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 Cabinet Battle #1, Hayden&Brandon
Tanuki
 Posted: Feb 28 2018, 01:16 PM
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He said he had wanted to meet with them. It was a bit of a short notice when she had been sent the letter, or maybe she just wanted to see it that way. But when Adam had said they, he meant herself and Brandon. It was obvious that Adam knew they had seen each other again, she just wasn't aware if he knew how bad it was, how much Brandon hated her. And she personally wanted to slap him for what he had tried to start with her Boyfriend that winter. Maybe Eugene hadn't caught the way he twitched like he wanted to hit something, but Hayden had, and she hadn't liked it at all. Yes, she owed a lot of apologies to Brandon, but dragging Eugene into it wasn't going to solve anything at all.

But Adam also said this was a legal matter, something about a shared property that their mother and father had left for them, and how it was about time they saw it. What kind of property did their parents have that they didn't know about? Whatever the case, it meant that she had to be there, so whether she wanted to or not it really didn't matter, because she'd be seeing her brother today. She wished that wasn't something she had to think with such disdain, but so far he had proved to angry to see anything her way, regardless of how she had tried to look through glasses tinted by his experience, he had yet to offer her the same treatment.

As the older sibling, there had been a lot of choices she had to make as a twenty year old that she shouldn't have had to. It was too many not to make some sort of mistake, and while leaving her brother with social services had been a mistake in its own right, Hayden felt that things still turned out better for Brandon this way, than they would have had he been with her. She had a bag over her shoulder as she sat in the back of the Taxi, carrying her father's golden pocket watch that had always been meant for Brandon, a much coveted prize of the wicked witch of westhaven, AKA their aunt. Whether he wanted to deal with her or not, it was possibly the only time she was going to be able to hand it to him.

As soon as she arrived, she spotted Adam in front of a small gate. They were at the shore, a strange location for any property that her parents may have owned. Despite that, she walked up to him, and beside him, Brandon.

"Adam," She said, her gaze shifting to her brother. "Brandon." Adam smiled despite the natural tension that had already bubbled up between the siblings. "So, sorry to call you guys here in such a hurry but I'm afraid it was a little urgent. You're Aunt is at it again."

"Great, what does the Wicked Witch of the West want this time?" She asked, crossing her arms over her chest, glancing briefly in Brandon's direction. They certainly didn't see eye to eye, but the one thing they could Agree on, was that their aunt was a total bitch.

"See, your parents owned a little getaway cabin here on the shore, that was usually where they went when you spent the weekend with yours truly." Hayden snorted softly, a fond memory of their father. "Yeah, that sounds like dad. Romantic getaways, sans the kids." Hayden glanced up the path, a peek of a small roof visible. "That it?"

"Sure is, you two can go have a look if you want."




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 Posted: Mar 1 2018, 08:05 PM
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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
"Wrapped up, so consumed by all this hurt"
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Brandon dragged his feet going to this property that his parents had hidden away. He was pretty sure everything of value had been snatched up by his aunt already but Adam claimed in his letter that there was something out here they needed to see. He just hoped it wasn’t some ploy to get Hayden and Brandon to talk. He wasn’t interested in working things out with her. She had abandoned him when he needed her the most and he resented her for that.

Brandon arrived at the small cabin by the shore before Hayden. Adam was standing by the gate waiting for them both. “Hey Adam,” he said. He crossed his arms, leaning against the fence. “No sign of her yet?” he asked which Adam confirmed. They stood around in silence, staring down at his shoe until he heard Hayden’s voice.

He looked up, a scowl on his face. He rolled his eyes, not saying a word to her, focusing instead on Adam. Looked like their aunt had her eyes on what little she hadn’t managed to grab already. He looked up at the cabin. Their aunt would probably like to be able to sell this place and take the money. It would make a good vacation home for someone.

Adam told them to go take a look, and Brandon pushed himself back off the fence, heading in front of Hayden up the small path to the cabin. He didn’t wait for her to catch up, since he wasn’t really trying to hang around her. He was just here to see what Adam wanted to show them, figure out what to do with it, and go home.

