I woke up with my head feeling heavy like a dozen stones. Next to me the bedsheets were empty. A sigh of relieve escaped my lips. With slow movements I got up and left the bedroom, hoping that Drake already left. Actually no, not hoping, knowing that he left. I know I shouldn’t feel that way about my boyfriend. In my thoughts I still hated him for everything he does to me, but what should I do? Where should I go? I knew no one and my best friend Haley shouldn’t know anything about this…
I looked through all the drawers in the kitchen, searching for an Aspirin, or maybe two… While I searched for them I started to think how stupid I was. Every time I went out clubbing with Drake, what happened about 3-4 times a week, and my so called ‘friends’, I ended up having a huge hangover and not remembering anything of the night.
I filled a glass full with water and dropped the aspirin in it. I waited till the pill disappeared and sat down at the small table we had in the kitchen. While I emptied the glass, I checked my mobile phone for any new messages. ‘Oh shit’ I totally forgot that I was supposed to meet Haley today… I groaned and checked the time. I only had one hour to get dressed and go to the restaurant she wanted to meet me.
One hour later I arrived at the restaurant and hurried up to find Haley sitting where we always had our table. “A bit hungover, huh?” Haley asked and smirked at me. As a response she got a groan and we ordered. We chatted a bit and just had a normal best friend talk. But even before we got our meals we got interrupted. “Sienna?”
Well, what a surprise…
It was the day after we went out clubbing. We spent the whole day going on sightseeing trips, just to relax a bit before we would spent hours at the youtube convention. It was a bout 2 pm when we decided to get something to eat. Zoe, Finn, Marcus, Caspar, Alfie, Louis and me headed to a well known restaurant. But as soon as we entered, there was a girl getting all of my attention.
"Sienna?" with the rest of the group following me, I called her and she looked up surprised. "Jack" I’m not sure if she planned on letting it sound annoyed, but well, it did. "What are you doing here?" now the rest of the group has arrived and they stared at Sienna and me. "I live in this city, no big surprise" nope, she definitely wanted to sound like that. "Hey, aren’t you the boy from yesterday? Caspar, right?" Haley interrupted us and pointed in Caspar’s direction. "Haley! Hey!" They went in for a hug, they looked like long lost friend. Watching them made my heart feel like it was torn apart. That should have been Sienna and me, not them. "You guys can join us, if you want to!" Haley invited us to sit down. I looked at Sienna who didn’t look that pleased with this, but eventually started to move. I was sitting between Sienna and Caspar.
Everyone started to chat, well except me. While Finn was talking to Sienna, trying to catch up the last years. To my surprise, she wasn’t that ignorant to him, but still, she wasn’t the girl I remembered. The food came and everyone stopped talking for a few seconds, just to erupt again, now sounding happier than before. I was still quietly sitting in the corner and eating while I tried to listen to the conversation Finn and Sienna had. “Hey Haley, can you give me the salt?” Sienna tried to catch Haley’s attention, but she was too busy talking, let me rephrase that, flirting with Caspar. She groaned and reached over the table to grab the salt. With that action her t-shirt slipped a bit higher and I tried not to look when it revealed her soft skin, no wait-
That definitely wasn’t ‘soft skin’! My eyes grew bigger when I saw the big bruise that covered almost half of her left side. I took a quick look around the table to check if anyone else had seen it, but everyone was still chatting. “Can we talk?” I whispered to her. “Why?” she started to add salt to her chicken breast. “Just come with me” I hissed. She didn’t move and just went on eating. Without any hesitation, I grabbed her arm and pulled her up, getting everyone’s attention, but I didn’t care and dragged her with me outside of the restaurant. “What the fuck are you doing?!” she protested but again, I didn’t care. I only let go of her when we were outside of the restaurant and I was standing in front of her.
