and seemed to stay there. Today was no better than my first day back after Taylor left the ER. I thought it would get better. I thought the worry would go away. But it didn't. I hoped she was doing okay at school. I hoped that no one made fun of her or taunted her for the attempt to take her own life. I really truly hoped that. I guess I would find out when I got home.

When the bell rang for end of classes, I was relieved. I'd barely been paying any attention in class, just glaring at the sky, cursing the dark clouds. I trotted through the puddles on the sidewalk groaning as my shoes got soaked. It would take ages for these to dry! I only had a sweatshirt so I had my hood pulled up against the wind and rain. I heard footsteps behind me. As I turned, I nearly fell down in shock.

"Taylor?" She gave me a half smile.

"You look horrible you know. The whole damp spiky rock star look totally doesn't suit you." She was teasing me! She was smiling and teasing me.

"Jerk." I replied smiling slightly. "So how was school?" We were still standing in front of the school, and while I was soaking, she held a blue umbrella.

"I owned Lindsey." She laughed. She was laughing! I almost jumped for joy. "Scott and everyone helped me stand up to her. Even Sammie helped!" I grinned.

"Nice!" She returned my smile, and stepped forward.

"Looks like you need an umbrella." As we padded towards home, I had to ask.

"What did you say to Lindsey?" She gave a quiet laugh and began telling me the story. We walked all the way home under Taylor's blue umbrella.

When the sun shines, we'll shine together
Told you I'll be here forever
Said I'll always be a friend
Took an oath I'ma stick it out till the end
Now that it's raining more than ever
Know that we'll still have each other
You can stand under my umbrellaWhen the sun shines, we'll shine together
Told you I'll be here forever
Said I'll always be a friend
Took an oath I'ma stick it out till the end
Now that it's raining more than ever
Know that we'll still have each other
You can stand under my umbrella