A/N – Hey everyone So I don't know if you've read my other Shaylin fanfic, but you probably should. This is a sequel to that one (it's called 'Colours') and I couldn't resist writing this. You can read this one without reading the other one, but I would advise you read it first. It'll make more sense. This one takes place post-Hidden, but it has a lot to do with 'Colours.'
Also, this could be triggering. It has self-harm in it, and mentions of abuse, so I'm shooting you a warning that it's fairly dark. Thanks for reading!
She stands in front of the mirror, looking at herself for the first time since she's been given her sight back. She doesn't like to look at the mess she'd made of her body those years ago. Her glossy, dark hair falls naturally around her shoulders and her body is a good one…to someone else.
Nobody but her should know what she had done. Too much harm had come to her body by her own hands. With her sight restored, every time she saw anything sharp she shuddered inside. She hadn't looked at her waist. Her waist was where it had all happened.
She slowly moves her hand from the wall, where she had been supporting herself, to the bottom edge of her shirt. She always wore long ones in case it rode up in the wind or anything. Nobody could see…
She lifts up her shirt, looking at the scars for the first time. She gasps in horror when she sees what she had done to herself. Long, jagged scars cross other scars. Most are still bright red. The image of the dead fish eyes from the market comes back to her now as she thinks the word she thought then – ugly.
"Shaylin?" The voice comes, strong and sturdy, but she doesn't hear it. She's in the depot tunnels, but she doesn't know who is outside her room. She doesn't have a roommate. Who would want to room with her? Even if she has more self-esteem now, the words and taunts the bullies gave her will never truly leave. Just like the scars, except these ones are uglier because you can't see them.
"Yeah?" she calls back because she doesn't know what else to do. She's crying now, but she hides her tears. She did it all the time with her mother. Crying only got her hit. She can't seem to drop her shirt, can't seem to let it all go…
"Are you okay? You've been in there a while." Shaylin recognizes the voice to be Zoey's.
"I told you it was fine." That was Aphrodite's voice. Shaylin tried not to hate her but she couldn't help it. She wanted to be nice. That was all Shaylin ever wanted. But nobody seemed to realize that that was all. "Can't we leave it to its strange ways now? I haven't drunk my breakfast yet. Don't let it take that away from me, that's what I look forwards to. I didn't picture myself worrying about it."
"Don't call Shaylin 'it'." That was Stevie Rae. The way Aphrodite was treating Shaylin brought back all the words all the bullies had ever said. Aphrodite was just another one of the bullies…just another one…but her words made Shaylin realize that she'd never truly get away from them. The bullies would always chase her, always follow her, always tell her she wasn't good enough.
She still believed them. She'd never be good enough. How could she? Not everyone in the whole world could lie. She didn't deserve to be here…
"Shaylin?" Zoey calls again.
"I'm fine," she gets out, but the tears begin to flow faster after that.
Nobody answers. Finally, Zoey replies, "Okay." Shaylin can hear them leave. She looks at her few, meager possessions. Finally, deciding on what she hopes is the right move, she takes a razor that she's secretly kept and brings it to her skin…but this time she goes to her wrist. Her waist is ugly enough. Her whole body should be ugly. She doesn't deserve it. Not good enough…she's not good enough…
She's never going to be good enough, is she?
She brings the razor across her skin and she feels that same feeling of release she used to as it begins to bleed. The blood drips onto the floor, and Shaylin cuts her other wrist, sighing in the good feeling. The pain makes her know that she's capable of doing something correctly.
She puts down the razor and watches for a while as her blood trickles to the floor. Finally she looks back up into the mirror and gives a cry when she realizes just what she's done.
She can't handle it. As all the words the bullies have ever said come flying through her mind – skank, whore, fag, cunt…and finally, Aphrodite's 'it' – she lifts her fist and smashes the mirror.
The glass falls everywhere and she sinks to her knees, the blood falling over her shirt and her jeans. She's crying so much she can't stop. A few seconds later, she hears people running to her room. She's going to be found out. She's going to be found out…
Zoey lifts the curtain in the doorway and runs through, gasping as she assesses the situation. Stevie Rae is here too, along with Damien and even Aphrodite. Aphrodite doesn't rush over, or act concerned. She just stares at Shaylin and Shaylin knows she knows the cuts are because of people like her.
Zoey joins Shaylin on the floor and wraps her arms around the smaller girl. "Why did you do this?" Shaylin gives a start as Zoey doesn't sound angry, or upset. She only sounds empathetic.
Shaylin can't respond for a while because her tears are too thick. When she can stop crying and speak, everyone stops what they were doing and they listen. She tells them how she went blind, the teasing, the bullying and the cutting. Shaylin leaves out the Aphrodite part, but Aphrodite infers for herself what happened.
"It's because of what I said, isn't it?" Aphrodite whispers. "I made you…"
Shaylin tries to shake her head. "No, no…I was stupid."
Aphrodite refuses to accept that. "No, it was me."
Zoey asks to see her scars, and Shaylin doesn't have a reason to stop her, so Zoey gingerly lifts up Shaylin's shirt and then drops it immediately as she sees what the younger girl had done to herself.
"You're okay now," Zoey whispers. She hasn't stopped hugging Shaylin. "You're okay now."
She invokes spirit, helping to calm Shaylin, Damien calling air, and Stevie Rae calls on earth. "You belong here. Nyx has gifted you…you're one of us."
Shaylin didn't realize how much those words meant to her until later. She feels the calming effects of the elements on her mind and she falls to sleep.
When she wakes she's alone again. But only physically.
"I'm not alone," she whispers to herself. She gets dressed, telling herself that again and again. "I'm not alone. Never alone. Never again."
During that day at school, she sees Erik Night once. He clearly wants to make a move on her, but underneath, Shaylin wants to believe he's a good person.
She remembered how she thought he was "her miracle."
Maybe she can still find that miracle, somewhere.
A/N – Sorry for the bad ending, I didn't know how to end this. I hope you liked it. Thanks for reading