He walked into the cabin, looking around. It wasn’t a bad place. Small and quaint, definitely a romantic little getaway. He wasn’t surprised his dad had this place on the side. He shoved his hands in his pockets. “And Aunt Nancy hasn’t sold this place yet? That’s a fuckin’ surprise."


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 Posted: Mar 2 2018, 09:41 AM
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When Adam said they could head up to the house already, Brandon was quick to go up ahead of them, and Hayden turned her attention on Adam. "He's in a good mood today. It's almost like that Cactus is only halfway shoved up his ass this morning." she mentioned, Adam giving her a shrug. "Hayden, can the two of you behave around each other for more than five seconds? You know this isn't what your parents would have wanted." Adam mentioned, a frown etching itself into his features.

"Tell that to Brandon then. Because he's the one who refuses to talk to me." Adam seemed to want to say something, but Hayden catching the look in his eyes headed up to the small cottage after Brandon, Adam sighing to himself before making his way up behind them. And it was a quaint and quiet little place, indeed something out of some story book she had been read when she was a little girl. No wonder it belonged to their father, he had always been a romantic when it came to their mother Elizabeth.

"She was probably too busy shoving money down her pants. Because there's only one thing that gives her pleasure anymore and it isn't her flaccid husband." She answered, whether Brandon wanted her to or not. Before they could start arguing with each other, Adam stepped between them, placing a hand on each of their shoulders.

"That's a good guess Hayden. But no, the reason she can't sell it is because it doesn't belong to her." He let go of them and retrieved a paper, holding it up to show them. It was a deed, with their names signed below their parents at the very bottom. "Your parents didn't really have a will, as I know you found out Hayden." He gave her shoulder a sympathetic squeeze as her eyes dulled for a moment's time, remembering something that she only wished were easy to erase from her memory.

"But they did sign you both as the co-owners of this place, so when they died Ownership was passed to you." Hayden glanced down at the paper again, and her gaze slowly shifted to her brother, and then to the house in front of them. "And that's why Nancy hasn't been able to touch the place, I've been holding the deed for you. Prime location, so it's worth a lot, but she won't see a dime." It seemed to also bring Adam comfort, saying those words. "But it's up to you two to figure out what to do with it." He passed the deed to Hayden, who now looked at Brandon.

"He said two. So are you going to talk to me or stand there like a board of wood?"




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Belle
 Posted: Mar 3 2018, 05:37 PM
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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
"Wrapped up, so consumed by all this hurt"
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Brandon hadn’t been speaking to Hayden, he had been speaking to himself. Of course that didn’t stop the sorry excuse of a sister from speaking her mind anyway. If anyone else had said that about his aunt he would’ve happily agreed, but with Hayden, all he could do was roll his eyes at her before he felt Adam’s hand on his shoulder.

He held up a paper, something that looked like official paperwork and explained it as a deed their parents had added their names to. The one thing they had the foresight to be sure got passed along to their children and not swiped by their vicious aunt. Now they would have to figure out what to do with the place.

As Adam handed the deed to Hayden, Brandon glanced around the room. He had never gone back to the apartment after his parents murder and now here he was standing where his mother and father once stood. Where they danced, laughed, probably even talked about him and Hayden. He wondered if they left anything behind here.

Hayden’s voice snapped him out of his thoughts and he frowned at her. “He didn’t say we had to figure out what to do with it right fuckin’ now, did he?” he asked with a sharp tongue. “Or are you just ready to sell it and make a buck like Nancy?”

He walked off, going to see what the other rooms held. He just wanted to be alone with his thoughts of the family he lost.


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 Posted: Mar 3 2018, 06:00 PM
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Brandon snapped at her. It was something she was expecting, but she hadn't quite prepared herself for what he was going to say. Adam frowned as he watched Brandon walk off, and then looked back to Hayden. "Hayden, I..." It was clear that Adam didn't know what to say, and Hayden shook her head. "It's fine, I'll go after him." Adam seemed to think it was a bad idea, but if he had been looking at her, Hayden ignored him and followed after her brother into the house. But she didn't head in the same direction he had, instead, staring into the empty space of the living room.

