Double Loss
By Luke Stacey

Isn't it funny how people accept their reality? Questions always go unanswered and people always end up getting hurt but why, why don't we tell the truth?
"Theirs something your mother and I would like to tell you, sit down son."
"Great, I'm in for another pep talk am I?" replied Sebastian to his more serious than usual father.
"Stop trying to annoy me and sit down for God's sake," said David trying to take hold of the situation but failing miserably.
"Now that you've reached eighteen there is a few things we need to tell you isn't their Jess" Jess, Sebastian's mother is sitting in a very uncomfortable position beneath the two men who are standing as tall as they can trying to make themselves look bigger than they are.
"When you were younger." said David in a now more comfortable manor but still with an edge to his voice. Sebastian looks at him with a smirk to his smile as if to ridicule his father.
"Look, your not making this any easier"
"What is hard about it? Come on out with it" interrupts Sebastian with absolutely no care in the situation. Sebastian and his father have never seen eye to eye, always trying to better themselves by each other's misfortunes.
"We haven't told you because it's not an easy thing to tell a child, as I was saying, when you were younger"
"Get to the point Dad, I haven't got all day I've got to be at Sara's in half an hour"
"You had a sister Sebastian, for Christ's sake, you had a sister" now shouting and getting very emotional about the whole thing. David's stomach turned when he said it, almost as if a load was lifted for a couple of seconds but suddenly smacked down on him again.
Sebastian's eyes begin to fill and in an attempt to stop the tears he sips on his glass of brandy. Silence fills the room and Jess sends a comforting look at Sebastian.
Quickly he stands up and the parents expect a response. He looks at his mother sharply with such an eye than you can see the hate and broken trust suddenly created. He grabs his jacket, flings it over his shoulder and storms out of the room.
The silence stays in the room for a moment and is then broken by David.
"Well that was a bloody success wasn't it?!" he said with no real thought of what had happened and with no compassion for Jess who is now crying head in hands with her mind trying to make some sense of the situation.
"Well, what am I supposed to do now? It was your stupid idea to tell him in the first place, you can pick up the pieces this time"
"Do you not understand how hard it was for me to loose this child, the lies, the torment I went through when we lost her, you never once stopped to think how I was, never asked me how I felt, it was always you you you." Replied Jess in a very emotional tone.
"Its not just you who felt bad for God's sake, I felt the pain as well. That was just my way of dealing with it."
Jess slowly stood up and could see that finally after 13 years it had finally got to him, the pain had finally reached his soul and he could no longer block it out.
"Damnit it Jess, why, for God's sake why"
"It wasn't our fault David, there was nothing we could do, she's gone now, we just have to accept it." Jess said trying to calm a now very emotional and broken down David.
"She was only five years old, we should have been more careful, if we had just kept a closer eye on her when she was crossing the road none of this would ever have happened"
"We've been through this a hundred times David, there's nothing we can do about it now, she's gone, we can't bring her back"
This was the first time since Linda's death that they had properly confronted the situation, always David had been the strong one, blocking out his emotion and leaving Jess to suffer, and he offered no support. I guess it was his way of dealing with it but Jess couldn't see this and many a time they have come close to divorce. The decision to tell Sebastian about his sister was made when clearing out the attic and discovering old newspaper cuttings, documenting the death of Linda. They made a firm mutual choice though it took a long time to take action. They had decided to tell him 3 years ago, it had taken them this long to buck up the courage and come clean.
To keep David from the truth they created a story that they knew Sebastian would accept. Whenever he asked about Linda or mentioned the word Sister they were soon to say that he didn't have a sister only a very close friend whose parents had moved away. Sebastian never questioned it, he accepted it, and to him it was the truth. The reason for this secrecy was because of Jess, she handled the whole situation very badly. When she saw Linda cross the road she was shouting at her, telling her to get back inside and clean up. A neighbour nearby had heard this and after the accident told the police that it was Jess' fault. She went through years of depression and never destroyed the guilt that had built up inside her.
Who doesn't believe their parents anyway? He was right to believe them, wasn't he? He made the choice after all. But why, you ask did he not want to find this friend? He did and for about 6 months he even had a good letter-friendship going with her. Or at least what he thought was she. Really it was his mother trying to twist the truth to fit their home-created story.
In one of the letters Sebastian told Linda that when they were older they would get married and that he would whisk her off to a desert island where they could live forever. Sebastian was only 6 at the time and much of the letter was dictated to Jess who would write it down for him. If only he knew his passionate and loving letters were going know where at all. Every letter ever sent and every letter supposedly received from Linda was kept in a locked box under Jess and David's bed. It was said to Sebastian that the box held secret stuff that only they were allowed to see.
