The metal rubs roughly against my skin, cutting deep into my wrists, as forceful hands press into the middle of my back, urging me forward.
My feet shuffle around the splattered blood decorating the tiled floor, and my eyes wander over the mess I’m leaving behind.
What have I done?
Stepping outside, I’m welcomed by the flashing strobed of red and blue lights, and the prying eyes of everyone I’ve ever known.
Staring. Questioning. Judging.
I keep my head down, willing myself to wake up from this horrible nightmare. Praying that my irresponsible choices didn’t just take away my whole family. With each step I take the sound of gunshots bouncing off the walls echoes through my mind. Mixed with the memory of Sasha’s blood curdling screams, and I know I’m destined to be haunted by this moment forever.
“Ma’am you’re going to have to move out of the way.” The officer’s stern voice has me looking up. I wondered if I would see her before they took me away. She stands before me, leaning on the police car. Her tears are uncontrollable, and her shoulders shake in grief. If a broken heart had a face, hers would be it.
I step closer, and let all the regret, the confusion and the ultimate betrayal linger between us.
“I’m so sorry.” I say, my voice hoarse and broken.
The second the words leave my mouth, her body stiffens. I know their inadequate. She straightens her back, and wipes her face; ridding herself of her vulnerability.
“Sorry?” She spits out in a question. “I hope you fucking burn in hell.”
My head hangs in defeat, knowing those gates are open wide and ready to welcome me.
I feel his disappointment before I see him. “Sasha, the ambulance is making its way to the hospital. Dakota needs you.” My brother Hendrix stares at me like he’s noticing me for the first time. Wondering what he missed, and how we got here. Shaking his head he leaves me behind, and follows his future.
“Drix,” I call out. His shoulders rise and fall at the sound of my voice. “I know how important she is to you. Take care of them for me, you’ll do a better job than I ever could.”
My request scratches the surface of our unspoken thoughts. Guilt swims in my veins and regret cinches my heart. There isn’t a life around me I haven’t touched and stained, and the pain etched on all their faces is tangible proof.