"I saw it" I simply said. Just for a second her eyes looked worried, but she quickly hid it and asked "What did you see?" she crossed her arms and gave me a sassy look. "Don’t play dumb on me!" I didn’t want to sound that angry, but I couldn’t help it… I was just too annoyed by her attitude. "I saw your bruise and don’t tell me that you fell down or ran into something, because I will not believe you!" I raised my voice.
But within seconds all my anger was gone when I saw a tear slip out of her eye…
She turned around trying to hide the fact that she was crying. “No, no, no, no, no!” I said already feeling sorry. Every time I stepped in front of her, she turned around again and I finally gave up and hugged her from behind. “Sienna, what happened? You know you can tell me everything!” I whispered and it seems like I finally broke down her walls. She stepped a few feet away and wiped her tears away. “Y-You are right… It was my boyfriend… But please don’t tell him! He… he loves me… he just sometimes can’t control his anger…” her voice was shaky and I quickly pulled her in a tight hug, always trying not to touch her bruise to prevent pain.
"But Sienna… you know you deserve someone better!" I tried to calm her down.
But I didn’t tell her that I was talking about me.
"Singing the sun don’t shine, the sun don’t shine…" I hummed as the fresh Australian air blew against my skin. We were just crossing the bridge.
“WE’RE FINALLY HERE BOYS!” Marcus shouted, followed by a bunch of ‘woos’ and ‘yeahs’ from the others.
“Dude, I’m a girl!” Zoe laughed. See, we all have pretty famous YouTube channels and we’re in Sydney for a convention thing.
“I say we hit a club tonight, I heard there’s a really good one just off of Bondi Beach,” Finn, my twin, said. I was acting pretty quiet.
“What’s up Jack? You’re really quiet,” Alfie patted my shoulder.
“Oh nothing,” but it was something. It was Sienna, I’m pretty sure she lives her now. It would be cool if I see her I guess but Sydney is a pretty big city.
“Take a right here,” Caspar instructed Marcus who was driving.
“Oh I see it!” Zoe pointed to a small building just on the beach.
We entered to hear booming music, good music. I was dragged straight to the dance floor by Marcus who of course began to ‘break it down’. I love my friends but I really wasn’t in the mood for partying.
“Jack, Jack, come over here!” I heard a South African call me. I looked around to see him at the bar chatting up a very good looking girl with long blonde hair.
“This is Haley and she’s Australian,” Caspar told me.
“Hi,” she smiled and held her hand out, I shook it.
“Well Caspar we are in Australia,” I stated, just in case he forgot.
“So, Haley, are you here with your ‘gal pals’?” I wet myself laughing. Gal Pals? Nice one Casp.
“Yeah I’m here with my friend. You guys are from England right? She’s from there too!” she smiled wildly, “Sienna!” she called.
Shit. I thought to myself. Her friend… from England… called Sienna. What if? And then I saw her. I’d know those big brown eyes anywhere. We looked at each other dumbfounded.
“You know each other?!” Caspar exclaimed. We didn’t say anything.
“Guys!” Haley nudged her friend.
“Jack?” she said, with the same shocked expression, “oh my… you haven’t changed still that nerdy little boy,” she laughed. She may look exactly the same but she’s much more confident.
“Still short I see,” I don’t know why but it came out as if I was taking the piss out of her.
“Welllllllll,” Caspar rocked on his heels.
“This is a tad awkward isn’t it,” Haley did the same. They both walked off and left us to it.
“You never called me,” I said quietly but she heard.
“That’s because I didn’t need you,” she looked bitter.
“Woah you’re a bit snappy aren’t you?” Something was off.
“Well maybe I’m just not the same 11 year old girl that you last saw,” she snapped at me. I suddenly saw this tall, muscular guy walk up to us.
“Hey baby,” he wrapped his arms around Sienna’s tiny waist and kissed her neck. Yuck.
“Your set was amazing!” she kissed him back and then looked at me, “Drake is a DJ,” it was like she was trying to make me jealous. Her boyfriend looked at me with evil eyes.