Five years ago when Sebastian was 13 he was up in his parent's bedroom looking for Christmas presents. He went through drawers and drawers only to find nothing. Jess and David had done a good job of hiding them this year, as Sebastian always seemed to hunt them out. Whilst hunting around Sebastian came across a key, he didn't know what it was for at first but then remembered about Mummy and Daddies 'secret' box. He sunk his body under the bed and without much trouble came across the box. Slowly he pulled it out, staring in awe and wondering what is might posses. With delicate ease Sebastian slowly loaded the key into its hole and started to turn with such an excitement in his soul that he could barely hear his Mum pull up outside. As the front door opened Sebastian snapped out of his trance and quickly hid the box back under the bed and shoved the car back in the drawer. Then he ran downstairs and greeted his mother and kept quiet about the whole thing. He never thought about the incident again.
Meanwhile after hearing the truth from his parents Sebastian ran out of the house and headed for Sara's, Sebastian's long-term girlfriend whom he is very happy with.
He has a long way to walk since he lives in a small village outside the town in which he went to school in and now works. Sebastian had always expected things to come to him and had hoped by now, his eighteenth year of existence on this planet, he would be far away staring in some hot shot Spielberg movie. It never occurred to him that you needed money and talent to get there! Instead he work as a computer salesperson in the town's leading PC outlet. At the weekends and on Friday nights we would take a trip to the local amateur theatre just down the road from where he worked and help out with the general running of the place and if he was lucky even starred in a couple of the shows.
Whilst walking into town he thought deeply about what had just happened and pictured his sister in his mind. "Where did she go" he thought, "What is she doing now" these questions tangled his mind and after a while the torment of trying to remember as much as he could really got to him. Sinking to the floor Sebastian looked up into the night sky and realised for the first time how complex it was, how much he could see. When Sebastian was younger he was always encouraged by his father to get into astronomy but Sebastian found it utterly boring. This was the first real time he had noticed how beautiful our Solar System was and how much we hadn't really found out. After thinking for a while and comparing his life to the universe it was time to carry on walking, he was nearly there now and it was getting cold so he had better hurry.
Now with the street lamps in full glare Sebastian ran up the drive to Sara's one bedroom apartment and rang on the doorbell. Nothing happened so he tried again, still there was no response from the house and this time now getting angry Sebastian banged on the door. "Sara, open the door it's me, open the door". Sebastian could hear a slight rumble and then finally he could see a figure approaching the door.
"She has gone out, went ages ago." Hammered a deep hollow voice through the letterbox. It must have been Paul, Sara's flat mate.
Sebastian quickly turned round and headed towards the Base, which was the town's best (and only) nightclub.
The club was filled with immature teenagers trying to act older. A distinct smell of nicotine hit his nose and promptly he covered it. Coloured strobe lights flickered all around and Sebastian was having a hard time finding Sara. He had already paid five pounds to get in and Sebastian was only guessing she was here.
Finally he saw her, stooped in a purple chair she sat, it suddenly hit him how beautiful she was and quickly he went and sat next to her.
"I need to talk, now, c'mon lets go outside" he shouted competing with the loud music coming from a large speaker right next to them.
"Not now, Sebastian, I'm having fun here, just, come and see me tomorrow, please" she said trying to edge him away.
"Its very important, really, c'mon, now, I need to talk to you"
"Just go away, for Christ sake, leave me alone" replied Sara slurring he words. Sebastian could see that she had drunk slightly too much and decided to leave.
He really needed to get this out, had to air it to somebody it was that big, that life changing. What kind of a relationship did they have if he couldn't even talk to her?
After walking around the town passing dozens of happy faces Sebastian began to feel really sick. Such a horrible feeling was brewing in his stomach that he had to tell someone. The only person he could think of apart from Sara to talk to was Spike his supposed best friend. Spike was a very 'of the planet' guy and was very hyper compared to Sebastian. Spike didn't really know what friends are for but thinks he does. Spike and Sebastian always avoid important subjects and most of the relationship is one way. Even though Spike never pays much attention to Sebastian they have remained friends for well over twelve years now. When Sebastian started dating Sara Spike became very jealous and the two didn't talk to each other for about three months. After the jealousy cooled down Spike came back and there has been a weird air between them ever since. Spike was really the last person Sebastian wanted to talk to about his problems with Sara. But he needed to get it out and this he thought was the only way.
Spike lived in the more upmarket part of town and yet again was quite a walk for Sebastian. As he trudged around the streets toward Spike he started to run and was very anxious to get rid of the 'sickness' he felt in his stomach. As he ran away from the town now almost delirious the lights started to fade and he stood silent in a field pitch black.
Flashing in front of his eyes were vague images of past days when his smile was true and his sister was around. As Sebastian collapsed to his knees the images became clearer and now stood a sharp, bright picture of his Sister. She was walking towards him, slowly, but with great intent. As he looked up she reached out a hand and beckoned him to follow. Slowly Sebastian extended his hand to reach hers, sweat poured from his head and dripped onto his nose sliding into his mouth. Their hands were nearly touching now and Sebastian started to smile.
