Chapter 27, Falling Apart
I'm racing and swerving through the streets, desperately trying to get the air to fill my lungs, but I have no luck.
I know I shouldn't be driving when I'm like this, but I have no choice. I have to make it home as fast as I can, but the road seems to be never-ending. I keep pressing the gas pedal harder and harder, staring at the way the needle indicating my speed on the dashboard keeps rising higher.
Tears are streaming down my face and blurring my vision, and I wipe them away with my sleeve, but I can't stop the coming. As I cry, a painful lump forms and tightens my throat, and I cough and gasp for air.
When turn into my street and I see my house in the distance, I hold on to the steering wheel until my knuckles turn white. I just have to hold on for a little longer and everything will be fine.
Finally arriving at my house, I turn the wheel to park and I floor the break as I get in the driveway. I can smell the burnt tires and see the marks they left behind in my rearview mirror, but I can't worry about that right now.
I rush out of the car, shaking and crying and I look for the key to the front door. I struggle to keep my hand steady enough to get the key inside the lock, but I force it as much as I can and I finally unlock the door and go inside the house.
"MOM!" I yell through unsteady breaths, trying to find some help, but there is no response except for the echo of my own words.
I try to yell again but my voice just wont come out, so instead I start running and stumbling through the house, looking for someone. I check every room and I finally realise that I'm alone, and no one can help me.
I push my bedroom door and it slams open. As I go in I see that it is filled with pictures of me and Tyler, and that makes my heartache grow even stronger. All our memories smile back at me and remind me things will never be the same, that I made so many mistakes I can't take back, and that worst of all I hurt someone I love. I should have listened, I should have seen the signs, but I was too self absorbed and selfish to notice what was going on. I brought this upon myself. I never thought losing a friend could hurt so much, but the hole I feel growing in my chest is proving otherwise. I back into a wall and just let myself slide down to the floor, sitting with my arms holding my legs close to my chest.
And in that state I just let it all go.
Knowing that I'm alone I let myself cry and scream as loud as I can, hearing the echo of my voice bouncing through the empty house, and hoping that this will relieve me somehow, but it doesn't. I bang my head against the wall once, and I don't feel anything. I do it again, and again, and again, harder each time, but I can't feel the pain. I just feel my body go numb as I keep sobbing and I bury my head in my arms.
Each time I let out a breath, a wail comes out with it, and my chest is getting tighter by the minute. My heart keeps racing and I'm starting to get scared because it feels like it's been hours since I was able to breathe properly. I've never felt something like this before.
I know I'm self destructing, and making the situation worse for myself, but I can't stop. The thoughts inside my head won't let me.
My body jolts at the unexpected sound of my phone ringing. I shuffle I trying to get it out of my back pocket as fast as I can. It could be Tyler calling, saying he wants to patch things up, or it could be my mom to tell me where in the world she is. But as I grab the phone and stare at the screen, the caller ID shows Noah's name.
With my hand shaking I press the decline button and toss my phone on the ground. He's the last person I want to talk to right now. It's not like this is his fault, I have no one to blame but myself, but if I hadn't let my feelings for him blind me, maybe I wouldn't be here.
After a minute, the phone starts ringing again, and I just let it go to voicemail. He'll give up eventually.
But time and time again, the phone keeps ringing and he keeps calling. So not being able to take it anymore, when it rings again, I pick it up.
"Wh-what d-do you want N-Noah?" I ask into the phone in between choked breaths and tears.
"Amber? What's going on? Why are you crying?" he asks, rushing through his questions.
"T-Tyler." is all I say before breaking down again.
"Amber are you home? Are you alone?"
"Y-Yes" I reply to both questions.
"Darling I want you to listen to me, stay right where you are. Hold on for just a little longer. I'll be there in five minutes." he says and I hear him shuffling around on the other side of the line.
"No N-Noah don't-" I try but before I can finish, he hangs up the phone.
And all I hear is the sound of the dial tone and my own unsteady breaths.