Send the Pain Below…

Chapter 1 Alex

I sit in my audacious room pouting. I don't even know what that word means, but Justin used it one time, and now I can't get it out of my head.

Just like him.

My name is Alex Russo, and… you think you know me. I'm sure that whore Gigi has made her rounds telling everyone the truth; I love my brother. It's so stupid, but so true.

And I don't even care.

You think you know me; I'm pretty, I'm pushy, I'm…. pathetic.

School is the worst. Harper knows, she's rambling on about Jeremy from science, though I've never actually seen the guy, but she knows. Once the hall clears, she pulls me into a hug, and I sob into her shoulder like we're little kids again.

I wish I didn't feel this way. I wish I could send the pain below, away from my heart. It's like I'm suffocating.

Harper tries, so hard for me, all the time. I can't find a better friend, but I still push her away.

I have to find him; I have to find Justin, my Justin. Ever since I was little, he's been mine. Everything about him is mine. His attention has always been on me, his anger has always been for me, he is my Justin.

I find him flirting with a girl and feel a small stab of pain. Wow, didn't know my heart would react like this. Sure, I'm used to the usual stuff, feeling ignored or replaced, but now it feels like he's purposefully hurting me because this time, I'm not involved. In every other case, Justin has asked for my help, no… my permission. He knows how important he is, and not just in a bragging sense. He knows I need him. He pats her shoulder and sends her on her way.

His attention is all on me now, I can feel it. He just… zeroes in on me when I'm around. I know I sound like I have a huuuuuge crush (and with good reason) but listen; Justin feels something for me too. Maybe he feels the same way.

"Oh hey, Justin, cute shirt, did you have to mug a Care Bear for it?" It gets his attention. I love his face, the way he reacts to me all the time. It's like I'm already under his skin. I feel more than see him tense up.

"That's an excellent way of asking me in a roundabout way how to attack such a creature. Leave it to Alex Russo to be too lazy to research her on own potential criminal acts!" He snorts before I can. My head shakes the hair from my face as he brushes by.

"Hey! I at least gave you credit for taking down a bear…!" I grabbed his arm just as we have since we were toddlers. He jumped back like it burned him. I stood there shocked as he glared silently.

"And I gave you credit for not already mugging an innocent creature. Don't you have class?" His eyes lit up darkly, "Oh, right… you don't have any class!"

He snickered to himself. This wasn't him, my Justin was snippy but this was downright cruel. I squeaked indignantly, ignoring Harper's attempt to stop me.

"Justin!" I called. He froze and everything changed. Something was wrong here. It was like, "Guess this spell" where Dad would make us cast a random spell. It was always something stupid. One time, no lie, it was the "everyone guesses wrong" spell. I swear, wizards are the dumbest people ever. The sensation though, knowing that something was wrong, that a force had acted here that I could not identify, was terrifying.

"Alex…" His tone was… hurt? And angry, and a million other things, "I know. And don't play dumb, and don't try to treat me like I'm too dumb to see what you are."

A wetness hit my eyes, and my breathing hitched. Surely he couldn't… Harper came over, "Justin, maybe you better leave…"

"NO!" I growled, "Say it, say it to my face!"

He shook his head, "I am so disappointed in you, Alex. You're my sister, how could you ever think we could…?" He sighed, "Take that emotion, and bury it, deep, and then send it lower than that. Bury all of your emotions below your deepest point."
And he walked off with my heart.