I don’t know why, but it didn’t feel right. I looked deep in her eyes again and something inside of me told me that there was something wrong. Her eyes weren’t filled with the happiness I remembered them, and now that I think of it, she didn’t look like the happy, shy girl I remembered. But in her eyes, I could also see something that looked like pain. Out of the corner of my eyes I saw how she carefully pushed this jerk’s hand a bit higher. My gaze was fixed on her left thigh, there was something wrong. “DJ? Impressive…” I said sounding a bit too uninterested than I intended to. “Uhm, excuse me?! But I think it’s really impressive to be a DJ in this exclusive club. What are you doing anyway?” Wow, I didn’t expect her to be that sassy. “I am a youtuber” I didn’t say anything about my over 2 million viewers, probably 1.9 million people more who know this Drake boy. “A youtuber? Oh are you one of these guys who talk to a camera? Oh please…” Drake said with a sound of amusement. But I didn’t care about him, my eyes were glues on Sienna the whole time. I swear, for a second I could see amazement in her eyes but just as quick as it appeared it was already gone and she had the same amused expression like Drake did.
"Let’s go, babe. The cool kids are somewhere else. I don’t think you want to talk to this youtube freak any longer, do you?" I was a bit take back at the determined sound in his voice. Again, for a second there was a mixture of fear and sadness in her eyes. "Yeah, sure. Nice meeting you Jack" With that they turned around and went to the other side of the club. They left me and just when they were out of sight, Sienna turned around again and it was hard to see what she did, because of the darkness on the club, but I swear it was a small smile. A smile that expressed sadness and apologies. I was puzzled, was this really the Sienna I had feelings for?
August 24th 2004
"I’m actually so excited to start senior school!" I smiled as we walked through WH Smiths looking for any stationary we might need.
“You are?” Sienna glared at me. For the past few weeks she hadn’t been herself and I began to worry.
“Dude what’s up?” I asked.
“Can we do this another time? I - I need to tell you something,” she began to shake a little. We walked to the nearby park and sat by the lake.
“Tell me what’s up,” I said.
“You know my Dad has his business,” she looked serious, I nodded, “well it’s gotten really big in loads of countries like China, Germany, America,” she paused, “and Australia,” A tear began to roll down her face, ” and we’re moving there. Next week,” she broke down right in front of me. I was holding back the tears too. My best friend who I loved so much is moving to the other side of the world.
“B-but you’ll be back right?” she didn’t say anything, just shook her head. I felt paralysed, I didn’t know whether to congratulate her or let my true emotions show. So I said nothing. And she left. And after that, we never spoke again.
June 18th 2001
Sienna and I had been best friends for four years. Her, my brother Finn and I would spend every playtime together, drawing, painting, running around. But Finn had just become friends with some other boys so it was just us two. I remember June 18th 2001 so vividly. It was the day I began to feel something else for Sienna, even though I was only 8 years old.
It was playtime and I had gone inside to grab a skipping rope and some tennis balls to play with. I walked outside to see Sienna surrounded by the mean boys in our class.
“Stay out of our area, you dwarf!” “Yeah why are you so short?!” “You’re such a midget!”. I didn’t like what they were saying to her. She always got picked on for being the smallest in the class.
“HEY!” I shouted they all turned around to look at me, “leave her alone!”
“And what are you going to do if we don’t!” one of them walked up to me. Seeing Sienna so upset with tears rolling down her face jerked something inside of me.
“Just leave her alright,” I became really angry.
“Fine,” they backed off, “but next time, you’re going to get it.” I remember feeling really glad that it didn’t get violent. I just wasn’t into all that stuff. I ran over to Sienna, who was crying, and hugged her.
“You didn’t have to do that, Jack,” she leant into my shoulder.
“I just don’t like seeing you upset,” I said to her. In that moment I realised something that would stick with me for the rest of my life. I felt like I had a duty to look after Sienna, no matter what. I didn’t know what that meant back in 2001, but I just knew what I had to do.