How many times had they crossed this floor together, locked in a dance that her father had no doubt initiated. How many times had they sat on that now dusty old couch, talking about their children, their lives, and where they were headed next in life?

How many seconds had it taken for a knife to end those thoughts?

There was a lot that went through her head in a few seconds. Bodies in a morgue, being forced to identify her mother's personal effects even when she knew she was already gone. Funerals were expensive, trying to console Brandon had been worse when she didn't even know how to stop her own heart from breaking. And then she had made the choice with that same broken heart that led to her brother's understood, unwanted hatred.

In the next moment there was audible gasps of breath as she leaned against the door frame, tears sliding from her eyes. But it wasn't a large house, Brandon was here somewhere. Not wanting to give him another reason to snap at her, she reigned herself in. Wiping furiously at her eyes with her sleeve, she took a deep breath. "I'm sorry I made such a mess." She whispered. But a thought came to her then, as she stared at the dusty furniture, and the bare window garden, gritty dry soil begging to be given a second life.

Hoping she had given Brandon enough time alone, she found him in the dining room. The box she was holding held a note for her younger brother from their father, something she hadn't dared to open when she had discovered it came with the pocket watch. Instead, set it down with an audible noise, and slid it across the table for Brandon. "A Memorial." Her voice was sound, and there was a certainty to it, even speaking to her brother. "Flowers, Spring cleaning, we can turn the place into something mom would have wanted. Dad would be happy enough Nancy doesn't have her hands all over it." She paused to look at him for a moment. "I know you think I could care less about what happens to this place, but seriously consider what I'm suggesting."




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Belle
 Posted: Mar 4 2018, 02:30 PM
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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
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Brandon didn’t even know where he was walking off to, he was just focused on getting away from Hayden and Adam. He wanted to be alone to think about everything. He thought they had lost everything that had belonged to their parents but now they had this cottage. There could be all sorts of their parents’ trinkets hidden here.

He ended up in the dining room and he sat down at the table, his head in his hands. He could feel the sting of tears in the corner of his eyes. Why did his life have to end up like this? Why was he stuck living this nightmare that he couldn’t wake up from? He missed his parents. He missed his sister. He missed his old life.

The sound startled him from his thoughts, looking at the box that had just been slid over to him. He looked up cautiously as Hayden started speaking. When she finished, he looked back down at the box, carefully opening it, finding a note addressed to him, and his father’s pocket watch. “Where did you get this?” he asked, looking at her for only a moment, before carefully taking the watch out of the box. He held it delicately, not believing that it was real. He thought it had been lost years ago. That their bitch of an aunt had run off and pawned it for a pretty penny.

“I don’t wanna sell the place,” he told her.


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Tanuki
 Posted: Mar 4 2018, 03:55 PM
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She had expected him to snap at her when she had spoken. It was something she had taken as a normality with Brandon now, she she braced herself for it. It was a bit sad, if she really thought about it, but this kind of relationship between them had been years in the making, so could she honestly be that surprised that he resented her so much now? The chips had fallen, and even if it wasn't in the way she wanted them, at least Brandon was here, and he was alive for whatever that was worth.

But instead his eyes shifted to the box that she had gingerly slid across the table, and she watched him out of the corner of her eye as he opened it, finding both the letter for him and their father's prized pocket watch inside. It was supposed to be given to Brandon when he turned 18, just like the dog tags she wore around her neck, etched with the names of their Grandfather and Father, and one day the name of her husband was to be written on it too, something passed from her Grandmother, to her mother, to her.

His attention turned to her, and this time he didn't snap, and he didn't have anything cruel to say to her, instead asking her a simple question. "The apartment." She answered quietly, crossing her arms over her chest and looking down at the floor in silence for a moment. "Dad was going to give it to you, when you turned 18. I tried to give it to Micheal, but he told me it was better I gave it to you myself." She looked away from him, hiding the pained expression on your face. "I didn't see another time to give it to you, since you never want to be in the same room with me for more than five seconds. But if it's with you then it's with who it belongs to, and Nancy can stop badgering me every year." She concluded.

When he said he didn't want to sell it, she took a deep breath. "Then we don't sell it. We turn it into something they would have been proud of." She finally glanced at Brandon. "You may not like me, but Brandon, what else do we stand to lose by making this place another way to remember them?"