"Sebastian, over here mate" shouted Spike running towards him.
Sebastian suddenly snapped out of his trance and stood up with tears in his eyes. Slowly he turned around, wiped the salty water from his eye and looked at Spike.
"Hey, what's up? You all right? Said Spike with an anxious tone in his voice.
"I'm fine, just thought I would come and see you." Replied Sebastian trying to pull himself together and to stop shivering.
"C'mon, let's go inside, it's bloody freezing out here"
Spike led him back to a rather stately house with several balconies standing out in the dark. The house was painted white from top to bottom and had an awful lot of garages, which were all, filled with high-class, very expensive cars.
The two on them spent hours and hours talking. Their conversations ranged from the 'local economy' to 'which girl has the cutest bum' but Sebastian never managed to bring up the problem that had been eating his stomach for over six hours now.
Slowly they both became tired and Spike offered one of the spare bedrooms to Sebastian.
The morning came quickly and after less than 3 hours sleep Sebastian gathered his things together and headed home to face his parents.
After another long walk Sebastian was very tired and could barely keep his eyes open. When he arrived back home his parents were out, probably looking for him he thought. Sebastian dropped his things and fell on the sofa and drifted into a heavy sleep.
Sebastian's parents were looking for him as he had rightly predicted. Early in the morning just after Sebastian had left they dropped by at Spike's. David and Jess explained to spike what had happened, he was shell-shocked, and it was too much for him to take in. Spike informed the parents that he had gone home and they would probably find him there. David and Jess drove around for hours trying to figure out what they could say to sort this problem out.
Suddenly Sebastian was awakened by the sound of the phone ringing. Pulling his body towards the phone he lifted the receiver to hear Spike at the end of the phone.
"Sara's just been on the phone mate, I'm afraid I've got some bad news for you"
"What, what the hell are you talking about" said Sebastian trying to fully wake up.
"She says she couldn't face you herself"
"Sorry Spike, I'm not getting you her, still very tired"
"Sebastian, Sara says its over, you two, she doesn't love you anymore." He said with a tiny edge of happiness to his voice. "But don't worry mate, there's other people out there".
"What the hell are you talking about?" he said now getting very irritated. "I was talking to her just yesterday."
"Yeah, she said and you were being very funny with her"
"No I wasn't, she was being funny with me!"
"Okay, okay, whatever, I'm sorry mate, she says its over" suddenly Spike remembered about Sebastian's parents calling round and before he could say anything about it Sebastian slammed down the phone.
He stared at the hung up phone and slowly fell to his knees. With an almighty roar Sebastian threw the phone across the room and let out all the emotion he had been storing up for over a day now. The tears ran down his face a caught his hand on the descent to the ground. Sebastian couldn't stop himself from crying it was too much, why did this have to happen to him? And at a time like this as well. He couldn't understand why she would do this, they had been so happy together. "For Christ's Sake" he dried. Not long ago they were planning there wedding arrangements, where they would live. Things were going fine, he couldn't work it out. Okay, the last couple of months have been a bit difficult, he admitted but we were fine, she never complained.
Now in another emotional rage Sebastian grabbed his coat and yet again set of for town in an attempt to find Sara.
Again she was not at the house and Sebastian ran around the town trying to find her. He had tried everywhere, there was only one last place he could think of. A quiet city park right at the top of town, she liked it there. Inside the parks there were beautiful plants of every colour and a small lake that engulfed much of the park.
Sebastian had arrived and just as he had expected Sara was crouching next to the lake with a large leaf in the water, swaying it from side to side. He walked up to where she was standing and knelt down next to her bag.
"Its beautiful here isn't it"
"Uh hu" she replied not paying much attention to what he was saying.
"Look Sara, we need to talk, so much has happened over the past day, I need for you to hear me out" he said trying to desperately to get her attention.
"Its alright Sebastian" she said, now starting to smile "I already now, your parents dropped earlier on, they had been looking for you for ages."
"I had to get away and think," said Sebastian
He explained to Sara what had happened yesterday with his parents, she was very shocked and genuinely upset for him.
"I'm sorry about telling Spike to call you" she said. "I was way to harsh, don't know what I was thinking, I just felt trapped that's all, as if I had know where to turn"
"You can always turn to me" he said reassuringly. "Can we give it another go?"
They embraced and a tear fell from Sara's eyes.
"But before I can properly commit to you" said Sebastian making Sara slightly anxious. "I need to find my Sister. I know she moved away somewhere, if I talk to my parents it shouldn't take to long. Its just something I have to do". Sebastian stated with a firm tone to his voice. Sara nodded and they walked towards the exit. In the distance David and Jess were walking around trying to find him. Suddenly Sebastian caught glimpse of his father and David ran over.
"Son, are you all right" said David, relieved to find him.
"I'm fine, but Dad" David looked puzzled. "I need to find her, my sister, where is she, please."
"David, I'm sorry, I'm so sorry"
"She's dead."