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Belle
 Posted: Mar 5 2018, 10:52 PM
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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
"Wrapped up, so consumed by all this hurt"
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She must have gone back to the apartment after she left him at the agency. He looked at the note from his father, not daring to read it in front of Hayden. He didn’t trust himself to not burst into tears at the words of his father. He instead placed the note into his pocket. He would read it in the safety of his own apartment.

Brandon didn’t have a say in what happened to him or to his parents’ belongings 6 years, but he would have a say in what happened to this place. It was the last thing his parents had been able to leave for them, and he wouldn’t be rid of it as easily as Nancy had been rid of the rest of their possessions.

“You could’ve shown your face and given it to me yourself on my 18th birthday,” he said. He didn’t look at her. He didn’t want to look at her. “Instead you let me think the only family I had left was dead because you’re a coward.” It wasn't said with malice. Instead disappointment was clear in his voice. He put the pocket watch back inside the box, putting that into his pocket with the note.

He stood up, shuffling past her back to the entryway. “We can fix the place up. I’ll help with that, but don’t think that this fixes anything with us. You fucked that up a long time ago.” He left the room searching the house for the bedrooms.


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 Posted: Mar 6 2018, 12:08 PM
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Hayden flinched visibly when Brandon spoke his next words. It was a reaction she had done without a voluntary movement. She was just so used to Brandon snapping at her by now that she braced for whatever emotional damage it was going to do next. And he was right, she could have come and given it to him on his 18th Birthday, but what difference would that have made? The damage had been done when she left him where she did. In hindsight, it had been a sudden, and a very poor choice. Micheal would have adopted him from the start if Hayden had just talked to him, but she didn't.

Her mind only on one thing then, escaping the pain, she had made some poor choices. And while she understood why Brandon was upset, she was tired of feeling like she didn't have a right to feel sad about what had happened, like she had done it to herself. Because it wasn't true, they were choices she would have never had to make if someone hadn't come in and destroyed their lives first.

She took the rest of his words, but followed him into the next room, silent for a moment as she glanced around it. "I'm never going to be able to fix what I broke, Brandon. That was broken long ago, and nothing I do is going to somehow make it so I never did what I did. I know that you're aware I understand that." She said in a stern manner, attempting to hold her ground.

"The only thing I can do now is try and make you understand that I'm sorry things turned out this way. I'm sorry that you aren't completely happy with your life. But will you look at the good things you have in your Goddess-damned life?" She asked, crossing her arms over her chest. "I'm sorry you haven't spent the last five years with me, I'm sorry someone killed our parents, and I'm sorry I didn't let you know where I was because I didn't know how long I was going to be there, but I'll never regret that Micheal took you in. I'll never regret that you're in college, that you're doing things that I didn't get the option to do, that I couldn't give you the option to do." She swallowed her breath.

"Brandon, I don't care if you think I'm the worst person on this planet," She did care. "But please stop making me feel like I'm the person who held the knife in their murder. You're not the only one who lost things!"




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Belle
 Posted: Mar 9 2018, 10:23 AM
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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
"Wrapped up, so consumed by all this hurt"
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Brandon walked away from Hayden. It was best that he do that, rather than continue any kind of confrontation with her. Instead of letting him do this though, she followed him right into the next room. They now themselves in the kitchen and Brandon busied himself looking in cabinets and drawers so he didn’t have to look at her.

Brandon didn’t think her the worst person on the planet. That position would always be held by the people who took his parents from him. But Hayden had committed an almost equally terrible crime; she walked out on the only family she had left. The only family that gave a damn about her.

“I’m not fucking stupid Hayden. I know I’ve had a decent life. Yeah, whatever, I’m in college and gotten pretty damn good at pretending I have a fucking clue as to what the hell I’m doing with my life.” He slammed the cabinet door he had opened shut, causing the items inside to rattle.

He spun around to face her. “And I’m very fucking aware we both lost things when they were murdered, but you know we still had? Each other! Until you decided to fucking leave too!" Tears stung at his eyes as he shouted. "So yeah, we both lost our parents that day, but I’m the one who lost my whole family!” Surely Adam could hear the chaos happening in the room, but Brandon couldn’t care less. The life he had known had ended all those years ago and it wasn’t just the fault of his parents’ murderers.


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 Posted: Mar 10 2018, 07:31 AM
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As expected, Brandon wasn't happy about the things she had said. But when it came to her, she decided there were a lot things he wasn't happy about, and it was things that she found she couldn't change. There was no changing his mind, showing him she wasn't the heartless bitch that he tried to make her out to be. If she didn't care about him at all, she would have, and could have (at least in a logical sense) pawned off all the things she had gotten from the apartment. But instead she still had every bit of it, and she had given him the one thing she knew would be most important to him. It had come years late, there was nothing she could do to take that back, but it was his now.

"You have more of an idea than me." She scoffed, crossing her arms. "I've stuck myself in the middle of a dead end town cleaning a creaky government building for a living. Whether you know where you're going or not, at least you can go somewhere." she snapped back, taking a breath. "And yes, before you say it, I did do that to myself. But I didn't do it to you, and that was more important to me." She shook her head. "Sixteen, Brandon, you were sixteen. What would have happened if I took you to a town where no one knew your name and then you were left alone by other means. No one could have helped you there. I couldn't stay in the city, not after what happened, but it didn't mean you had to suffer with me only to end up alone anyway!"

She paused when he mentioned that he was the only one who had lost an entire family. Did he understand what he was telling her? He was telling her she did what she had done just because she could. And that wasn't true at all. "Oh yeah, you're the only person who lost your entire family." The laugh that followed was bitter. "You're a little older than I was then, but at twenty you try suddenly having to make all the choices I had to make. Fighting for some way to keep us above water, identifying dead people, making funeral arrangements! And then on top of all of that 'Do you want to keep your younger brother?', of course I fucking wanted to Brandon but unfortunately I wasn't able to make every choice correctly!"

She could have went on, but the silence around them was suddenly filled with a soothing, familiar voice, the voice of their father backed by gentle jazz styled music. If Hayden had anything else to say, it was gone now as she shamefully shut her mouth. Adam stood in the doorway of the room they were in now, a disappointed look crossing his face. "Is this what your parents would have wanted?" He asked, sighing. "They'd be rolling over in their graves about now if they could see you both tearing each other's throats out!" His voice was stern, and Hayden looked away shamefully as the words hit them harshly.

But maybe they were needed.





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 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 09:47 AM
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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
"Wrapped up, so consumed by all this hurt"
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The mess that Hayden had created of her life was her own doing. She made those choices years ago, and if she was unhappy with how her life turned out she had only herself to blame.

“So you think that I didn’t suffer because you were nice enough to leave me with a group home?” Brandon asked. “If it hadn’t been for Michael, I wouldn’t even be standing here right now. You think any normal family wants to adopt a 16-year-old who just lived through the most traumatic experience of their life?” he asked, arms crossed in front of his chest. “I would’ve aged out of the system and ended up right on the street!” If it hadn’t been for Michael, that was what would’ve happened. No one wanted to adopt a pissed off teenager. They didn’t want that problem on their hands.

Suddenly the room was filled with the sound of their parents’ music and any other words Brandon wanted to spit at Hayden were stuck in his throat as Adam stood in the doorway, looking at them both disapprovingly. Brandon slid down to the floor, knees to his chest as tears flowed more freely. He hadn’t heard his parents’ music in years. He hadn’t heard their voices in so long and the weight of everything that had happened since that fateful night came crashing down on him all at once.

He put his head in hands, hiding his face from Adam and Hayden. He hated showing weakness in front of others, but these emotions were out of his control. He sat listening to the music, missing his parents more and more as his father’s voice surrounded him. He wished that he had never gone on that walk with Hayden. If only he had been there, he might have been able to save them.

“I just needed someone who knew what I was going through,” Brandon said through the tears. There wasn’t any malice in his voice this time, just pain and sadness.


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 Posted: Mar 12 2018, 01:45 PM
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Brandon's words cute like a knife. Of course, she understood that there were better ways that she could have handled it, and there were better ways that she could have done things. But she couldn't go back in time and fix her mistakes. All she could do now was own up to them. She wanted to continue arguing with him, try and make him see things in a different light, but before she could the sound of their father's voice to an accompaniment froze them both. Adam looked at them coolly, and they both Witnessed it as Brandon sunk to the floor in a mess she knew quite well.

Because she had several times been that same mess.

She could feel Adam's eyes on her now, and slowly she stepped forward, walking closer to Brandon yet still keeping enough distance between them where he couldn't reach out and shove her if the need had arisen. She heard his words muttered, although she could feel there was no sort of malice or harm to her wished by them this time. She took a soft breath. "I still know what you're going through." She said finally, averting her gaze for a moment. "I may not know everything, Brandon. Hell I was the one who inflicted some of that pain for you, and whether I meant it or not I'm sorry for that," She shook her head.

"But Goddess Brandon whether you like it or not we still have the same experience, and I wish we had never had it but here we are now," She sat next to him on her knees, her hands resting on her thighs and stare distant. There wasn't anger in her voice now. Remorse, Sadness, but no anger. "There are so many things I did wrong, and so many things I want to try to correct. But how am I supposed to try when we can't stop fighting?" She wasn't putting the blame square on him, and instead, it was on them both. "Adam's right, we can't do this forever, can we?" She searched his face for some kind of answer. "You may not believe me, but I miss you. Maybe I shouldn't get to, maybe it's selfish, I don't know, but..." She shook her head. "I only have one member of my family left on this earth, and one day before I'm gone, I'd like him to be able to see I never meant to hurt him."





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Tag: Belle
Date: Spring 13th, Year 3
Outfit: Here
Weather: Cloudy
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Belle
 Posted: Mar 17 2018, 01:47 PM
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"I want people to be afraid of how much they love me."

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Brandon Greene
Spring 13, Year 3 • Late Morning • Cloudy
"Wrapped up, so consumed by all this hurt"
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Brandon took a deep breath, trying to calm himself back down. Just being around Hayden brought about so many good and bad memories. The addition of his parents’ music in the background intensified those memories, and brought about a lot of feelings Brandon had been doing his best to suppress.

He lifted his head from his hands, eyes red and tear stained. He looked at Hayden who was now sitting near him. “I miss you too,” he said. “I miss us, the old us, before everything happened, before..” Before their parents had been brutally murdered and he had been abandoned by the only family member he had left.

He shook his head. “I just...I don’t know what to do anymore, Hayden.”


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Tanuki
 Posted: Mar 18 2018, 06:54 AM
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Sneaky Trash Panda at your service

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Brandon didn't respond for a few moments, and Hayden glanced away towards Adam, for some form of assurance. Adam did something they didn't expect, but it didn't mean that he was wrong to do it. Because it was only then that Hayden realized how much they were becoming something their parents wouldn't be proud of. Often their father had told them in this life all they had was each other. But every time they had met since that first time, all they had done was argue, and she was tired of that.

The words he spoke 'I miss you' were enough to bring tears to the corners of her eyes. It was something she didn't think she would hear Brandon say again. She thought a lot about that, if Brandon missed her or not, but the answer she decided was more obvious than she thought previously. He missed everything, as she did. If their parents were alive today, they would have gotten to do so many things. But it was things they couldn't do now that left both siblings with a hole in their hearts.

"I know. I do too." She responded as she clasped her hands together while she thought. "I know we can't go back now but...we can at least...try to move forward." She said, glancing at Brandon. "If I'm honest, I don't know what to do either, Brandon. I don't know where we're supposed to go, with any of this." She took a deep breath. "But there's one thing I do know, and that it's I'm really tired of fighting with you. I know what I did was awful, believe me, I know and if there was a way I could take everything back I would but I..."

She couldn't.

"I just don't want to fight anymore. I have to fight so many people as is. Yelling should be reserved for awful people like Nancy, not for you I...I'm tired, Brandon. Can we try something different?" She didn't know what, but any place else was better than where they were now.





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Tag: Belle
Date: Spring 13th, Year 3
Outfit: Here
Weather: Cloudy
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